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 long term counseling for the stalker/abuser. 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 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.  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! 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 Million Signatures & More

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73,830 signed of 75,000 goal

Petition to make Kobe Bryant the new NBA Logo

With the untimely and unexpected passing of the great Kobe Bryant please sign this petition in an attempt to immortalize him forever as the new NBA Logo.   PICTURE CREDIT: @tysonbeck Due to fake accounts here are my social handles: Twitter - ThatGuyN1CK IG - thetyvonfettuccine

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3,180,799 signed of 4,500,000 goal

Target, Stop Filling the World with Plastic Bags!

We, Target customers, ask Target to eliminate plastic bags. We understand this won’t be convenient to us, but it is time to act. For those of us who also shop at Costco or IKEA, we know we can survive without plastic bags.  2 million single-use plastic bags are consumed every minute. These bags often wind up in waterways and our landscape, degrading water and soil as they break down into tiny toxic bits. These bags have a massive carbon footprint.  Switching to paper is not the answer. The carbon footprint of paper bags is even bigger. Paper production uses trees that could instead be absorbing carbon dioxide, releases more greenhouse gases, takes 3 times the amount of water, and results in 50 times more water pollutants. We can bring our own bags. If Target provides bags for purchase, we ask it to charge a meaningful amount because this approach works. Plastic bag use fell by 90% in Ireland following a plastic bag tax of 37 cents. In Australia, 2 major retailers led by eliminating plastic bags in their stores and the country reduced plastic bag use by 80% in 3 months. In Los Angeles county, a plastic bag ban with a charge on paper bags reduced single bag use by 95%. Target’s current 5 cent incentive for those bringing bags does not meaningfully curb Target’s plastic bag consumption.  We want Target to act swiftly. Target’s plastic bags are choking the earth. 

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501,416 signed of 1,000,000 goal

Ban Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting in Massachusetts

Our names are Aisha Yusuf, Hanna Stern, and Mariya Taher, and we each are pleading to the Massachusetts State Legislature to pass a law making it illegal for someone to carry out Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting/Circumcision (FGM/C) on young girls. FGM/C involves removing and damaging healthy and normal female genital tissue on girls, and can cause physical harm including pain, bleeding, shock, tetanus, genital sores, and cause long-lasting psychological harm including sexual disorders, fear of sexual intimacy, nightmares and post-traumatic stress disorder. Mariya - I was born in the United States and now live in Massachusetts, but at the age of seven, I was subjected to Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting in India. Friends and relatives of mine also living in the United States have undergone FGM/C both here in the United States or in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Somalia, Australia, and many other countries in the world. Aisha- I got my circumcision when I was five. I know many women who also got it done. Personally, I know people in my community who talk about it as if it’s normal. I was aware of people practicing it behind closed doors but I also know that some people are looking for ways to keep the practice alive here in the States even though it might mean legal action is taken against them. I didn't know my home state, Massachusetts, had no laws against FGM/C until I met Mariya who works with many communities to protect girls against FGM/C. Hanna - I literally stumbled on the subject of female genital mutilation searching for a global health research topic online for a school project. I knew nothing about it and was concerned that others would find it uncomfortable and unrelatable. My teacher told me that was all the more reason to focus on FGM/C. It’s not a cultural issue; it’s not a third-world problem. FGM/C happens all over the world; it is happening in Massachusetts! Regardless of culture and tradition, and despite a lack of intent to cause injury, the end result is girls in MA are being violated and need our protection to safeguard them from FGM/C. Massachusetts is known for its progressive policies in terms of reproductive rights, anti-discrimination laws, and equality issues, yet our state still is in the minority of states that do not ban female genital mutilation or cutting. As FGM/C is nearly always carried out on minors, is a violation of the rights of children, and reflects deep-rooted inequality between the sexes that constitutes an extreme form of discrimination against women, we must protect girls from undergoing FGM/C. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, it is estimated that over half a million girls and women in the United States are at risk. Massachusetts ranks 12th in the nation for at-risk populations with an estimated 14,591 women and girls.  Since 2012, the Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association has over and over again tried to advocate for a state law criminalizing FGM/C. Yet, still to this day, no law has been put into place. The current bills, S.788, and H.2333, have been sent to committee for study and most likely will not move forward either. All three of us believe in the importance of education and community engagement to help create social change within communities and amongst groups where FGM/C might be happening. To that end, we each have organized and participated in community events to educate our friends and family members about the harms of FGM/C and why it should be abandoned. Yet, despite our efforts, FGM/C continues, often being touted as a religious or cultural practice that is needed to control women’s sexuality. In April 2017, a doctor in Michigan was charged with performing FGM/C on minor girls, highlighting yet again that FGM/C does affect women and girls living in the United States. The doctor claimed FGM/C was a religious requirement and that there were no harmful effects. We three believe that culture and religion should not be an excuse used to sanction harm to girls. We need a bill in Massachusetts that unequivocally reiterates that female genital mutilation/cutting is a form of violence. There are laws against domestic violence and sexual assault. We need a law against FGM/C as well. We three believe our state can do a better job of protecting girls in the Commonwealth by banning FGM/C. You can support us too by signing our petition demanding that legislators make passing a bill banning FGM/C high on their list of priorities. Let’s work together to take a stance against Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting!  ~ Aisha Yusuf, Hanna Stern, and Mariya Taher

