United States Department of Labor
United States Department of Labor
Make Thursday Night The Legal Start Of The Weekend
Thursday Night Football should be more than just a game, it should be the official, legal start of a three-day weekend. America is at a crossroads. The choice is clear: do we continue to suffer the indignity of a two-day weekend? Do we keep sleepy Fridays at work dreaming of escaping the cubicle as part of our weekly routine? OR do we rise up to make the change that hardworking members of society have deserved for so long? Our demands are simple. We, the people, the football fans, the hard working people of the United States deserve better. To be precise, what we deserve is a longer weekend and one that starts at the same time as Thursday night kick off. All we ask is that the government simply change our national calendar, and make Thursday night the start of the weekend. That’s all. No big deal. We’ve punched the card too many times to deserve anything less. Join the movement. With every signature, we are one step closer to starting the weekend early and making a real change for every single working class member of society. It is only together that the future is possible.
United States TPS Extension for Salvadorans
On January 8, President Donald Trump blocked the temporary protected status (TPS) of 250,000+ Salvadoran immigrants who LEGALLY live and work in the United States. Now, despite many living in the U.S. for 15-20 years, these fingerprinted, documented, tax paying individuals are given ONLY 18 MONTHS (Sept. 2019) to get permanent resident status (which can take years to accomplish, if at all) otherwise be forced to leave the country. Now, the U.S. is considered their home--a country that's allowed them to build a better, safer life. These people aren't just grandparents, parents, in-laws, brothers, sisters, nieces and nephews. They are also our friends, neighbors and community leaders who are intertwined in our workplaces, schools and neighborhoods. They are our loved ones. And now President Trump is saying that their contributions don't matter and that they don't belong.WATCH: "Their Status is Temporary. But to Salvadorans, the U.S. is Home"https://www.nytimes.com/video/us/100000005611803/tps-el-salvador-immigration.html?playlistId=100000002500298"These innocent people fled their home country after a disastrous earthquake, and while living conditions may have slightly improved, El Salvador now faces a significant problem with drug trafficking, gangs and crime. Since 2001, these people have established themselves in the United States, making countless contributions to our society and our local communities. It would be devastating to send them home after they have created a humble living for themselves and their families." - Rep. Diaz-Balart PLEASE SIGN AND SHARE the petition to help Salvadorans get their TPS extended, as well as pass legislation to help them find a path to permanent residency and/or citizenship.
Change all STOP signs to GON'T signs
Dis bitch empty. YEEEEET!
Unhomeless the Homeless in California
Declare Homelessness State of Emergency in California L.A. County Homeless On any given night, there are over 148,000 homeless people in California - 23% of the entire nation’s homeless population. Los Angeles County has the second largest population of homeless people of any region in the United States, according to a government report released Wednesday. In Los Angeles, 600,000 people are considered "severely rent burdened," which means they spend half their income on rent. More than 8,000 people became homeless here for the first time last year, according to the 2017 Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority report. "We are reaching levels of inequality that we have not seen since the Gilded Age," said Tracy Rosenthal of the Los Angeles Tenants Union. The union helps organize tenant boycotts against things like rent increases and gentrification. Los Angeles County's total — 55,188 — was behind only New York City's 76,501, according to the 2017 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. However, 95 percent of people experiencing homelessness in New York City were sheltered, the report found, while only 25 percent of those experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles were sheltered in 2017. The HUD report findings were similar to the results of the 2017 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count released in June by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, which put the county's homeless total at 57,794 — an increase of 23 percent over the previous count. The HUD report found that on one night in January, nearly one of every four people experiencing homelessness in the United States was in New York City or Los Angeles. According to the report, overall homelessness increased nationwide this year for the first time in seven years, by slightly under 1 percent compared to 2016. On a given night across the