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.

OWL ALERT MARCH 10: POLICE MUST BE TRAINED TO HELP PEOPLE WITH ALZHEIMER’S AND DEMENTIA

SITUATION: California Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) penal code currently does not include training on how to effectively interact with persons with Alzheimer’s Disease, or dementia.

SITUATION: Assembly Member Kevin Mullin has introduced AB 2583, which will amend current protocol to include this missing—crucial–training.

SITUATION: AB 2583 is currently before the Assembly’s Public Safety Committee for consideration on March 21st, and, without enough support, may not make it out of committee for a vote by the full Assembly.

ACTION: Contact Public Safety Committee Chair Byron Jones Sawyer:
P.O. Box 942849
Sacramento, CA 94249-0059
Tel: (916) 319-2059
Click HERE to email Byron Jones Sawyer

ACTION: Contact Public Safety Committee Vice-Chair Tom Lackey:
P.O. Box 942849
Sacramento, CA  94249-0036
Tel: (916) 319-2036
Click HERE to email Tom Lackey

ACTION: Share this message with friends and family statewide.

OWL ALERT MARCH 4: EXPAND AND PRESERVE SOCIAL SECURITY

Expanding Social Security is essential to keeping millions of Americans out of poverty—including hundreds of thousands of Californians.

SITUATION: U.S. Representative John Larson, (D-CT), has introduced the Social Security 2100 Act: A Sacred Trust, which will increase benefits and lower taxes of SS recipients, while ensuring that Social Security remains solvent for the rest of this century.

SITUATION: California State Senator Nancy Skinner has introduced State Joint Resolution 11, which requests California Representatives in Congress to call for a vote supporting the Social Security 2100 Act, which is crucial because:

  • A message from California—the most populous state in the nation—will be heard loud and clear, and other states will follow
  • California is home to a major percentage of U.S. citizens age 65 years and over

ACTION:  Send a letter of support for this resolution to State Senator Nancy Skinner:

1515 Clay Street, Suite 2202
Oakland, CA  94612
Phone: (510) 286-1333
Click HERE to email State Senator Skinner.
 
ACTION: Share this Alert with friends and family
 
ACTION: Contact your California State Senators and Assemblymembers:
Click HERE to find your Cal State legislators
 
ACTION: Contact your U.S. Representative:
Click HERE to find your U.S. House member

OWL ALERT FEBRUARY 20: FIGHT BACK AGAINST PREDATORY JUNK FEES

“Junk fees” are predatory. They hurt consumers.
They hit the most vulnerable hardest. And they lead to spiraling debt.

SITUATION: Credit card companies, banks, ticket vendors and other entities are charging customers myriad hidden fees related to their purchases. In 2019 alone, banks and credit card companies charged Americans almost $30 billion in late fees and overdraft charges.

SITUATION: The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), headed by Rohit Chopra, is now accepting comments about the billions of dollars in junk fees that Americans pay on credit cards, bank accounts, and loans.

ACTION: Submit a public comment to CFPB if you have ever been charged unexpected fees by banks, credit card companies or other corporations. You can also help by leaving comments on Twitter or Facebook. See below for links to CFPB comments, Twitter and Facebook.

Your feedback will inform their use of rulemaking,
guidance, and enforcement tools to combat junk fees.

ACTION: Encourage friends and family to add their voices to this fight.

Click HERE to leave comments for the CFPB.
Click HERE to leave comments on Twitter.
Click HERE to leave comments on Facebook.

URGENT OWL ALERT February 9, 2022: DEMAND TRANSPARENCY IN SOCIAL SECURITY

SITUATION: MEDICARE is increasingly moving seniors and disabled people into Direct Contracting Entities (DCEs), which are private, for-profit corporations.  The President and Congress have been silent.  Even the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, a federal agency in the Department of Health and Human Services administering Medicare, has not objected. 

SITUATION: We need to know the facts behind this movement and STOP it if it does not serve those Medicare is supposed to help.

ACTION:  Contact Speaker Pelosi and insist she call a halt to this process and hold fully open and transparent hearings on this important issue:

90 7th Street, Suite 2-800
San Francisco, CA 94103
phone: (415) 556-4862
https://www.speaker.gov/contact

NOTE: California Alliance for Retired Americans is holding a Valentine’s Day campaign to generate a storm of letters, emails, Facebook posts and tweets to Speaker Pelosi, demanding she stop DCEs, and hold Congressional hearings on this dangerous plan. Click here and scroll down to find out more about this campaign. OWL needs you to be a part of that campaign, but DO contact Senator Pelosi about holding open hearings, even if you miss the Feb. 14 date!

