Rhode Island State House
Rhode Island State House
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 mostly 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. sailors and military contractors previously stationed overseas. 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. 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. sailors 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 2017 creates a specialized visa allowing military veterans and eligible civilian contractors to sponsor their children and grandchildren for U.S. citizenship. 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 struggle to connect to their American military fathers. Please sign this petition to tell Congress that these families cannot wait another day. Pass the Uniting Families Act of 2017 now!
Call for Blue States to Move On
What happened to make this country the focus of judgment, laughter, and fear from the rest of the world? The industrialized world outside of the United States enjoys a better quality of life and general happiness that most of us can only imagine. First class education, comprehensive health care, clean food/water/air and an overall better relationship with their fellow citizens. And as a country, we have higher mortality rates at younger ages, poorer health, and an impoverished population who can't learn new skills without going deeper into debt. As much as we like to blame Donald Trump for our national problems; these problems were here before him, and they will still be here if Trump is removed from office tomorrow. We have a political system that centralizes power to a consolidated political center in Washington, DC and an economic center in New York City. Our Electoral System will isolate the power to determine the direction of our political system to a very small, easily manipulated portion of the electorate in strategic location. Worst of all, we have a large portion of the population who will empower a mentally unstable man to the highest office in the world; just so they can say “We Won”. This group is constantly complaining about a simple world with plentiful jobs in their communities that are extinct or never really existed. And now, they have the nerve to complain about losing the federal government programs they benefitted from and voted against. It's time we said “ENOUGH” and have Progressive States and Communities band together and share resources and ideas to provide a better quality of life for its people, that the Trump Administration wants to take away. And furthermore, we need to ensure that we only support States and Communities who will change their policies for its people. We can no longer provide assistance to Red States, just so they can abuse and neglect their citizens for business interests. For the future of this nation, we need to explore every legal method possible to protect the people from an extremely dangerous President Trump. A Values Based Alliance of the States (VBAS) is one way of resisting this new reality of government, and the dangerous changes that we all know are inevitable. I understand that the constitution will not allow us to directly stop this monstrosity, but it will allows us to devalue it. A VBAS of certain states with similar values and policy preferences can and will use its population centers and economic influence to co-op, share resources, and implement policies with other co-opted states, while not having to depend on or engage the federal government. Examples: There are certain states with a majority of people that believe single payer healthcare system (CA, MA, VT, NY, WA, OR, IL, HI.). If those states passed laws to provide single payer health care for it’s people, a Single Payer Healthcare VBAS organization of those states can share resources to improve efficiencies, expand medical training/education amongst the co-opted states, negotiate pharmaceutical/treatment, amend needed tax policies and petition the US Government. This would also force neighboring states to decide if they want to change their internal policies to provide single payer, so they can join the Health Care VBAS. A resident of Indiana might ask his state to join the VBAS, because he could literally see his next door neigbor in Illinois fully covered, and using a Doctor that just came back from his training at a medical school in California. Although the VBAS states can not legally sign the Paris accords, they can change their internal policies to abide by its recommendations. There could be an environmental protection VBAS, where the states involved agree to abide by the Paris accords, improve safety protocols within its states, take climate change seriously, and provide economic preference to states and nations that do the same. CA, OR, NY, MA, VT, WA HI, and NV could agree to be a preferred customer of states or nations that voluntarily reduces its carbon emissions and address climate change, instead of LA or TX, which most likely will not. Other issues could include minimum wage, education, trade agreements, gun control and virtually every policy not adjudicated solely to the federal government. As more VBASes are organized and more states agree to join them, Donald Trump and the ignorance of future presidents become less and less relevant. Please sign this petition and pass it on to as many people as possible.
Don’t Take Away Our Right To Resell Tickets! Oppose Rhode Island Restricted Ticketing Bills!