country, 553,742 people were homeless, with nearly two-thirds housed in shelters or transitional housing programs and one- third living on the streets, according to the report L.A.'s big increase in homelessness had a significant impact on the national numbers. Between 2016 and 2017, individual homelessness increased by 9 percent (15,540 people) in the nation's major cities. Los Angeles accounted for 60 percent of this increase. According to the report, Los Angeles County ranked: - second nationally in the percent of unsheltered homeless, at 84.3 percent; - first in the number of individuals who are homeless, at 47,082; - first in the number of unaccompanied homeless youth at 5,163; and first in the number of homeless veterans (4,476) and percentage of unsheltered veterans (76.1 percent). California had 134,278 homeless people, and while the Golden State has the nation's largest population, the rate of 34 homeless residents per 10,000 people was twice the national average, according to the report. Of those, 68 percent were living on the streets, by far the worst percentage. The report said half the nation's homeless live in California, New York, Florida, Texas or Washington. Counties across the state are facing a pervasive and deepening homeless crisis that imminently endangers the health and safety of tens of thousands of residents, including veterans, women, children, LGBT, youth, persons with disabilities and seniors. Nowhere is this more evident than in Los Angeles County at least 134,278 men, women and children -- 10,000 to 12,000 in Downtown, including more than 8,000 parents and children in the San Fernando Valley alone -- are without homes. There are beds for less than one third of the homeless in Los Angeles county, comprehensive services are available to far fewer than half, and the county jails are routinely used as a substitution for mental health facilities. In Los Angeles county the tremendous scale of homelessness threatens the economic stability of the entire region by burdening emergency medical services and the social services infrastructure. It is time to treat this crisis like the emergency it truly is. The increasing numbers of displaced homeless people and the lack of ongoing resources to stably re-house them require immediate and extraordinary action. That is why We in LA County are taking the lead in a statewide effort to ask Governor Brown to declare a state of emergency in California to address this growing humanitarian crisis. Please join us! Sign our petition urging to declare the homeless crisis a state of emergency and bring the concerted effort and resources needed to tackle this crisis in a meaningful way. Homelessness, Humanitarianism, Social justice, Human Rights, Economic Justice, Homeless crisis, Affordable housing, Civil Rights, Civil Liberties, and the Right to Live Free of prejudice. No human in our country should be homeless. Let's take the first step together. Everyone deserves a safe place to call home. Then Share this petition with your friends on social media to spread the word even further. Thank you for your support.
Stop the hidden exploitation of home-based Medical Transcriptionists in MT Services (MTSO)
Summary: Tens of thousands of U.S. and Canadian home-based medical transcriptionist/editors (MTEs) work either as regular employees or independent contractors for various medical transcription service organizations (MTSOs) located throughout the country. Their pay and working conditions have deteriorated in the last decade since the introduction of speech recognition technology, although the new technology did not prove as productive as forecast to warrant the reductions in pay at implementation, and did not replace the need for the same level of skilled workers. Physicians and other healthcare providers don't get their pay cut when EHRs, robots or other technology help them to work more efficiently or with less strain and fatigue. Healthcare facility-based MTEs doing the same work with the same technology, who may or may not have union representation, and often also work from home, are paid at least double to triple on average what their peers in MTSOs receive. The difference is that workers in MTSOs are isolated from each other and unable to collectively bargain for their pay, performance measurement system, or other working conditions. This petition calls for MTSOs to enable their employees to access their peers to organize for collective bargaining, and to utilize a fair, industry-standard performance measurement system and market-base pay system comparable to their counterparts in healthcare facilities. It also calls on healthcare providers and administrators to support these efforts when considering outsourcing medical transcription. Detail: In the last decade or so, MTSOs have been able to slash pay up to 60% based on the new technology of Speech Recognition (SR), which was projected to be far more accurate and productive than it actually turned out to