OWL ALERT December 3: FUND CLIMATE ACTION IN SAN FRANCISCO

SITUATION: SF has been slow to address our climate crisis—-and it’s going to be expensive. We need to continue to find new ways to plan, and fund planning and implementation. Relevant bond issues will be discussed at the Board of Supervisors’ meeting on Tuesday, December 6.

ACTION: Implore the Board of Supervisors to adopt the resolution urging the Capital Planning Committee to include Climate Action Plan (CAP) funding priorities recommended by the Center for Law, Energy & the Environment (CLEE) Report, in the proposed General Obligation (GO) Bond schedule.

Email letters should be received before the start of the meeting – preferably by close of business on Monday, Dec 5. Suggested subject line: File 221208: Support resolution to include Climate Action funding in Capital Planning. Email to the Clerk of the Board, bos@sfgov.org.

OWL ALERT October 28: IMPROVED MEDICARE FOR ALL

SITUATION: California’s Healthcare for All Commission is charged with determining how to fix our broken healthcare system through a unified financing system that would save money AND provide better benefits and access to providers. This is for our whole health care system in California- not just Medicare.

SITUATION: A coalition of labor and community groups working towards the creation of a guaranteed health care system in California, along with UCSF, created a calculator so that individuals can see how much they could save if we moved toward such a system.  This calculator was expanded specifically for Medicare.

ACTION: Check out the calculator to see how much YOU would save: https://healthyca.org/medicare-for-all-savings-calculator/

ACTION:  Check out the recording of the recent CARA meeting with some of the creators of the calculator: https://californiaalliance.org/

ACTION:  Share this information with others!  

OWLSF ALERT: HALT “FLOW” ADMISSIONS TO LAGUNA HONDA

SITUATION: The circumstances that thrust Laguna Honda Hospital into the throes of potential closure by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are largely due to the implementation of the “flow project” process of admitting patients. Implemented in 2004, this process greatly altered the demographic of LHH patients by:

  • transferring the responsibility of admissions from LHH Admissions Committee to the Department of Public Health, and
  • including patients who prior to FLOW would have been denied admission based on a variety of behavioral health issues, including drug abuse and violence

ACTION: Contact local, state and federal legislators and tell them to halt the FLOW admissions program (all contact info below).

ACTION: Attend the Board of Supervisors’ hearing on LHH’s future on Tuesday, November 1st at 3 p.m., either in person at city Hall, or online. Click HERE for details about attending online.

ACTION: Share this message with friends, family and colleagues.

Contact info:

Click HERE to contact your San Francisco City Supervisor

Click HERE to find and contact your California State Assembly Member and Senator

Email Xavier Becerra, Secretary of Health & Human Services: xavier.becerra@hhs.gov, or write or call:

200 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20201
Toll Free Call Center: 1-877-696-6775

Click HERE to contact Governor Gavin Newsom

OWL/CARA Alert Oct. 6: RECOMMENDATIONS ON STATE BALLOT MEASURES

OWL is a member of CARA (CA Alliance for Retired Americans) and is forwarding to our members CARA’s recommendations on some of the CA Propositions in the November 8 election.

CARA’S RECOMMENDATIONS ON STATE BALLOT MEASURES

CARA’s Board and Legislative Committee reviews all of the measures that qualify for the statewide ballot and makes decisions to support, oppose or take no position on these measures. In order to win  support or opposition, these measures must have a direct impact on seniors and our families and be approved by CARA’s leadership (with a consensus vote whenever possible). This year, there are 7 measures on the state ballot, and CARA was unable to get a consensus or even a clear majority on 3 of the measures, so CARA is  taking NO POSITION on them.

The other four measures listed below are part of the slate card that CARA is sending to all convention participants and  senior voter lists and posting on their website and in social media.

