Decision Maker

Brian Schatz

  • HI
  • Senator

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Victory
Petitioning Barack Obama

President Obama: Protect Sharks by Expanding Papahanaumokuakea #GoBigObama #ExpandPMNM

I am a surfer, photographer, and shark attack survivor from the island of Kaua'i. I am passionate about marine conservation, particularly what's going on with shark conservation and the rapid decline of shark stocks worldwide.  I also feel a calling to help others overcome adversity, and enjoy being an outreach to other amputees and the adaptive/disabled community. It's insane the amount of sharks needlessly killed, about 100 million a year. It is a completely unsustainable rate considering extinction is forever. As an apex predator, they play a invaluable role in our marine ecosystem.  We need our oceans to be living and functioning, or our lives, regardless of on land or water, will become greatly affected over time. As a fellow "island boy," President Barack Obama knows the importance of Aloha 'Aina (love of the land) and he has done a lot for sharks since he took office.  He signed the Shark Conservation Act of 2010 and has created huge marine protected areas in the Central Pacific that protect all species.   The president has only a few more months left in office and there's a few more things he can do to protect threatened shark species here in Hawaii.  Please sign this petition to ask President Obama to expand the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument as proposed by prominent members of the Native Hawaiian community. In the Pacific, oceanic whitetip sharks (Carcharhinus longimanus) and silky sharks (Carcharhinus falciformis), highly migratory species that were once categorized as two of the most abundant species of large marine animals, have declined significantly. Populations of these species have dropped to such low levels that fishing vessels are now prohibited from retaining them.  Despite this ban both species are still incidentally caught and killed on longlines in Hawaiian waters. Since the monument is within the core habitat for both oceanic whitetip and silky shark, an expanded protected area from fishing can ensure that populations of these vulnerable sharks are safeguarded. Research also shows that habitats within the existing monument support abundant Galapagos sharks (Carcharhinus galapagensis), tiger sharks (Galeocerdo cuvier), and grey reef sharks (Carcharhinus amblyrhinchos).  These species, and others, have been shown to travel to the area of the proposed monument expansion.  For example, a combination of fishing data and satellite and acoustic telemetry revealed tiger sharks swim thousands of kilometers along the Hawaiian chain and out into the open ocean, with individuals found more than 600 kilometers offshore.  By increasing the size of Papahanaumokuakea, these resident species, and other highly migratory sharks that frequent these waters can be protected. The value of large protected areas to sharks has been demonstrated, and expanded protection in this area will be of benefit to multiple threatened shark species. Please join me in encouraging President Obama to go big and expand the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument according to the proposal put forward by the Native Hawaiian community!  #GoBigObama #ExpandPMNM

Mike Coots
43,040 supporters
Victory
Petitioning U.S. Senate, Bernie Sanders, Charles Schumer, Cory Booker, Kirsten Gillibrand, Dick Durbin, Patty Murray, Richard Blumenthal, Maria Cantwell, Ben Cardin, Tom Carper, Robert Casey, Christopher Coons...

We demand that The United States Senate not confirm Jeff Sessions as Attorney General

As the nation’s chief law enforcement officer, the Attorney General of the United States must be independent of politics and respect the dignity of all Americans. The Attorney General has a duty to enforce the rule of law fairly and pursue equal justice under the law. One of the core functions of the Department of Justice is to protect Americans’ civil rights, and to defend those who have been denied them. Another key function of the Department of Justice is to protect our security, but never sacrifice our civil liberties. Not only has Senator Sessions been a staunch opponent of reforming the tragic shortcomings in our criminal justice system, he holds a number of views that are inconsistent with how most Americans believe justice should be applied under our Constitution.

The Righteous Opposition
40,395 supporters
Petitioning Marco Rubio, Bernie Sanders, Ted Cruz, Mitch McConnell, Charles Schumer, Elizabeth Warren, John McCain, Rand Paul, Kirsten Gillibrand, Dianne Feinstein, Bill Nelson, Dick Durbin, Cory Booker, Patty...