be. (It was forecast as a 100% production increase, leading to cutting the pay rate in half of straight transcribing at implementation, versus an actual yielded productivity increase of approximately 20% to 30% in MTSOs, but not readjusting the pay rate upon this finding). SR was made even less productive than forecast by changing from assigning single or backup accounts to assigning work across multiple, rotating, changing accounts to meet turnaround times, new account acquisitions or losses, and in some cases to train the SR for accounts to be off-shored later to India. Production and quality are best maximized and maintained with familiar and unchanging conditions. The change in technology did not reduce the skill level or knowledge base requirement of the workers, and in fact added new skills of editing. Performance measurement systems were put in place by MTSOs to pay MTs again by production, across all workers, even though there are varying software platforms with variable productivity features, and varying amounts and complexity of accounts, dictators, and work types, which is often not factored and adjusted fully or at all. Despite the variability, all workers are held to the same standard, even though this is contradictory to best practices established by AHDI (Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity). In recent years, QA standards in MTSOs have risen beyond industry standards from 98% to 99% or 99.6%, which requires more time, yet not necessarily adjusted for in line count requirements, and which are difficult to fully gauge. In some MTSOs, pay rates for the entire week are often reduced if the QA or production standards are not met weekly, even if off by 1 line or 0.1% for a single audit in a week. This practice is also not recommended by AHDI. Performance audits are not averaged over time to allow for variability in work assignments, new technology or accounts, illness, life situations, etc. Rather, each week, the MT must meet standards or lose pay that week and be set up for performance action planning and termination, even when the variability makes meeting performance standards on a weekly basis difficult, and regardless if their average scores over several weeks is actually above standard. Workers are put in the frustrating position of not being able to gauge or control their performance, which is described by AHDI as the failing of this type of compensation system. Go too fast, they may lose points in QA accuracy. Go too slow for accuracy and they may lose points for production. Again, this system is not recommended by AHDI as best industry practice. Turnover is unnecessarily frequent due to rigidly-applied, erroneous standards, and the "luck of the draw" in work assignments, personal health and life situations, or a more or less lenient manager. Many managers are pressured to adhere strictly to metrics, and those that are too lenient in making allowances for typically excusable circumstances become "no longer with the company." Some managers may manipulate the work to "justify" moving MTs around or out with changing "business needs." As a result of the work assignment and compensation methods, pay is often near minimum wage, or less, which the company has to mark up to pay minimum wage. This then becomes a performance issue on the metrics spreadsheet, which is all these workers basically are, a number on a spreadsheet, that also includes line counts, quality, "force to QA rate" for blanks, and productive time (time on keyboard versus not keyboarding). Though they are a skilled technical and knowledge base, and their counterparts in healthcare facilities are making double the pay in an hourly-pay or unchanging environment, they are kept to minimum wage. Most MTs who have worked in the industry for awhile saw their wages fall to half of what they previously were before the misapplied technology of SR, and they can no longer make a living. Though they may receive benefits such as health insurance, their wages are often so low they qualify for public-assisted healthcare, similar to what was found at Walmart or McDonalds. Some MTSOs will overuse or misuse independent contractors (ICs), stretching the boundaries of their work requirements to avoid paying employee-status benefits or payroll service, and subjecting them to the same working conditions as employee-status MTs. Beyond low wages for MTs in MTSOs (in which many MTSOs reap CEO salaries and profits in the multiple millions to near billions of dollars), the environment described above creates a pressure-filled and morale-challenged environment, with MTs often receiving feedback on minor errors and metric shortfalls on a daily to weekly basis, and living in fear of decreased wages each week or losing their jobs due to performance metrics. There are often work shortages due to improper staffing and account work distribution, and staff are expected to make up time later or use PTO if they have it regardless of their schedules, and