Monday, March 5, 2012

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: March 5, 2012

State

OPPORTUNITY TO WEIGH IN ON VOTING RIGHTS TODAY

The Pennsylvania Senate Appropriations is planning to vote on MONDAY 3/5 on HB 934 which would deprive voters of the right to cast a ballot if they do not show a valid state-issued photo ID card, with limited exceptions. This will particularly affect non-drivers (senior citizens who no longer drive, persons with disabilities, and residents of urban communities who travel by public transit), and the challenge of securing a non-driver photo ID card from PennDOT will be costly, difficult, and, for some, impossible.

Supporters of the bill have been unable to show any evidence of voter identity fraud in Pennsylvania because safeguards against fraudulent voting are already in place in our state. The legislation may cost Pennsylvania taxpayers millions to implement. Long lines at polling places are likely to form, leading other voters to simply give up and go home. More information on the legislation can be found at http://voteforhomes.org/addditional-information-about-pa-voter-id-bill-house-bill-934.

You can call your state senator on Monday, March 5th, between 9:00 am. and 1:00 pm to state your position on HB 934. Not sure who your state senator is, or need his/her Capitol phone number? Visit http://statevoices.salsalabs.com/o/58/p/dia/action/public/?action_KEY=228.

From our friends at Vote for Homes.

DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WELFARE EXPEDITED REGULATIONS

Act 22 of 2011 provides the Department of Public Welfare with expedited regulation authority. This authority allows the Department to achieve budget savings and cost avoidance, without going through the normal legislative process.

DPW has published several draft regulations on its website which must be finalized by June 30, 2012. The regulations will be open for a two-week comment period ending March 9, 2012. Instructions on how to submit comments may be found on the website and interested parties are encouraged to submit comments electronically.

From our friends at Maternity Care Coalition.

SUPPORT THE GENERAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

PA Cares for All is looking for organizations who want to sign on to a letter to save the General Assistance program. General Assistance is a last-resort program providing extremely meager benefits to 68,000 Pennsylvanians with no income. There is no other safety net for its recipients: if someone is able to work or has another source of income, she is ineligible for GA. The overwhelming majority of recipients are disabled; most of these people are applying for federal SSI disability benefits that will reimburse the Commonwealth once approved. GA also provides a lifeline to women escaping domestic violence. It supports people in intensive drug or alcohol treatment programs. And GA supports caregivers and children unable to live with their families.

If you wish to sign on to this letter, please do so by Tuesday by emailing Louise Hayes at LHayes@clsphila.org. You can also sign an online letter at www.pacaresforall.org.

SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE MANDATORY ULTRASOUND BILL

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives is considering the passage of HB 1077, the "Women's Right to Know" Act. The legislation requires that all women seeking an abortion be subjected to a mandatory ultrasound at least 24 hours in advance. It requires the ultrasound screen to be aimed toward the woman's face, but permits her to look away. It requires that the woman accept two printouts of the ultrasound image, and requires she deliver the printout to her physician in order to have the procedure.

Medical groups, including the PA Medical Society, have already come out in opposition of HB 1077 as an invasion of the physician/patient relationship.

Here are two ways to share your thoughts:

1. If you oppose this bill, you can sign the petition urging lawmakers to do the same.

2. Regardless of your feelings, you can call your State Representative to share your thoughts on HB 1077. When you reach the office, please let them know you are a constituent. Find your State Representative at legis.state.pa.us.

From our friends at WOMEN’S WAY.

INTERESTED IN INSURING MOTHERHOOD?

Maternity Care Coalition is leading a campaign to pass into law the Insuring Motherhood Bill, legislation that would require all insurance plans to cover maternity care.

In Pennsylvania, small and individual insurance plans do not need to cover maternity. Additionally, pregnancy can still be considered a pre-existing condition in determining eligibility for coverage.

In addition to their online petition, they are developing a social media photo campaign.

Print one of the signs from their facebook album -- or craft your own creative message -- and snap a photo of yourself holding the sign. You can post the photo on the Insuring Motherhood Campaign Facebook page here.

You can also email the picture to ecusack@momobile.org to have it included in a larger video project. This video will feature all the photos collected and will be shown to state legislators.


INDUSTRY PARTNERSHIP TAX CREDIT BILL

Senator Michael Brubaker (R-Lancaster and Chester Cos.) is introducing legislation to offer a state tax credit to businesses that contribute funds to Industry Partnerships above and beyond the current required match.

