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Showing posts from April, 2011

"Sick Days for Healthy Recovery" - OpEd in Philadelphia Business Journal

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Guest Comment
Sick days for healthy recovery
Philadelphia Business Journal - by Eileen Appelbaum and Lonnie Golden

The most recent national jobs reports show improvements in the labor market, but the employment gains and the falling unemployment rate are still largely the result of a decline in layoffs and firings of workers.

Hiring remains weak as the latest government report on job openings and labor turnover shows. In a job market still facing challenges, reducing the number of workers who are laid off or fired is essential to building a healthier labor market, strengthening the recovery and spreading its benefits. Mandating paid sick days is one policy that will help employers keep workers in jobs.To read the full story, please visit The Philadelphia Business Journal's website.

Every Parent Wants to Protect Their Children

Every parent wants to protect their children, no matter how old they get, but my daughter was faced with a horrible choice, and it was my fault. She had to choose between staying in the hospital waiting for word about my status in the Intensive Care Unit (which would make her lose her job) or going to work and facing the possibility that I could die while she was ringing people up at the check-out counter.

Going to work or caring for an ailing mother is a choice no one should have to make.


That's why I'm joining with PathWays PA and the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces in calling for paid sick days for anyone employed in the City of Philadelphia.

Not only has my daughter already confronted this ugly choice, but she's going to have to do it again and again in the near future because I'm facing heart surgery and a possible diagnosis of breast cancer.

But this isn't just about me and my family. Over 40 percent of Philadelphia's workers don't have …

National Runaway Switchboard Annouces LIVE CHAT Service

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Between 1.6 and 2.8 million youth run away every year. The National Runaway Switchboard has a 24-hour crisis hotline, and a new LIVE CHAT service on the NRS website to help keep at-risk youth safe and off the streets.
The National Runaway Switchboard is a safe, confidential and free service to support youth who are thinking of running away from home, have run away, or have run away and are thinking of going home. In addition to the LIVE CHAT, the NRS has a 24-hour crisis hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY, and a Home Free program to help runaways return home.
For more information, watch the NRS’s public service announcement on YouTube, and help raise awareness by passing this information along in your outreach efforts.

PathWays PA Job Postings - April 28, 2011

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Manager, Individual Donor & Corporate Relations & Special Events
Individual and Corporate Fundraiser sought by PathWays PA to manage special events, individual, community group, and corporate fundraising, and communications. Ideal position for a mature professional who is seeking a position with a well-regarded non-profit. Public speaking experience and excellent writing skills are mandatory, as well as marketing and individual fundraising experience. This is an office-based position based in Delaware County, with visits to potential corporations and donors throughout the region. There are occasional speaking engagements/events on weekends and evenings. Please respond in confidence with resume, cover letter and two press releases developed by you. Also please provide salary requirements that reflect the reality of working in a non-profit environment during a protracted economic downturn. Please fax resumes and press release to: LD/Dev. at 610-328-2807, or e-mail through our …

Pennsylvania "WelFAIR" Legislation Update

So far this week two bills from the WelFAIR initiative won final passage in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, and another was agreed to on second consideration as amended.
HB1312, the bill proposed to change the DPW’s nearly $20 million Special Allowance Program from a grant program into a loan program, was agreed to on second consideration on Tuesday after amendments by Democrats were voted down. The bill won final passage on Wednesday by a vote of 159-29 and will proceed to the PA Senate.
HB1297, the bill proposed to create a requirement for people with felony drug convictions to undergo drug testing in order to receive public benefits, was also agreed to on second consideration on Tuesday after failed attempts by Democrats to make amendments, and won final passage in the House on Wednesday with similar support, by a vote of 164-23.
HB1301, which would limit reimbursements by the Medical Assistance Transportation Program to trips under 50 miles, was agreed to on second consi…

Working Poor Families Project Releases New Data

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The Working Poor Families Project (WPFP) has recently provided updated data on the conditions of working families in the U.S. a whole, the fifty states, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

These data are the quantitative data generated for WPFP by the Population Reference Bureau from American Community Survey (ACS) 2009 and the Current Population Survey (CPS) 2010.

The data give a comprehensive picture of the economic and demographic realities of Pennsylvania’s working poor families. Working poor families often earn too much to qualify for significant government benefits, but often they do not earn enough to make ends meet. The data below are a snapshot of the challenges faced by Pennsylvania’s working poor families and highlight the areas where these families are particularly vulnerable.

The following data are for Pennsylvania:

• 69.5% of families who earn less than 200% of the federal poverty line (FPL) are working families (334,650 families <200% that are working/ 481,730 …

Pathways PA E-Newsletter: April 25, 2011

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Federal Policy Update

CONGRESSIONAL SPRING RECESS IS A GREAT TIME TO CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATORS

While federal legislators are back in their home districts for the spring recess it is a great time to invite them to visit your program offices or tour your facilities. Help them learn about your work and meet your clients, so they will be able to see firsthand who would be affected if drastic budget cuts are made. The Child Welfare League of America encourages you to let Congress know that These Cuts Won't Heal! CWLA Advocacy staff can answer questions about what messages to share.
State Policy Update

ACTION ALERT: INDUSTRY PARTNERSHIP LEGISLATION


Industry Partnerships are consortiums that allow employers to improve and expand their workforce by bringing together companies committed to the development of their workforce. This program provides workers with access to training that gives them the skills necessary to maintain jobs and obtain employment with sufficient wages so workers can ade…

This Week in the Delaware County Daily Times: Ex-Delco D.A. McEwen to Lead State Reapportionment Panel

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is naming a senior judge as chairman of the Legislative Reapportionment Commission. The justices announced the selection Tuesday of Stephen McEwen Jr., currently president judge emeritus of the Superior Court.