TIME TO ELECT NEW OWLSF BOARD MEMBERS–WITH YOUR HELP

OCCASIONAL PIECE – February 2022

GUIDE FOR NOMINATING AND ELECTING OWL 2022 BOARD MEMBERS.

Serving on the OWL Board is a fun and stimulating experience of real community. OWL needs new Board members to give their wisdom to the Board. There are 7 returning Board members. The current Board wants to be sure all Members understand the Election process and are urged to participate. Those for whom we have email addresses will receive this online.  All others via snail mail.

RESPONSIBILITIES FOR INDIVIDUAL BOARD MEMBERS

  • ATTEND monthly Board meetings either in person or via Zoom.
  • PARTICIPATE in 1 OWL Committee – usually a monthly meeting with perhaps some tasks for which person volunteers – might chair a committee.
  • IDENTIFY topic for OWL ALERTS for one month of each year, put in reasonable shape and send to OWLSF Office Administrator for formatting and sending out.
  • ASSUME responsibility for one or more monthly meetings according to topic chosen by the Board. This is often done by working with someone else.

NOMINATING PEOPLE FOR BOARD MEMBERSHIP

  • BE SURE ANYONE YOU NOMINATE is willing to serve on the Board.
  • DO nominate yourself if you wish.
  • EMAIL YOUR NOMINEES to Betty Traynor: btraynor@att.net, or
  • PHONE the OWL number: (415) 712-1695.

DEADLINE for Nominations is Feb 28th, 2022. List of nominees will be sent to all members after that.  Others can be nominated from the floor on 3/26/22. ELECTION OF BOARD MEMBERS will be held at the very beginning of the March meeting on March 26th, 2022.  Up to 8 people may be elected.

OWL ALERT FEBURARY 8: TAKE ACTION FOR EQUAL RIGHTS

Congress must remove the ratification deadline of the Equal Rights Amendment to get it across the finish line and added to the Constitution. 

SITUATION: This country has waited too long for the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) to become a part of the Constitution. More than 100 years after (some) women gained the right to vote, women and nonbinary people are still not guaranteed equality under the law.

SITUATION: First passed by Congress in 1972, in January 2020, the final state voted to ratify the ERA. Then, on March 17, 2021, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation to remove the ratification timeline attached to the ERA.

ACTION: Now the Senate must act to remove its ratification timeline so it can pass once and for all.  S.J. Resolution 1 is the companion bill in the Senate that would remove the timeline. We need 60 votes to pass the resolution.

ACTION: Contact your senators and ask them to cosponsor S.J. Resolution 1 and ensure that the ERA is a part of our Constitution.

OWL ALERT JANUARY 16: SUPPORT SINGLE PAYER HEALTH CARE

ACTION NEEDED FOR UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE

SITUATION: Today’s U.S. health care system is a complex, fragmented multi-payer system that leaves wide gaps of coverage and poses significant issues of affordability.

SITUATION:  AB 1400, the California Guaranteed HealthCare For All legislation—which sets in motion a single-payer health care coverage system in California—has passed the Assembly Health Committee and must pass the entire Assembly no later than January 22, 2022. 

With Medicare under attack on a national level,
it is especially urgent for California to lead the nation on behalf of healthcare.
OTHER STATES WILL FOLLOW.

ACTION: Urge Governor Newsom to support AB1400!

ACTION: Contact your Assemblymember and say urge full and vigorous support for AB 1400.

ACTION: TELL FRIENDS AND FAMILY IN CALIFORNIA

OWL ALERT JANUARY 8: MEDICARE UNDER ATTACK

SITUATION: The Trump administration launched a plan to move up to 30 million seniors and disabled people into Direct Contracting Entities without their knowledge or consent.  These DCEs are private, for-profit corporations which would be able to pocket up to 40% of what they charge Medicare, compared to 2% by Traditional Medicare providers.

SITUATION: The Biden administration is continuing this process!

 THIS IS EGREGIOUS FOR MANY REASONS! Here are just a few:

  • DCEs would generate profits by denying care and charging more.
  • They would have no Congressional oversight.
  • This is part of a movement to completely privatize Medicare by 2030.