When tickets go on sale, loyal Rhode Island fans line up for the chance to see our favorite artists, sports teams, or events. We go online, pick up the phone or wait in line for hours to purchase tickets. But sometimes life gets in the way, and we can’t attend a highly anticipated show or the big game. If Ticketmaster and their allies have their way, we won’t be able to sell, donate, or even give away the tickets we bought and own. Rhode Island General Assembly bills H-7543 and S-2658 are an attempt by ticket giants like Ticketmaster and the venues they do business with to further monopolize ticket sales by eliminating your rights to use, donate or resell tickets however you choose. That’s not right! No other industry operates this way in Rhode Island, because these restrictions violate some of our most fundamental consumer and property rights. It’s time to protect our rights as fans – write to your Rhode Island legislators and tell them to stand with fans, not ticket industry monopolies, and oppose H-7543 and S-2658!
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.
Stop The Statute of Limitations on ALL Child & Adult Sexual Assault #metoo #StopTheStatute
http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/December-2016/Marc-Winner/ #metoo Please read until the end to begin to understand the scope of it all. ❤️� Hopefully we have just one more pre-trial on the 1st of 4 serial rape trials against Marc Winner and then the actual 1st trial will be set. Over 16 years, I hoped and prayed this day would actually never come, because although I knew he couldn’t stop-it was my greatest wish that he would, so no one else would be violently raped by him again. Painfully, that was not the case with 4 in the SOL and 10 total we know about in a 15 year period. The continuous promises made to me when they wanted me to be okay with the plea deal, were not kept. Woman after woman reported him only to be disbelieved and disregarded, because of archaic belief systems even within the justice system and Chicagoland Cook County City and Suburbs being on different computer systems. How senseless is that? It now does make sense though why only a few months after he raped me, he moved to Chicago and opened a new “award winning” tanning salon, he of course named after himself. It would seem he may have knowingly made the move with the help of his wealthy and powerful family and benefactors in order to stalk prey without scrutiny and undetected once again. I have been ruled a past crime witness, being his first known victim and first to report. We won’t know until the trials begin whether or not past crimes will be testifying and entered into evidence. Often the court system doesn’t want to do what can be referred to as “muddying the waters” by bringing past crimes in. I find that ridiculous because all the past crimes establish an obvious pattern and MO. However, whatever it takes for the rapist predator with a file as large as “War & Peace” to finally no longer slip through the cracks and be put behind bars for good, is fine by me. This has not been an easy road. It’s actually been harder than I would ever be able to explain. My sister and brother survivors understand why sexual assault is the most under reported crime, because coming forward in order to protect others from a monster has no upsides due to the revictimization of stigma, harassment, a pretty inept and broken system, and those who want to make rape of all things about politics or shaming and blaming the survivor rather than stopping the perp. It’s been a long 16+ years with much joy after I came to terms with the unthinkable, but I really got thrown for a loop that invasion day almost two years ago now when I found out he was back or I should say never actually left. For he remained active and my reporting him, going to all our trial dates, and his slap on the wrist plea deal didn’t keep him from continuing his proclivity to do irreparable and permanent harm. I do not feel any of the unfounded shame or blame any longer. I could really careless what the ignorant callous bullies towards survivors of rape think or say either. I do however feel an immense responsibility to my sisters who survived him, all sister and brother survivors, and the community at large to see this through to the end-to finish this-and to help convict him anyway that I lawfully can so he never hurts another living soul again. Many confusingly mock and attack survivor activists who put it all on the line to stop criminals by using the term social justice warrior as a negative connotation on the internet and elsewhere. However, what they don’t seem to understand is that this is NOT a political issue and a violent despicable crime such as rape can never be referred to as “social.” It’s a matter of stopping a violent criminal from seriously hurting others in a way that the survivors receive a life sentence. Rape is actually a CRIMINAL JUSTICE issue-always has been, always will be. As a Criminal Justice issue, one way to end the emboldening of predators like Marc Winner, Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, and Denny Hastert is to stop the SOL clock. Predators know very well that they have a time clock they can easily run out during the often decades of time it takes a victim to come forward and be a survivor. The time is NOW to #StopTheStatute of Limitations on sex crimes in every state for children and adults once and for all. There are no statutes in different states on Forgery, types of Fraud, Murder, Manslaughter, Attempted Murder, Arson, types of DUI accidents, and even in a few on Rape, but a few isn’t good enough-Rape is a life sentence, so should be the time period it takes to report it (which remember does not mean the lack of burden of proof) in order to help deter. The system needs to give survivors the time they need to come to terms with the heinous violation to their body and spirit in order to get closure and justice-How can’t everyone reasonably understand and get behind that? #Ibelieveyou#stopthestatute
