67 petitions

Update posted 2 weeks ago

Petition to Trent Ashby, Dan Patrick, Texas State House, Greg Abbott

Healthcare for Retired and Active Teachers

Recent changes, voted on by our elected officials, have escalated the price of health insurance for educators in Texas.  Retired teachers presently average $24,000 a year, and as of January 2018, in-network fees will increase 130% and the out-of-network will increase by 361%.  With these rising costs, the average retired teacher will have the bulk of his/her pension sucked away by heightened insurance premiums.  Retired teacher deductibles will also increase to $3,000 which is TEN times what it is now.  As it stands for current educators, in the upcoming 2017-2018 school year, ActiveCare 2 will increase to $2,004 for employees and their families.  Couple that with dental and vision insurance, and it totals a whopping $2,201.46.  Each district tries to help by contributing around $300; however, that still ends up being $1,816 a month for health, vision, and dental insurance.  On average, a teacher who has taught for 10 years makes about $50,000 a year ($4,166 a month).  Deduct withholding tax and medicare tax ($408), deduct TRS contribution ($329), deduct ins ($1,816), and the amount to be lived off of is $1,613 a month if they choose ActiveCare 2.  Let me put this into perspective for you...TRS insurance will cost MORE than what you are left with.  Even if deciding to go with another plan, the premiums and/or deductibles are still high.  There is no other profession in Texas that employs more than that of public education, yet we are not taken care of by the state of Texas.  Currently 700,000 active public educators and 270,000 retired teachers are looking to our elected officials to make moral and ethical decisions on the welfare of educators.    Why more teachers don't protest:  Teachers are some of the most loyal employees you will ever find.  For many, professional development is back in full force beginning next week.  Their loyalty to their district and students supersede that of fixing their own dire situation, hence how they managed to stay quiet this long.  Educators care for others and put themselves on the back burner.  Last year alone, Texas teachers spent around $200,000,000 of their OWN money to put back into their classrooms.  I have never seen any other profession give of themselves as teachers do.  It is time that the state of Texas bands together with and for them to show your support.   In signing this petition, you are pleading to Governor Greg Abbott and our elected officials to revisit the TRS healthcare for retired and current educators and make it affordable in comparison to average monthly incomes and cost of living in Texas.  This is not the responsibility of the school districts.  It is the duty of the state to manage teachers' healthcare premiums and deductibles, and as it stands, Governor Abbott, our senators, and our representatives have failed in doing so.   School Administrators, teachers, and other school employees, please copy and paste the link and send this out to your campuses/districts!!  We MUST finally come together and be heard!! #dontmesswithtexasteachers #changetrs  

Stephanie Quinn
169,880 supporters
This petition won 3 weeks ago

Petition to U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate

Require all MLTS/PBX Phones Dial 911 Easily: Help Enact Kari's Law

On December 1, 2013 Kari Rene Hunt was murdered by her estranged husband whom she was intending to divorce. She agreed to meet him at a local motel to leave their children with him for a short visitation while he was in town. Her estranged husband ambushed her in the motel room and cornered her in the restroom. During the struggle and resulting death of Kari, her oldest daughter, age 9, (name with held for privacy) attempted to dial 911 from the motel room phone. She followed instructions as taught by her mother on the way to call for help but she was never instructed that in some hotels and motels you must first dial a "9" and then 911. We are attempting to ensure that any person needing police, EMS or the Fire Department at any hotel or motel location or from any MLTS/PBX system be able to dial the numbers 911 and receive emergency response. In a panic, any under age child, or for that matter anyone in an emergency situation should be able to depend on dialing 911 from any phone in the United States and receiving assistance. We pray the lawmakers in our Congress and Senate hear the cries of Kari and her children and enact a law requiring all hotel and motel chains, including all "Mom & Pop" locations have all phone systems updated to E911 systems. These systems allow the 911 call to automatically connect to a 911 operator without having to dial a "9" in order to get an outside line. Total E911 fees/funds collected from the use of telephones in the United States was $2,322,983,616.36 in 2012. Total amount spent for E911 or 911 enhancements in the United States was $97,367,543.46 leaving $2,225,616,072.90 un spent. Where is this money? Some states such as Illinois, has diverted monies from the collection of E911 fees to it's general fund therefore being spent on who knows what. The money is there, it's being collected by who? THE GOVERNMENT! It's being spent on very little E911 functionality or just sitting there. Why?  WE ask that Wyndham Hotels, which is the parent company of Baymont Inns and Suites where this incident occured, lead the way in the industry by updating the antiquated phone systems still used in some of their hotels. Sadly though, 2 year 11 months later we have heard nothing from the Wyndham Corporation, however, the Marriott International Corporation has mandated to all franchise hotels under the Marriott brand to update their systems to be direct dial 911. Can you you guess what hotel we will be using from now on will be? That's right , MARRIOTT! Seconds count and when a 9 year old little girl is mature enough and brave enough to attempt to dial for help, she should be answered. When that child dialed 911 she should have heard, "911, what is your emergency?" Instead she heard static. We understand the cost implications (which in most cases is very minimal or free) and know that E911 has been a requirement for a few years, but only a handful of states require it. Why? Money is collected from every citizen that uses a phone but it's the citizen that is NOT benefiting from the collection of these funds. We ask the United States Congress to make it a requirement for all hotel and motels operating the United States and offer conversion assistance where needed. We also ask that such law(s) prohibit excessive charges for doing this update, in most cases it is simply a series of buttons from a keyboard that will solve the problem. Please help make this "Kari's Law".

Hank Hunt
612,220 supporters
Started 3 weeks ago

Petition to Craig Estes, James Frank, Mac Thornberry, Greg Abbott, Donald Trump

Provide services for the 134,908 Texans with disabilities on waiting lists

In Texas, there are currently 134,908 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities on waiting lists to receive services through different Medicaid waiver programs. Those on waiting lists are denied services paid for by Medicaid which may include: physical and specialized therapies, supported employment, adaptive aids such as wheelchairs, medical supplies, day programs, respite care, speech and language pathology, transition service assistance, and so much more. Texas continues to sit at the bottom of the ranking for removing people with disabilities from waiting lists. Our most current number (January 2018) shows there are 134,908 individuals with I/DD in Texas waiting for services. That's more than of all of the population of Wichita Falls, Burkburnett, Vernon, Holliday, Henrietta, Electra, and Petrolia!  To see a visual comparison of other states from 2016, click on the following link: this graphic, you will see that in 2016, Texas was home to over 46% of people on waiting lists out of our entire country. Our most recent number (2016) for the 30th Senatorial District located in North Texas shows 3,411 people waiting for services.  At The Arc of Wichita County, we encounter people on a daily basis that are on waiting lists and we can see the negative impact this has on their lives. Our hope is that by bringing this to light, that those with disabilities in our area along with the other 130,000+ people in Texas will be moved off of the waiting lists and receive the support so desperately needed. Serious change has to take place for the waiting list to be significantly reduced, and the only way that is possible will be for the I/DD community to speak up!  Thank you and be sure to spread the word!     Sources: 

The Arc of Wichita County
961 supporters