No on HJ69/SJ18: killing wolf pups in dens, hibernating bears, stealjaw toe traps on bears

Tell your Senator and President Trump to vote NO on H.J. 69/S.J. Res. 18! 225 heartless House Members voted to overturn a federal rule – years in the works, and crafted by professional wildlife managers at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – to stop some of the most appalling practices ever imagined in the contemporary era of wildlife management. Denning of wolf pups, killing hibernating bears, spotting grizzly bears from aircraft and then shooting them after landing, and trapping grizzly bears and black bears with steel-jawed leghold traps and snares. The stuff of wildlife snuff films. And not just on any land. On our country’s national wildlife refuges. More specifically, on 16 national wildlife refuges covering 76 million acres, all in the state of Alaska. In this case, Alaska has a bloodthirsty Board of Game, whose members enthusiastically implement a draconian policy called “Intensive Management.” That policy dictates that state managers drive down wolf, bear, and coyote numbers to boost caribou and moose numbers for hunters — turning Alaska’s wildlife refuges into what retired Arctic National Wildlife biologist Fran Mauer calls “game farms” — the very thing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service acted to stop through a rigorous, science-based, and legal federal rulemaking process that was overturned by today’s vote. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service shouldn’t run refuges like game farms, as Alaskan officials want to do. Only the U.S. Senate and President Trump can now stop this unwinding of a decision by a professional wildlife management agency. Please contact your U.S. Senators and tell them to steer clear of a disgraceful resolution, and to honor limits in the conduct of wildlife policy in the United States of America. From the Humane Society (http://blog.humanesociety.org/wayne/2017/02/u-s-house-sanctions-killing-hibernating-bears-wolf-pups-dens-federal-refuges-alaska.html  

Judith Silver
18,967 supporters
Petitioning Hawaii Department of Land & Natural Resources

Help Protect Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve

Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve has been named by 'Dr. Beach' as the #1 Beach in the United States for 2016. This story was reported by CNN, MSN, and other major news organizations on 5/26/2016.  With an estimated 3,000 visitors to Hanauma Bay each day, coupled with this recent news of its #1 ranking being released just ahead of Memorial Day weekend -- which is sure to drive even additional visitor interest to the historic, cultural, and natural gem -- changes need to be made to better educate visitors on preserving the coral reef and protecting marine life.  Upon visiting the park on any of the six days of the week the Nature Preserve & Marine Life Conservation District is open to visitors, one is sure to see a large number of snorkelers standing on the reef, as well as disturbing sea turtles and other marine life. Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve currently makes it mandatory for each visitor to first watch a 9-minute video about the history of Hanauma Bay, the types of fish and coral one is likely to see while snorkeling, and helpful tips and information for avoiding damage to the reef and marine life.  Unfortunately, the video includes numerous clips of people standing on the reef and also a person approaching a sea turtle with hands outstretched as if trying to touch the threatened species. Additionally, beyond the educational center, upon descending down the hill to the beach and on the beach itself there are hardly any reminders to avoid contact with the reef.  Below are the requested changes: 1) Currently, the introduction video that is mandatory for each visitor shows people walking on the reef and a person trying to closely interact with a sea turtle. We would request a budgetary allotment be made for a remake or edit of the video to remove these scenes which are likely to confuse non-English speakers and English speakers alike. Those not closely listening to the narrative but watching the film are likely to be left with the impression that these prohibited actions are acceptable practices. 2) Place more prominent and visual image heavy signage on the descent to the beach, at the beach itself, and at the Information and Snorkel Renting centers on the beach front regarding not stepping on or touching coral, stirring up sediment, or touching, disturbing or threatening marine life. As Hanauma Bay is a Marine Life Conservation District (MLCD), one would expect that Hanauma Bay would have high quality signage on par with those found at Pupakea MLCD. 3) Encourage lifeguard staff to issue reminders by megaphone to visitors that standing on the reef is not permitted or provide on-beach staff of the Preserve to serve in this capacity. 4) Provide educational signs with multiple translations to account for the global demographic of visitors that flock to Hanauma Bay each day. Please sign this petition to encourage Hanauma Bay Management and Education Program Directors, Department of Parks & Recreation, Department of Land & Natural Resources, State of Hawai'i Division of Aquatic Resources, and our elected representatives to take further action aimed at better educating visitors to Hanauma Bay about the environmental impacts of standing on or otherwise damaging the coral reef, as well as the impacts of disturbing or otherwise threatening marine life.

