Monday, October 4, 2010

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: October 4, 2010

Special Announcements

Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces: Press Conference and Lobby Day

Over 41% of workers in Philadelphia have no earned sick time, while 78% of restaurant and accommodation workers are forced to choose between going to work sick (or sending a child to school sick) and losing a day's pay or possibly their job.

The Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces is holding a Press Conference and Lobby Day, complete with Lobby Training, to provide information for Philadelphia's City Council about the importance of earned sick time and to urge them to continue work on the Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces Act (Bill No. 080474).

WHEN: Tuesday, October 12th

There will be a Lobby Training held at 123 S. Broad Street 8th Floor - Room 8B at 11:00 AM. Food will be provided The Press Conference will take place at 1:00 PM, in the Mayor's Reception Room in City Hall, with visits to City Council Members throughout the afternoon.. Come for the whole day or for as long as you are able to.

You do not need to be an expert or have lobbying experience to take part in this exciting day. We will provide you with everything you need to advocate for this important issue!

For more information about the event, please contact Kate Scully at PathWays PA at 610-543-5022 or Rebecca Foley at WOMEN'S WAY at 215-985-3322.

Please join the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces to give workers the ability to earn sick time to care for themselves and their families. To RSVP for this event please visit: http://earnedsicktimelobbyday.eventbrite.com.

PathWays to the Stars 32nd Anniversary Celebration Sports-tacular!

PathWays PA will celebrate 32 years of services to low-income women, children and families this year by hosting the PathWays to the Stars 32nd Anniversary Celebration Sports-tacular.

WHEN: Tuesday, November 9, 2010, 6:30 – 9:00PM
WHERE: Radisson King of Prussia’s Waterford Ballroom.

The silent auction will feature Phillies, Flyers, Eagles and Sixers tickets and memorabilia. Also, as part of the festivities, we will present this year's Trailblazer Awards to five inspiring individuals. To read about the 2010 Trailblazer Honorees, click here.

To bid on silent auction items or see what is available, click here. Be sure to check out the items available often and we will be adding new ones until the event.

Tickets to the event are $50 ($60 at the door) and may be purchased online. Further information on corporate and individual sponsorships can be found here.

Federal

Support the Child Nutrition Reauthorization Act

With the new poverty data showing just how many children are living in poverty in this country, a Child Nutrition Reauthorization Bill that improves low-income children's access to nutritious food and does not cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly Food Stamps) is incredibly important. With 43.6 million Americans living in poverty in 2009 SNAP benefits – the nation’s nutrition safety net for children and adults – needs to be strengthened, not weakened.

A bill is needed that will reduce childhood hunger and obesity by improving program access and the quality of meals served to children. These improvements cannot be made at the cost of lowering future SNAP benefits to the millions of children in families with low incomes.

Please urge your Representative to pass a good child nutrition bill that does not cut future SNAP benefits to our children and families in need.

State

House Approves Natural Gas Severance Tax Bill, Now Moves onto the Senate 

Last week the House approved SB 1155, a bill that would tax extracted natural gas from Marcellus Shale. The bill would impose a 39-cent tax on every 1,000 cubic feet (MCF) of gas produced, with no tax on the sale of the natural gas. This tax would generate and estimate $316 million in state revenue in 2010, the first full year of implementation.

The bill, as amended, would distribute revenue from the severance tax as follows:

Until Fiscal Year 2012-13, the initial $75 million generated from the tax would be used as follows:
  • $70 million to the General Fund
  • $5 million to the Department of Labor and Industry for natural gas-related job training programs
The remaining revenue would be distributed as follows:
  • 40% to the General Fund
  • 32% to the Environmental Stewardship Fund
  • 16% to Local Governments
  • 2.4% to the Conservation District Fund
  • 1.6% to the Hazardous Sites Cleanup Fund
  • 1.6% to the Pennsylvania Game Commission
  • 1.6% for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program
  • 1.6% to the Oil and Gas Environmental Disaster Recovery Fund
  • 1.4% to the Fish and Boat Commission
  • 1% to the Environmental Hearing Board
  • 0.8% for state dam removal, restoration and repair projects
As of now, it is unclear whether this amended bill will pass the Senate. To learn more about this issue visit the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center’s Severance Tax Resources Page.


Now Available from the KIDS COUNT Data Center: Child Poverty Rates and Rankings by State, City Level and Congressional District

The Annie E. Casey Foundation's KIDS COUNT Data Center has been updated to include poverty data from the 2009 American Community Survey (ACS) that was just released. The Data Center for the first time breaks down child poverty rates for those living below the federal poverty level, by state, city and congressional district.

As a result of the recession and growing unemployment, there is a significant rise in the national child poverty rate, jumping from 18 percent in 2007 to 20 percent in 2009.

In Pennsylvania, 17 percent or 467,000 children lived in poverty in 2009. This is an increase of 12,000 children since 2008 and of 20,000 children since 2007.

In Philadelphia, 13 percent (119,000) children were living below the poverty level in 2009. This is an increase of 7,000 children in one year.

Nationally there are 14.7 million children in households with incomes below the poverty level, 1.6 million more than in 2007. There is a wide range in child poverty rates across congressional districts nationwide, from a high of 49 percent in New York's Congressional District 16 to a low of 3 percent in New Jersey's Congressional District 11 and Pennsylvania's Congressional District 8.

For more information see the KIDS COUNT Data Center, which contains maps and graphs of the latest data on poverty, health insurance coverage, and more than 100 other indicators of child well-being.

Information/Events

Deadline to Register to Vote is TODAY!

Today is the last day to register to vote on November 2nd. This means that completed registration forms must be submitted or postmarked on or before October 4, 2010. Your vote is your voice and if you are not registered yet be sure to do so today.

You can print out your Registration Form from the Committee of Seventy.  You can also register in person at a number of locations.

The Committee also has information about the candidates running for elected office and tools to help you find your polling place.

For more information, please see the other resources below:

  • The Pennsylvania Department of State has a website dedicated to addressing questions and concerns about voting: http://www.votespa.com
  • The Pennsylvania Bureau of Commissions, Elections, and Legislation’s website provides information regarding elections, pertinent forms, and laws: http://www.dos.state.pa.us/bcel
  • Your county board of elections - find out their contact information here.
PathWays PA Spotlight Initiative


PathWays PA Receives Economic Security Champions Award

Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW) works nationally and in its home community of Washington, DC to build pathways to economic independence for America's families, women, and girls. WOW has a distinctive history in changing the landscape of women and work.

WOW called on organizations willing to embrace the framework of promoting economic security over a lifetime to become Economic Security Champions. Economic Security Champions are organizations that participate in innovative work in the field of economic security and that are willing to embrace a framework for promoting economic security across the age spectrum through organizing, advocacy and outreach activities.

PathWays PA was selected to be a champion for our ongoing work with economic security as exemplified by the Pennsylvania Self-Sufficiency Standard, Elder Economic Security Standard, and our work on Earned Sick Time.


Image courtesy of: image courtesy of http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Voting_United_States.jpg

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