may end up short on payday. Many feel they are on a treadmill, and not able to earn more in what is supposed to be an incentive pay system. Many have had their savings depleted to make ends meet. Others have simply left, some to find relatively better positions in other MTSOs, but which may ultimately end up being bought out by those same larger companies in what has become a monopolistic, noncompetitive (copying practice and pay) environment, and some MTs have simply left the industry altogether. Some report their experiences directly to management, others anonymously in places like Glassdoor, Indeed, MT Stars etc. An article describing the situation was published a short while back in For the Record. Many will not say anything because they fear that more of their jobs will be off-shored to India or other countries, although turnaround time needs and time zones, proficiency gaps, and quality concerns continue to keep work in the states. Some MTSOs refuse to offshore medical records due to varying concerns around quality, HIPAA security, privacy, and confidentiality, other regulatory violations, identity theft, fraud, extortion, logistics, and support for U.S. (and Canadian)-based employees. We ask your help to petition the MTSOs to allow MTs full access to their peers including email addresses and meeting forums for the purpose of collaborating and collective bargaining, and to bring performance and compensation systems and wages up to the best practices of AHDI and the market pay of their peers in healthcare organizations. We ask that healthcare consumers call on healthcare providers to keep their medical records in the United States (and Canada) where its citizens and MTs are rigorously trained, required and committed to follow stringent privacy and confidentiality laws as well as practice professional ethics. We also call upon healthcare providers, hospital administrators, AHIMA, CHIMA and AHDI to show their support for the skilled, U.S. (and Canadian) home-based staff in MTSOs that work hard to alleviate the record-keeping burden of providers, providing high-quality medical records within needed time frames. We call on them to require MTSOs to improve their practice as we have requested. We ask them to withdraw support and patronage for MTSOs that engage in the aforementioned inhumane and poor management, erroneous and unjust performance and compensation practices, and offshoring work in an effort to cut costs, that in the long run does not return a savings and harms U.S. (and Canadian) citizen workers. We call on them to patronize and support MTSOs that do not offshore their work and that provide fair performance measurement and pay commensurate with the skill and knowledge base of the position, the cost of living and comparative pay to their peers in healthcare organizations. Additional References: 1. The EHR Burden needs to be Solved:http://www.healthdatamanagement.com/opinion/why-the-ehr-documentation-burden-needs-to-be-solved 2. As Hospitals Go Digital, Human Stories Get Left Behind:https://www.statnews.com/2016/04/06/electronic-medical-records-patients/?_hsenc=p2ANqtz-_Y7EyonE5dcNmjpoaLU-lVlimpUymZ483Wt1aSv2dNeLBtdXsb6SD_fG1odDC4ihMfl4oeC4DI1X2WhkHkqxsLDbpgcw&_hsmi=28168114 3. EHRs, Clerical Tasks Contribute to Physician Burnout:http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/865469 4. Readers Write: It’s Time to Get Doctors Out of EHR Data Entry:http://histalk2.com/2016/04/20/readers-write-its-time-to-get-doctors-out-of-ehr-data-entry/ 5. Finance Leaders Rethink Transcription: Six Critical Criteria in a Changing Landscape: http://www.webmedx.com/corporate/about-us/CaseStudies/WhitePaper_CFO.pdf 6. Medical Transcription Services: How to Choose and Negotiate:http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/8847-best-medical-transcription-services.html 7. Hidden High Costs of Offshoring Medical Transcription Work to India:https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/hidden-high-costs-offshoring-medical-transcription-work-dawn-lindholm 8. Offshore Health Records May Pose Privacy Risk: http://www.modernhealthcare.com/article/20140418/BLOG/304189995 9. Offshoring and Privacy Protection:http://www.citizen.org/trade/offshoring/privacy/ 10. The Truth About Medical Transcription: http://dailytwocents.com/truth-medical-transcription/#comment-35069 11. Life at the Low End of the Pay Scale:http://www.fortherecordmag.com/archives/0315p18.shtml 12. The Sledgehammer Approach to Management (SLAPM):http://www.wahlscribe.com/uncategorized/the-sledgehammer-approach-to-management-slapm/ 13. Five Tips To Better Measure Productivity: http://www.fortherecordmag.com/archives/013111p8.shtml 14. Are Scorecards and Metrics Killing Employee Engagement?https://hbr.org/2011/07/are-scorecards-and-metrics-kil 15. Measuring Programmer Productivity is a Waste of Time [shift in focus from individual metrics to outcome or group metrics (turnaround time) and process bottleneck improvements]: http://nesma.org/2015/01/programmer-productivity-is-waste-of-time/ 16. Electronic record errors growing issue in lawsuits: http://www.politico.com/story/2015/05/electronic-record-errors-growing-issue-in-lawsuits-117591 17. Exploitation is Exploitation is Exploitation: https://filmanddigitalmedia.wordpress.com/2015/11/16/exploitation-is-exploitation-is-exploitation/
