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Non profit living

Oregon nonprofit looking to hire staff for home support for people with disabilities

PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) – Advocates for Life Skills & Opportunity (ALSO), a non-profit organization committed to supporting people living with intellectual and developmental disabilities, is looking for several direct support professionals who will support people disabilities and will help them achieve independence and person-centered lifestyle choices.

These positions at ALSO, which is consistently rated by current employees as a preferred place to work, do not require any prior healthcare experience, and the organization will provide all the necessary training.

“Our mission is to stand up for people with disabilities and promote their full inclusion in the life of their community,” said Brett Turner, CEO of ALSO. “As COVID-19 restrictions and economic issues hamper the ability of some employers to hire, ALSO is confidently launching our “The work of the heart is my work” campaign to recruit candidates deeply committed to a profession centered on love and care.

The Direct Support Pro position assists people with a multitude of home care needs, provides accompaniment on social outings and appointments, helps with medication and performs other critical support tasks. The position is eligible for signing and retention bonuses and potentially eligible for the Public Student Loan forgiveness program. ALSO provides a robust benefits package, including medical, dental, vision, LTD checks, life insurance, sick leave, PTO and 401 (k) plan with match up to ‘at 4% (for full-time employees).

Interested candidates can apply directly on the ALSO website: heartworkoregon.com

“I don’t think there’s a more rewarding job with a more people-focused organization statewide than a direct support pro at ALSO,” says Ben McClure, chief engineering officer. systems at OCHIN and chairman of the board of ALSO. “It’s a demanding job, but one that comes with tremendous personal and professional rewards. In short, it is really for people who want to work from the heart.

About ALSO

ALSO is a non-profit organization committed to providing the best residential, employment and assisted living services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. ALSO promotes full community inclusion, creativity, independence and employment opportunities. Our main goal is to ensure that our customers live the life of their choice. ALSO serves people all over Oregon from its Metro Portland, Bend and Klamath Falls locations. For more information, visit alsoweb.org.


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Nonprofit grants propel prosecutor against racial injustice

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – When Deborah Gonzalez took office in January as prosecutor for the Western Judicial District of Georgia, she noticed that too few defendants, especially black defendants, were eligible for a program that promised treatment for drug addiction or mental health, not jail.

Like many court diversion programs elsewhere, potential participants in the Athens-Clarke and Oconee counties programs were disqualified for certain prior charges or contact with police. People living in poverty also struggled to qualify due to the weekly program fees.

“My philosophy is that there is racial injustice and disparities in the way people are treated in this system. And we have to be intentional in the way we approach it, ”Gonzalez said.

With a grant from a national nonprofit criminal justice advocacy group, Vera Institute of Justice, and a local organization, People Living in Recovery, Gonzalez is redesigning the program to make it more accessible.

Many of the changes adopted by states after the death of George Floyd have focused on police tactics and not on racial disparities in the criminal justice system. Nationally, bipartisan congressional talks on overhaul of policing practices ended without a dealnegotiators on both sides said last week, despite promises of change from the Biden administration.

And now groups like Vera are targeting suburban communities to push through criminal justice changes without new laws.

Vera awarded 10 prosecutors approximately $ 550,000 to help reduce racial disparities in prosecutions. Prosecutors in Georgia, Virginia, Michigan, Hawaii, Pennsylvania, Missouri, New York and Indiana – most of whom were elected in the past two years on progressive platforms – are reviewing agendas or policies in their offices that disproportionately affect accused of color.

Some prosecutors handle prosecutions for specific crimes or make diversion programs more inclusive. Others are looking for ways to keep minors out of the criminal justice system all together.

“There was a desire to do more right now, to tackle the system that continues to allow this to happen. So we started to wonder if there was anything more we could do with this unique moment to reimagine what a fair system looks like, ”said Jamila Hodge, former director of the Reshaping Prosecution program with Vera.

In Gonzalez district, for example, about 22% of the district’s total population is black. Of the more than 6,800 people indicted in 2019 and 2020, the majority were blacks. Fewer than 150 people were referred to the trial preparation program, and most came from a county that is only 5% black.

She hopes to double participation in her program by 2022 and will put in place controls to monitor as diversity increases.

Vera will provide assistance for 12 months. The hope is to reduce by 20% the disproportionate number of black and brown people prosecuted and imprisoned in the pilot areas. The grants require prosecutors to partner with local community organizations.

