Tags >> Congress
Aug 10
2010

The Other 98%

Posted by Bruce Robinson in speaker , Santa Rosa , rights , protest , politics , nonprofit orgs , news , legislation , Ideas , government , election , current events , Congress , business , activism

Bruce Robinson

Growing corporate influence in American politics and especially electoral campaigns is driving a push-back effort from Move On dot org, a nation-wide series of protests that includes one in Santa Rosa today.

The origins of this new MoveOn campaign predate the current mid-term elections, explains David Walls, Coordinator for the group’s Sonoma County Council. They can be traced back to the protracted legislative battle over health care reform.

Cyntia Boaz, professor of political science at Sonoma State University, says the coming Congressional elections will be fueled in large part by populist issues, on both ends of the political spectrum. But each “wing” will respond to them differently.

 

 

 

 

Aug 02
2010

20 years of ADA

Posted by Bruce Robinson in wheelchair , transportation , rights , public safety , policy , lifestyle , legislation , jobs , Ideas , history , Health , government , environment , employment , education , disability , design , Congress , California , activism

Bruce Robinson

Since the Americans With Disabilities Act was enacted by Congress 20 years ago, it has changed much more than building codes.

When the ADA passed, it took some time for the law’s new requirements to have a visible effect. But Anthony Tusler (left), founder of About Disability, a Penngrove-based advocacy office, observes that there were some notable changes in the public media landscape almost immediately.

 Most adult Americans with disabilities were cheered and empowered by the passage of the ADA in 1990, but Tusler acknowledges there were a few who felt threatened by the changes the bill would bring, and opposed it.

Despite their gains in other areas, most disabled Americans continue to struggle to find meaningful employment. Tusler suspects some employers manipulate the hiring process to avoid dealing with the ADA.

 

 

This is one of a series of photos taken in April, 1977 by Anthony Tusler at the demonstration and picketing at the U.N. Plaza in front of the Federal Building in San Francisco. The group then entered the offices of HEW and refused to leave. It was the longest occupation of a Federal Building by any group. Demonstrations were also held at other Federal Buildings across the country. Because of the political pressure of these actions Secretary Califano signed the regulations in May. A more complete history can be read at 504 Sit-in: Historical Articles and Eyewitness Accounts.

Jun 25
2010

Hands Across The Sand

Posted by Bruce Robinson in water , Sonoma County , resources , recreation , politics , parks , ocean , nonprofit orgs , Marin , legislation , government , fish , environment , current events , conservation , Congress , California , activism

Bruce Robinson

Offshore oil drilling has never been embraced here on California’s north coast, but recent events in the Gulf Coast have bolstered that view elsewhere. Hands Across the Sand, a coordinated series of demonstrations across the country, including one near Bodega Bay, will try to reinforce those changing attitudes on June 26th.

Rep. Lynn Woolsey’s Marine Sanctuary Expansion Bill (HR 223) and its identical Senate counterpart would build on existing protections and expand them to cover the entire Marin and Sonoma coastlines. Tom Roth, the congresswoman’s senior policy aide, offers details.

But Roth also notes that the partisan political climate in Washington has become increasingly hostile toward anything that sets out to restrict American oil development.

Regardless of what happens to Woolsey’s bill, Coastwalk Executive Director Una Glass points out that there is another, statewide, obstacle to coastal oil drilling, one that is already in place, even if it is not widely known.

 

 

Jun 21
2010

DNA Privacy

Posted by Bruce Robinson in technology , seniors , rights , politics , policy , medicine , legislation , journalism , healthcare , Health , Congress , California , business , author , aging

Bruce Robinson

It’s hard to imagine anything more personal than the genetic information encoded in your DNA. But it’s only protected by privacy laws some of the time.

The actual status of California’s law protecting genetic information with regard to long term care insurance is currently a bit murky, says health journalist April Lynch. It is generally assumed to have ended, but it seems to have lapsed rather than having been repealed.

As genetic information becomes increasingly available, Lych suggests that consumers will more and more have to make decisions about how much they themselves want to know about it, as well as how much is shared with doctors and insurers.

April Lynch

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