North Dakota State House
North Dakota State House
Protect Theodore Roosevelt National
Park From Oil Refinery Complex
The National Park Service, National Parks Conservation Association and Coalition to Protect America's National Parks oppose what is perceived as a direct threat to Theodore Roosevelt National Park's Class 1 Air Quality Standards, water quality and image.The Meridian Energy Group has convinced North Dakota's elected officials to rezone more than 725 acres of farmland, located off the eastern border of TRNP's southern unit, to industrial use in order to house their proposed petroleum refinery, a pipeline to this refinery and a BNSF loading terminal.Pictured above is a view of the proposed refinery site from within TRNP southern border, upon Buck Hill. A view many visitors of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota's top tourist site and favorite destination of Teddy himself, enjoy. The only thing keeping smoke stacks from billowing within this view is a final approval from the North Dakota Department of Health. An approval Meridian is confidet in recieving within "120-150 days."The NPS, the CPANP and NPCA not only appose the construction because it would threaten TRNP's Class 1 Air Quality Standard, which is protected under the Clean Air Act. They also fear the refinery, along with the industrialization of the area, will destroy the atmosphere the park offers. Truck traffic will also increase, most certainly adding to traffic accidents and other dangerous situations. In turn, they say it will likely effect the image, feel and visitation of the park in a negative way.Please join these organizations and many others in standing up to Meridian Energy. Stop this refinery in its tracks before it's too late!
Congress: Let all children of U.S. military service members unite with their families!
I’m Jenifer Bass, a U.S. Navy veteran, who served for 10 years, one-third in the Asia-Pacific region. It was due to my travel between ports in countries like Japan and Thailand that I first encountered amerasian children, and descendants, of U.S. service members and civilian contractors previously stationed overseas. Filipino Amerasians are abandoned and neglected biracial children of Filipino mothers and American fathers (mostly members of the US armed forces). In the Philippines alone, more than 52,000-plus children were born and left behind after the U.S. Navy withdrew the last of its military personnel in 1992. Right now, the U.S. government won’t legally recognize them as U.S. citizens, despite having been born to an American parent. The Philippine Embassy won't help them either. As a former US colony between 1898 and 1946, the Philippines was home to millions of US soldiers and their dependents, even after its independence. Until 1992, the country hosted two of the largest US military facilities outside the US – Clark Air Base and Subic Naval Base, which played major roles during the Vietnam and first Gulf wars. In 1982 US Public Law 97-359, or the Amerasian Act of 1982, allowed children from Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Kampuchea, or Thailand to move to the US and eventually become American citizens, but those who were from the Philippines were excluded from the law, an exclusion which was upheld by the US Senate on the basis that many Filipino Amerasians were “conceived from illicit affairs and prostitution”, and were born during peacetime. Today, there are estimated to be more than 250,000-plus children. Many amerasians are caught in a no-man’s land of discrimination and poverty -- most left behind by U.S. service members who are unaware that they’ve fathered children overseas. My friend John Haines is one of these sailors. In 2011, John discovered he was the father of a half-Filipino daughter, Jannette. He attempted to unite with her through the American Homecoming Act -- but was frustrated to learn that the Act did not apply to Filipino children of U.S. service members. Today, all John wants is to be united with his daughter and grandchildren. He, like so many other veterans are living with a “hole in their hearts” as they search for ways to unite with their children. There is hope. The Uniting Families Act of 2018, HR 1520, creates a specialized visa allowing military veterans and eligible civilian contractors to sponsor their children and grandchildren for U.S. citizenship. Currently, blood relationship must be proven by DNA test and the total number of visas granted will be capped at 5,000 each year. The issue takes on more urgency as so many of our veterans from our wars in Southeast Asia are getting older and dying each day -- without the chance to connect, or in some cases, reconnect with their own children. John’s daughter Jannette has already undertaken the DNA testing process, conclusively proving her relationship to her American father. All she’s waiting for is the opportunity to permanently unite with her father. There is a PBS documentary, "Left by the Ship" (2010), documenting a day in the life and the personal struggles as a Filipino amerasian on the never ending search for identity and their struggles to connect to their American military families. Please sign this petition to tell Congress that these families cannot wait another day. Pass the Uniting Families Act of 2017, HR 1520, now!
Prevent North Dakota from accepting Syrian refugees
Lets join the states that have already agreed to keep refugees from Syria out of their states. With the unfortunate events that have previously happened in Paris, we need to take as much action as we can to prevent this chaos from happening here in America. More importantly, North Dakota, with our Air Force base, missile silos, and oil field. http://abcnews.go.com/US/michigan-alabama-texas-refuse-accept-syrian-refugees-wake/story?id=35231800
Remove the penalty that prevents people with disabilities from marrying!