In Washtenaw County, Michigan, where Ann Arbor is located and just west of Detroit, prosecutor Eli Savit is working with a group called My Brothers Keeper to divert colored youth accused of non-violent crimes to a program. intensive mentoring. Savit, who took office in January, said he wanted to focus on interventions that occur with children who act or commit minor crimes.

“What we’re trying to do is come in early without the intervention of the criminal justice system, without creating a case that can hold them back. It can have this cascading effect on their lives. Job applications ask if you’ve ever been charged, not if you’ve been convicted, ”Savit said.

In Chatham County, Georgia, where Savannah is in the northeastern state, Deputy Chief Prosecutor Michael Edwards said an analysis of black men and boys in the criminal justice system revealed that they constituted a disproportionate number of people accused of possession of firearms.

The office, in partnership with Savannah Feed the Hungry, has developed a program called Show Us Your Guns that focuses on people between the ages of 16 and 25 who are in possession of a gun while interacting with police. . Until these young men have used these weapons to commit a crime, they are eligible for the program instead of being arrested or jailed. This requires that they return the weapon in exchange for their participation.

“We do this, knowing that guns are a third rail in conversations in the community. But we know it’s an important way to impact public safety and the lives of these minors and young men, ”said Edwards.

Edwards said the program will be tailored to individuals, seeking needs such as job training, education, mental health and addiction treatment and even partnering with the local YMCA so young men can take care of it. of themselves physically.

“Too often lawsuits are case-based, but we want it to be cause-based – looking at the underlying causes,” Edwards said.

For Shane Sims, the thought of prosecutors in all of these places making plans to consider everyone in front of them, and not just the crime they committed, gives him immense joy. Sims is the executive director of People Living in Recovery, which is working with Gonzalez in Athens, Georgia, to redesign its mental health and addiction diversion program.

He was sentenced to life over 15 years for his role as an accomplice in a theft which resulted in the death of a store clerk. He was 18 and it seemed like no one thought who he was or how he got there – that his parents were addicted to crack and that he was taking care of his younger brother on his own from a young age.

When he got out, after three guards demanded his release, he started working in the community.

“What we’re doing together is realizing that drug addiction is at the heart of so many people who enter the criminal justice system. Historically, minorities have the least consideration in deciding how to handle this, ”Sims said.


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Seiler promotes the benefits of living in the great outdoors | State and region

Melanie Seiler’s life is very much about wellness.

Having a little fun doesn’t hurt either.

In uncertain times like the Covid-19 pandemic, many have pointed out that being outdoors is one of the best remedies for fighting the spread of the disease.

“The Covid-19 pandemic was very difficult to navigate, but an extremely important time to continue health education campaigns and creative ways to keep people active,” said Seiler, Executive Director of Active Southern West Virginia. “We relaunched the organization in 2021 to bring the programs back in person.”

Although her mother Susie Hofstetter’s family is from Ohiopyle, Pa., And her father Bob Seiler’s family is from the Cumberland, Md. Area, Seiler grew up in Fayetteville. It allowed him to appreciate – and understand – how much outdoor fun can be discovered in southern West Virginia.

Prior to his affiliation with Active SWV, Seiler worked for Adventures on the Gorge following the merger of the family rafting business, Songer Whitewater with AOTG in 2011. At Songer, Seiler was responsible for the river for several years and responsible for the river. vacation cabin, and she also spent a lot of time dealing with accounts receivable and human resources.

She has also been a certified ski instructor for 20 years and a member of the National Ski Patrol for 10 years.

“Growing up in the outdoor industry made me feel like everyone had the opportunity to raft and paddle white water or meet friends on bike trails and rock climbing routes. She said. “What motivates me is to later realize the lack of access and interest in outdoor recreation on the part of my peers and my generation.

“I want to express and share opportunities to experience the benefits of being active in the outdoors. “

Her days at Active SWV currently include “a lot of paperwork to keep track of funding requests and reports,” she says. “I really try to provide my people with all the tools and resources they need to do a great job.

“I spend a lot of hours on my computer, but I love going out and talking to groups about our work and free events,” she said.

Active SWV has made huge strides in recent years, Seiler believes.

“Active SWV was formed in late 2014 with a non-profit status, then I was hired as a sole employee in February 2015,” she said. “We quickly acquired a member of the AmeriCorps VISTA service and took to the streets recruiting volunteers to run programs.

“The first two years were tough structuring each program area and building a brand, but it paid off and in 2016 we entered into a cooperative agreement with the New River Gorge National River (today the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve), many county parks and had a handful of children’s clubs in elementary schools in the area. In 2019, we had the highest number of volunteers with over 200 people across our four program areas: Community Captains, Kids’ Running Clubs, Workplace Wellness, and SWV Bike / Walk.

