Hands Up Act
My name is Travis Washington. I received my M. A, degree in Higher Education and Administration from Southern Illinois University Carbondale in May 2019. I have been politically involved, from registering people to vote, to work in the Springfield Capitol (as an Alexander Lane Fellow, January to May 2017). We know how so many people of cultural minorities are in constant fear of leaving their household. This fear in our lives far too often comes from individuals working in public safety who harm people. Every single week we hear about another unarmed innocent vulnerable human being shot by the police. This has increased the trauma and fear that has made people of color scared to leave their homes. We need legislation now that prohibits police officers from shooting unarmed citizens. If there isn’t a weapon found after someone has been shot (therefore, unarmed) by a police officer, then I propose that the officer should receive a mandatory 15-year prison sentence. We have seen over and over police officers get off, even with videotape footage of citizens having been shot by police officers. This is a new form of lynching. I am pleading with you to propose a bill that protects people who have every right to feel threatened by law enforcement. We always say we need more training for those involved in public safety, and there are increasing policies and laws that mandate that police officers have “body cameras” on them. Those measures do not address the whole problem, not when the individual officers who shoot unarmed victims aren’t punished. Senator, we are in a crisis where relationships between people of color and police officers are deteriorating, beyond the critical level. In order to build any sort of positive relationships again, we need laws to keep a balance in the lives of all the public. I might even suggest this as a title for this proposed legislation: the Hands UP ACT. I will be emailing this to the all of your colleagues in the U. S. Senate, members of Congress, State Governors; Democracy Now, the Huffington Post, ThinkProgress; and to other appropriate organizations across the country. Once this petition receives enough attention. My goal to speak before the House of Representatives or United Nations during a committee hearing to bring attention to this policy. Thank You !!
Federally Required Psychological Screenings for Police Employment and Federal Reforms
Over this past decade, we have seen numerous police killings and brutality—much of which has been captured with the help of social media. The use of social media has exposed much of the violence which would have otherwise been hidden. Recently, George Floyd was a victim of this violence. A police officer in Minneapolis, Derick Chauvin, used his knee to pin Floyd down by his neck. A 10 minute video captured his murder. Floyd pleads that he can't breath, and about halfway through the video, Floyd appears unconscious and is likely dead at this point. Still, Chauvin keeps Floyd pinned to the ground with his knee until the paramedics arrive; ignoring his duty to render aid. Also captured, were the three other officers at the scene who also refused to assist Floyd and ignored the pleas of the bystanders to check his pulse. It was recently shown that Chauvin had multiple complaints against him, 2 of which he was punished for. The following proposed law would be able to prevent many of the incidents which have occurred with George Floyd, Freddie Gray, Atatiana Jefferson, and countless others. As of now, potential officers go through a psychological screening before employment that tests their fitness to be an officer. The test screens for judgement, integrity, dealing with stress, honesty, etc. This needs to go further in order to eliminate people who could pose a danger to citizens while on the job. Not all states require psychological screening which makes a federal requirement a necessity. The psychological screening, which is already done to screen an officer, should be more in depth and should also include evaluations that test for psychotic disorders, mood disorders & personality disorders. Around 88% of police departments have required drug screening. This should be included in all police departments since it would serve as a necessary precaution for screening. Since Chauvin was involved in incidents during his tenure as an officer, a re-screening should be required every 6 months to a year while the officer is employed. Much like how a doctor or lawyer is re-examined on their knowledge to ensure they are fit to practice, an officer should be required to take a re-examination too. These requirements should be federally mandated to ensure that across the country, officers are screened effectively. I appreciate you for taking the time to read this. Thank you! UPDATE (6/5/20): Since posting this petition, I have received numerous suggestions which I believe should be included and federally required as well. These include: regular & initial drug testing, social media screening, a federal hate crime for falsely reporting a racial crime, redirecting police funding in major cities to programs that support the communities, a national database for police officers involved in misconduct, QR codes on uniforms, an associates degree requirement for all departments, and banning police officers from being hired at another department if they are fired from one previously.
We Want a Police Reform Bill NOW!