Justice for Justin
In the early hours of Thursday June 29th, 2017 Justin Phelps was pronounced dead at his home in West Warwick, RI of an accidental drug overdose. Although Justin did not make it, he was not alone. Justin's former fiancee', Natasha, would remain in the household until morning. Under the "Good Samaritan Act", Natasha could have contacted emergency services getting Justin the help needed to save his life while also freeing her of any and all responsibility of his overdose. Instead of saving his life, she proceeded to get high and "go to sleep." After investigation the police determined that Natasha had stayed with Justin's deceased body for a duration of at least 8 hours. Officers on scene stated that she was not at fault and allowed her to leave. Justin's sister Ashley, who resides in the adjoining condo had started attempting to contact her brother Wednesday evening as early as 6 pm, both his and Natasha's phones would only repeatedly send her to voicemail. There were approximately 28 calls that would be ignored by Natasha that evening, Ashley never spoke to her brother again. Sensing something was amiss, she went next door. Knocking loudly, trying to gain entry into the house, she only found herself locked out. Several other friends of Justin had also tried to contact him; all ignored by Natasha. For more than half of my life the Phelps family has been my family, despite having our occasional differences like families often do. I love them and it breaks my heart to see them going through this. It hurts to breathe when I realize that I'm not going to just wake up from this, that I'll never see Justin again. We will never see Justin again. This could have easily been prevented had Natasha simply answered a phone or unlocked a door. Two weeks prior to this incident; Justin had overdosed, rescue was called by Ashley and Justin was revived using narcan. Natasha was furious with Ashley for contacting and "involving" the police, even though it saved his life. During the investigation Thursday morning while questioning Natasha she told the police that she had been asleep. She went on to give them her phone with a newly deleted call log and an old phone that she claimed to be Justin's; having no missed calls. Ashley quickly pointed out that this was not her brother's phone and provided evidence of the ignored calls on her cellphone but the officers dismissed it. I know that nothing can bring Justin back to us. What I cannot accept is that fact that Natasha walked away from this. Why do we have the Good Samaritan Act if there is no penalty imposed if it's neglected? Especially when the neglect results in death? The fact is that Justin could be alive right now and the only reason he is not is because his girlfriend did not want to involve police. This is not right and what I'm asking for is simply this; Justice for Justin. I would like to see Natasha held at least partially accountable for her actions, or in this case her lack thereof. Perhaps if it was made a punishable crime to neglect the GSA, unfortunate events such as this could be avoided in the future. I cannot even fathom the pain and suffering his family is enduring at this time and it is sincerely my belief that no one should ever have to.
RI House and Senate: Prevent the Breed Specific bills H 5287 and S 178 from advancing
Breed specific legislation is unjust. Stop punishing responsible dog owners and their pets! In the words of the AKC "The American Kennel Club strongly opposes any legislation that determines a dog to be "dangerous" based on specific breeds or phenotypic classes of dogs. We support laws that: establish a fair process by which specific dogs are identified as "dangerous" based on stated, measureable actions; impose appropriate penalties on irresponsible owners; and establish a well-defined method for dealing with dogs proven to be dangerous."
Echo is my baby. He is a part of our family. He is our bird. Echo is a quaker parrot. He is the sweetest bird. He loves cuddles, scratches, and he loves his family. Quaker parrots happen to be illegal in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Tennessee, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Wyoming. Other states have restrictions like having a license, or having a band on your bird. There are many reasons for this. Quaker parrots multiply very fast, they build nests that have in the past been problems, and they are territorial. All of these reasons have one thing in common. That is they have to get out. Instead of making them illegal I would like there to be restrictions. My dream is to live in Tennessee but that will not be possible if my bird can't live there too. My goal is to make it possible for everyone to keep there pet quakers if they have to move to one of these states. Even if there are restrictions. Please help me and echo to make quakers legal! They are amazing creatures and fantastic pets!
