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Temporary protected status (TPS) grants temporary protection from deportation to nationals of a country in which environmental or political events have occurred which make it temporarily unsafe to deport them or when armed conflict poses a serious threat to public safety. TPS has been granted to nationals of many countries including those of Nicaragua and Honduras in 1999 following Hurricane Mitch, and of El Salvador in 2001 following severe earthquakes.
Recent devastating environmental disasters from which Haiti has not recovered, continuing violence, and unstable political conditions pose a serious threat at this time to the personal safety of anyone forcibly repatriated to Haiti. Last year’s storms and hurricanes killed hundreds and rendered hundreds of thousands homeless. Fifteen percent of Haiti’s already fragile economy was destroyed, the equivalent of eight to ten Hurricane Katrinas hitting the United States in the same month. Haitian deportees face hunger, homelessness, and grave threats to their security. The Haitian government’s ability to provide basic governmental services–clean water, education, passable road and basic healthcare–has been severely compromised by the natural disasters and food crisis in 2008. Repatriating Haitians exposes them to these dangerous conditions, while imposing an additional burden on government resources that are already stretched too thin.
Furthermore, granting TPS to Haitian refugees would help Haiti recover, as Haitians in the United States could obtain work permits and would increase the already significant flow of remittances to their family and friends back home. Many depend on those remittances for their very survival. That flow of dollars is among the best foreign aid that the United States can provide, and it costs taxpayers nothing. TPS would be extended only to those Haitians currently residing in the United States, so any concerns about a mass exodus to the US are unfounded.
Congressman Alcee Hastings (FL) introduced legislation to grant TPS to Haitians (H.R. 144).
Research suggests that white and Latina women have similar attitudes about dieting and weight control. Further, prevalence studies of eating disorders indicate similar rates for white and Latina girls and women, particularly when considering bulimia and BED or binge-eating disorder. As with African-Americans, it appears that eating disorders among Latinas may be related to acculturation. Thus, as Latina women attempt to conform to the majority culture, their values change to incorporate an emphasis on thinness, which places them at higher risk for bingeing, purging, and overly restrictive dieting.
Consider Gabriella. She is a young Mexican woman whose parents moved to the U.S. when she was just a child. While her mother and father continue to speak Spanish at home and place a high value on maintaining their Mexican traditions, Gabriella wants nothing more than to fit in with her friends at school. She chooses to speak only English, looks to mainstream fashion magazines to guide her clothing and make-up choices, and wants desperately to have a fashion-model figure. In an attempt to lose weight, Gabriella has made a vow to herself to eat only one meal a day—dinner—but on her return home from school, she is rarely able to endure her hunger until dinnertime. She often loses control and ends up “eating whatever I can get my hands on.” Frantic to keep her problem hidden from her family, she races to the store to replace all the food she has eaten.
Gabriella says that although she has heard her “Anglo” friends talk about eating problems, she has never heard of anything like this in the Latina community. Like Patricia, she feels isolated. “Yeah, sure, I want to fit in with mainstream America,” she says, “but I hate what this bingeing is doing to my life.”
http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/ helpline 1 (800) 931 2237
http://www.anad.org/ helpline (847) 831-3438
Few of us realize it, but the food we put in our mouths each day dramatically affects the global climate. The typical American diet requires the staggering equivalent of 400 gallons of oil each year. That, in turn, generates, nearly as much planet-warming carbon dioxide as the average U.S. car creates.
In this modern food transportation system, wasted energy reaches absurd levels. For example, a lettuce farmer near Atlanta, Georgia who wants to sell lettuce to a Safeway in Atlanta, must first ship the lettuce 621 miles to Upper Marlboro, MD for inspection, then ship it back down to Georgia. This transportation not only consumes fossil fuel but takes up extra road space and leaves the lettuce less fresh!
These diet-related impacts on our climate and natural environment could be dramatically and painlessly reduced if Americans took three easy steps. These are 1) buy locally raised foods whenever possible; 2) buy organic foods; and 3) reduce meat and dairy consumption.
Thankfully, buying local food that has not been trucked thousands of miles gets easier every year. According to the US Department of Agriculture, regionally based farmers markets with a wide variety of fruits and vegetables have grown from 300 in the mid 1970s to 3100 in America today. Such markets simultaneously decrease transportation inputs while increasing community interconnectedness. One study estimates that people have 10 times as many conversations at farmers’ markets than at supermarkets. Visit www.ams.usda.gov/farmersmarkets/map.htm for a farmers market nearest you.