Hawaii Ocean Ambassadors
9,425 supporters
Victory
Petitioning Hawaii State Legislature, Police Department, Prosecutor, Governor

Pass Safe Harbor & End Demand for Prostitution Laws in Hawaii

Currently, Hawaii has no protocol to legally detain juveniles rescued from prostitution without criminalizing them. The Pacific Alliance to Stop Slavery (PASS) is urging the Hawaii State Legislature to pass legislation to help child trafficking victims to proper rehabilitative and healing services rather than to incarceration. PASS is also urging the legislature to pass an End Demand Bill (SB192/HB1066 and SB194) which seek to increase penalties for patrons of prostitution/sex-trafficking, commonly referred to as “johns.” The existing grade of offense for johns is a petty misdemeanor, equivalent to the fine of remaining in a public park after hours. The penalty for the offense of fueling prostitution/sex-trafficking, by providing the demand, has not been updated in Hawaii since the law was created in the early 70s. Please help Hawaii pass these bills because injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Help us stop the growth of child-trafficking in America. FACTS: Hawaii’s incarceration rate of juvenile girls exceed the national average. Of these offenses, about 35% are runaways. Hawaii has one of the highest rates of intrafamilial sexual abuse (or incest) and also has one of the highest attempted teen suicide rates in the nation. There are approximately 300 children reported missing in Hawaii per month. There are no law enforcement stats for child sex-trafficking because of the lack of a state sex-trafficking law. Earlier this year, Shared Hope International rated Hawaii second worst in the nation in protecting child victims of sex trafficking by law. // // // //

Pacific Alliance to Stop Slavery
4,473 supporters
Petitioning U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, President of the United States, Donald Trump, John Cornyn, Thad Cochran, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, Richard Shelby, Lamar Alexander, Susan Collins, Lisa...

#SAVEH2B: Save Small & Seasonal Businesses!