PA Partners is asking anyone who supports this bill to contact their state senator within the next week and ask him or her to sign on as a cosponsor of Senator Brubaker’s bill. Senator Brubaker has been a champion for Industry Partnerships and was the prime sponsor of the bill to establish IPs in state law that was enacted last year. To sign on, senators should contact Senator Brubaker’s office at 717-787-4420. Questions can be directed to Kristin Crawford, Senator Brubaker’s Chief of Staff, at the same number or kcrawford@pasen.gov. They need to do this within the next week.

Here's what you can say: "I support the Industry Partnership program in Pennsylvania and am interested in ways to expand it. Have you heard about Senator Brubaker's bill to introduce a state tax credit to fund the program? Can I send you the legislation? Will Senator X cosponsor it?"

A copy of this legislation and Senator Brubaker’s cosponsorship memo are available online..

National

SUPPORT THE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT

Thanks to your advocacy efforts, there are now have 56 sponsors for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) or S. 1925.

To move this bill forward, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) needs to be asked to schedule a Senate floor vote soon in order to help this bipartisan bill avoid the rancor of election year politics.

If you support this act, call Senator Reid's DC office (202-224-3542) with this message:

"We need Senator Reid to continue to be our champion for the whole country. Please sponsor the Violence Against Women Act and schedule S. 1925 for a floor vote as soon as possible."

And remember to thank PA's own Sen. Casey for co-sponsoring the bill and standing up for survivors!

You can read more about the Act at http://bit.ly/wrJPfD.

From our friends at WIT.

SIGN ON TO SHOW SUPPORT FOR WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT FUNDING

Funding for workforce development, education, health, and social services is under fire again. The Campaign to Invest in America’s Workforce is asking organizations who support this funding to sign a letter to leaders of the Congressional Appropriation committees. To sign on, simply e-mail Rachel Gragg, Federal Policy Director at the National Skills Coalition (rachelg@nationalskillscoalition.org) and copy the Campaign at nnspinfo@insightcced.org.

The letter urges Appropriation Committee leaders to provide the highest possible allocation for Labor-H funding in FY 2013, which includes funding for workforce development. It was drafted by the Campaign to Invest in America’s Workforce, the Committee for Education Funding, and the Coalition for Health Funding.

A powerful message can be sent at this crucial time by having as many local, state, and national organizations that care about workforce development, health, and education as possible sign onto the letter.

To learn more, visit http://bit.ly/wPi9rS.


MINIMUM RENT FOR POOR FAMILIES IN SUBSIDIZED HOUSING MAY BE INCREASING

Local, state, and national organizations who oppose a proposal that would raise the minimum rent at HUD-assisted rental housing for the poorest families are urged to sign this letter (click here to see the letter). This proposal would raise minimum rents to at least $69.45 a month. The current minimum is $50, but local housing authorities have the discretion to set the minimum lower. Many do so because the families have almost no cash income. It is estimated that over 490,000 households would see their rents go up under this proposal, including 700,000 children. Nearly two-thirds of these children are of pre-school age.

The letter is addressed to the chair and ranking member of the House Financial Services Committee, which will take up legislation including this proposal.

Deadline for signing: Thursday, March 8, COB. Please contact Casey Labrack at Labrack@voices.org to sign, if you are authorized to sign this letter by your local, state, or national organization. Please include your organization’s full name, your city and state, and your name, position, email, and phone.

Information

WHITE HOUSE WOMEN’S UPDATE CALL

Tomorrow, the White House is hosting a Women's Update Call as part of their Women's History Month outreach. This call will be a broad update and overview. Please feel free to share this dial-in information and RSVP link with your networks.

Call information
Date: Tuesday, March 6th
Time: 2:00 p.m. EST
Call-in number: (800) 230-1093
Title: White House Women's Update call
Link to RSVP Form: http://www.whitehouse.gov/webform/white-house-womens-update-call


FIGHTING CHILDHOOD HUNGER WHEN SCHOOL IS OUT

Times are tough. Family budgets are stretched thin. Thousands of children in our communities may go hungry this summer without the school meals they receive during the year. Come learn about how you can help feed children this summer.