Investigation into AWL Chicago Ridge’s substandard living conditions of the animals
We are requesting a third party investigation of Animal Welfare League In Chicago Ridge , Illinois, which is a non-for profit, private animal shelter. These photographs were FOIA’d from the Illinois Department of Agriculture In 2015. How could these unsanitary, unsafe, deplorable conditions pass the IL Department of Agriculture’s inspections ? Aside from the health risks these already sick animals are exposed to, what about the health and safety of the employees and volunteers? This problem has existed for years and still exists today! As you can see in the photographs of the shelters garage, animals are being kept in their kennels next to pigeon coups. The pigeons are defecating on, in and around these dogs, despite having “cardboard boxes” for crate covers !! These conditions are horrific, unsafe, unhealthy, deplorable, substandard conditions and should not be allowed. We do not want AWL shut down, but want to make it what it should be, a safe and clean place for the animals. This shelter needs to get rid of current management and board members, and bring in people who care about the lives of these animals !!
Start treating California's disabled citizens' mental health needs
A beloved family member who has ALS, also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, had a psychotic break recently and was suicidal. He desperately needed an inpatient mental health program to stabilize his condition. The hospital administration applied to programs throughout the entire State of California. He was rejected at every program, because they claim that, while they can treat the mental health aspect, they cannot treat the physical needs of ALS. He was finally admitted into the only program in the entire State of California who would accept him that we could find. Without inpatient mental health care, I feared for his life. I have since learned that this is a widespread, prevalent issue across all disabilities, and people with disabilities are being rejected repeatedly and, sadly, predictably. This is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which requires medical facilities to make the appropriate accommodations for people who are living with disabilities. More importantly, it is an intolerable violation of human decency to allow the neglect of the most vulnerable of our citizens' needs. How many have committed suicide on your watch? I am asking you to do the following immediately: 1. Audit all mental health programs within the State of California for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), indicating the number of people with disabilities accepted into their programs, the number of people with disabilities rejected access to their programs, and, lastly, accommodations they make to treat people with disabilities. 2. Determine and execute mandatory methods of accommodating people with disabilities, including funding for atypical accommodations. 3. Enforce strict adherence to providing access for people with disabilities to mental health programs. 4. Publish an annual public report with specific details of compliance or noncompliance. Thank you for your immediate attention to this life-and-death matter.
congressional investigation of UAW corruption
the recent FBI investigation into the fca,ford and gm training centers and the bribery and embezzlement of funds between union and company's involved . As an auto worker myself i believe along with many of my coworkers that this impacted our collective bargaining agreements impacting our lives and working conditions and shop rules. the iuaw took money to look the other way and push through one sided contracts over the last 15 years it's our belief that the current state of the iuaw is one of curruption and greed. https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.detroitnews.com/amp/107393100
TAKE ACTION: Sec. Kelly Must Resume Processing of H-2B Petitions!
We must ask DHS Sec. John Kelly to enforce the language that was passed in the FY2017 Omnibus bill. This language was passed by both Houses of Congress and the President on May 5 and gave permission to both Secretaries to resume H-2B processing. Please sign the petition and leave a "reason for signing". This will automatically send an email on your behalf with the information in this petition to people that have the power to make these decisions. Thousands of employers are still stuck in limbo and are awaiting further processing of H2B petitions. There is nothing more important to these employers and employees who are the backbone of America's economy.