Prop. I: Right to Reproductive Freedom – YES

Prop. 28: Art and Music K-12 Education Funding Initiative – YES

Prop. 29: Dialysis Clinic Requirements – YES

Prop. 31: Flavored Tobacco Products Ban Referendum – YES

See for full descriptions of each: https://californiaalliance.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Slate-Card-V6.1.pdf

Also see the League of Women Voters of CA ballot recommendations:

https://lwvc.org/vote/elections/ballot-recommendations

ACTIONCONSIDER THESE RECOMMENDATIONS AND VOTE ON OR BEFORE NOVEMBER 8.

OWL ALERT September 23: CELEBRATE SMALL VICTORIES–THEY ADD UP TO BIG ONES

SITUATION: The State legislature passed and on September 16, 2022, Governor Newsom signed SB 1137 prohibiting new oil and gas wells or major retrofitting of existing wells within 3200 feet—more than half a mile—of homes, schools, nursing homes, and hospitals.

ACTION: Kudos to everyone who responds to the OWL ALERTS.  Persistence pays off.  Together we can be a part of bringing healing and justice to the Earth and all that is within it.  Give thanks with a grateful heart and contact Governor Gavin Newsom with a word of thanks for this action.

ACTION: Forward this message to friends in California.

CONTACT:
Governor Gavin Newsom
1303 10th Street, Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 445-2841
click here to email Gavin Newsom

OWL ALERT September 16: STOP THE NEGATIVE IMPACT OF BIG MONEY IN CALIFORNIA ELECTIONS

SITUATION: The Ballot Disclose Act (AB 1416) sponsored by the California Clean Money Campaign—which OWL has supported in the past—is on Governor Newsom’s desk for signature. AB 1416 requires ballots to add a short list of supporters and opponents from the official arguments in the voter information guide.  This information helps voters ascertain who supports and opposes each measure.

SITUATION: Also, on Governor Newsom’s desk for signature is the Disclosure Clarity Act (SB 1360) which requires online image and banner ads to clearly and prominently show their top funder on the ads themselves.

Newsom must sign these bills within the next 6 days
or this landmark legislation just dies on his desk.

ACTION: Stop the negative impact of Big Money donors in California IMMEDIATELY Write, call, and email Governor Newsom and tell him to sign AB 1416 and SB 1360.

ACTION: Tell your family and friends to join you in this very important effort.

Governor Gavin Newsom
1021 O Street, Suite 9000
Sacramento, CA 95814

Phone: (916) 445-2841
Click
HERE to email Governor Newsom.

OWL ALERT August 31: RACIAL JUSTICE FOR ALL

SITUATION: September 30, 2020 Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law AB 2542, the California Racial Justice Act (CRJA), which expands opportunities for defendants to challenge racial bias in their convictions—but it excludes judgements before January 1, 2021.

SITUATION: New bill AB 256, Racial Justice for All (authored by Ash Kalra, Dem, District 27) would expand the use of CRJA to convictions prior to this date, as well as procedures undertaken while the accused was a minor. This bill has passed the California State Senate and Assembly.

ACTION: Urge Governor Newsom to take the step from Racial Justice to RACIAL JUSTICE FOR ALL by signing AB 256.

ACTION: Share this message with friends and colleagues in California.

Governor Gavin Newsom
1021 O Street, Suite 9000
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 445-2841

Click HERE to email Governor Newsom

OWL ALERT AUGUST 16: GIVE CALIFORNIA CITIES THE TOOLS TO REDUCE TRAFFIC FATALITIES

SITUATION: Traffic deaths in San Francisco persisted during the pandemic and, two years out from its 2024 Vision Zero deadline, the city’s goal of zero traffic deaths by then has become increasingly elusive.

SITUATION: Speed is the main factor in determining a victim’s survival in a crash, and (many argue) there is no single tool as effective at decreasing the dangers of automobile traffic as speed safety cameras.