“I am very proud of the trusted partnerships, of the people who have improved their lives through the activity and of the staff who remain cohesive and dynamic,” she added.

As the battle continues to urge children – and adults for that matter – to stay active and not focus too much on computer or phone screens and adopt a more sedentary lifestyle, Seiler says that ‘Active SWV has made progress.

“Active SWV is seeing progress in youth through our Kids Run Club grant program. Surveys before and after show that children achieve the recommended amount of daily physical activity, have less screen time, and 75 percent report being able to get someone home more active with them.

“The progress we are seeing in the region is more collective resources from agencies, organizations and the faith community to reach underserved families and individuals. One collaboration being Adventure Fayette County providing substance abuse prevention and the Icelandic youth model combining survey data with programming solutions. It means finding populations at risk, understanding their challenges in accessing healthier choices, and creating programs with a strong group of volunteers and mentors.

“Throughout the pandemic, Active SWV continued to work with companies as members of the Active SWV Workplace Wellness program. We spend many hours of the day at work or on our computers working remotely. Implementing changes to policies, systems, and the environment to make healthy choice an easy choice has shown results in employee morale, productivity, and increased buy-in to other investments in well-being at work.

Each year, Active SWV – in partnership with WV Health Promotion and Chronic Disease – awards a series of workplace wellness capacity building grants to businesses across the state. This year, they searched for 20 workplaces, each of which will receive $ 1,000. The mission of these grants is to increase access to healthy foods, physical activity and other supports to improve employee well-being. The application period is closed and the winners will be announced on October 1.

The agency created the Kids Run Club program in 2015 with a pilot club, and the program has since grown to reach more than 30 schools and community groups across West Virginia, Seiler said.

“With our comprehensive Kids Run Club manual providing structure to all clubs, trained volunteers lead groups of children through the activities described in the manual,” she explained. “Through these activities, children acquire lifelong skills and strengthen their confidence in their physical activity abilities.

“The goal of the Kids Run Club program is for children to have fun with physical activity and have a positive team experience. It is important to Active SWV that the program is offered free of charge so that all children have the opportunity to participate.

To apply, go to https://activeswv.org/2021/07/fall-kids-run-club-mini-grant-is-now-open/.

Active SWV also sponsors an adult / family / multigenerational program known as the Community Captain program. This is a volunteer-led activity that usually meets once a week. Weekly programs in locations such as Summersville, Fayetteville, Oak Hill, Beckley and Williamson focus on running / walking, Pilates, youth disc golf, Refit, yoga, stand-up paddleboarding and paddling. cycling / walking.

For example, a Wednesday run group from Fayetteville that Seiler and his friends participate in will meet as a three-year free run group in December.

“We started the winter of 2018 thinking that we would come together every Wednesday in December to get through the dark days of winter,” she said. “So we started to meet at 6:15 pm when everyone got out of work and ran down the sidewalks of Fayetteville with the street lights and headlamps.

“Well, the group decided to continue meeting in January, then February, and so on. Every three months or so, we move to a different location and usually end up in a restaurant to eat together. Many people have joined the group over the years and we continue to welcome new people.

“Group responsibility helps keep people and myself,” Seiler said. “You know that your running friends are waiting for you and making the activity more fun in good company.

“Even when it rains and snows, we dress appropriately and go out anyway. Physical activity is good for the body and the mind, and the social connection is good for the mind.

To learn more about the Community Captains program, visit https://activeswv.org/community-captains/.

SWV’s active staff and volunteers have “made a difference in the lives of individuals and improved the health culture in Southern West Virginia,” said Seiler. “This was accomplished by normalizing beginner activities like walking and hiking, and having easy ways to volunteer increased the ways to be active.

“These efforts have been well received and volunteers find that their friends, family, neighbors and coworkers are helping each other remove barriers to an active lifestyle such as transportation, skills, equipment, child care. children and fear of injury. This work is even more important during the pandemic to help people stay healthy and active. “

Seiler, of Fayetteville, is married to Travis Hames and has daughters-in-law Kalila and Delaney.

His favorite outdoor hobbies are telemark, a skiing technique that combines elements of alpine and Nordic skiing; paddleboarding and surfing.

Her hobbies and interests also include raising chickens and adventures with her bird dog.