The commission will redraw the lines of Pennsylvania's General Assembly districts to account for population shifts over the past decade. The court chose the panel's chairman after the four legislative leaders who are the other members — two Republicans and two Democrats — were unable to agree on one within the time frame allotted by the constitution.


To read more, please visit The Delaware County Daily Times website.

Also of note this week, state government operations and the Capitol were closed Tuesday and Wednesday due to a water main break in Harrisburg. Low water pressure and a boil-water advisory kept legislators and policymakers from the Capitol.

PathWays PA Job Postings - April 21, 2011

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Manager, Individual Donor & Corporate Relations & Special Events
Individual and Corporate Fundraiser sought by PathWays PA to manage special events, individual, community group, and corporate fundraising, and communications. Ideal position for a mature professional who is seeking a position with a well-regarded non-profit. Public speaking experience and excellent writing skills are mandatory, as well as marketing and individual fundraising experience. This is an office-based position based in Delaware County, with visits to potential corporations and donors throughout the region. There are occasional speaking engagements/events on weekends and evenings. Please respond in confidence with resume, cover letter and two press releases developed by you. Also please provide salary requirements that reflect the reality of working in a non-profit environment during a protracted economic downturn. Please fax resumes and press release to: LD/Dev. at 610-328-2807, or e-mail through our …

In Today's Delaware County Daily Times: Collaborative effort: PathWays PA, Goodwill of Delaware and Delaware County are providing two services to help people

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By KATHLEEN E. CAREY

RIDLEY — Twenty-three-year-old Jessica was having difficulty keeping food on the table while taking care of her disabled mom and trying to juggle working a full-time job and going to school part-time.

So she signed up for a financial literacy session through PathWays PA’s Path$ to Benefits program Tuesday at the Holmes Goodwill store.

“I thought it was very helpful,” Jessica said. “(The financial counselor) helped me with a lot of things. She made me feel very comfortable about talking about my issues. It’s a program that helps you when you are at your most down point,” she said.To read more, please visit The Delaware County Daily Times website.

Pathways PA Special Budget Alert: April 20, 2011

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FEDERAL BUDGET UPDATE

Half way into the fiscal year and after months of standoff, the House and Senate passed the final FY 2011 spending bill for discretionary programs (those funded annually). One hour before midnight on April 8, when the federal government was set to shut down, a deal was struck estimated to cut $38.5 billion in spending for the remainder of FY 2011, the largest annual spending reduction ever. A one-week continuing resolution (CR) was passed to keep the government open and running while allowing time for details of the plan to be ironed out. On April 14, H.R. 1473 passed the House 260-167, with 59 Republicans and over half of the Democrats voting against the bill. The spending cut was likely too little for the Republicans and too much for the Democrats who opposed the bill.

Later in the day, the Senate passed the bill by a vote of 81-19, with 15 Republicans, 3 Democrats, and 1 Independent opposing passage. Many programs thought to be at risk were spared cuts. …

Paycheck Fairness Act Reintroduced in Congress

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In honor of Equal Pay Day, April 12, 2011, the Paycheck Fairness Act was reintroduced in the U.S. Senate to strengthen federal pay equity laws and ensure equal pay for equal work. A companion bill was also introduced in the House of Representatives.

To learn more about Equal Pay Day, read our Equal Pay Day blog post.

Specifically, the Paycheck Fairness Act legislation:

- Clarifies the 'any factor other than sex' defense so an employer trying to justify paying a man more than a woman for the same job must show the disparity is not sex-based. The disparity must be job related and is necessary for the business.
- Prohibits employers from retaliating against employees who discuss or disclose salary information with their co-workers.
- Strengthens the remedies available to include punitive and compensatory damages. Under the EPA currently, plaintiffs can only recover back pay or, in some cases, double back pay. The bill would ensure that women can receive the same remedies for p…

Pathways PA E-Newsletter: April 18, 2011

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Federal Policy Update

FINAL FY2011 BUDGET DETAILS RELEASED

Late last week, details were released on the final Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 continuing resolution (CR) negotiated by the White House and Congressional leaders. The bill, which will fund the federal government through September 30, includes $38.5 billion in cuts below current funding levels—$78.5 billion below levels requested in the President's FY 2011 budget proposal—and includes $13 billion in cuts to programs under the Departments of Labor, Education, and Health and Human Services.
Cuts under the final CR are less severe than anticipated, with job training programs at Department of Labor facing just under $1 billion in cuts, including: Workforce Investment Act (WIA) funding is cut by $307 million, but $125 million for a new "Workforce Innovation Fund" is included in the bill, resulting in a net reduction of $182 million in WIA formula funding; $125 million in FY 2010 funding for the Career Pathways Innovation Fund …

This Week in Harrisburg - April 11 - April 15, 2011

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Capitol legislators held discussions on school choice, tax credits, and more salary freezes at the capitol this week.

The House Finance Committee heard Wednesday from a variety of county and municipal organizations on their priorities for the upcoming year. Discussion focused around mandate relief, tax and pension reform, and the potential for a local impact fee on gas extraction.

By a vote of 15 to 11, the Senate Appropriations Committee voted to report as amended, SB 1, legislation creating a school voucher program. The committee adopted an amendment offered by Sen. Lloyd Smucker (R-Lancaster) which he said clarifies certain provisions, expands opportunities available under the program, and contains the cost impacts. A series of amendments offered by committee Democrats were defeated. The bill will now go to the Senate floor for further consideration.

Along a party line vote the House Gaming Oversight Committee approved this morning a bill sponsored by Rep. Paul Clymer (R-Bucks) tha…