Due to unchecked police violence in this nation, we are requesting an immediate police reform bill. When police brutality occurs, police are allowed to conduct their own investigations of their own misconduct. In some situations a neighboring police department will conduct an investigation of misconduct. This is a conflict of interest. We demand a bill that requires all police departments in this country be investigated by democratically elected, independent civilian review boards; which have the power to investigate police, and also bring charges against police. These boards must have subpoena power. These boards must not include current police officers or relatives of police officers. The people on these boards must not be appointed by local Mayors, or Governors. We want the ability to vote for the members of these boards and have them give us the accountability and transparency which is needed to protect the people. We would also like a push for more de-escalation training, body cam footage release policies, less than lethal weapons used by police, and implicit bias training for all police officers. The police are here to protect and serve the public. Give us justice
Ban the use of rubber bullets for crowd control
Rubber bullets are not safe to be used for crowd control. They are made of a metal core and coated in rubber. It is not safe to be firing them into crowds, and we have seen over the past few days many protestors losing eyes or damaging their faces due to a rubber bullet hitting them. These bullets are supposed to be aimed at the ground, but we cannot trust law enforcement to do that as we have seen. Rubber bullets can seriously injure, and even kill people. The damage they cause to protestors is immense, and the costs are unimaginable. Sign the petition in hopes they will see this petition and call for a ban on rubber bullets. Let our people protest and let our people assemble. Rubber bullets don’t protect or control a crowd, they only add unneeded injury to protestors. This isn’t “crowd control” when it purposely wounds protestors. These rubber bullets are large too. They are about the size of the palm of your hand. They do not need to be that big, and they do not even need to exist. They generate useless violence, as law enforcement officials are harming protestors in the name of crowd control. BAN THE USE OF RUBBER BULLETS NOW! STOP LAW ENFORCEMENT FROM HURTING MORE PROTESTORS IN THE NAME OF CROWD CONTROL. THEY ARE INHUMANE AND CAN PROVE TO BE LETHAL.
Sign Our Petition! Stop Trump From Firing Dr. Fauci!
Please immediately sign our petition in support of Dr. Anthony Fauci, our nation's top infectious disease expert. America is facing the most dire public health emergency in modern times. We need to keep Dr. Fauci on the job. President Trump, however, wants him gone! Why? Because Dr. Fauci is refusing to go along with Donald Trump's lies. Dr. Fauci cares about one thing -- keeping us safe. He is trying to tell us that ... COVID-19 is very real and very dangerous. We all need to wear masks. The situation is getting worse by the day. These are the facts. But Donald Trump wants to hear none of it. He wants Americans to believe everything is fine ... that he is the "perfect" President, just so he can get reelected. He doesn't care how many more people get sick or die. Even school children. So he’s been laying the groundwork to do the unthinkable: Fire the one person in the Administration who's actually trying to save American lives. We have to say “No!" And if we don't speak up now, Dr. Fauci could be gone within the week. SIGN ON TO SAVE FAUCI. Dr. Fauci is a national hero. He has advised six Presidents as Director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases on HIV/AIDS and many other domestic and global health issues. He was one of the principal architects of the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), a program that has saved millions of lives throughout the developing world. He oversees an extensive research portfolio of basic and applied research to prevent, diagnose, and treat established infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, respiratory infections, diarrheal diseases, tuberculosis and malaria as well as emerging diseases such as Ebola and Zika. Over 135,000 Americans have already died from COVID-19. We need to keep Dr. Fauci on the job. PLEASE SIGN ON NOW TO SAVE DR. FAUCI!
Pass the Anti-Lynching Bill Now
Anti-Lynching legislation first made it's way into Congress in 1922. It was filibusters and never passed. Subsequently, the language of the 1922 Dyer Anti-Lynching Bill was the foundation of multiple Anti-Lynching Bills presented to Congress. All of which failed. June 2018, Senators Kamala Harris (D-CA), Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Tim Scott (R-SC) presented the Justice for Victims of Lynching Act. A bill that would make lynching a federal hate crime. It was voted on by the Senate but failed to be acted upon by the House. This past February 2020, the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Bill was passed. It was introduced by Representative Bobby Rush (D-IL). Between the Justice for Victims of Lunching act and the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Bill, it was assured that there would finally be measures taken against those that would commit such atrocious racial terrorism that has already claimed over 4,000 African American lives. Today, this bill is still on hold as Sentor Rand Paul has objected to it's passing. He considers the language "too broad," despite the bill being accepted as a bipartisan effort. “Under the statute as written, bruises could be considered lynching. That’s a problem, to put someone in jail for 10 years for some kind of altercation. And it also I think demeans how horrible lynching actually was,” - Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) To that, I say to Senator: How dare you? Your opinion on the definition of lynching doesn't matter. Nobody asked you because you never had to go through it. If some escaped a lynching with a few minor bruises. They're still a lynching survivor. To only make lynching the most extreme case is the exact problem America has. America has constantly minimalized the experiences of Black Americans. You've generalized our history into oversimplified digestible chunks that you can spew when it serves you. That is why MLK's legacy is misappropriated. That is why we are told, "Slavery was long ago." 186 Black bodies were brutilized by lynching in the very state that you serve. Your opposition to this bill speaks volumes to the Black Kentuckians that you serve. Furthermore, you are using this bill as a prop for personal political visibility. You are bringing attention to yourself and your base on the 4,000 lynched Black bodies. You have zero grasp of the depth and range of lynchings in America. So, you DO NOT get to set the bar on what is too little and too great a definition of it is. You DO NOT get to be the tone police for this bill. It is best that you sit behind your desk, sign the bill and be quiet. With this petition I demand that you sign this bill into law. If Rand Paul insists on obstructing justice and a form of reconciliationfor Black Americans, I demand of Senator Mitch McConnell to bring it to the floor for a vote.
