action opportunities, Goodlatte

Thursday 10/12 Action Opportunities

Today, we are following up on an action we’ve had before on disability rights. The ACLU’s breakdown of HR 620 is here.
 
1. CONTACT GOODLATTE: HR 620 is a bipartisan sneak attack on the Americans with Disabilities Act. Inspired by a 60 Minutes piece which exaggerated claims of frivolous lawsuits, HR 620 throws more bureaucratic barriers in the way of disabled people seeking to eliminate physical barriers from inaccessible buildings. It would require disabled Americans to first notify the business in writing of which parts of the ADA it had violated and how, and then mandates a grace period of several months for the business to take “substantial” steps towards fixing the issue. HR 620 would weaken the rights to accessibility granted by the ADA. It’s shameful that this bill has wide bipartisan support, and one cosponsor has already withdrawn. Goodlatte voted to pass it in committee — tell him we do not approve.
 
  • Goodlatte: Staunton (540) 885-3861, Harrisonburg (540) 432-2391, Lynchburg (434) 845-8306, Roanoke (540) 857-2672, Washington DC 202-225-5431 and email form here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is _____ and my zip code is ______. I’m contacting Rep. Goodlatte today about his vote in committee on HR 620, the so-called ADA Education and Reform Act. This Act, if passed, will weaken the ADA and turn disabled Americans into second-class citizens who must write politely to businesses to request their right to accessible spaces, instead of being granted that right and dignity as a matter of course. Rep. Goodlatte’s vote on this bill is unacceptable to me and I will take it into account when I visit the polls. Thank you.”
action opportunities

Wednesday 10/11 Action Opportunity

1. CONTACT CONGRESS: Tell our members of Congress to REPEAL the Jones Act!

Remember our action from 9/27? Well, the Trump administration waived the Jones Act for just 10 days to allow foreign vessels to bring aid to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. 10 days is not enough — with ongoing rescue efforts, little food and water, and people dying in ICU without power, the US territories need help desperately. It’s time for our government to stop treating our territories like colonies and treat this crisis with the same speed and urgency as they did Florida and Texas. We’re asking you to take action again and call for the repeal of the Jones Act.

[What is the Jones Act, exactly? More on that here.]

  • Kaine: Washington DC: 202–224–4024, Manassas 703–361–3192, Roanoke 540–682–5693, Virginia Beach 757–518–1674, Richmond 804–771–2221, Abingdon 276–525–4790, Danville 434-792–0976, and his contact form is here.
  • Warner: Washington DC 202-224-2023, Roanoke 540-857-2676, Abingdon 276-628-8158, Norfolk 757-441-3079, Richmond 804-775-2314, Vienna 703-442-0670. His “Submit Comment” form is here.
  • Goodlatte: Staunton (540) 885-3861, Harrisonburg (540) 432-2391, Lynchburg (434) 845-8306, Roanoke (540) 857-2672, Washington DC 202-225-5431 and email form here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is ______ and my zip code is ______. I am contacting [NAME] today to urge him to join Senator John McCain in calling for a repeal of the Jones Act, which essentially extorts Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands by forcing them to pay more in order to accept foreign aid in the name of ‘national security.’ It’s time to stop treating the US territories like colonies and respond to this situation with the same urgency our government did in Texas and Florida. In the senator’s words, ‘Now, more than ever, it is time to realize the devastating effect of this policy and implement a full repeal of this archaic and burdensome Act.’ Thank you.”

2. PERSONAL ACTION: Talk to a friend or family member about the devastation in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands this week. Don’t let this disaster fade from the public mind. If you can, tell them about the Jones Act and why we need to repeal it — encourage them to get involved and contact our Congressmen!
3. EVENT: Do Your Job, Bob! rally on Friday, 10 am – 2 pm
Do Your Job, Bob! is a weekly demonstration that takes place outside of Bob Goodlatte’s regional offices across the district. Show up if you’re able to tell Goodlatte that we’re here, we’re paying attention, and we won’t go away.

action opportunities

Two Pipeline Petitions and Court Support

But first, some housekeeping: Due to a series of unfortunate events, the writers of these posts had to take a brief hiatus. We’re back on schedule now and appreciate your patience. If you subscribe to the mailing list and haven’t gotten a newsletter in a while, we are also reformatting that and will roll out the new version soon. From now on, these posts will consist of just 1-2 actions plus an event/events. You will see repeated actions throughout the week — we need to be persistent on topics like gun regulation and healthcare! If there’s an action you want us to include, let us know!