E-mail: [email protected] or follow us on Twitter @gb_scribe


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Anonymous reader pays Saint-Dominique cancer patient’s debt

Linda Burks owed more than $ 4,000 for her breast cancer treatment at St. Dominic, a not-for-profit church hospital in Jackson who hired a debt collector to sue her. Burks works as a full-time receptionist with Medicare who has started taking extra janitorial shifts to pay his bills.

After a series of investigations which the Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting product, and the Mississippi Free Press republished in its entirety, a woman who read the series took action. Earlier this month, she hooked up with Burks and paid off her medical debt.

“We’re supposed to help each other, aren’t we? Wrote the reader, who wished to remain anonymous. “People helped me when I needed it.”

After receiving treatment for her breast cancer at St. Dominic’s Hospital, Linda Burks had thousands of medical debts, which the hospital sent to collections. Photo by Sarah Warnock

However, St. Dominic Hospital did not change its policies in response to the report.

Burks’ story was part of an investigation into the aggressive debt collection policies of St. Dominic and its debt collectors. Reports revealed that the hospital was billing thousands of Mississippians when these patients should have qualified for free or reduced medical care; inflated patient bills by a third or more with attorney fees, court costs and interest rates by 8%; the wages of the seized patients; money seized from patients’ bank accounts; and sued thousands of patients, many of whom work in low-wage industries like fast food and retail.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the the federal government has given the hospital millions of dollars in pandemic relief funds, but St. Dominic continued to sue patients and even their employees, as the hospital sued over a hundred staff for medical debts.

Burks: “What am I doing? “

Linda Burks was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016 and received treatment at St. Dominic. She faithfully paid her bill for over a year when she said she noticed Saint-Dominique was no longer automatically withdrawing from her account.

Burks said she proactively contacted St. Dominic, but was told it was too late – her invoice was sent to the collections. Smith, Rouchon & Associates, a Jackson-based collection agency, started calling him, demanding more money from Burks. The debt collector sued her, adding more than $ 1,500 to her bill for legal fees.

Relief sculpture of Saint Francis of Assisi kneeling before an angel
Saint Francis of Assisi (photo) inspired the religious order which now sponsors Saint Dominic Hospital. Photo by Fr. Daniel Ciucci on Unsplash

St. Dominic has annual operating expenses of around half a billion dollars and pays virtually no tax due to its nonprofit status. Experts say suing patients for medical debts is only a tiny fraction of a hospital’s income, but the effects can be devastating for patients. For Burks, this meant she was reluctant to return to St. Dominic for treatment because she feared she would be sued again.

“I’m a cashless receptionist, living from paycheck to paycheck,” Burks wrote to a judge in 2018. “… I want to live, and these tests play a big role for me in whether I stay cancer-free. … What should I do. to do?”

Follow the example of the founder?

In 2019, the Dominican Sisters for St. Dominic’s Health Services sponsorship transferred from St. Dominic Hospital to the Health system of the Franciscan Missionaries of Notre-Dame, whose inspiration, St. Francis of Assisi, was a man born into a wealthy family who gave up his wealth and begged with the poor.

“Let us therefore have charity and humility and give alms because they wash souls from the stain of sins”, François wrote in the 13th century. “For men lose all that they leave in this world; however, they carry with them the reward of charity and alms which they have given, for which they will receive a reward and remuneration worthy of the Lord.

When contacted this week, a spokesperson for the Franciscan Missionaries of Notre Dame, the Louisiana-based health system that owns St. Dominic, reiterated that the hospital no longer directly pursues patients – a policy that took place in July.

“We always want to be compassionate and improve the experience for our patients,” spokesperson Ryan Cross said in an email.

But St. Dominic rarely sued patients directly, relying instead on two local collection agencies to handle the vast majority of medical debt collection lawsuits. The hospital still allows its debt collectors to sue patients, garnish their wages, damage their credit and bankrupt them.

The Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting produced the series. Email reporter Giacomo Bologna To [email protected]. Read Giacomo Bologna’s full series on medical billing in Mississippi:

Part 1: Investigation: St. Dominic’s nonprofit hospital routinely sued patients who could not afford care

Part 2: “It broke my heart”: the tactics of the Saint-Dominique debt collectors cause lasting damage

Part 3: Medical debt lawsuits hurt low-income Mississippians; Here are expert solutions


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Many obstacles for families with dietary challenges | News, Sports, Jobs

WASHINGTON – Many Americans who have struggled to feed their families in the past pandemic year say they have struggled to find how to get help and have struggled to find healthy foods they can afford.