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322,220 signed of 500,000 goal

No child should die from the flu

For most of us, the flu season is inconvenient, but for people confined to immigrant detention centers it’s scary. Children held in detention are 9 times more likely to die from the flu than the general pediatric population. With flu season well underway, we urgently need your help to get flu vaccinations to the people who need it most. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is blocking a group of doctors from offering the flu vaccine to children and families in detention.  Immigrant detention camps function like prisons: physically and emotionally stressed migrants are held in these overcrowded and unsanitary conditions, often for months on end. Without the flu vaccine, it’s almost guaranteed that we’ll see more outbreaks, putting more lives at risk. No one in 2019 should be dying from the flu in these camps. Carlos' death could have been prevented. Send a message to DHS before the disease spreads even further.  This is a heartless way to punish people who are seeking safety in the United States. Let’s be clear: our government put these people in camps simply because they are seeking asylum; they have not committed crimes. It doesn’t have to be this way. Our organization, Doctors for Camp Closure, wants to offer the vaccine to people in a detention center in California at no cost to the government. All we need is permission to enter. Join us in requesting permission to offer the flu vaccine to vulnerable children and families in migrant detention. P.S. – If you’re a physician, medical professional or medical student, please leave a comment indicating that when you sign.

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64,883 signed of 75,000 goal

Rodney Reed is innocent. Exonerate and send him home.

Update: On November 15, 2019, with 5 days before Rodney Reed was scheduled to die, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals unanimously blocked his execution, and remanded his case back to the 21st District Court of Bastrop, Texas for a new hearing to examine new evidence, new witnesses, Brady violations, and Rodney's claims of actual innocence, which is a chance for him to clear his name and be exonerated. Our work is just beginning and we must keep pressure on those with the power to continue doing the right thing.   Dear Governor Greg Abbott: 1. Rodney Reed is innocent. 2. The State relied on expert testimony to convict Rodney Reed that has since been recanted BY THE EXPERTS who put forth the testimony. Three renown medical examiners have concluded it is "medically impossible" for Stacey Stites to have been killed at the time the state says she died. This alone exonerates Rodney Reed. Reed was convicted based on forensic expert testimony that has now been recanted by the scientists and agencies that offered the evidence on behalf of the State. In fact, leading forensic pathologists have concluded that it would be "medically and scientifically impossible" for Reed to have murdered Stites. This new forensic evidence (which the State hasn't contradicted) indicates that Stites was murdered at a time that her fiance, local police officer Jimmy Fennell, testified that he was alone with Stites in their apartment. Fennell recently completed a ten-year prison sentence after he plead guilty to felony charges arising out of the kidnapping and sexual assault of a women he encountered while on patrol as a Georgetown, Texas police officer. Rodney Reed is innocent and should be exonerated, not executed. 3. We hate to say it, but, Rodney Reed is the victim of racism and was framed for a crime he didn't commit. 4. ALL OF THE EVIDENCE implicates *somebody else* was the real killer. And that somebody else failed two polygraph exams about his role in the murder, and he has continued to be a violent offender and assaulted others in the same way - kidnapping, sexual assault and choking with a belt. 5. Rodney Reed, and the Reed family, have suffered enough. 6. Sometimes our court system makes mistakes, and this case is a prime example of those injustices of what happens when the system fails. 7. Due to these mistakes, there's been no justice for the victim, Stacey Stites, and the real killer has continued to be a serial violent offender. 8. We need you to hear us, review this case, and find it in your heart to do what's right. 9. You promised Texas wouldn't ever kill an innocent person. You're the only person who can keep this promise by stopping the execution of Rodney Reed. 10. If prosecutors followed the evidence, and the evidence only, Rodney Reed wouldn't even be a suspect in this case, let alone become indicted. There's absolutely no evidence that indicts Rodney Reed. Please exonerate Rodney Reed.

