workers rights

188 petitions

Update posted 3 days ago

Petition to Charles D. Baker, Massachusetts State Senate, Massachusetts State House

Parkinson's Disease Disability for Firefighters due to toxins on the job.

  A fire can expose firefighters to millions of chemicals and toxins. We have become aware of the massive risks these toxins pose for first responders, who breathe them in, ingest them, and absorb them through the skin while putting their lives on the line. Most states have adopted “cancer presumptive laws,” meaning that if a firefighter gets cancer on the job, they are automatically awarded accidental disability to see them through their illness. The increased rate of Parkinson’s Disease (PD), a degenerative brain disorder, in firefighters has emerged. I am a firefighter who was recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s. I am not alone -- while the rate of PD in the general population is 3 out of 1000, it is 30 out of 1000 for firefighters. I am young to be experiencing this disease, but that’s often how it works for emergency responders, and there is mounting evidence that our exposure to toxins is the culprit. Four firefighters who all fought a tire fire in Spencer MA in 1986 have all been diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease. My state of Massachusetts has great presumptive laws for firefighters, not only for cancer, but for heart and lung disease as well. It is now time for our legislators to include Parkinson’s Disease among these illnesses. There is no disputing the connection between toxic chemical exposure and PD anymore. While PD usually develops slowly among the general population, symptoms often hit firefighters fast, seemingly out of nowhere. Research now suggests that toxin-induced PD has a more rapid onset than genetic PD, another indicator that we are, indeed, contracting this illness on the job. For those of us struggling with Parkinson’s, walking, talking, grasping and even blinking become increasingly difficult tasks to accomplish. Needless to say, continuing to work as firefighters while battling this disease is most often not possible. Indiana recently became the first state to include Parkinson’s in its presumptive law. This has provided unimaginable relief to many firefighters, who were running out of sick time, and facing unemployment and massive medical bills due to their debilitating disease. We now must band together and demand that more states recognize the link between firefighting and PD, and include PD among the illnesses covered by their presumptive laws. Please sign this petition to include Parkinson's in Massachusetts’ presumptive law, which would allow firefighters with Parkinson's to retire on full accidental disability.

Greg Heath
57,723 supporters
Update posted 6 days ago

Petition to Represenative Matt Shaheen

Say No To HB 1705 - TEXAS Barber and Cosmetology Abolishment :Signature Goal 100K

On 02/12/2019 Texas State Representative Matt Shaheen, District 66,  filed HB 1705, which states to abolish the regulation practices of Barbering and Cosmetology.  If HB 1705 were to pass, all Texas Barber and Cosmetology licenses would no longer be valid or required as of September 1, 2019.  This would be an insult to the licensed professionals that have taken the time to receive Barbering and Cosmetology education that consist of Anatomy and Physiology of Hair, Skin and Nails, Chemistry, Ecology, Trichology, and more. This would also be a disservice to the consumer as abolishment would put both parties at a high risk of communicable diseases, chemical damages, and hair loss due to improper practical application and lack of knowledge in safety and sanitation. It is now time to organize by letting your voice be heard and maintaining awareness of this situation as this has not been the first attempt.  We need all licensed professionals, future student professionals, manufacturing companies, and consumers to understand the importance of opposing HB 1705 by siging this petition, making phone calls, sending emails, and being present to show your disdain for this bill. State Representative Matt Shaheen, Dist #66 District - Ph:469-642-8708                        512-463-0594  Fax:512-463-1021                                                          With kind regards,                    Sharla Wooten

sharla wooten
183,993 supporters
Update posted 1 week ago

Petition to Greenville County Council, Greenville Library Board of Trustees

No Discrimination, No Retaliation: Greenville County Library System

News media and social media outlets have reported that on March 18 & 19, two Greenville County Library Managers, at the two largest branches in the county (Five Forks and Pelham Road), were removed from their positions in relation to the Drag Queen Story Hour of February 17. A third manager has resigned due to the toxic work environment that led up to these firings. Events at a public library may be sponsored by the library or may be community events sponsored by independent organizations who just happen to use the space to assemble. This event falls into the second category, wherein an individual (with valid library card and application with agreement to follow library policies) used this public library space. Like any public meeting, individuals who want to attend should; others who disagree or have no interest in the meeting (whether religious, home owners associations, or otherwise) should refrain from attending. A library has no right to discriminate against patrons because a political or religious group may disagree with the content of their agenda. Because of misrepresentation and misunderstanding about the nature of the event, it garnered significant media coverage. In response, the librarians in question handled the situation professionally, enduring hate mail and hostile treatment by patrons. No employee added “fuel to the fire” of public controversy. Instead, each did their job of assisting patrons, answering phone calls, and soothing employees’ fears. Each followed state law, library policies, and American Library Association (ALA) ethics, in order to ensure that First Amendment rights and equal access were protected. Now, the GCLS has acted to damage the career of some of its most respected managers and trusted employees, in order to create an atmosphere of intimidation. It sends the signal that no decision of the Executive Director is to be questioned, no difference of identity is to be tolerated, and expressing any difference of opinion is tantamount to termination.  Surveillance and dismissals are being used to quiet staff who stood for equal patron access, as well as to deliver job-ending retribution against staff who stood up for or delivered access to gender-non-conforming patrons. Employee retaliation undermines the protection of important librarian rights, including the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and the ALA Bill of Rights. More worrisome in this context, it sets a precedent that a future patron viewed as “provocative” or “unwanted” by some in the community could be denied assistance or resources. To that end, we ask the Board of Trustees to offer a formal public apology, reinstate terminated employees, and dismiss the current Executive Director.

Brandon Inabinet
4,386 supporters