ACTIONS:

CONTACT Speaker Pelosi at and insist she call for a halt to this process and hold hearings:

90 7th Street, Suite 2-800
San Francisco, CA 94103
phone: (415) 556-4862
https://www.speaker.gov/contact

CONTACT your own Representative and tell her/him to insist Pelosi hold hearings while forcing a pause in this process which is already underway:

https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative

CONTACT Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra and thank him for pausing the process and sounding the alarm:

HHS Headquarters
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C.  20201
Phone: (877) 696-6775
xavier.becerra@hhs.gov

IMPORTANT:

Urge your friends across the country to
contact their own Representatives, and tell them to
STOP THE ATTACK ON MEDICARE!

ALERT DECEMBER 18: STOP DIRECT CONTRACTING ENTITIES (DCE’s) FROM TAKING OVER TRADITIONAL MEDICARE

SITUATION: In 2020, the Trump Administration launched a new policy “experiment” designed to privatize traditional Medicare. Under this model, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) could move more than 30 million traditional Medicare beneficiaries into mostly commercial, for-profit plans called Direct Contracting Entities (DCE) without the enrollees’ understanding or consent.

In ways similar to commercial Medicare Advantage plans, DCEs have the potential to interfere with care decisions and waste taxpayer money when compared with the efficiency of traditional Medicare.

The Biden Administration is moving the DCE program forward, threatening the future of Medicare as we know it.

ACTIONS: 

DON’T PRIVATIZE MEDICARE, SUPERSIZE IT!

1. Call your member of Congress, Democrat or Republican: House Capital Switchboard 202-225-3121 and tell them to sign Representative Jayapal’s letter to Secretary Becerra. He has the power to end Direct Contracting Entities and protect Medicare for everyone!

2. Call the Secretary yourself: Comment line is (202) 205-5445. Put an end to Direct Contracting Entities and stop the privatization of Traditional Medicare.

3. Sign the petition to HHS Secretary Becerra:  https://pnhp.salsalabs.org/DCEpetitionSeptember2021/index.html

4. Please pass this on to your family and friends. 

OWL ALERT DECEMBER 11: STOP RACE-BASED CRIMINAL CONVICTIONS AND SENTENCING

EQUAL JUSTICE UNDER LAW

SITUATION: The California Racial Justice for All Act prohibits the State from seeking or obtaining a criminal conviction, or from imposing a sentence, based on race, ethnicity or national origin (AB2542). This landmark Act made it possible for a person charged or convicted of a crime to challenge racial and other specified bias in their case, but it did not apply to judgments or actions before January 1, 2021.  

AB256, as Amended would remove this limitation and allow those impacted by unfair convictions and sentences prior to January 1, 2021 to seek redress.

ACTION:  Everyone deserves equal justice under the law. Tell the California Senate to pass AB256 when it reconvenes in 2022.

ACTION: Please encourage California friends and colleagues to support this important upcoming legislation.

OWL ALERT DECEMBER 5: SEATING FOR SENIORS AND PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES

SITUATION:  People with disabilities and seniors need shelters and seating while waiting for public transportation. At this time, only 34% of current bus stops have seating, and these are distributed inequitably, with the northern half of the city twice as likely to have shelters as the southern half, particularly Bayview/Hunters Point.

ACTION:  Contact the SFMTA Board of Directors and tell them that:
1) Bus shelters and seats should be distributed equitably throughout San Francisco,
2) Bus shelters with seats are especially needed to accommodate seniors and people with disabilities.

CONTACT: 
Office of the SFMTA Board of Directors
Phone: 415.646.4470
Email: MTABoard@SFMTA.com

 

OWL ALERT NOVEMBER 27: CELEBRATE SMALL VICTORIES: They add up to big ones!

SITUATION: The State of California, since July, 2021, has denied 109 permits for fracking.  The Older Women’s League is part of the campaign to end fracking because it uses enormous quantities of water, injects chemicals into our water supply, and promotes use of fossil fuels.

ACTION:  Kudos to everyone who responds to the OWL ALERTS.  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 to friends in California.

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

2021-11-22 OWL ALERT NOVEMBER 22: HUMAN MIGRATION AND IMMIGRATION

SITUATION: Executive Director Rev. Deborah Lee and the Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity need OWL’s support to, among other things, address the root causes of human migration from Honduras, as well as the transfer of released green card holders from prisons to ICE–for deportation–after completion of their sentences.

ACTION: Open the links below, provided by Rev. Lee after her November 20, 2021 presentation on immigration at the OWL monthly meeting.