SITUATION: California State Assemblymember Phil Ting is the lead author of a bill authorizing a five-year pilot program in five California cities—including San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose in the Bay Area—to utilize “speed safety systems,” such as cameras, that automatically detect violation of speeding laws. (We already use cameras to enforce red-light running.)

ACTION: AB 2336 is currently under review by the Assembly. Contact your State Assemblymember and urge them to promote and enact this life-saving legislation (see link below for contact info).

ACTION: Share this message with friends, family and colleagues in California.

Click HERE to find your State Assemblymember.

Click HERE to find their contact info, listed alphabetically by last name.

OWL ALERT AUGUST 4: THE FOURTH AMENDMENT IS NOT FOR SALE

SITUATION: Data from apps most of us routinely use can be warrantlessly examined by the government, allowing agencies—such as the IRS, the FBI and ICE—to identify and track people without users’ knowledge.

They do this:

  • By purchasing information about individuals from commercial data brokers.
  • Without having to provide probable cause, because the laws regarding this matter were written before commercial data brokers existed, therefore not including them.

ACTION: S1265/HR2738, The Fourth Amendment is Not For Sale Act, has been introduced by Senator Ron Wyden (D, OR), which, among other actions:

  • Ensures that intelligence agencies acquiring data on Americans do so within the framework of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
  • Requires the government to get a court order to compel data brokers to disclose data.
  • Takes away the Attorney General’s authority to grant civil immunity to providers and other third parties for assistance with surveillance not required or permitted by statute.

ACTION: The Fourth Amendment is Not For Sale Act is being considered by both Houses of Congress. Contact your Senators and Representatives (info below) and urge them end this massive privacy invasion by passing S1265/HR2738.

ACTION: Share this email with friends, family and colleagues.

Click HERE to find contact information for members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.

OWL ALERT JULY 26: STOP THE DANGEROUS TRANSFER OF RESIDENTS OF LAGUNA HONDA

SITUATION: San Francisco’s Laguna Honda Hospital—the largest skilled nursing home in California, and the largest publicly owned nursing home in the entire country—has been mandated to relocate more than 600 patients by mid-September, while recertification is in process.

SITUATION: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) unreasonable and inhumane demand does not take into account that:

  • Laguna Honda cares for especially fragile people;
  • When nursing home patients are forced to change location, the death rate from “transfer trauma” is high; and
  • Four people recently died shortly after being transferred!

ACTION: While efforts at recertification are underway, closure and discharges out of Laguna Honda must stop!

ACTION: Please contact federal HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and California Governor Gavin Newsom, who must be made aware that there is wide objection in the community to the removal of Laguna Honda residents from their home.

Xavier Becerra:
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C.  20201
Toll free call: (877) 696 6775
Email: xavier.becerra@hhs.gov

Governor Gavin Newsom:
1021 O Street, Suite 9000
Sacramento, CA  95814
Phone: (916) 445-2841
Click HERE to email Gavin Newsom.

 

 

 

 

OWL ALERT JULY 22: URGE SENATE TO CONFIRM FEDERAL JUDGES BEFORE RECESS

SITUATION: The Supreme Court and conservative federal judges are waging war on our fundamental rights. 

SITUATION: We need the Senate to prioritize filling federal court vacancies, except the Senate is about to go into its month-long August recess.

It’s imperative that the U.S. Senate prioritize action on as many judicial nominations as possible while there are the votes to confirm federal judicial nominees who are diverse, qualified, and committed to the judiciary’s role in vindicating our fundamental rights.

ACTION: Please call our CA Senators and ask for the Senate to stay in session this August long enough to confirm as many judicial nominees as possible. 

MAKE SURE YOUR VOICE IS HEARD!

Senator Dianne Feinstein:   (415) 393 0707

Senator Alex Padilla:   (415) 981-9369

OWLSF ALERT JULY 13: BUILD SUPPORT FOR SINGLE PAYER HEALTH CARE IN CALIFORNIA

SITUATION: In January, lawmakers chose to delay a vote on AB 1400—the California State bill that would establish CalCare, a guaranteed, single-payer health care system for all California residents—which caused the bill to miss its legislative deadline this year.