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729,793 signed of 1,000,000 goal

Demand a Fair Trial for Jonathan Irons, Wrongfully Convicted Since Age 16

Jonathan Irons has been incarcerated since 1997 for a crime that he did not commit. He was just 16 years old at the time and arrested for the non-fatal shooting of a homeowner during a burglary -- even though no DNA evidence, fingerprints, physical evidence, or footprint evidence collected ever linked Jonathan to the crime.  I’ve known Jonathan for over a decade, and I’m fighting to make sure his case gets a fair review and calling attention to the prosecutorial misconduct that I believe resulted in Jonathan being wrongfully sent to prison for 50 years as a teenager. Will you stand with me and demand new evidence be considered? Jonathan’s conviction was based solely on unreliable eyewitness testimony. Credible witnesses who could have provided testimony to Jonathan’s whereabouts during the time of the crime were never brought to court to testify, and Jonathan was interrogated by authorities without a guardian or attorney present, even though he was a minor. Moreover, when the shooting victim indicated that he couldn’t identify his shooter, police officers told him to give his “best guess” which led to his guess of Jonathan. Jonathan has now been in prison for 22 years, for a crime I know and thousands of others know he didn’t commit. I met Jonathan through a family member’s prison ministry program when I was 18. I was shocked and horrified to discover that this was happening to someone who was only a couple years younger than I was at the time of his arrest. I was even more shocked to learn that over 10,000 people may be wrongfully convicted of serious crimes each year and that prosecutorial misconduct is rampant in communities across the United States. I’m dedicating my life to freeing Jonathan the same way I dedicated myself to each game in the WNBA. And it’s why I need your help today. I urge you to join me in asking Judge Daniel Green and Missouri Assistant Attorney General Patrick J. Logang, the Office of the Missouri State Attorney General and the Office of the District Attorney of Saint Charles County to take into account the undeniable facts of Jonathan’s case, and provide justice for Jonathan Irons once and for all.

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121,269 signed of 150,000 goal

Go #AllinforClimateAction NOW - #Climate Emergency

Time is running out for our planet. And as the Amazon “the lungs of our planet” burn before our eyes, we must act now to fight climate change or doom this and future generations into an age of extinction.  The next generation may never see the Amazon rainforest, coral reefs, or a polar bear.  But the spectacular biodiversity existing on our planet, our home, is more than just beautiful, it is what keeps us alive. Our destruction of ecological life support systems will literally kill us all. My name is Cynthia Leung and I am a high school student from Brooklyn. I first started getting involved with the movement during the UN's High-Level Political Forum when I learned about the linkages that climate change can have with multiple important topics. Having the Climate Change Summit in the New York UN Headquarters is extremely important for the American climate action movement. In fact, since the summit will be in New York, we need to utilize our voices to make sure our message is heard loud and clear by world leaders in September. Being one of many youth climate activists proves that young people will continue to advocate and protest until we have definite plans for climate change because our futures are at risk.  My generation and millions of young people from all over the world, are skipping school, university or work, taking to the streets and protesting your inaction on climate change. The time to act is now and we have one month to add our voices to call for strong, unified climate action from our government.   Add your voice today if you want to hear our world leaders’ plans to mitigate emissions by 2020, and dramatically reduce emissions to reach net-zero emissions by mid-century! This September, world leaders will unite in NYC for the UN Climate Change Summit. And young climate leaders from around the globe will be there to deliver the world’s biggest call-to-action! We demand that they come up with bold, ambitious, definite and effective climate and environmental action plans. Great-Britain and Ireland have already headed our call and declared a climate emergency. We urgently need more countries to stand up to protect their people, animals, and OUR planet.   Let’s face the truth. Radical transformational change is imperative in safeguarding our future and future generations. IPCC’s 2018 report emphasizes that we need major transformation, especially since we are now off track in limiting climate change to 1.5 degrees celsius. And global political and business leaders hold the key to the transformational change we urgently need. We, the youth of today, are holding them accountable through direct action and we expect the powerful to take responsibility to deliver a sustainable future for all. World leaders should no longer ignore tens of thousands on the streets. In the moments leading up to September and the meeting of the powerful, we’ll mobilize internationally to get world leaders to take climate action! When leaders of the world unite in New York City in September, we will be there and we will deliver, the world’s most signed call-to-action! Until then, we are watching them carefully. We will not go down without a fight. We will keep rising until governments will act. And when September comes, we will be there! This petition is part of an international campaign. You find all petitions here: www.change.org/allinforclimateaction Please support our campaign and join us!  Sign this, if you are also #AllinforClimateAction! Please follow us on  Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/allinforclimateaction/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/allinforclimateaction/