PLEASE ASK CONGRESS TO #SAVEH2B AND SUPPORT IMMEDIATE CAP RELIEF!  American Small and Seasonal businesses are currently approaching their busiest season of the year and they will not be receiving their seasonal guest workers. Without these legal, temporary employees American businesses and workers are in jeaprody.  The H-2B Visa nonimmigrant program allows employers to hire foreign workers to come to the United States and perform temporary nonagricultural services or labor on a one-time, seasonal, peakload or intermittent basis. H-2B workers are not considered immigrants. In order to qualify for an H-2B Visa, an employer must prove that there are not sufficient U.S. Workers who are capable of performing temporary services or labor. MYTH: H-2B WORKERS TAKE JOBS AWAY FROM AMERICANS.FACT: American workers are guaranteed first chance at every job later filled by an H-2B temporary laborer. By law, every open position must be properly advertised in the community and requires employers to hire any able and willing American workers to fill open positions. The fact is that H-2B temporary workers actually support American jobs and the U.S. economy. The H-2B program provides an opportunity for seasonal businesses to operate at a greater capacity, thereby retaining their full-time American workers and contributing more to their local economies. Additionally, temporary foreign seasonal workers help support many upstream and downstream jobs. According to the American Enterprise Institute study on Immigration and American Jobs, every H-2B worker creates or sustains 4.64 American jobs on average. MYTH: EMPLOYERS DON’T EVEN TRY TO HIRE AMERICAN WORKERS TO FILL THESE TEMPORARY HARD LABOR JOBS.FACT: Employers work extremely hard to hire American workers because 1) it is dramatically cheaper to do so, and 2) the law requires that employers demonstrate that every effort has been made to hire Americans before they can start the process of trying to hire a temporary foreign laborer. Again, the fact is that the vast majority of American workers are not interested in temporary seasonal manual labor jobs. Geography is a big obstacle for many employers; for example, many resort communities don’t have a sufficient local labor pool. And, in many cases, these types of seasonal jobs may not be appropriate for high school students due to the hours or labor laws that prohibit the use of heavy machinery by minors. MYTH: PAYING HIGHER WAGES WILL ENTICE AMERICAN WORKERS AND SOLVE THE SEASONAL TEMPORARY LABOR SHORTAGE.FACT: Hourly pay for these types of jobs have gone up significantly over the last few years because employers who use the H-2B program are required to pay their H-2B workers and similarly employed American workers a premiumwage dictated by the U.S. Department of Labor. These temporary manual labor jobs often pay considerably more than the minimum wage, but American workers still won’t take the positions. Sadly, in many cases, employers who obey the law and use the H-2B program are often competing against businesses that choose to illegally hire undocumented immigrants and pay those workers considerably less. If wages were raised even higher, seasonal employers who use the program would not be able to sustain their businesses or their American workers. MYTH: THE H-2B PROGRAM REPRESSES WAGES FOR AMERICAN WORKERS BY PROVIDING A CHEAPER LABOR SOURCE.FACT: Hiring H-2B workers is a much move expensive and risky option. In addition to the fact employers are required to pay H-2B workers and similarly employed American workers a premium wage that is often well above the federal minimum wage, complying with the H-2B program is extremely costly, complicated and wrought with uncertainty due to an overly restrictive cap and a constantly changing regulatory environment. Employers turn to the H-2B program as a last resort, after extensive efforts to recruit American workers. MYTH: H-2B WORKERS OVERSTAY THEIR VISAS AND EXACERBATE ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION IN AMERICA.FACT: According the U.S. Department of Homeland Security visa overstay in the H-2B program are rare. Workers who do overstay their visas are barred from using the program ever again. The fact is that the vast majority of H-2B workers and their employers are meticulous about compliance. Not following the strict program rules means the end of a well-paying seasonal jobs that allows these workers to provide for their families and still maintain their homes in their native countries – a risk these workers are not willing to take since they generally return to the same employer year after year. Additionally, when approving H-2B visas, the U.S. Consulate confirms workers’ ties to their home countries. Further, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security requires employers to promptly report any H-2B workers who do not report for work or who complete their work earlier in the season than anticipated. MYTH: THE H-2B RETURNING WORKER EXEMPTION IS UNNECESSARY.FACT: The H-2B program’s annual 66,000 cap (33,000 for each half of the fiscal year) is not adequate to meet the demands of a growing economy. The cap for the first half of the fiscal 2017 was reached on January 10. The second-half cap was reached on March 13, leaving many seasonal employers shut out of the program with no access to legal seasonal laborers. Without the returning worker exemption passed by Congress with bipartisan support and signed into law by the President, many companies will have to close their businesses, lay off American workers or turn away customers.This provision is essential to the survival of small and seasonal businesses across the country and should be made permanent. An H-2B returning worker exemption is a narrow solution to a seasonal workforce shortage that focuses on workers who are valuable to their seasonal employers and who have never violated the terms of their past visas or other U.S. laws. These workers do not pose a security risk and they are not taking away jobs from Americans. For more information please visit: https://www.SaveH2b.orghttps://www.h2bworkforcecoalition.com https://youtu.be/UTYVEirlu3o   To contribute further, please contact your Congressmen/women and tweet using the hashtag: #SAVEH2B

SAVE H-2B
4,438 supporters
Petitioning Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Bradley Byrne, Richard Shelby, Lisa Murkowski, Don Young, John McCain, Jeff Flake, Martha McSally, John Boozman, Dick Durbin, Tammy Duckworth, Bobby Rush, Robin Kelly, Mic...

Make Endometriosis A Recognized Disability In the United States

1 in 10 women suffer with Endometriosis which has no cure. Most of these women are in the twenty to forty age group (can be younger or older) and of the women who have this condition up to 40% are infertile. Unfortunately it can take up to 10 years for a woman to be diagnosed with endometriosis. Many struggle to keep jobs or have lost their jobs due to this painful condition. As of right now social security does not recognized endometriosis on the disability list. It is because they consider the pain to be intermittent and can be manged with medication which endo suffers can agree that that is not always the case. Too often women are turned down because of this reason. This petition has been made so that we can get this condition recognized as a disability in the United States. Too often we must suffer because we have no other resort. I hope that we can reach the white house and make this happen.  Everyone please sign, this condition is so common that if you are not a sufferer yourself you know someone (mother, sister, aunt, daughter, wife, girlfriend, friend, etc.) that suffers from it. Thank you for your support!