Justice 4 Amie - Domestic Violence Laws Updated
Due to domestic violence, I recently lost a wonderful friend, Dr. Amie Harwick. She was murdered as a result of poorly written laws that do not protect the victims and properly punish the offenders. I refuse to let her death be in vain. She was a Doctor in the Mental Health Field and advocate in the community. We need to do the same and advocate for Amie. So I am launching JUSTICE 4 AMIE! Amie had a restraining order in place against a violent ex boyfriend she dated over a decade ago. The restraining order had expired before her untimely death. In the last week of January 2020, this ex boyfriend attended an event, at which she was making an appearance, and continued his harassment of her. He began to stalk her thereafter and on late Valentine's night decided to attack her in her own home. This man clearly needed treatment, incarceration and/or punishment for years prior to this attack. She should have never been in this situation like so many other victims. The process to get a restraining order is very difficult, traumatizing and must be repeated when the restraining order expires. With this in mind I believe the laws and statues need to be re-written as follows: 1. No expiration date or a longer protection term and to not be lifted until victim requests it to be cancelled. 2. Mandatory affirmative obligation for long term counseling for the stalker/abuser if a restraining order is violated even a minor offense. If they are deemed a harm to the victim or society, then institutionalization may be ordered. 3. Victims should not have to testify in a courtroom close to their abuser/stalker. There should be an option to live stream in a safe space in a satellite location for the hearing with the judge. It's a traumatic experience that the victim is already dealing with and should not be subjected to it again if they do not feel they can. That is why many abusers get away with their actions: many victims back out of trial due to fear of facing their perpetrator. 4. Just like sex offenders, a National Restraining Order Registry should be made to warn others of offenders that have restraining orders. There can be levels just like Sex Offender Registry. A national database so that you can look up an individual and see if they have multiple restraining orders out on them. It is very difficult to search an individual now to determine if they have had more than one Restraining Order without knowing the Victim etc. 5. Financial Abuse by Abusers is very serious and is another major reason why most victims find it difficult to leave their abuser. Identity Theft since the abuser may have all the personal and financial information of the victim. Their Credit Scores ruined by partners running up charges and not paying their debts to hurt the victim. Coercive Abuse. UPDATE for 5. - SUPPORT SENATE BILL 1141 by Senator Rubio who is currently pushing for Legislation on this matter in California. 6. Free access to Attorneys just like criminals have free access to public defenders. A victim should not have to bear the legal fees that are incurred when seeking protection. 7. The personal addresses of anyone should be blocked from public access and remain private per individuals request. Voter Registration and Business Registration is an easy way to access someone's personal home information which gives Stalkers and Abusers access to the victim's home address. Privacy matters! UPDATE for 7. = https://www.sos.ca.gov/registries/safe-home/ 8. Supporting Current Bills to pass like SACRAMENTO, CA – Sen. Susan Rubio (D-Baldwin Park) has introduced Senate Bill 1141, which will expand legal protections for survivors of domestic violence by criminalizing threats, humiliation, intimidation, and other coercive actions that are used to frighten and control a victim. SB 1141 makes coercive control a crime punishable by imprisonment in jail not to exceed one year, or by imprisonment in the state prison, or by a fine not exceeding $1,000. The bill defines coercive control as the deprivation or violation of the victim’s personal liberty, which can be established through a course of conduct including force, duress, isolation, or economic abuse. Examples of coercive control include controlling a person’s finances; isolating a person from family and friends; and monitoring a person’s day-to-day activities. “Current domestic violence laws do not reflect how domestic violence is practiced in reality,” Sen. Rubio said. “The new crime of coercive control recognizes that domestic violence encompasses more than just physical abuse. This change protects survivors of domestic violence by making their cases harder to dismiss and easier to prosecute.” “SB 1141 authored by Sen. Rubio recognizes that domestic violence is not limited to physical violence,” said Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer, the bill’s sponsor. “This legislation addresses the very real harm of coercive control and strengthens the State’s protections for domestic violence survivors.” England, Wales, Ireland, and Scotland have had coercive control laws for several years, encouraging changes in how their societies view individual acts of violence as part of a broader pattern of abuse. The unique harms suffered by domestic violence survivors occurs as much from the deprivation of liberty achieved through a pattern of power and control as it does from discrete physical acts of violence. If anyone has any other ideas, we would love to hear them. People shouldn't have to die to make changes. As she helped countless numbers of other people in life, we need to use Amie’s passing as a catalyst for change. So her family, friends, and loved ones’ pain from her death is not in vain. Enough is Enough. 1 in 4 will experience severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. 1 in 3 women will experience rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime. 3 women a day are killed by domestic violence. #Justice4Amie Lets get a Million Signatures & More