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71,192 signed of 75,000 goal

Stop the sale of guns at Walmart stores

Tuesday, July 30th, 2019: 2 people were murdered at Walmart #0848 in Southaven, Mississippi.  Saturday, August 3rd, 2019: 22 people were murdered at Walmart #2201 in El Paso, Texas. In light of these recent tragedies -- a mere snapshot of the gun violence epidemic plaguing the United States -- and in response to Corporate’s inaction, we as employees are organizing several days of action, to protest Walmart’s profit from the sale of firearms and ammunition. Walmart is a company that has always placed its associates and customers first; we have recently made great strides toward fostering a safe, inclusive, and progressive community. Last year, Walmart raised the minimum age to buy a firearm or ammunition from 18 to 21. In 2015, Walmart removed products resembling assault-style rifles from its inventory. Nonetheless, Walmart remains one of the largest retailers of firearms in the United States, and there is a direct correlation between the number/availability of guns and the amount of mass shootings per capita. Yes, we have made great strides already, but now we must organize to shape this company into a place that we can all be proud of. As associates, we can and must leverage our power and ability to change our company for the better. We have one demand, and that is all. We value Walmart and our fellow associates, but we are no longer willing to contribute our labor to a company that profits from the sale of deadly weapons. We would like to see Walmart take a unified and public stance against guns and gun violence. We urge our leadership to cease the sale of all firearms and ammunition, ban the public open and concealed carry of weapons on company property and in all stores, and cease WALPAC donations to NRA backed -A/A+ politicians. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us at walmartwalkout@gmail.com

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157,176 signed of 200,000 goal

#JusticeForRocky Demand that Rocky be released from Swedish Officials

On Sunday, June 30th, A$AP Rocky, his bodyguard and two performers from his show acted in self-defense after two men followed, harassed and physically assaulted them in Stockholm. Video footage shows the assailants following Rocky and his colleagues, even cutting off where they are trying to walk sometimes, while Rocky pleads to them that he does not want any issues.  The group of men continued to follow and harass Rocky and his colleagues, asking for money, and began grabbing Rocky and the others. This led Rocky and his colleagues to act in self-defense to avoid any further physical harm. On Tuesday, July 2nd, Rocky volunteered to go to police headquarters after his performance for questioning about this incident. Rocky and his colleagues were arrested on-site.  We are surprised that something like this could happen in Sweden to people who were minding their business and forced to defend themselves from a group of assailants. This should be about justice. Rocky has been in prison for six days for the use of self defense.  Upon being detained, Rocky was denied his request to counsel which is in violation of Article 36 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, to which Sweden is a signatory.  Everyone has the same rights to be treated fairly upon detainment and should be given fair and equal access to such rights. Since, he has been allowed to visit with a U.S. Embassy Consult and attorney, but only in the presence of Swedish officials. It is extremely troubling and worrisome that the laws are not being applied equally in these circumstances.  On Monday, July 8th, we filed an appeal with the Swedish Supreme Court to have Rocky released from the inhumane conditions and the clear violation of human rights. They rejected the filing, which means Rocky will remain in prison for two weeks. The conditions of the facility are horrific. Some of the inhumane conditions Rocky and his colleagues are facing at the Stockholm Detention Center include 24/7 solitary confinement, restriction of amenities for the most basic of human functions, access to palatable and life sustaining food as well as unsanitary conditions.  The prosecutor on the case has further communicated that he is working to receive an additional two-week extension for a trial to begin in mid - to end of August. To keep Rocky and his colleagues in jail pending the lengthy trial proceedings is a punishment before the fact, with no due process.  Join us in the #JusticeForRocky movement and demand that Rocky be released from Swedish officials immediately. Share this petition, along with our image on social media: https://bit.ly/2NIQt2A

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651,188 signed of 1,000,000 goal