Nicole Ficenec
3,007 supporters
Petitioning Senator Roy Blunt (MO) (United States Senator)

Add Trigeminal Neuralgia to Disability List

Just over two years ago, I was diagnosed with Trigeminal Neuralgia, a chronic pain disease that only affects the face, but is known to be the worst pain known to mankind. To date, this illness is not listed on the Social Security Administration's (SSA) roster of illnesses and conditions that could qualify an individual for Disability, even though there are thousands, if not tens of thousands, of individuals who suffer from this and can no longer work. There is no cure for Trigeminal Neuralgia, only an ever-changing list of medications, and several brain surgeries that attempt to provide relief to the sufferer. This chronic pain disease should be added to the SSA's list, so that those of us who suffer and can no longer work have a fair chance of winning our disability cases. This would take the pressure off of Family services, and the families who support those of us with no income.

Rebekah Painter
1,821 supporters
Petitioning Donald Trump, U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, Hal Rogers, Robert Aderholt, Kay Granger, Mike Simpson, John Culberson, John Carter, Ken Calvert, Tom Cole, Mario Diaz-Balart, Charlie Dent...

PLEASE #SAVEH2B: GET THE FACTS & STOP THE LIES!

Stop The Lies and Get The Facts!  Ask Congress to support American seasonal/small business! Temporary H2B workers help sustain US jobs and are necessary for these LEGAL employers. Do not let ILLEGAL employers force them to close their doors! The H-2B Program Creates American Jobs • The H-2B program is essential for small and seasonal businesses that are committed to hiring a legal workforce but areunable to fill seasonal jobs with American workers despite extensive recruitment efforts. Seasonal industries that use the H-2B program include seafood processing, horse training, hospitality and amusement parks, forestry, landscaping, circuses, carnivals, food concessionaires, swimming pool maintenance, construction and stone quarries. • The H-2B program is important to workers. For H-2B workers, the program provides well-paying seasonal jobs that allowthem to provide for their families and still maintain their homes in their native countries. This program is also important for American workers whose year round positions are reliant upon seasonal laborers during peak seasons. • Every H-2B worker is estimated to create and sustain 4.64 American jobs. The H-2B Visa nonimmigrant program allows employers to hire foreign workers to come to the United States and perform temporary nonagricultural services or labor on a one-time, seasonal, peakload or intermittent basis.H-2B workers are not considered immigrants. In order to qualify for an H-2B Visa, an employer must prove that there are not sufficient U.S. Workers who are capable of performing temporary services or labor.   MYTH: H-2B WORKERS TAKE JOBS AWAY FROM AMERICANS.FACT: American workers are guaranteed first chance at every job later filled by an H-2B temporary laborer. By law, every open position must be properly advertised in the community and requires employers to hire any able and willing American workers to fill open positions. The fact is that H-2B temporary workers actually support American jobs and the U.S. economy. The H-2B program provides an opportunity for seasonal businesses to operate at a greater capacity, thereby retaining their full-time American workers and contributing more to their local economies. Additionally, temporary foreign seasonal workers help support many upstream and downstream jobs. According to the American Enterprise Institute study on Immigration and American Jobs, every H-2B worker creates or sustains 4.64 American jobs on average. MYTH: EMPLOYERS DON’T EVEN TRY TO HIRE AMERICAN WORKERS TO FILL THESE TEMPORARY HARD LABOR JOBS.FACT: Employers work extremely hard to hire American workers because 1) it is dramatically cheaper to do so, and 2) the law requires that employers demonstrate that every effort has been made to hire Americans before they can start the process of trying to hire a temporary foreign laborer. Again, the fact is that the vast majority of American workers are not interested in temporary seasonal manual labor jobs. Geography is a big obstacle for many employers; for example, many resort communities don’t have a sufficient local labor pool. And, in many cases, these types of seasonal jobs may not be appropriate for high school students due to the hours or labor laws that prohibit the use of heavy machinery by minors. MYTH: PAYING HIGHER WAGES WILL ENTICE AMERICAN WORKERS AND SOLVE THE SEASONAL TEMPORARY LABOR SHORTAGE.FACT: Hourly pay for these types of jobs have gone up significantly