An Impact Genome and Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll finds 23% of Americans say they haven’t been able to get enough to eat or the types of foods they eat. they want. Most people with food issues signed up for a government or nonprofit food aid program in the past year, but 58% still had difficulty accessing at least one service.

And 21% of adults who have difficulty meeting their food needs have not been able to access any assistance. The most common challenge for those in need was a fundamental lack of knowledge about eligibility for government and nonprofit services.

Survey results paint a big picture of a country where hundreds of thousands of households suddenly found themselves food insecure due to the economic disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic

They often found themselves navigating the intimidating bureaucracy of government assistance programs and with limited knowledge of local food banks or other charitable options available.

Black and Hispanic Americans, Americans living below the federal poverty line and young adults are especially likely to face eating problems, according to the survey.

Americans who struggle to afford food also feel less confident than others about their ability to afford healthy foods. Only 27% say they are “very” Where “extremely” confident, compared to 87% of those who do not face dietary challenges.

For housewife Acacia Barraza in Los Lunas, a rural town outside of Albuquerque, New Mexico, the challenge has been finding a steady supply of fresh fruits and vegetables for her 2-year-old son while respecting the family budget.

Barraza, 34, quit her job as a waitress before the pandemic when her son was born. She considered returning to work, but intermittent childcare shortages as the pandemic set in made that impossible, she said. The family lives off her husband’s salary as a mechanic while receiving help from SNAP, the government program commonly known as food stamps.

Despite government help, Barraza said she still scrambles to find affordable sources of fresh vegetables, actively browsing local markets for bargains such as a bag of fresh spinach for $ 2.99. .

“If we don’t always have vegetables, he won’t want to eat them in the future. And then I am worried that he will not get enough vitamins from vegetables in the future or now for his growing body. So it’s really hard. It’s just really hard. she said.

Even those who haven’t lost income during the pandemic find themselves stretching their food dollars at the end of the month. Trelecia Mornes of Fort Worth, Texas works as a customer service representative over the phone, so she was able to work from home without interruption.

She earns too much money to qualify for SNAP, but not enough to easily feed the family.

She decided to take distance education with her three children at home over fears about COVID-19 outbreaks in schools, which took school lunches out of the equation. Her job responsibilities prevent her from picking up free lunches offered by the school district. She takes care of her disabled brother, who lives with them and receives SNAP benefits. But Mornes said that $ 284 a month “Lasts about a week and a half. “

They try to eat healthy, but budgetary considerations sometimes lead them to prioritize cost and longevity with “canned soups, maybe noodles – things that last and aren’t that expensive”, she said.

Radha Muthiah, president of the Capital Area Food Bank in Washington, said the difficulties reflected in the survey are evidence of a new phenomenon brought by the pandemic: families with no experience of food insecurity are suddenly in need, without knowledge of charitable options or experience in navigating government assistance programs.

“It’s all new to them” she said. “Many people and families, especially those experiencing food insecurity for the first time, don’t know all of their options. “

Many are reluctant to engage directly in government programs such as SNAP and WIC – the government’s parallel food aid program that helps mothers and children. Muthiah said reluctance often stems either from frustration with paperwork or, among immigrant communities, from fear of endangering their immigration status or green card applications.

The survey shows that overall, about 1 in 8 Americans regularly get their supplies from convenience stores, which typically offer less nutritious foods at higher prices. This experience is more common among Americans with dietary issues, with about 1 in 5 frequenting convenience stores.

Reliance on convenience stores is a particularly troubling dynamic, Muthiah said, as the options there are both more expensive and generally less nutritious. Part of the problem is just habit, but a much bigger problem is the lack of proper groceries in “Food deserts” that exist in the poorest neighborhoods of many cities.

“Sometimes they’re the only quick and efficient option for many people to get food,” she said. “But they don’t get the full range of what they need in a convenience store and that has a lot of negative health effects.”

The survey shows that half of Americans with dietary challenges say extra money to pay for food or bills is needed to meet their dietary needs.

Fewer consider reliable transportation or enough free food for a few days, such as in emergency food parcels, or free prepared meals at a soup kitchen or school as necessary resources to meet their food needs, although the majority states that this would be helpful.

Gerald Ortiz of Espaeola, New Mexico, bought a 2019 Chevrolet pickup truck before the pandemic, then lost the office job he had for 20 years. Now he’s scrambling to make the monthly payment of $ 600 and gets by with charity and just eating less. His unemployment benefits ended this month.