SITUATION: We will have another chance to pass CalCAre in 2023 when the legislature reconvenes.

We need to build the necessary support to win,

AND WE NEED TO START NOW.

ACTION: Tell state lawmakers to fight the for-profit health care industry and PASS AB 1400 (see link below to identify your State Assembly Member).

ACTION: Join the CalCare Statewide Strategy call on July 14 at 6 p.m. Click HERE to register (with apologies for the extremely late notice).

ACTION: SHARE THIS ALERT with friends and family in California.

Click HERE to find your State Assembly Member and HERE to find their contact info.

OWL ALERT JUNE 29: TURNING UP THE HEAT ON MEDICARE PRIVATIZATION

SITUATION: The ACO-REACH program moves Medicare beneficiaries who are currently signed up for Medigap/Fee-for-Service Medicare into private plans with limited networks, run by investment groups (not even health care plans), and in many cases without approval or notification to the beneficiaries.

ACTION: We will never kick profiteers out of Medicare unless we ALL take action, and soon!

WE MUST TELL THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION
TO END THIS PROGRAM!

Here are five actions you can take toward this crucial goal:

ACTION 1: Call President Biden at (202) 456-1111 and demand he use executive action to end Direct Contracting and REACH today. (Note that the White House switchboard is only open from 11 am to 3 pm ET, Tuesdays through Thursdays.)

ACTION 2: Call your U.S. representative and senators using the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121, and demand they join the fight against Direct Contracting and REACH and stop the privatization of Medicare.

ACTION 3: Click HERE to sign and share the petition to end Direct Contracting and REACH.

ACTION 4: Celebrate Medicare’s 57th Anniversary on July 29th (actual birthday is July 30th). For those in the Bay Area, CARA will have an in-person event in front of the CMS office in San Francisco (5th and Market) on July 29th at 11am. Urge your organization to sponsor the event and CARA will send fact sheets to distribute. OWLSF is a sponsor!

ACTION 5: SHARE THIS ALERT!

OWL ALERT JUNE 10: THE THREAT OF MEDICARE PRIVATIZATION—SDA PANEL JUNE 20

SITUATION: Medicare’s ACO REACH is a major threat to this crucial service for older Americans. It allows corporations to buy medical practices, keeping profits for themselves, limiting service and excluding people without their knowledge.

ACTION: Because it is such a core issue to the values of OWLSF (in addition to our Member meeting on Saturday, June 25th at 11 a.m.), we encourage everyone to attend a Teach-In Panel Discussion on Monday, June 20th from 5 to 6:30 p.m., hosted by close San Francisco organizational ally, Senior and Disability Action.

Moderated by Dr. Ana Manilow, panelists include:

  • Barbara Commins, who will give a simple introduction to Medicare and Medicare Advantage
  • Melanie Grossman, who will offer an overview of Medicare Direct Contracting and ACO REACH
  • Claire Cohen, who will speak about what seniors and people living with disabilities can do to fight this dangerous trend.

This issue could not be more important to us, and all are encouraged to participate. Click HERE to register and receive a Zoom link. AND INVITE FRIENDS AND FAMILY!

OWL ALERT MAY 26: STOPPING GUN VIOLENCE

SITUATION:  Recent mass shootings in Buffalo, New York and Uvalde, Texas cry out for action!  We should not be deterred from taking action by the powerful gun lobby, the unwillingness of our leaders to pass legislation, or the current atmosphere of devisiveness in the US.

Even small steps will help.

ACTION: Ask Speaker of the house Nancy Pelosi to encourage and support legislation reducing access to guns. Call, email or write to ask her to support all efforts to make our children and all of America safer from guns.