A state-based, Constitutional Amendment to Require POTUS Candidates Release their Taxes.
Amendments to the US Constitution can be proposed by two-thirds of state legislatures. This petition urges state legislatures of all 50 states to immediately take up the task of introducing an amendment to the Constitutional that requires: All candidates running for office of the President MUST release their entire tax history including FULL, long form tax returns to be eligible to run for President of the United States of America. Failure to release said documents will prohibitively disqualify a candidate from running for office of The President of the United States of America. This requirement will hold the same weight and importance as "natural born" status. It's vitally important that the President and their finances are free of foreign influence. The practice of releasing tax returns has been a political norm for more than 50 years. It's time now to make it LAW. If state legislatures lead, the national leaders will follow. This petition will be delivered to legislatures in all 50 states.
Research Rhode Map RI
RhodeMapRI was adopted, without your input, by a 'consortium' of people last Wednesday night. They will send it to the State Planning Council this Thursday for adoption. You can stop it from becoming Law BUT you have to act by Thursday 9am. Read the remainder of this email and contact Mr. Kevin Flynn email@example.com or 401-222-6496 and urge him to vote down adoption of the plan until it can be properly vetted by all parties impacted. Contact Governor-elect Raimonda 401-222-2397 and tell her to urge the State Planning Council to delay this vote. Consider attending the State Council Planning meeting on Thursday, Nov. 20 at 9:00 am to voice your opposition to adoption of RhodeMapRI before proper vetting. This is not a Democrat or Republican issue. It is an individual rights issue. As you read further, please keep in mind that the RI Public Expenditure Council, RIPEC, a nonpartisan public policy research organization providing unbiased economic information to the state and who had originally suggested that the state needed an overall economic plan, has rethought their position and called for the state to halt the adoption of RhodeMapRI. This plan has nothing to do with economic development in RI. Although we encourage you to read the entire plan document, because time is of the essence, we call your attention to the last four pages (http://rhodemapri.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Economic-Dev-Plan-Full-Draft-for-Public-Hearing-Review.pdf). A quick perusal will give you the background you need to understand that this plan has nothing to do with economic development in RI, but rather it is a plan to completely transform the way all Rhode Islanders will live, move, work and be educated. And it will be very costly. ➤➤➤It overrides your city or town’s authority The premise of this so-called 'sustainability plan' is that if you are a property owner, you are contributing to “social” injustice, and to achieve “justice”, local zoning authority and regulations must be eliminated. Why has the media only this week discovered this issue? Even the news media said they were not aware of this plan. If the news media is not informed, then how can we or you be informed? The development of this plan has been in the works for close to two years, but have you heard anything about it? Probably not. That's because the consortium of people and groups that were invited to the process, while they included 9 cities and towns, basically included the big cities in RI. There were only three towns that would be considered suburban/rural - Burrillville, No. Kingstown and Westerly. The other 30 cities and towns are not part of the consortium. Most citizens and groups were not consulted. The individuals who are part of the 'Social Equity Advisory Committee' that provided input to the plan include local social activist groups and residents from cities, primarily Providence. Again, none from the suburban/rural areas. Not a single taxpayer group or responsible government group/think tank (e.g., The RI Center for Freedom and Prosperity) was invited to participate. Although the plan document (link provided below) calls for business participation, there appear to be no businesses listed. Given the likelihood of significant tax increases resulting from such a plan and the immutable loss of individual rights resulting from this plan, the average taxpayer should have been at the table. Additionally, the plan needs to be reviewed in the context of both the US Constitution and the RI Constitution. If adopted, only 3 1/2 weeks will have passed between public comment period, to revision, to adoption - Oct 27 - Nov 20.
I do not support H 5287 or S 178. No animal should be categorized or punished because of irresponsible owners, trainers or breeders.
I do not support H 5287 or S 178. No animal should be categorized or punished because of irresponsible owners, trainers or breeders.
Since when is showing compassion to an injured animal and trying to bring it back to health a crime
Since when is showing compassion to an injured animal and trying to bring it back to health a crime