“I make sure that the payment for my truck is made” Ortiz said, as he sat in a line of around 30 cars waiting to collect food from a charity, Barrios Unidos, near Chimay. “After that, I, I just eat once a day” he said, pointing to her stomach. “That’s why you see me, I’m so thin now.”

He applies for several jobs and survives on charity and all the produce he can grow in his garden – peppers, onions, cucumbers and watermelons.

“It was depressing. It’s been, like, stressful and I have anxiety. he said. “Like, I can’t wait to find a job. I don’t care what it is right now.

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Powell meets a changing economy: fewer workers, higher prices

WASHINGTON – Restaurant owners and hoteliers are struggling to fill jobs. Delays in the supply chain drive up prices for small businesses. Unemployed Americans unable to find work even with record high job vacancies.

These and other disruptions to the U.S. economy – the aftermath of the viral pandemic that erupted 18 months ago – appear likely to last, a group of nonprofit business owners and executives said on Friday. to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.

The business challenges, outlined during a “Fed Listens” virtual panel discussion, highlight the ways the COVID-19 epidemic and its delta variant continue to transform the U.S. economy. Some event attendees said their business plans are still evolving. Others have complained of sluggish sales and fluctuating fortunes after the pandemic eased this summer, then escalated over the past two months.

A d

“We are living in truly unique times,” said Powell at the end of the discussion. “I’ve never seen these kinds of supply chain issues, I’ve never seen an economy that combines drastic labor shortages with a lot of unemployed … So it’s an economy that evolving very quickly, it will be very different from the one (before).

The Fed chairman asked Cheetie Kumar, a restaurant owner in Raleigh, North Carolina, why she is having such a hard time finding workers. Powell’s question goes to the heart of the Fed’s mandate to maximize employment, as many people who worked before the pandemic have lost their jobs and are no longer looking for them. When – or if – these people resume their job search will help determine when the Fed can conclude that the economy has reached the peak of jobs.

Kumar told Powell that many of his former employees have decided to quit the restaurant industry for good.

A d

“I think a lot of people wanted to change their lives, and we lost a lot of people in different industries,” she said. “I think half of our people have decided to go back to school.”

Kumar said her restaurant now pays a minimum of $ 18 an hour, and she added that higher wages are likely a long-term change for the restaurant industry.

“We can’t get by and pay people $ 13 an hour and expect them to stay with us for years and years,” Kumar said. “It just won’t happen.”

Loren Nalewanski, vice president of Marriott Select Brands, said his business was losing out to similar challenges as many former employees, especially housekeepers, left for other jobs that recently raised wages. Even the recent cut to a federal unemployment supplement of $ 300 per week, he said, has not led to an increase in the number of job seekers.

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“People have left the industry and unfortunately they are finding other things to do,” Nalewanski said. “Other industries that may not have paid that much … are (now) paying a lot more.”

Jill Rizika, president of Towards Employment, a non-profit workforce development organization in Cleveland, said she sees the stark disconnect every day between companies posting millions of job vacancies. and those struggling to find work and escape poverty. About 60% of the people her organization helps find jobs have criminal records, she said, and 65% have only high school diplomas. Many parents, especially mothers, are still unable to return to full-time work.

“They tried to work but because of the epidemics, the children are being sent home from daycare or school, which makes their schedules unmanageable,” said Rizika. “Where the digital divide comes in: a young mother tried remote working but didn’t have enough broadband to make it work.

A d

Small businesses are also grappling with rising costs, with little relief in sight, some participants said. The Fed has accelerated its plans to start withdrawing its low interest rate policies, in part because of concerns about rising inflation.

Larry Andrews, chairman of Massachusetts Growth Capital, a state agency that supports small businesses, said that during a recent tour of the state, a cafe owner told him that the price of a case of eggs had skyrocketed since the pandemic. Another restaurant owner said a jug of cooking oil went from $ 17 to $ 50 – “if you can get it.”

“The speed and intensity of this slowdown – and the speed of the recovery in many areas – is unprecedented in modern times,” said Powell in prepared remarks at the start of the event. “The business plans have been reworked, the outlook has been revised and the future continues to be tainted with uncertainties.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


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Expanded Child Tax Credit Means My Son Will Have More Options Than Me – Press and Guide

I remember finding out that I was about to become a mother. I felt fear take hold of me. My brain stopped. I remember crying, but I had no tears. I remember trying to run, but couldn’t move.