over the last few years because employers who use the H-2B program are required to pay their H-2B workers and similarly employed American workers a premiumwage dictated by the U.S. Department of Labor. These temporary manual labor jobs often pay considerably more than the minimum wage, but American workers still won’t take the positions. Sadly, in many cases, employers who obey the law and use the H-2B program are often competing against businesses that choose to illegally hire undocumented immigrants and pay those workers considerably less. If wages were raised even higher, seasonal employers who use the program would not be able to sustain their businesses or their American workers. MYTH: THE H-2B PROGRAM REPRESSES WAGES FOR AMERICAN WORKERS BY PROVIDING A CHEAPER LABOR SOURCE.FACT: Hiring H-2B workers is a much move expensive and risky option. In addition to the fact employers are required to pay H-2B workers and similarly employed American workers a premium wage that is often well above the federal minimum wage, complying with the H-2B program is extremely costly, complicated and wrought with uncertainty due to an overly restrictive cap and a constantly changing regulatory environment. Employers turn to the H-2B program as a last resort, after extensive efforts to recruit American workers. MYTH: H-2B WORKERS OVERSTAY THEIR VISAS AND EXACERBATE ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION IN AMERICA.FACT: According the U.S. Department of Homeland Security visa overstay in the H-2B program are rare. Workers who do overstay their visas are barred from using the program ever again. The fact is that the vast majority of H-2B workers and their employers are meticulous about compliance. Not following the strict program rules means the end of a well-paying seasonal jobs that allows these workers to provide for their families and still maintain their homes in their native countries – a risk these workers are not willing to take since they generally return to the same employer year after year. Additionally, when approving H-2B visas, the U.S. Consulate confirms workers’ ties to their home countries. Further, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security requires employers to promptly report any H-2B workers who do not report for work or who complete their work earlier in the season than anticipated. MYTH: THE H-2B RETURNING WORKER EXEMPTION IS UNNECESSARY.FACT: The H-2B program’s annual 66,000 cap (33,000 for each half of the fiscal year) is not adequate to meet the demands of a growing economy. The cap for the first half of the fiscal 2016 was reached on March 15. The second-half cap was reached on May 12, leaving many seasonal employers shut out of the program with no access to legal seasonal laborers. Without the returning worker exemption passed by Congress with bipartisan support and signed into law by the President of December 18, 2015, many companies would have had to close their businesses, lay off American workers or turn away customers.This provision is essential to the survival of small and seasonal businesses across the country and should be made permanent. An H-2B returning worker exemption is a narrow solution to a seasonal workforce shortage that focuses on workers who are valuable to their seasonal employers and who have never violate the terms of their past visas or other U.S. laws. These workers do not pose a security risk and they are not taking away jobs from Americans. The H-2B returning worker exemption in the omnibus appropriations bills simply provides that if an H-2B worker has been counted against the cap in one of the three prior years, that worker can return to work in the H-2B program in the current year without being counted against this year's cap. For more information please visit:https://www.SaveH2b.orghttps://www.facebook.com/SaveH2B/https://twitter.com/SaveH_2Bhttps://youtu.be/UTYVEirlu3o To contribute further, please contact your Congressmen/women and tweet using the hashtag: #SAVEH2B.

SAVE H-2B
737 supporters
Petitioning David Ige, Hawaii State House, Hawaii State Senate, Brian Schatz, Mazie Hirono

Rename the Honolulu International Airport to the Barack H. Obama International Airport

Since the city of Chicago was granted the opportunity to build the President Barack Obama Presidential Library, I believe we should do something here in Hawaii that will honor our 44th president. Our 44th president was born here and represented Hawaii with great passion. I think it will be a great honor to rename the Honolulu International Airport to the Barack H. Obama International Airport! He will go down in history as one of our greatest presidents and our first president who was born and raised here in Hawaii!

Edward Murray
494 supporters