WHAT TO SAY: It is time for Congress to take action and reduce gun violence wherever possible.  Here are a number of steps Congress could take now:

  • Serious and stringent background checks with no loopholes and including “straw” purchaces and guns bought privately or at gun shows
  • Federal mandatory waiting period on all gun purchases
  • End immunity for firearm companies
  • Ban gun sales to anyone under age 21

Contact Speaker Nancy Pelosi:

San Francisco:                          Washington DC:

90 7th Street, Suite 2-800         1236 Longworth H.O.B.
San Francisco, CA 94103         Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 415-556-4862                Phone: 202-225-4965

Click HERE to email Nancy Pelosi

OWL ALERT MAY 19: STOP PRIVITIZATION OF MEDICARE

SITUATION: Seniors and the disabled continue to be moved out of traditional Medicare into Direct Contracting, now called ACO REACH.  Private medical practices are being bought up by investors who then enroll older and disabled Medicare patients from these practices into REACH without their knowledge or permission. Patients must then leave their doctors and find another practice to continue in traditional Medicare.

SITUATION: President Biden could put an end to this practice with the stroke
of a pen.

ACTION: Call, write, or email President Biden at the White House!

WHAT TO SAY:  Please preserve the right of seniors and the disabled to choose what kind of Medicare they are enrolled in.  Stop ACO/REACH and keep Wall Street out of Medicare!

Phone: 

202-456-1111 TTY/TTD 202-456-6213

Write:

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20500

Click HERE to email the White House

OWL ALERT MAY 10: END VISITATION LOCKOUTS IN SENIOR CARE

ALLOWING ACCESS TO LOVED ONES IN NURSING HOMES

SITUATION:  During the medical emergency of Covid 19, assisted living facilities and nursing homes enforced strict lockdown rules to protect residents’ health.  With careful screening and proper precautions, designated loved ones could be allowed visits, preventing loneliness and harmful isolation.

SITUATION: California State Assembly bill AB 2546 ensures procedures are set up so designated family members or loved ones can offer in-person support and care in future times of crisis.

ACTION: Call or write your Assembly Member and tell them to support Assembly Member Adrin Nazarian’s AB 2546 to prevent lockouts of important family and support persons in senior facilities during future medical emergencies.

Say, “No lockouts of vital loved ones when they are most needed!

ACTION: Tell friends and family around the State about this important issue!

Cick HERE to find contact information for all State Assembly Members, alphabetically by last name.

Click HERE to identify your California State Assembly Member.

OWL ALERT MAY 3: SUPPORT AND STRENGTHEN SOCIAL SECURITY

SITUATION:  Supporting Social Security was a key issue for the founders of OWL, and it is still important today.  Social Security needs to be updated to:

  • increase benefits,
  • clean up the many inequities in the program, and
  • put the system on a firm financial footing by increasing FICA for workers with incomes exceeding $400,000.

SITUATIONHR 5723 addresses these issues and is currently in several committees, including Ways and Means and needs to be moved forward.

ACTION:  Call or write speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office in California or D.C. and tell her to immediately bring HR 5723 to a vote.  Let her know you are a member of OWL and think this is the best opportunity to bring this bill to a vote!

San Francisco: 90 7th Street, Suite 2-800,  San Francisco, CA 94103, Phone: 415-556-4862

Washington DC: 1236 Longworth H.O.B, Washington, DC 20515, Phone: 202-225-4965

Click HERE to email Nancy Pelosi
.

 

 

OWL ALERT APRIL 3: STOP SF CITY COLLEGE CUTS!

SITUATION: City College of San Francisco is preparing to lay off 50 full-time and hundreds of part-time faculty, which will lead to:

  • Cuts in classes
  • Reduced enrollment
  • Reduced state funding, and
  • A new round of cuts

SITUATION: This deadly cycle must stop. City College must be restored as a community asset serving tens of thousands of people here. 

ACTION: Sign the petition against City College layoffs and class cuts:

click HERE to sign the petition

ACTION: Pass this on to your friends.