No one had prepared me for motherhood – my own mother abandoned me when I was not even 2 years old. The father of my child was violently abusive. My life was unstable and I was afraid that another human being would depend on me.

Things are so much better now. My son, Caleb, is entering kindergarten and he is the light of my life. We’ve been through so much together, but we’re doing it.

One thing that helps more than words can express is the expanded new child tax credit. Adopted as part of the Biden administration’s COVID-19 relief program, it puts money in our bank account – and the bank accounts of almost every parent in this country.

This credit is on track to lift half of all children living in poverty, including mine. This will help them lead safer and happier lives into adulthood.

My own early childhood was filled with trauma.

After our mother left us, my father had to take care of all of us children. He did his best, but he didn’t know how to access social services for us. When he got sick, we lost everything. We ended up living in a tent “village” under a bridge, where I had to cook for 50 people for the next seven years.

I was just a child.

I was afraid of people in the streets, of students at school, even of being with others where I lived. When I took action and skipped school, I was put in juvenile detention for truancy. The years that followed saw cycle after cycle of abuse, instability and trauma.

But eventually I found help. When I was 18 and on the run, I found a job at a homeless shelter called Covenant House and moved in. They helped me get ID and taught me about social services and how to get them.

I didn’t know there was help available for someone like me. I became a team leader there and my life began to change. Now I’m an advocate for a nonprofit called RESULTS, which trains and helps people fight for policies that help families like mine survive and thrive.

Along the way, I learned something really important: Many of us who grew up in abusive situations just don’t have access to mental health services, so we end up in abusive relationships. adulthood. And many others who experience the trauma of poverty simply don’t know how to get help.

Before the COVID-19 relief program, I would never have been able to access the child tax credit – I was just too poor. And complex paperwork and bureaucratic requirements also put other help out of reach.

But now families like mine, and all other families with children, are receiving life-changing assistance right in their bank accounts. I can’t tell you how much of a difference it makes.

Thanks to the Child Tax Credit, Caleb will not suffer the tremendous trauma I suffered as a child. His life will be better. He will have the love and economic support he needs to thrive.

We are the richest nation in the world, but too often we have abandoned our poorest children, like my mother abandoned me. But if we have the political will, we can make smarter economic choices like these to give all children a safe and secure childhood.

Not only will Caleb prosper, but we in society as a whole will.

La’Shon Marshall lives in the Detroit metro area and is a poverty advocate with the RESULTS Educational Fund. This editorial was distributed by OtherWords.org.


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Haitian group in Houston seeks to help refugees coming from the border – Houston Public Media

Migrants, many from Haiti, wait to board a bus to Houston at a humanitarian center after being released from the United States Border Patrol after crossing the Rio Grande and turned into asylum seekers, on Wednesday, September 22, 2021, in Del Rio, Texas.

As the United States orders the deportation of thousands of Haitian migrants crossing Mexico to Texas, a local nonprofit is dealing with those who have already made it to Houston.

Organizers of the nonprofit Houston Haitians United this week called for volunteers to cook and translate Haitian dishes, helping to bridge the linguistic and cultural divide. The organization has looked after relief efforts and recently worked with Mayor Sylvester Turner’s office to organize supplies drives in the wake of the devastating earthquake that rocked Haiti this summer.

HHU is also using its platform to denounce immigration policies aimed at deporting recently arrived Haitians.

“Some people walked two months to come to the United States just to be deported to Haiti and start from scratch,” said James Pierre, president of HHU. “It’s heartbreaking because a lot of money, blood, sweat and tears have been invested in trying to find a better life.”

According to the Houston Chronicle, up to 3,000 additional Haitian refugees are expected to pass through Houston on their way to other destinations in the country. Most or all of those who do will have come from Del Rio, where tens of thousands of migrants were waiting under the international bridge between Del Rio and Mexico.

Florida and northeastern states like New York and New Jersey have historically been stopping places for the Haitian diaspora. There are over 500,000 Haitians living in the United States, nearly half of whom live in Florida.

Pierre is a transplant from Florida who says there are thousands of Haitians in the Houston area alone, and his organization is a way to build a community here.

“When I moved to Houston 18 years ago, it wasn’t around, you know? ” he said. “Haitians have been here since the 1970s. But the reason we created HHU was that they were here, people move here every day.

Buses arrive at a shelter in northwest Houston run by the Mormon Church since Monday evening, with two to three buses of about 65 people each, greeted by HHU volunteers, organizers said.

