Monday, December 6, 2010

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: December 6, 2010

Special Event

ENJOY FREE COFFEE WHILE URGING LEGISLATORS TO ENSURE ALL WORKERS HAVE THE RIGHT TO EARN PAID SICK DAYS - PLEASE RSVP TODAY!

Join the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces for a Letter Writing Party.

In addition to networking, free coffee, and an opportunity to learn more about earned sick time, we will be asking each person to put pen to paper and let their members of City Council know why earning paid sick days is important.

WHEN: Tuesday, December 7th - 8:00 AM – 10:00 AM

WHERE: United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania, 1709 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia PA

PLEASE RSVP, EVEN IF YOU ARE JUST STOPPING BY: http://letterwriting.eventbrite.com

Come for the entire event or just stop in to send a letter. Free coffee and a light breakfast will be provided.

Even if you have paid sick days it is likely that people you come into contact with every day do not. Did you know that 41% of workers in Philadelphia are forced to choose between going to work sick, or sending a child to school sick, or losing their pay or possibly their job? The majority of workers without paid sick days are those preparing and serving our food and caring for our children.

For more information about the event please email policy@pathwayspa.org. To learn more about the need for earned sick time visit http://earnedsicktime.blogspot.com.


Federal Policy Update

CHILD NUTRITION ACT PASSES

Last Thursday the House approved for final passage the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (S. 3307) by a vote of 264 to 157.

The legislation includes increased reimbursements for school lunch, new national nutrition standards, and categorical eligibility for foster youth. The final bill did include cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, or food stamps) to offset some of the cost. So while the passage of this bill is a great victory, work will need to be done to try to reverse those cuts. Please stay tuned for information about those efforts.

Please contact your members of Congress today and thank them for ensuring children do not go hungry this school year. Please also mention the need to restore the cuts to SNAP.

TANF EXTENSION PASSES

On November 30, 2010, the House of Representatives passed the bill that includes the extension of the TANF Block Grant through federal fiscal year 2011. This is the bill that passed the Senate before Thanksgiving. It will now go to the President for signature.

Please contact your members of Congress today and thank them for passing this important extension.


State Policy Update

ADULTBASIC IN JEOPARDY

Health insurance coverage for 43,000 Pennsylvania residents covered under the state’s adultBasic program may end as soon as February. The program, which is funded through contributions from the state’s tobacco settlement funds and through an assessment on the state’s four Blue Cross plans, was slated to end in December 2010. A temporary reprieve, in the form of a voluntary commitment by the Blues to continue its contributions through June 2011, has fallen short.
Without additional funding, the program will end early, and without a permanent funding solution. Notices to enrollees may need to go out as soon as January.
Ways you can help:
Information/Events

WHAT’S NEXT FOR PENNSYLVANIA: A PUBLIC FORUM ON THE HEALTH AND WELL-BEING OF WOMEN AND FAMILIES

Hosted by Raising Women’s Voices of Southeastern PA and WHYY

Please join Raising Women’s Voices of Southeastern Pennsylvania and WHYY for a critical dialogue with your elected officials on women’s health care needs as the health care reform law is implemented in Pennsylvania.

WHEN: Wednesday, December 15, 2010 from 5:30 - 8:00 PM
Networking: 5:30 - 6:00 PM
Program: 6:00 - 8:00 PM

WHERE: WHYY’s Dorrance H. Hamilton Public Media Commons, 150 N. 6th Street, Philadelphia, PA

* Light refreshments will be served*


All state legislators, including newly elected legislators, from Southeastern Pennsylvania as well as the Governor-Elect have been invited to speak and answer questions from the audience. You will have the chance to hear directly from those making important decisions about what to expect in the coming years as this important law is implemented.

Raising Women’s Voices of Southeastern Pennsylvania, of which PathWays PA is a member, is a coalition formed to ensure that women’s concerns were addressed during the health care reform process. We now advocate for health care reform implementation policies that support the full range of comprehensive reproductive health care services for women. While women gained many wonderful benefits under the new health care reform law, they also lost and have the potential to loose even more benefits, especially reproductive health care rights.

Come out and let legislators know what is important to YOU as they move forward in implementing health care reform!

For questions or additional information, please contact Kate Scully at kscully@pathways.org.

NATIONAL WEBINAR ON PAID SICK LEAVE: THE IMPACT AND IMPLEMENTATION OF PAID SICK LEAVE LEGISLATION

The Women of Color Policy Network, in conjunction with Legal Momentum, the National Partnership for Women and Families, the Center for Social Inclusion, the Applied Research Center, and the Insight Center for Community Economic Development, will be holding this event on paid sick leave.

WHEN: Thursday, December 9, 2010 3:00 - 4:00 PM (Eastern)

Please RSVP here: https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/387021520

Panelists include:

  • Brandy Davis, Policy Coordinator, California Labor Project for Working Families
  • Jose Oliva, National Policy Coordinator, Restaurant Opportunities Centers (ROC) United

For more information, visit: http://wagner.nyu.edu/wocpn/news/

POPVOX – NEW ADVOCACY TOOL

POPVOX is a new tool that can help advocacy organizations increase their visibility before Congress and the public. Organizations can set up a profile on the site, which is searchable by issue area, so that Congressional staff can reach out to them when new legislation is introduced or when a committee needs to reach an issue expert.

