Get QR Codes for Uber/Lyft Drivers

I felt physically sick when I got into my Lyft this weekend. There were 5 other people in the car, and I still felt overwhelming anxiety. The death of Samantha Josephson was something that affected many people. Not just those that knew her or went to USC, but people everywhere. I was standing in the gym and overheard two girls saying, “That could’ve been me. I don’t know when I last truly paid attention to my Uber.” And that summarizes what affected people so much, that could’ve been me. As people everywhere are embracing the #WhatsMyName campaign in honor of Sami, I’d like to ask that Uber and Lyft help us in steps to assure safety for all passengers.  A QR code. It’s that easy. That’s all it takes to verify that the Uber or Lyft you are getting in is yours. Not only does it help passengers verify they are getting in the right car, but it helps drivers know they are picking up the right person. I spoke to my Lyft driver this weekend who also had stories to share about people intentionally getting in his car who aren’t passengers in an attempt to get money or get a ride somewhere. Scanning a QR code on the window of the passenger side of your Uber/Lyft would instantly verify for both parties that you are the right person. In addition, it could be used as a tool to “check in” your ride and alert others that you are in the car.  I am no logistics person, and I’m sure there’s much more that would need to be worked out. But we trust these companies with our lives every day as we get in a car with someone else behind the wheel. I am by no means faulting these companies for this situation because the only person to blame is the man who kidnapped and murdered Sami, however, a lot of people would feel much more safe with this in place. Help sign this petition so that Uber and Lyft will see this idea! Together we can improve the safety of others. #ForeverToTheeSami

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243,237 signed of 300,000 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 won’t help. 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. Paper bags do not breakdown faster in a landfill and take more space.  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 discount 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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247,392 signed of 300,000 goal

Stop covering up sexual assaults

On a recent international trip with friends, I decided to go on an outdoor excursion. I never would have imagined that our tour guide, who came with stellar reviews on TripAdvisor, would ultimately rape me, and that TripAdvisor would do next to nothing to prevent him from doing it again. I’m just one of countless women who’ve been ignored or mistreated by TripAdvisor after reporting a sexual assault at a business on their site. In the era of #MeToo, this company is not taking violence against women seriously. My assault was deeply traumatic and probably one of the worst things I’ve ever experienced. But the humiliation I was put through when I turned to TripAdvisor for help was almost worse. When I asked for help warning other tourists about my attacker, the company simply suggested I leave a review. Not only was this solution woefully inadequate to warn other tourists – my one star review would quickly get lost among minor complaints about the guide – but it required me to relive the painful details of my assault and out myself publicly in a place where my assailant could likely find me. TripAdvisor is the largest travel site in the world. Join me in demanding that it act as a leader within the industry, by taking action to protect its users and demand safety from the businesses it promotes. The company has already bent to public pressure on this issue by implementing a system to warn users about businesses with “health, safety, and discrimination issues.” But the system is proving ineffective and insufficient. Now is the moment to demand policies which actually protect customers from sexual assault and incentivize travel businesses to do the same. If enough of us speak out now, the poor publicity TripAdvisor is receiving compounded by our pressure will force the company to do something. Join us.

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436,652 signed of 500,000 goal

President Trump: don’t cut the Special Olympics

BREAKING: Because of continued pressure, President Trump says he will make sure funding for the Special Olympics is fully preserved. But Congress still needs to approve the budget, and our voices matter now more than ever!  The White House’s proposed budget includes eliminating $17.6 million in grants to programs like the Special Olympics. “For 50 years, the Special Olympics have been building a movement to break down barriers - both on and off the field in health and education - all through the power of sport.” That is what it says on the Special Olympics website. The Special Olympics is working to end discrimination, and they are actually achieving that. By holding the events, the Special Olympics tackles the inactivity, stigma, isolation, and injustice that those with intellectual disabilities face. The Special Olympics also works to gain better access to health services for those with intellectual disabilities. Those with disabilities are often denied health services and die on average 16 years earlier than the general population. The Special Olympics has provided more than 2 million free health screenings and has trained more than 260,000 health professionals and students to treat those with disabilities. Millions of athletes take part in the Special Olympics all around the world. Tell President Trump not to cut funding to the Special Olympics, which provides so many vital services to those who really need it.