Rolanda Charles, the group’s secretary, helped coordinate volunteers via social media, posting a call for people who speak Haitian Creole and who can help make large casseroles of comfort food like chicken stew and Diri Kole, Haitian-style rice and beans. plate. Charles also posted the bus arrival times.

“We were there from 6:30 p.m. to almost three in the morning, distributing food, translating, putting people in touch… with their friends and families who are currently in the United States and helping them buy those bus tickets or tickets. ‘plane. to bring them home,’ Charles said.

As of Thursday, the number of Haitian migrants at the Del Rio Bridge had fallen to around 4,000, according to information from the Associated Press. About 1,400 had been returned to Haiti on 13 flights under the pandemic public health authority known as Title 42, while 3,200 others are in U.S. custody and under treatment, several thousand more returning to Mexico, according to the AP.

For those who are allowed to stay in the United States at least for the time being, Charles was hopeful that more organizations would help them along their journey, especially after seeing heartbreaking footage at the border.

“Every person, however they get to the border – whether they stay there or have to go back – must be respected,” Charles said. “They must be treated with respect, dignity and humanity. We are people at the end of the day. We are not animals. We are human beings.

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Non profit living

Where to give Halloween candy

There’s no better time to give back and spread the joy than a holiday – Halloween included! If you are looking to make a positive impact in someone’s life this Halloween, you may want to consider donating candy to those who could use a treat to lift their spirits. Whether you’re planning to give back on your own or looking to instill charitable values ​​in your kids after a treat, read on to learn more about where you can give Halloween candy this spooky season.

United Way

United Way is a non-profit organization whose mission is “to improve lives by mobilizing the benevolent power of communities around the world to advance the common good”. The organization is known for hosting Halloween events for kids and making the holidays a little more special for underserved communities. Visit their website to find your local chapter and learn about Halloween candy donation.

Ronald McDonald House Charities

Ronald McDonald Houses is a non-profit organization that seeks to support families struggling with serious childhood illness. Because these children are unable to go out and make treats, many Ronald McDonald House chapters will accept unopened Halloween candy to share with children with illness and their families. Find your local and ask whether or not they could use candy donations to help spread the Halloween joy.

Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude proudly distributes candy to deployed troops, local military units, veterans and first responders. Complete the registration form and pair up with a local military unit, first responder service, or veterans organization. If no match can be found, you can always send your candy to the organization’s Candy Processing Center in Los Angeles.

Operation Shoebox

Operation Shoebox sends thoughtful care packages to troops and is known to include candy, especially during the holidays. Other sugary treats they’ll accept as donations for their treatment packages include individually wrapped granola bars and cookies. Visit their website to learn more about the donation.

Local organizations

Sometimes you don’t have to look far to tell the difference. Call your local pantries, nursing homes, and shelters to see if they would be interested in accepting new unopened Halloween candy. There is something special about giving back to your own community and doing something positive for other members.


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Non profit living

American Dream Center in Tulsa helps families integrate into the United States

The American Dream Center in Tulsa helps families from other countries settle in Oklahoma.

Founder Casey Jones told News On 6 they have helped nearly 100 families this year. Jones grew up in Oklahoma, then began to travel and live abroad.

“I have lived abroad, I have lived in Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Ivory Coast,” Jones said.

Friends helped him adjust to life in other countries. When Jones returned home, he realized that there were people moving to Oklahoma from outside the United States who needed the same help and guidance as overseas. , so he created the American Dream Center.

“We are helping immigrants and refugees adjust to America,” Jones said.

The non-profit organization provides immigration legal services, it helps people find jobs, it even provides a translator who does errands, like going to the DMV a bit easier.

“We walk alongside them and help them navigate the ins and outs of our system,” Jones said.

American Dream Center has already helped 90 families this year and hundreds since the doors opened in 2017, including people like Ariana Wilson, who immigrated to the United States with her triplets from Venezuela.

“This country has opened the door to new life,” Wilson said. “Sometimes God sends angels into your life.”

Wilson thinks these angels are at the Dream Center. She said that before moving to the United States, she was robbed several times at gunpoint, would not have electricity for weeks, and could not regularly access the medications her son took. need. Jones and his team helped Wilson and his family gain Temporary Protected Status.

“We can help inexpensively since we’re a non-profit organization,” Jones said. “These people have left their friends and family, their culture, their language to try something new. We have to accept them, welcome them and help them succeed because if they succeed, we succeed.”

The American Dream Center has said it is ready and willing to help Afghan refugees in the coming months, but has not yet been contacted.

For more information, visit the American Dream Center website here.


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