Individuals on POPVOX can weigh in on legislation and communicate directly with their Members of Congress. They can also learn about which organizations have endorsed or oppose legislation and what others are saying about the issue before deciding on a position. To see which bills are "hot" on the site right now, visit www.popvox.com/bills. From there, an organization can post their position on the bill for individuals to read.

POPVOX is free and available to nonprofits inside and outside the Beltway that want to influence policy making. Check out PathWays PA’s profile.

PROPERTY TAX/RENT REBATE PROGRAM

The deadline for senior citizens and other residents to apply for a state rebate on rent or property taxes paid in 2009 is December 31st.

The Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program provides a rebate of up to $650 to income-eligible senior citizens and other residents. The program is open to Pennsylvania residents who are 65 or older, 50 or older and widowed, or 18 or older with a permanent disability. To qualify, household income must be $35,000 or less for homeowners, or $15,000 or less for renters.

Homeowners and renters only have to count half of their Social Security, Supplemental Security Income or federal railroad Tier 1 retirement benefits when applying.

LEAD SAFE BABIES – FAMILIES IN TRANSITION

Join the People’s Emergency Center for a workshop on lead poisoning prevention education to homeless families with young children and pregnant women. The workshop will feature Todd Zeigler of Lead Safe Babies program and Peter Palermo of the Philadelphia Department of Public Health’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention program.

WHEN: Thursday, December 16, 2010 10:00 A.M. - 11:30 A.M.
WHERE: Wanamaker Building, Room 12C (12th floor), at 100 Penn Square East in Philadelphia

Attendees can expect to learn about “Lead Safe Babies – Families in Transition” and how it can benefit families residing in emergency or transitional housing. The program will offer primary lead poisoning prevention education to homeless families with young children and pregnant women. In addition, families will receive a free home visit once they move into permanent housing. Two AmeriCorps volunteers will provide the education, either through workshops or one-on-one education, whichever works best for the client or the site. The National Nursing Centers Consortium, which manages “Lead Safe Babies,” will work with additional program partners to provide one free “Healthy Homes” workshop per site to educate staff on reducing additional environmental health hazards including asthma triggers, pests, mold and moisture, and safety hazards.

RSVP by sending an email to PPTFWorkshops@pec-cares.org. Please include your name, job title, organization, and email address.

LOOKING AHEAD: NEW HUD RESEARCH AND HUD/VA PARTNERSHIPS

WHEN: Thursday, December 9, 2010 3:00 P.M. - 5:00 P.M.
WHERE: The Wanamaker Building Room 12C (12th floor) 100 Penn Square East, Philadelphia, PA 19107

The forum will feature Mr. Mark Johnston, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Special Needs for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and Mr. Vincent Kane of the National Center on Homelessness among Veterans. Agencies serving singles, families, children, and veterans will be interested to hear about the latest policy developments from Washington DC.

RSVP by sending an email reply to PPTFWorkshops@pec-cares.org. Please include your name, job title, organization, and email address.

This forum is a collaboration between People’s Emergency Center, the Philadelphia Office of Supportive Housing, and Project H.O.M.E.

Special PathWays PA Information/Events


PATHWAYS PA’S ADOPT-A-FAMILY PROGRAM

With the holidays right around the corner, it is time for PathWays PA's Adopt-a-Family. The Adopt-a-Family program offers the families who receive PathWays PA services many of the joys of the holiday season they may otherwise be without.

Thanks to the generous contributions of local donors, special memories of holidays past have been created for the families we serve. Thousands of client families have benefited from this program through the years!

This year, client families will again be partnered with donors based on their size and the ages of their children. After being paired up with a client family, a wish list will be sent to the donors with the receiving family's genders, ages, clothing sizes and their holiday wishes. The donor family chooses to purchase any or all of the items on the clients' list, or substitute items that they feel the client may enjoy. Non-perishable food baskets are also welcomed.

This program is a source of happiness, joy and satisfaction for all involved, and with your help it will once again be a huge success!

Download donor form here.

Questions? Please call Pam Przybylski @ 610-543-5022 x234.

NEW CLASS TIMES: PATHWAYS PA OFFERS LANGUAGE/CIVICS COURSES

PathWays PA is offering a course meant for those interested in learning and improving their English while also covering:
  • United States History
  • Work Skills
  • Citizenship Process
  • Employment
  • Math
  • Reading

WHEN: Mondays & Wednesdays - 9:30 - 12:00 OR Tuesdays & Thursdays 5:00 - 7:30
WHERE: Darby Borough Hall, 821 Summit Street, Darby PA

For more information about the class, please contact Kelly Binder at 610-543-5022 X 227 or kbinder@pathwayspa.org.



Images courtesy of: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffeee_img451.jpg, http://thevolunteacher.wordpress.com/2009/08/.

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