Paid parental and family leave
The United States is the only industrialized country, and one of the only few countries in the world without any paid parental leave. Other countries are starting to provide paid paternity leave in a movement towards gender equality and better family raising, when our country has not even given the mothers a chance to bond, breastfeed, or care for their children. While the rest of the world takes care of the parents and the growing population, United States makes it harder than any other country to procreate without fear of financial instability. The only relief in place is the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) passed in 1993, that entitles eligible employees to take "unpaid, job protected leave for specified family and medical reasons" (https://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/index.htm In summary, the FMLA provides: Up to 12 weeks of leave in a 12-month period Unpaid leave, with guaranteed reinstatement unless you are a highly paid, salaried employee considered a "key" employee Leave to care for a new child (birth or adoption); a spouse, child, or parent with serious health conditions; or for a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to preform his duties. This is unacceptably not enough - every other high income country provides some sort of paid parental and family leave. Out of the 193 countries in the UN, USA is one of only four nations that does not do so. While some companies started providing their own paid parental leave, it is rarely offered to fathers and only some employees are legible for the partial pay. This is an issue on many levels: social, economic, and even health. Both parents should have the right to spend time with their newborn child, or their seriously sick family member, without punishment of losing a job title or plummeting into debt and economic challenges. It is a reasonably earned benefit provided by the rest of the world, except for United States, a country that claims itself as a superpower yet fails to provide it's people with something so globally accepted. The fertility rate has hit a record low, and more and more people are choosing not to have children, and unpaid leave accounts for part of the reason. Many women, can't even get one paid day off for their child's birth, let alone a paid week to bond, breastfeed and recover. The Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act, or FAMILY Act, is a proposal for paid family and medical leave from Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT). This act, would provide the same twelve weeks of protected job leave, however it would be at least partially paid. "The Family Act (PDF), sponsored by Democrats, would create a trust fund, similar to social security, paid by taxes on workers and employers, to fund up to 12 weeks of leave for new parents, as well as for other family emergencies" (https://qz.com/909145/trump-may-finally-bring-paid-parental-leave-to-america-this-year/ With small contributions of only an average of $2 a week from workers, and a cap of $227.40 contributed yearly, United States can finally begin to provide the paid family and parental leave everyone is entitled to, at no great economic costs to the government or the companies, as it would be fully funded by the employees' paychecks. After a similar setup was implemented in California as an expansion to the existing State Disability Insurance System, 2/3 of the workers did not even notice a change in the paychecks. The same goes for the FAMILY Act, but while the pay difference may be almost unnoticeable, the benefits would be major. Studies on how paid maternal leave affects families, and implementation of paid family leave in California, Rhode Island, Washington, New Jersey, and New York—and the District of Columbia, have proven the following benefits: Lower rates of child mortality and premature birth Better cognitive and socioemotional development of children Raises probability of mother's returning to work after a child's birth Parents are less likely to need food stamps and public aid Boosts employee morale Improves individual productivity The Center for Economic and Policy Research, conducted a report on Californian companies that have provided paid family leave, and found that "from 89 percent to 99 percent of employers say it has had no effect or a positive one on productivity, profitability, turnover and morale" (https://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/01/upshot/the-economic-benefits-of-paid-parental-leave.html The FAMILY Act, is a small step towards improving social and worker rights, however it is a change necessary. The bill was introduced into the Senate in February 2017, and after being read and referred to the Committee on Finance, no action has been taken since. Action needs to be taken in order to give American families the rights and protection they deserve. It is unacceptable for United States to be the only economically developed country to make parents sacrifice family time for the economic fear of corporations. The FAMILY Act is a change in the right direction, and it needs to be made a higher priority on the Congressional Agenda. Action needs to be taken within the Committee of Finance, whether it is held for hearing or referred to a subcommittee. We must demand that the Congress takes action to move the FAMILY Act through the legislative progress, as families deserve to hope for a future of paid family leave, and burying that possibility with no additional hearings is cruel and unfair. United States has gone too long depriving their workers of the paid leave every other country manages to provide. Lets care for the families, mothers, fathers and children - stop letting money, corporations and business greed take over that possibility. Sign this petition and help provide parents and family members in the workforce with protected paid family leave we all deserve. More information on the FAMILY Act