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104,135 signed of 150,000 goal

Stop Terrorist Violence Spreading on Facebook

On Friday, a man walked into a mosque, killed 50 people as they prayed, and live-streamed it from his phone. He is a terrorist and Facebook was his tool to send his message to the world. Social media is used as a platform to inspire attacks. His live-stream wasn’t the end. The video emerged, and re-emerged over and over again. Why did a multi-billion dollar company not have the technology to stop it from spreading? The company say it removed 1.5 million videos of the attack worldwide in the 24 hours after the shootings, 1.2 million of which were blocked at upload. That’s still 300,000 uploads that made it on to the platform. I’ve started this petition calling on Facebook to increase its efforts and publish a statement on what it will do to stop the re-emergence of violent content which is live streamed. There needs to be a pro-active response with detecting terrorist violence. Not a single person reported the video of the Christchurch terror attack while it was being streamed live, Facebook says. It allowed it to be viewed thousands of times and reposted to filesharing websites. Families of the victims have been subjected to others seeing their loved ones brutally killed. As the founder of hate-crime monitoring group TellMama, we see everyday how violent content inspires others to attack. For seven years, we’ve been putting pressure on companies to understand the consequences of the platforms. This is frankly not good enough when they make enormous profits and when hate and violent extremism is streamed through their platform.  We’ve heard of vows to do more - but this is not good enough. Please help us to stop this by signing this petition and by letting Facebook see that they must take action, whether this is through artificial intelligence assets or manual resources to ensure that this does not ever happen again. They owe it to the families of these victims and in ensuring that no-one has to go through this in the future. Enough is enough!

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111,884 signed of 150,000 goal

MAKE MUELLER REPORT IN FULL AVAILABLE TO THE AMERICAN PUBLIC!

We, as American citizens, deserve to know the full truth about these grave investigational issues concerning our President of these United States whether the truth is good, bad, or ugly so that we can preserve liberty and justice for all. We, the American public, as citizens and taxpayers demand to see the full investigational report for full transparency. God Bless And Help America!  

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241,586 signed of 300,000 goal

Rename the Brooklyn Municipal Building for Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

This past August marked the 25th anniversary of Associate Justice of the Supreme Court Ruth Bader Ginsburg's elevation to the nation’s highest court. At the time, she was only the second woman to sit on the Court and she has been a trailblazer and hero to many ever since. Ruth Bader Ginsburg was born in Brooklyn where she was raised and attended New York City public schools until she graduated from James Madison High School in the Madison neighborhood of Brooklyn. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and finished first in her class at Columbia Law School. From there she began a distinguished legal career as a leading advocate for women’s rights, co-founding the Women’s Rights Project at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) before beginning her distinguished career on the bench. The life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a quintessential New York story. She grew up in Flatbush, the daughter of Jewish immigrants. Despite family tragedies that struck Justice Ginsburg early in life, including the death of her six-year old sister and early passing of her mother Celia, she rose to the apex of her profession, staying true to her ideals and principles. Ruth Bader Ginsburg has become an icon, affectionately referred to as the “Notorious RBG.” In an era where popular culture puts performing artists and sports stars on a public pedestal, Ruth Bader Ginsburg has risen to incredible levels of iconic admiration and love. Society often waits to recognize a lifetime of accomplishment until after that lifetime ends. In this case, we can honor the life and service of Ruth Bader Ginsburg during what we hope will be a long and active remaining life. It is our understanding that an executive action by the Office of the Mayor is all that is needed to rename a public building, similar to the action you took to rename the Manhattan Municipal Building in honor of former Mayor David Dinkins. With this understanding, we urge Mayor Bill de Blasio to rename Joralemon Street’s Brooklyn Municipal Building for the Honorable Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

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101,428 signed of 150,000 goal

Novo Nordisk: Stop the insulin price hikes

Here’s the bottom line: people are dying because the price of insulin is increasing every single month. Since 2014, the price of insulin has increased by a shocking 64%. Who is one of the the worst offenders? Novo Nordisk, a global healthcare company that increased the price of its insulin by 6% over the course of just two months this year. This just after it promised to cap annual price increases to single digit percentages. Novo Nordisk controls a quarter of the global diabetes market, and they aren’t using it for good. In 2011 alone, diabetes products alone brought in $8 billion This is literally life or death for many, and Novo Nordisk doesn’t appear to care. Antroinette Worsham’s daughter, Sylvia, was found dead after she was found rationing insulin because she just couldn’t afford to get another vial. Affording medication can mean either death and debt for many — and those choices just aren’t good enough. Novo Nordisk: lower the cost of life-saving diabetes medication.  

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450,731 signed of 500,000 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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289,327 signed of 300,000 goal

Remove Holocaust Denial Pages from Facebook

We call on Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook to cease hosting Holocaust Denial pages on their site. When these pages spread lies and untruths, it is veiled hatred and anti-semitism designed to cast doubt on facts. The Holocaust happened. This can not be disputed. Period. There is a difference between providing a platform for free expression and knowingly spreading false information and lies. Denying the Holocaust causes harm. These sites foster hatred, division and racism. We call on Facebook to take action and help stop this dissemination of hate.    Created by Holocaust Learning and Education Fund, Inc ( HLEF), Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect and the Association of Holocaust Organizations.

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362,985 signed of 500,000 goal