Congress is back to work, such as they do, this week, but apparently has no plans to do anything about the mass of refugee children at our border, since that was so July already, I guess. Hence the Coalition on Human Needs helps you tell your Congressfolk to pass supplemental funding to address the issue properly. Your demands will be specific: at least $2.7 billion, with $1.2 billion of that going to housing and services for refugee children. Funding these services properly will not guarantee that every single child at the border gets in safely; it will only guarantee that every single child has a fighting chance of getting it. Certainly it would guarantee a better chance of getting in than the piddling $694 million House bill, or Sen. Johnson (E-WI)'s notion of buying them all tickets on Orbitz and send them back (which could, you know, involve sending them back to this). And to those who would squeal WHEREZ TEH MONEYZ!!!!! Well, what about all those corporate tax cuts the House has been handing out like candy? No outrage over that? Quelle surprise.
Pennsylvania residents, take note: HB 1890/SB 1212 would help eliminate the gap between men's wages and women's wages. The bill would mandate equal pay for equal work, except where factors such as seniority or superior education would permit unequal pay, and would specifically prohibit employers from lowering wages in order to maintain such pay scales. The bill would also put the burden of proof upon the employer that factors like seniority and education cause pay disparities, rather than the sex of the employee, and would further prevent employers or labor organizations from retaliating against workers who initiate pay-discrimination complaints. Finally, the bill would also prohibit employers from making gag rules about pay -- where they prohibit you from talking about your pay rate to your co-workers -- a condition of employment. The bill really ought to prohibit employers from instituting such gag rules after hiring you, too, but HB 1890/SB 1212 will still do a lot of good. Keystone Progress helps you tell your state legislator to support equal pay for equal work.
Meanwhile, if you've missed previous opportunities to tell the EPA to pass the most vigorous rules possible to lower carbon emissions at existing power plants, then Public Citizen helps you do that. Public Citizen specifically helps you advocate for stricter limits on the carbon emissions from gas plants (the fracking apologists have long told us that fracking is friendlier to climate change than coal, which, ah, isn't really true) and avoid spending taxpayer money on carbon capture technologies, which are rather like putting a giant bomb under the earth. The big coal corporations threw a massive tantrum at the EPA's rule restricting carbon emissions at new power plants; how will they respond, do you think, to being told they have to reduce emissions at their old power plants? Not with restraint, I presume, but we have the better arguments; all they have is their greed. And to those who say the new rules would kill jobs: rules create jobs, for the people who figure out how to comply with the rules and for people who have to rebuild plants. I say this a lot, but I'll keep saying it until even the politicians get it.