When we think of marriage equality, we think about the ongoing fight LGBT couples face, but another minority group must deal with the stark reality that they are better off living in long-term committed relationships, without marriage. Like LGBT couples, these couples are denied the right to over 1,100 rights afforded to married couples. They have been denied access into their loved ones hospital rooms, faced family disputes over wills and have been denied spousal benefits from their partners workplace or the government in the event of their partners death. These are people with disabilities. Many people rely on the government for medical and financial assistance. Without medical insurance they would have no way to live independently. They would be forced into nursing homes (some already are), which would cost the government significantly more than getting Medicare and/or Medicaid does. At the same time, this assistance comes with a price. The government expects married couples to share income and that affects any assistance the couple receives. For many, their spouse makes too much (even if they make meager SSDI payments). This cuts into the healthcare services these couples receive. For some, their able-bodied partners make too much to allow them to qualify for medical assistance, if married, but not enough to pay out of pocket for costly medical equipment, medicine, or any other needs the disabled partner has. Add in the fact that even when a person with a disability can work, the opportunity for quality medical insurance is hard to find, due to their pre-existing condition and you will understand why many couples with disabilities are forced to live in domestic partnerships. Also, if two people with disabilities marry and they are on SSI or SSDI, their payments are CUT significantly, making it hard for them to maintain independence and afford their own food, shelter, clothing or other necessities. The time to stand up is now!! Let your Senators and Representatives know you want to remove the income caps placed on individuals with disabilities, so they can keep the government assistance and still be able to get married. Every loving couple deserves the right to marry. No one should have to choose between their wheelchair and their love, their therapy and their love, their medication and their love, their ability to eat or have a roof over their head and their love!! Those are not choices!! Help make it possible for those with disabilities to share their love without being penalized!Join our fight for marriage equality for people with disabilities:https://www.facebook.com/MarriageEqualityForPeopleWithDisabilities
Allow Wildlife Rehabilitation Centers in North Dakota
Did you know that North Dakota is the only state in the United States that does not have Wildlife Rehabilitation centers? I recently stumbled upon this information when researching how to start my own Wildlife Rehabilitation center here in North Dakota. I will just touch briefly on what Wildlife Rehabilitaters can do for our state. Animal Rehabilitation centers help keep people educated on what to do when finding a “orphaned” or injured animal. They can tell if the animal is to be left alone or brought in to a facility. Without rehabilitation centers, who do they call? ND Game and Fish who in return tell them to leave the animal to suffer or fend for itself and then most likely that person will end up taking the animal in illegally on their own to try to help it survive, because really? Who could leave an injured or orphaned baby to fend for itself? They then have no experience on what they are doing which in return most of the time will have a devastating result in which the wildlife animal does not survive. In the end, if an animal is released in to the wild, their chances of survival after rehabilitation are much greater compared to orphaned babies or injured wildlife that are left alone in the wild. At least this way they have a fighting chance to survive, when they are injured or orphaned and left alone they don’t stand a chance. Animals that are not able to be successfully rehabilitated and released in to the wild are then used for education purposes in which they can live a very fulfilled and happy life, if quality of life is not there they will then be euthanized. Not all animals that are injured or orphaned will be found by humans, there is so much land in North Dakota untouched by humans so the fact of this affecting the food chain is not accurate. Only the animals that happen to come in contact or cross paths with a human will be the ones lucky enough to have the chance to be rehabilitated. Sadly, at this time, my dream of being able to help our orphaned and injured wildlife here in the state of North Dakota can not come true. Thats why I need your help. Please sign this petition, this is something that is so important to me and I strongly believe that wildlife rehabilitation centers make a difference and that we need this kind of education in our State, a State that has so much wildlife that we need to protect.
Save Lives: Require Spinal Muscular Atrophy Newborn Screening
August is Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) Awareness Month. Please join our efforts to require SMA newborn screening, and help end the deadly effects of SMA. About SMA: • SMA is the number one genetic killer of babies and children under the age of two.• SMA is a motor neuron disease like ALS.• SMA robs the ability to move, swallow, and eventually breathe. • One in 40 unknowingly carries the gene responsible for SMA.• When two carriers have a baby, there is a 25% chance the baby will have SMA, a 50% chance the baby will be a carrier, and a 25% chance the baby will be unaffected.• One in 10,000 babies is born with SMA. The FDA approved Spinraza as the first treatment for SMA on December 23, 2016. However, newborns continue to go untreated when they would receive the most benefit, as no states are performing SMA newborn screening. Newly diagnosed Type 1 SMA babies treated with Spinraza didn't lose their ability to move, swallow, and breathe, but instead gained strength. Some even crawled and took steps — steps away from the deadly effects of SMA. Newborn babies treated within the first two weeks never lost abilities to SMA, and developed as average babies do. They crawl, eat, stand, and walk. Only newborns with older SMA siblings have been treated this way, as their parents knew to screen for SMA. Every newborn needs to be screened for SMA, so babies born with SMA can develop just as babies without SMA do. For this to happen, SMA needs to be added to the Recommended Uniform Screening Panel (RUSP), states need to require SMA newborn screening, and funding needs to be provided for SMA newborn screening. The Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children (Committee) is scheduled to vote to add SMA to the RUSP at its February, 2018 meeting. Once the Committee votes favorably to add SMA to the RUSP, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will add SMA to the RUSP. This is an important step, as many states look to the RUSP when adding new conditions to screen for. This petition will be delivered to both the Committee, and the Secretary of HHS. States also need to require newborn screening, as the RUSP is only a recommendation, it does not mandate states to test for conditions. We will continue to pursue SMA newborn screening in every state, and this petition will help our efforts. Missouri is the only state to enact newborn screening legislation, and will begin screening for SMA in January of 2019. Federal and state funds are also needed to begin and continue SMA newborn screening. This petition will help us as we advocate for funding with the appropriate federal and state congressional members. Act Now: With an FDA-approved treatment, it is urgent we secure SMA newborn screening. Newborn babies treated within the first two weeks will have the best chance at progressing as they would without SMA. Every baby born with SMA should be afforded this life-saving treatment. Please sign our petition urging Committee to vote to add SMA to the RUSP, urging states to require SMA newborn screening, and urging federal and state congressional members to provide funding for SMA newborn screening.