ROOT CAUSES – Eight page recommendations and Report (sent to Congress) – with more stories from our root causes pilgrimages:
U.S. Responsibility and Roadmap for Change Blog
KEEP EFRAN HOME – (this is urgent- he could be deported to Colombia as soon as next week):
bit.ly/KeepEfrainHome
KEEP CHARLES HOME:
Script and Toolkit: bit.ly/KeepCharlesHome  
Film about Charles’ transfer to ICE:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JTC9OV-mxM

ACTION: Ask Congress to pass H.R. 1574 (previously H.R. 1945), the Berta Cáceres Human Rights In Honduras Act which would suspend U.S. Security Assistance to Honduras until human rights violations by Honduran security forces cease and perpetrators are brought to justice.

ACTION: ASK FRIENDS AND FAMILY NATIONWIDE TO DO THE SAME.

OWL ALERT NOVEMBER 9: SPEAK OUT ABOUT YOUR TRANSPORTATION NEEDS

SITUATION: The San Francisco County Transportation Authority is seeking public input on a draft spending plan for the city’s half-cent sales tax, which will go on the ballot for renewal as soon as next June. The SF Board of Supervisors, acting as the Transportation Authority Board, directs revenue toward projects city-wide, such as construction on the Central Subway and the purchase of new MUNI vehicles.

SITUATION: San Francisco voters first passed the half-cent sales tax in 1989 and renewed it in 2003. Current plans are to develop the 30-year spending plan, formally called an Expenditure Plan, and the Board of Supervisors are expected to vote by the end of February on whether to place the Expenditure Plan and sales tax renewal on the June ballot.

ACTION: San Francisco residents can:

A 27-person Expenditure Plan Advisory Committee will then make recommendations next month to the SFCTA Board.

OWL ALERT OCTOBER 25: PHASE OUT FOSSIL FUELS NOW!

PHASE OUT FOSSIL FUELS NOW —Some success, more needed!

SITUATION: After years of advocacy from environmental justice frontline leaders and allies (including OWL), Governor Newsom announced a draft rule to impose a 3200-foot setback for new oil and gas operations near sensitive receptors, like homes and schools.

This is great news for California’s children and frontline communities.

However, this rule must apply to ALL new wells, not just those “with new surface locations” and the state must also protect the millions of residents living near existing wells.

ACTION: After taking a moment to celebrate this forward progress, please join Mothers Out Front CA in calling on Governor Newsom to do more.

Help us flood his office with calls!

ACTION: Urge Governor Newsom to finalize a rule that ends ALL neighborhood drilling and all permitting for fossil fuels.

http://ca.mothersoutfront.org   CALL 877-434-0011

OWL ALERT OCTOBER 18: FREE WIFI FOR SENIORS AND PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES

SITUATION: The pandemic has made it more important than ever to have access to the internet. For many seniors and people with disabilities, getting online is already full of challenges, but the lack of affordable internet has made it nearly impossible for us to access information, services, and connections online.
 
We know that internet access is an essential right today.
 
ACTION: We ask AT&T to provide FREE Internet at a minimum to senior buildings, single room occupancy hotels and supportive housing in San Francisco and the greater Bay Area.  AT&T can do this now!
 

ACTION: Please join Senior and Disability Action and SIGN THIS PETITION that will go to the AT&T Western Region President: https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/we-need-free-wifi.  This petition provides more information and a way for you to express your concerns and needs for fast and reliable Internet access.

 

ACTION: There will be a rally and action on Monday, October 18, 12:45 pm at the AT&T flagship store at Powell and Market, San Francisco. For more information, CLICK HERE .

OWL ALERT OCTOBER 3: HELP SENIORS AND PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES AGE IN PLACE

SITUATION: The U.S. Senate is currently working on a Reconciliation Package, including $400 billion for Medicaid Home and Community Based Services (HCBS), funds which will allow seniors and people with disabilities to age in place, but the amount allocated to HCBS is in jeopardy, with opposition proposing less than half those funds, $150 billion.

The full $400 billion will:

  • Increase federal matching funds to states for HCBS
  • Expand and strengthen caregiving jobs for workers who provide these services and have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic, a workforce which is predominately female, low-wage and BIPOC

A lower figure is simply inadequate to address the entrenched issues in the HCBS service system.

ACTION: Call our U.S. Senators ASAP to tell them we need the full $3.5 Trillion Reconciliation Package, especially the $400 Billion for HCBS.

ACTION: Send this email to friends and family in the U.S.

Contact information for California Senators:

Senator Dianne Feinstein
One Post Street, Suite 2450
San Francisco, CA 94104
Phone: (415) 393-0707
click here to email Dianne Feinstein

Senator Alex Padilla
333 Bush Street, Suite 3225
San Francisco, CA 94104
Phone: (415) 981–9369
click here to email Alex Padilla