Support the COVID-19 Pandemic Physician Protection Act (CPPPA)
Colleagues, Friends, and Family, By now, many of you have been personally affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. In some households, it may be several family members, or even yourself. As physicians and healthcare workers, we have been called to the frontline of this war against COVID-19, and we do not take this responsibility lightly. However, we do need your support. We need more tools and assurances in this fight against COVID-19. After hearing the feedback of the grassroots physician community through online communities with membership totaling over 100,000 physicians, we have proposed the COVID-19 Pandemic Physician Protection Act (CPPPA), which outlines the areas where we need help the most. Highlights include: Ensuring that physicians and other healthcare workers have access to adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), protecting physicians from malpractice concerns that have arisen as a result of deviation from standard practices in order to protect patients from COVID-19 exposure, increasing access and removing restrictions for TeleHealth services, keeping our private practices financially solvent, ensuring mental health coverage for healthcare workers, canceling student loan debt, and creating provisions for our families if we die or become disabled during this pandemic. Please take a moment to sign our petition, which will also supports our proposed legislation (the CPPPA). We truly believe it will save lives - not only of physicians and other healthcare workers, but of patients throughout the United States of America. Respectfully submitted, Nisha Mehta, MD Carlos Vital, MD Karla Vital, MD The full text of CPPPA can be seen at: https://drive.google.com/file/d/15ls6Mff-b5JV3uWA666Lxvo9JF1VVDEn/view?usp=sharing
Protect our Camping and OHV rights! Fight to Keep OCEANO DUNES SVRA open!
Share the link, spread the word, and Donate to Friends of Oceano Dunes @ oceanodunes.org Please Note: When change.org asks for a donation after you finish signing, that money does not go towards helping keep the dunes open. Information as to where you can donate is down below (oceanodunes.org) The fight needs to be paid forward. Please donate to OceanoDunes.org a non-profit who has been battling for 18+ years with multiple agencies to keep the Dunes open for everyone. The California Costal Commission has announced that they will be meeting on July 11th, 2019 at 9am in SLO- Embassy Suites Hotel 333 Madonna Road, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405 To discuss implementing a complete closure of the Oceano Dunes SVRA (Pismo Dunes) by Oct-Dec 2019. . Myself and many supporters of keeping Oceano Dunes SVRA open; are reaching out to all our fellow riders, campers, friends, and family to try and gather as much support as possible to voice our opinions and objections on the closure of this park! This park belongs to the people of the state of California, and if we do not make our voices heard now, it will be too late! It’s time we band together and fight for what is a California Coast staple. The closure of this park will not only affect local business but, also affect many people personally. Myself like many other fellow Californians have been visiting the dunes for years. The dunes have been a huge part of my life and many other individuals. Oceano dunes SVRA has been a place for people from all over to gather and enjoy beach camping and OHV use. As a veteran I fought for the rights to enjoy my California state parks and to have that right taken away is just not right. Help me and many other like minded individuals fight for our rights to camp and enjoy OHV use at Oceano Dunes SVRA state park and keep the memories rollin. I personally will be attending the meeting on July 11th; we ask for everyone to show your support and if you can make it out-Please do! Our voices need to be heard NOW! I know with your help we can keep our park open! Before July 5th email your comments to the commission at firstname.lastname@example.org to tell them they need to protect your rights for camping and OHV use via the Coastal Act. If you want to help fund Friends of Oceano Dunes, the non-profit group fighting against the closures (currently funding several lawsuits) you can donate directly to them VIA PayPal https://www.oceanodunes.org Taking action now by writing, calling, and emailing the contacts below is also of immense help! Let them know how important Oceano Dunes SVRA is to you! email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org OHVInfo.OHV@parks.ca.gov Jim@oceanodunes.org Thank you so much for your time. Very Respectfully, J. Titus Rivera