OK, that’s it! We have some petitions for you today — please make sure to SHARE after you sign!

1. PETITION from Stand with Standing Rock: “Tell Chase Bank to Respect Native Rights” 

According to Stand with Standing Rock, the expansion called “Standing Rock North” is “a much bigger pipe, with a much dirtier carbon footprint, than the Keystone XL or the Dakota Access […] experts say the chances of a catastrophic spill in that fragile ecosystem would leap to more than 95%. But there’s still time. Kinder Morgan can’t break ground without Chase, and Chase has spent the last few years trying to position themselves as environmental stewards. Join us and our sister organization NDN in demanding Chase pull its financing of this pipeline now.”

Sign and share to shame Chase out of the pipeline deal!

2. PETITION from Stand with Standing Rock: “Stop the Enbridge Line 3 Pipeline” 

SWSR asks, “Please join us and our brand new sister organization NDN as we send the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission a wake up call: Protect our water. Deny the permit. In Minnesota, the state recently completed an Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Enbridge Line 3 pipeline that concluded both the route and its alternatives would have disproportionately negative impacts on several Ojibwe tribes.”

Sign and share to help defend Indigenous sovereignty.

3. EVENTS from SURJ Cville: “Court Support”: Come out to Charlottesville to provide solidarity and support to these people on their court dates:

—Oct. 13, 9am, Mark H., Charlottesville General District Court: 606 E. Market St.
—Oct. 20, 10:35am, Veronica F., Charlottesville General District Court: 606 E. Market St.
—Oct. 27, 10:30am, Lara (testify), Charlottesville General District Court: 606 E. Market St.
—Nov. 6, 9am, Donna G. and Sara T., Charlottesville General District Court: 606 E. Market St.

action opportunities

Wednesday 9/27 Action Opportunities

1. The humanitarian crisis in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria continues to worsen, but the Department of Homeland Security will not waive the Jones Act to allow foreign vessels to bring aid. This despite waiving the act twice earlier this month — for Texas and Florida. Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands are U.S. territories and need all the help they can get. One thing we can do is sign and share this petition to the DHS to waive the Jones Act and allow Puerto Rico and the USVI to get the help they need.

2. Another thing we can do is ask our members of Congress to join Senator John McCain in calling for a repeal of the Jones Act. In a letter to the DHS, The Hill reports, McCain wrote, “It is unacceptable to force the people of Puerto Rico to pay at least twice as much for food, clean drinking water, supplies and infrastructure due to Jones Act requirements as they work to recover from this disaster […] Now, more than ever, it is time to realize the devastating effect of this policy and implement a full repeal of this archaic and burdensome Act.”

  • Kaine: Washington DC: 202–224–4024, Manassas 703–361–3192, Roanoke 540–682–5693, Virginia Beach 757–518–1674, Richmond 804–771–2221, Abingdon 276–525–4790, Danville 434-792–0976, and his contact form is here.
  • Warner: Washington DC 202-224-2023, Roanoke 540-857-2676, Abingdon 276-628-8158, Norfolk 757-441-3079, Richmond 804-775-2314, Vienna 703-442-0670. His “Submit Comment” form is here.
  • Goodlatte: Staunton (540) 885-3861, Harrisonburg (540) 432-2391, Lynchburg (434) 845-8306, Roanoke (540) 857-2672, Washington DC 202-225-5431 and email form here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is ______ and my zip code is ______. I am contacting [NAME] today to urge him to join Senator John McCain in calling for a repeal of the Jones Act, which is currently preventing foreign vessels from bringing aid to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands after the devastation of Hurricane Maria. The DHS waived the Act for Texas and Florida but has not done so for the two territories. This Act does nothing to protect us and in fact does the opposite. In the senator’s words, ‘Now, more than ever, it is time to realize the devastating effect of this policy and implement a full repeal of this archaic and burdensome Act.’ Thank you.”