Join PCCY for a forum on Wed. March 14th, 1-3 p.m.: “Fighting Childhood Hunger When School Is Out: The Nuts and Bolts of Summer Feeding Programs”

Presenters include representatives from USDA, Food and Nutrition Service, the Pennsylvania Department of Education, the Philadelphia Department of Parks and Recreation, and Nutritional Development Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, who will share information on the Summer Food Service Program. Local providers will also share tips from their years of experience. Click here for more details.

LEARN MORE ABOUT WOMEN’S HEALTHCARE AT THE STATE AND FEDERAL LEVEL

Rebecca Foley, Director of Public Policy at WOMEN'S WAY and Chair of the Raising Women's Voices Coalition in Southeastern Pennsylvania, will be on PHAN's next Tuesday Night Policy Call on March 6th (this Tuesday) at 6:00 PM. She'll discuss in detail the attacks on women's health happening at the state and federal level. Sign up here to get the latest information.

6th ANNUAL WOMENomics FORUM

The purpose of the WOMENomics Forum is to bring together women of all ages to help identify women's economic issues and get practical, innovative ideas to improve quality of life.

  • Keynote Speaker, Polly R. Moore, Esquire, "Women Finding Their Voice in the Workplace and Being Heard"
  • Panel Presenters: Joslyn G. Ewart & Christine Potter, "Ease & Financial Security for Life's Transitions" and "Extreme Couponing"
  • Breakout Sessions include "Social Networking in the Workplace," "How to Get a Job in Today's Market," "Money Management 101-How to Plan a Better Retirement," "Give Yourself Good Credit," and "Eating Healthy on the Go."

Saturday, March 24, 2012
8:00 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. Registration and coffee
8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Program and Continental Breakfast

Towne House
117 Veteran's Square
Media, PA 19063

RSVP by March 17, 2012
Click here for details, registration and directions.

Sponsored By
Friends of the Delaware County Women's Commission, Delaware County BPW, Delaware County Women's Commission, The Center Foundation, PathWays PA, Delaware County Council, Women's Resource Center

RECRUITING AND WORKING WITH INDIVIDUAL AFTERSCHOOL PROGRAMS

Wednesday, March 21, at 1:00 pm EST

Individual afterschool programs that operate on a smaller scale can successfully offer their own Afterschool Meal Program. Hear from a non-profit organization participating in the Afterschool Meal Program and learn the steps they take to operate a successful program. Hear from advocates and a state agency on how they work to recruit individual afterschool programs and aid them in the success of their Afterschool Meal Program.

FRAC encourages you to sign up early for the upcoming call to ensure your reservation.

MY HEALTH IS NOT UP FOR DEBATE

Last year, states passed a record 92 restrictions on women’s access to reproductive health services. Just last week, lawmakers in Virginia were poised to force women to have an invasive and unnecessary transvaginal ultrasound before having an abortion. And as we speak, the state of Texas is cutting reproductive health care services for hundreds of thousands of low-income women.

What other hurdles will they make women jump over to get the reproductive health care they need?

Watch NWLC’s new video and tell leaders: My Health is NOT Up for Debate™!

From our friends at NWLC.

CRIMINAL RECORD EXPUNGEMENT CLINIC

The People’s Emergency Center is holding a clinic on how to get your criminal record expunged on Saturday, March 17th from noon to 2pm at Rowan House, 325 N. 39th Street in the city’s Powelton section.

For more information, call 215-382-7522, ext. 289.

From our friends at PHENND and PEC.

SPEED DATING FOR COMMUNITY PARTNERS AT TEMPLE UNIVERSITY

This is a great opportunity to meet Temple faculty teaching community-based learning courses and students who might like to volunteer with your organization. Discuss community work, academic interests, and potential projects. Please bring literature and business cards.
This event will comprise the last portion of our annual Faculty Development Conference, co-sponsored with Temple’s Teaching and Learning Center.
Friday, March 30
2:30 PM
Student Center, Room 217
Register Now
http://bit.ly/zSUE83

Visit our website for more information
http://cln.temple.edu/speed-dating-with-community-partners/

From our friends at PHENND.

TARGET COMMUNITY NIGHTS AT THE FRANKLIN INSTITUTE
The Franklin Institute is pleased to introduce Target Community Nights at The Franklin Institute, a FREE educational and fun-filled science extravaganza sponsored by Target! Everyone is welcome to join in the fun, and experience The Franklin Institute’s exhibitions, special programs, and themed activities.

For more information, please visit: http://bit.ly/A08BsC.

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