Make racially motivated crime an act of terror and declare hate groups terrorist
As citizens of the United States and as living beings of the world, it is our responsibility to take responsibility for our future. America was built on the back of inequity and inequality. However, America is a country that that was meant to be created in the ideals that "All men are created equal," yet, as we see now more than ever that fairness has been a dream. We have the opportunity to use our voices to be on the right side of history. Now more than ever, we have the opportunity to create change for the betterment of society and to preserve what is left of the ideals laid within The Constitution. Racism is at the forefront of more violence in this country than any other act. From slavery to Jim Crow and Segregation to the war on drugs and systematic indentured servitude along with mandatory minimum sentencing; covert racism has been a tradition ingrained in our society like hot dogs, baseball, and apple pie. However, there are not strict federal and national laws in place to combat acts of racism. Racist acts and racism is often either simply frowned upon or turned a blind eye towards. I propose that we immediately enact legislation that protects people of all races, colors, creeds, and orientations from heinous and deplorable acts of physical, mental, or emotional racist/hate-motivated act(s) or action(s). I propose that we make racially motivated crime an act of terror and racist/hate groups terrorist organizations. I propose that we create George's Law to combat domestic racist terrorist. Terrorism as defined by the F.B.I.: International terrorism: Violent, criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups who are inspired by, or associated with, designated foreign terrorist organizations or nations (state-sponsored). Domestic terrorism: Violent, criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups to further ideological goals stemming from domestic influences, such as those of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature. I propose we consider the following: Expand the definition of terrorism to cover "domestic racist organizations" Which can be defined: A person who engages in domestic terrorism if they do a racially motivated act that is "dangerous to human life" that is a violation of the criminal laws of a state or the United States, or if the action appears to be race-related to: (i) intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of citizens by mass destruction, assassination or kidnapping. Hate groups, including but not limited to The Klu Klux Klan, will be deemed as a terrorist organization and, as such, their members put on federal watch lists and incarcerated as such while being held to the amendments under the Freedom Act. The conviction of Hate crimes come with mandatory minimum sentencing. These crimes may include but not be limited to terror group hand signals, racism rhetoric, distribution and creation of racist propaganda and materials, an act of physical harm to another human being that is in the guise of an act of racist aggression and other racially motivated actions that result in mental, emotional, and bodily harm to an individual(s). Strick penalties for Conspiracy and Aiding and Abetting acts of racist terror. Under 18 U.S.C. § 2, acts of the perpetrator become the acts of the aider and abettor, and the person aiding, and abetting can be charged with having done the acts himself. Anyone who aids, abets, counsels, commands, induces, or procures the commission of a crime is just as punishable as the person primarily responsible for the crime. Law enforcement officers who kill a civilian in the line of duty be immediately taken into the custody of the police department and held without release up to 30 days after the incident or until a full investigation can be completed by obtaining reviewing witness testimony, body-cam footage, and all other means of corroboration. If the officer acted within their rights as law enforcement, they are to be reinstated at the time of completion. If found that the officer has failed to comply with local state and federal law, they will be arrested and detained until a fair and reasonable trial date. This is simply a high-level overview of what I believe can be an immediate step in the right direction We are at a pivotal point in history. The aim of this petition is to create fairness and equality in the world. We will take this petition to both state and federal governments as well as the President, Congress, Supreme Court and The House of Representatives. Today, as Americans, and people of the world we are faced with making decisions that are going to put us in a position to change not only the shape of our country, but history itself. Please help us make racially motivated crime an act of terror and racist/hate groups terrorist organizations by creating George's Law. Now is the time to ask yourself what side of history do you want to be on? #MakeRacismTerrorism #GeorgesLaw --- Michael Anthony is an advocate for adult survivors of child abuse, international speaker, and author of Think Unbroken. @MichaelUnbroken