3. Republicans have 4 days to pass the Graham-Cassidy bill — which would strip healthcare from millions. This bill would end the Medicaid expansion and leave folks with preexisting conditions out in the cold. We ask you to commit to contacting our senators on this issue from now until the 30th. Let’s make sure they hear from us every day about this through Saturday.

  • Kaine: Washington DC: 202–224–4024, Manassas 703–361–3192, Roanoke 540–682–5693, Virginia Beach 757–518–1674, Richmond 804–771–2221, Abingdon 276–525–4790, Danville 434-792–0976, and his contact form is here.
  • Warner: Washington DC 202-224-2023, Roanoke 540-857-2676, Abingdon 276-628-8158, Norfolk 757-441-3079, Richmond 804-775-2314, Vienna 703-442-0670. His “Submit Comment” form is here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is _____ and my zip code is _____. I am contacting the senator’s office to express my deep alarm and anger at the Graham-Cassidy bill, an even harsher attempt to gut the ACA which would leave people with preexisting conditions without coverage. I am thanking the senator for opposing this bill and asking that he do everything within his power to prevent its passage. Thank you.”

3. UPCOMING EVENT – Thursday, 9/28 at the Staunton Public Library from 6-8
Beyond Resistance: Visioning a united community: 
It is time to acknowledge resistance fatigue and develop a new battle plan. Come contribute to the planning process and fan the flames of democracy. Help create a larger community vision and leave with bold and clear action steps.

4. UPCOMING EVENT – Saturday – March for Racial Justice – Washington DC
The bus will leave from the Staunton Mall parking lot at 6am. Please arrive early. Make sure to pack food and plenty of water. If you take medications please remember to bring them with you. If you still need to submit payment for your seat you can either mail it to PO Box 875 Fishersville VA 22939 or submit through PayPal at this link.

action opportunities

Friday 9/22 Action Opportunities

1. U.S. territories Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands were devastated by hurricanes. Please give what you can to these local relief efforts:

2. Due to a procedural detail, the Graham-Cassidy bill — which would strip healthcare from millions — must be passed before September 30th. This bill would end the Medicaid expansion and leave folks with preexisting conditions out in the cold. We ask you to commit to contacting our senators on this issue from now until the 30th — just eight days. Doable, right?

  • Kaine: Washington DC: 202–224–4024, Manassas 703–361–3192, Roanoke 540–682–5693, Virginia Beach 757–518–1674, Richmond 804–771–2221, Abingdon 276–525–4790, Danville 434-792–0976, and his contact form is here.
  • Warner: Washington DC 202-224-2023, Roanoke 540-857-2676, Abingdon 276-628-8158, Norfolk 757-441-3079, Richmond 804-775-2314, Vienna 703-442-0670. His “Submit Comment” form is here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is _____ and my zip code is _____. I am contacting the senator’s office to express my deep alarm and anger at the Graham-Cassidy bill, an even harsher attempt to gut the ACA which would leave people with preexisting conditions without coverage. I am thanking the senator for opposing this bill and asking that he do everything within his power to prevent its passage. Thank you.”

3. Protect the ADA and disabled rights and demand that Goodlatte oppose HR 620. This bill would throw additional hurdles in the way of lawsuits by disabled people against ADA-noncompliant facilities, through unclear language like “substantial progress” on improvements to inaccessible buildings by the building owner and a failure to specify a time by which improvements must be made. It lengthens an already laborious process which makes disabled people have to fight for their right to exist in public spaces which should be designed with disability in mind by default.

  • Goodlatte: Staunton (540) 885-3861, Harrisonburg (540) 432-2391, Lynchburg (434) 845-8306, Roanoke (540) 857-2672, Washington DC 202-225-5431 and email form here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is ______ and my zip code is ______. I’m contacting Rep. Goodlatte today to ask him to oppose HR 620, which would make it more difficult for disabled people to sue owners of inaccessible, ADA-noncompliant public buildings unless an arbitrary set of steps designed to favor owners over disabled people is followed. This is unacceptable and I strongly urge Rep. Goodlatte to oppose the bill. Thank you.”

4. We need your help! We’d like to get a volunteer to create these action opportunities once a week. You’d write up some items and send them to a coordinator to edit and publish. If you’re interested, please shoot us a message!