People across America can also buy directly from a specific farm nearest their home thanks to a practice called “community-supported agriculture (CSA).” For a set annual price, you essentially “subscribe” to a farm, receiving a standard weekly share of whatever the farm produces during the growing season. Visit www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/csa/csastate.htm for a CSA nearest you.
A second important step, beyond buying locally, is to buy organically raised food. On average, organic farms use 37 percent less energy than conventional farms. Also, unlike soils rendered nearly biologically lifeless from petroleum inputs, organic soils are full of plant matter and various biological processes that naturally absorb carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. According to a 23-year study by the prestigious Rodale Institute, one acre of organic crops “sequester” as much as 3,700 pounds per year of CO2, the world’s leading greenhouse gas. So organic food consumers fight climate change with every meal they eat.
Meat, eggs, and dairy products are high-energy, high-impact foods. It takes 40 pounds of grain to produce one pound of beef. Simply put, America could feed most of Africa with the grains we feed to livestock, while Americans are consuming twice the government’s daily recommended allowance of protein.
A vegetarian diet also dramatically reduces your risk of heart disease, the nation’s number one cause of death.
17 percent of U.S. energy use now devoted to food, it’s clear we’ll never solve the climate crisis with wind farms and hybrid cars alone. We must – and obviously can – cultivate and consume “clean-energy” food, grown close to home for the benefit of the whole world.
Author: Mike Tidwell
Amnesty International has found that the dramatic increase in the use of detention as an immigration enforcement mechanism in the USA results in a number of human rights violations. More than 300,000 men, women and children are detained by US immigration authorities each year. International human rights standards require that detention should only be used in exceptional circumstances, must be justified in each individual case and must be subject to judicial review. However, in the USA immigrants can be detained for months or years without any form of meaningful individualized judicial review of their detention. Alternatives to detention including reporting requirements or a bond should always be considered before resorting to detention.
The conditions under which immigrants are held violate both US and international standards on the treatment of detainees. Amnesty International documented pervasive problems including comingling of immigration detainees with individuals convicted of criminal offenses; inappropriate and excessive use of restraints; inadequate access to healthcare including mental health services; and inadequate access to exercise. Many individuals have limited or no access to family and to legal or other assistance throughout their detention.
Key findings of Amnesty International’s report on immigration detention include:
- The US detains asylum seekers, survivors of torture and human trafficking, lawful permanent residents and the parents of U.S. citizen children.
- While the average cost of detaining an immigrant is $95 per person/per day, alternatives to detention are significantly cheaper, with some programs costing as little as $12 per day. Despite the proven effectiveness of these less expensive and less restrictive alternatives, the government is choosing to detain instead.
- Immigrants can be detained for months or years without any form of meaningful individualized review of whether their detention is necessary.
- The vast majority of people in immigration detention – 84 percent – are unable to obtain the legal assistance necessary to present viable claims in an adversarial and complex court process.
- The US contracts with approximately 350 state and county criminal jails to house approximately 67% of all immigrants in detention.
- Detention facilities are required to comply with ICE detention standards, however, these standards are not legally binding, and oversight and accountability for abuse or neglect in detention is almost nonexistent, leading to practices in violation of international standards. Immigrants are often put in excessive restraints, including handcuffs, belly chains and leg restraints.
- Individuals in detention find it very difficult to get timely – and at times any – treatment for their medical needs. 74 people have died while in immigration detention over the past five years.
to read entire report visit: amnestyusa.org
With the state’s unemployment rate topping 10 percent, Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner highlighted a Web site Thursday that’s designed to help people who may have lost their health insurance along with their jobs.
The Web site, coverageforall.org, is run operatedby a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization in San Jose called the Foundation for Health Coverage Education in San Jose. The organization also runs a help line at 800-234-1317. The Web site and hotline are designed to provide access to hundreds of state and federal health insurance programs that meet a wide variety of individual needs.
“A lot of people don’t know these programs exist,” founder Phil Lebherz said in a press release. “What we are doing is making it easier for people in need to access all of their local and statewide options.”
Even before the recession, the federal government estimated that almost one in five Californians lacked health insurance at some point during the last 12 months, Poizner said in a press release. In January alone, nearly 80,000 Californians lost their jobs and their likely source of health insurance, Poizner said.
“There are resources out there, both public andprivate, that can help people who don’t have health insurance and want to know what their options are.”
Source: Sacramento Business Journal
Author: Kathy Robertson