Monday, May 4, 2009

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: May 4, 2009

May 12 Release
In Pennsylvania, a large and diverse group of families who may not be below the Federal Poverty Level are experiencing economic distress and are routinely overlooked and undercounted. That’s the finding from PathWays PA’s latest publication, Overlooked and Undercounted: Struggling to Make Ends Meet in Pennsylvania, which uses The Self-Sufficiency Standard of Pennsylvania to determine how many households live below self-sufficiency. This report will be released on May 12, 2009, at www.pathwayspa.org and at our blog, http://policypathwayspa.blogspot.com.


Join the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces!
PathWays PA is working with a number of organizations, including ACORN, Maternity Care Coalition, SEIU, and Women’s Way, to support earned sick days for all workers in the City of Philadelphia, by forming the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces. The Coalition is endorsing the Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces, Bill No. 080474.

If you would like to become a member of the Coalition please click here to fill out the Sign-On Form.


Free Women’s Health Information!
Women now have a new, easy to access tool to help them live healthier lives. Free Women’s Wellness Guide Kiosks are now available.

With just the touch of a screen, the Women’s Wellness Guide kiosk provides information on diseases and conditions common to women. The Women's Wellness Guide kiosks can be found across Pennsylvania including in grocery stores, county assistance offices, Women Infant and Children (WIC) offices, health care clinics, and prison waiting rooms. All of the information on the kiosk is available in English or Spanish.

For Kiosk locations call 1-888-615-7477 or click here.


Swine Flu Closes More than 100 Schools in the U.S. What Are Parents to Do?
Across the country at least 74 schools have closed because of confirmed or probable cases of swine flu and 30 more have closed as a precautionary measure. For schools that remain open, both President Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan advised parents to have their children stay home if they are sick.

For nearly half of the U.S. workforce, who do not receive a single paid sick day, missing work to care for their children is simply not an option. These parents are faced with the impossible decision to either leave their children unsupervised, send them to school sick (if the school is open), or lose the income that is desperately needed to buy food, pay rent, pay bills, etc.

No worker should have to face such an impossible decision, especially when there is another option that is more beneficial for workers, families, and society. The Healthy Families Act will ensure that all workers have paid sick time to care for themselves and their children. This will allow workers to necessary breathing room to be able to care for their children and stop the spread of diseases, such as the swine flu.

Please write an email, sign a petition, Tweet your friends (use the hashtag #sickdays if you can, and direct them to sign the petition at http://is.gd/uTvx), or make a phone call today.


Community Legal Services Presents – The Road to Recovery: Implementing the Stimulus in Philadelphia and Beyond.
The federal stimulus money, provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, offers unprecedented opportunities to get our local economy moving and to improve the lives of struggling Philadelphians. But while the money comes with a roadmap from the federal government, critical decisions must be made at the state and local levels.

Decision-makers must invest the stimulus money strategically so that its impact can be maximized, especially for low income Philadelphians. This forum will examine the key decisions to be made. It also will explore how advocates may work with decision-makers to ensure that the opportunities presented by the stimulus money are realized fully.

When: Friday, May 22nd 9:00 – 12:00
Where: Independence Visitors Center, 6th and Market Streets, Philadelphia
Who: Mark Alan Hughes, Policy Director, City of Philadelphia
Linda Blanchette, Deputy Secretary, Pa. Department of Public Welfare
Fred Dedrick, Deputy Secretary, Pa. Department of Labor and Industry (invited)
Mark Schwartz, Executive Director, Regional Housing Legal Services

To register please go to http://phillystimulus.eventbrite.com. Seating is limited. Registration is required. If you have problems registering online, please R.S.V.P. with Kavita Nayar at knayar@clsphila.org or 215-981-3732.


Support Earned Sick Days in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia!

Support the paid sick days campaign in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia!

Become our friend! Show your support for earned sick time by visiting Facebook. Visit this link to support earned sick time in Pennsylvania, and visit this link to support earned sick time in Philadelphia. Support both!

Tell us your story! Are you a parent who lost their job to stay home with a sick child? Are you a business owner who provides/supports paid sick days? Email your story to us at policy@pathwayspa.org. Call your Representatives! If you live in Philadelphia, call your City Councilperson and urge them to support "Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces," which guarantees earned sick time for all working Philadelphians. Not sure who your City Councilperson is? Click on this link and type in your home address to find out which district you live in: http://www.phila.gov/citycouncil/districtform/districtform.html.

If you live in Pennsylvania (but outside of Philadelphia), call your state Representative. Tell him/her you support earned sick time for workers. Not sure who your Representative is? Simply type your address here:http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/home/find.cfm.


Announcement: Free Online Resource Network for Unions
The Labor Project for Working Families announces LEARN WorkFamily, a free online labor education and resource network to help unions build a family friendly workplace culture. LEARN WorkFamily features the nation's only online database of contract language on work family issues such as family leave, childcare, elder care, flexible work options, adoption, bereavement leave and much more.

You can register for free at www.learnworkfamily.org. If you would like more information, please email info@working-families.org or call (510) 643-7088.

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