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a message from Petra Falcon, Promise Arizona

In the last few months we have witnessed an unprecedented number of unaccompanied refugee children arriving at our southern border from El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Honduras.

Call a key Democrat and tell them to protect the children from deportation!

My name is Petra. I am an immigrant rights activist in Arizona, as well as a mom, a grandmother and a human being. A few weeks ago I visited a border patrol holding facility in Nogales, Arizona, that housed 800 unaccompanied children under 18-years-old, including some children as young as five or six, without an adult family member. What I saw that day will stay with me forever.

It was disturbing. I saw the faces of children with fear and desperation in their eyes. Children locked behind cages with barbed wire that reminded me of dog kennels. I will never forget the pain in their eyes. Something must be done to help them.

In the last few months we have witnessed an unprecedented number of unaccompanied refugee children arriving at our southern border from El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Honduras. Thousands of children have made the perilous journey in order to escape crime, gang violence, sexual abuse, and other dangers in their home countries. How we respond to these children in the coming weeks will define us as a nation and our legacy for years to come.

Will you stand on the right side of history and take action on behalf of these children? Click here to take action now.

We have seen the response from House and Senate Republicans, who want the children to be stripped of their rights and immediately deported. Deporting children back to the countries they are fleeing from puts their lives at risk and is unacceptable. This kind of response is shameful! Even from a party with a long history of callousness towards vulnerable populations, this is a new low.

We need real leadership from Congressional Democrats to stop Republican’s shameful attacks. We need Democrats to stand up now for the rights of refugee children at the border. Take action now to tell Democrats in Congress to stand up and protect the rights of the children!

Right now members of Congress are hearing from both sides. As we speak, anti-immigration groups are organizing and calling on Congress to speed up deportations and strip refugee children of some of their most basic legal rights, which exist to ensure that they get a fair hearing and to protect them from being sent back to violence in their home country. We need to make sure that our message is louder. With your help we can drown out messages of hate and replace them with messages of compassion and tolerance.

Which message do you want to send? Take action now by making a call!

In solidarity,

Petra Falcon
Executive Director, Promise Arizona

Hatin …


House GOP Focused On Suing President Obama Instead Of Solving Our Country’s Problems


With just two days left before Congress heads out for the month long August recess, House Republicans are busy. Not raising the minimum wage or ensuring equal pay for equal work; not investing in an infrastructure for the 21st century; not preventing corporations from moving their addresses overseas in order to dodge paying their fair share of taxes. Instead, they are focused on authorizing a lawsuit against President Obama.

Like the House GOP’s 50-plus votes to repeal or dismantle the Affordable Care Act, this lawsuit is a political stunt to appeal to the far right wing of their party. Like the millions of dollars they have spent investigating and re-investigating Benghazi, it is a waste of taxpayer money.

And you don’t need to take our word for it. The Editorial Board of USA Today concluded that “a fair-minded look at the suit’s merits suggests it’s really more of a political grudge match.” And Candice Miller (R-MI), the member of Congress overseeing the lawsuit, admitted that “we don’t know yet” how much the stunt will cost taxpayers.

Another House Republican, Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC), has come out against the lawsuit and in the process revealed what could be the second act of this sideshow: impeachment. Calling the lawsuit “theater,” Jones asked, “Why not impeach instead of wasting $1 million to $2 million of the taxpayers’ money? … If you’re serious about this, use what the founders of the Constitution gave us.”

It’s not as if there is nothing else going on for these House Republicans to focus on. Unless action is taken before August, there will be a construction shutdown as the Highway Trust Fund runs out of funding, putting thousands of construction projects up to 700,000 jobs at risk. The House and Senate have been ping-ponging different versions of a short-term fix back and forth because the House GOP refuses to develop a long-term solution that invests in our nation’s infrastructure and keeps America working.

And earlier today, Senate Republicans blocked a bill to close the “corporate desertion” tax loophole. The loophole allows corporations that earn most of their money in America to renounce their corporate citizenship by moving their address to a tax haven and avoid paying U.S. tax obligations.

In spite of these and many other issues that need to be addressed, the House GOP priority lies with suing the President. Meanwhile, President Obama doesn’t appear too threatened: “Stop being mad all the time,” he said of Republicans at an event today, chuckling. “Stop just hatin’ all the time. Let’s get some work done.”

BOTTOM LINE: Instead of doing their job to help millions of Americans, the House GOP is focused on another political stunt to sue President Obama that will likely cost millions in taxpayer dollars. At the same time, deadlines loom and if Congress doesn’t act it will deal the economy a self-inflected wound at just the wrong time.

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Child care workers. Maids. Fast-food employees. Restaurant servers. Home health care aides.

National Women's Law Center
Take the Pledge
Support a new economic agenda that works for women in low-wage jobs.
Take Action

Child care workers. Maids. Fast-food employees. Restaurant servers. Home health care aides.

They’re jobs that are more likely to be done by women.

And that’s not good news.

Because if you’re in one of these jobs, which typically pay $10.10 an hour or less, you may well be living below the poverty line. You may be struggling to afford health care and child care. And you may face discrimination and sexual harassment.

We just released a new report showing that regardless of their education level, age, marital or parental status, race, ethnicity, or national origin, women are more likely to work in a low-wage job than their male counterparts. For women to get ahead, we need to improve working conditions and policy supports for workers in these jobs.

Sign on to support a new economic agenda that works for women in low-wage jobs.

Working in a low-wage job makes supporting a family incredibly difficult. In addition to the constant struggle to make ends meet, workers in these jobs face a drumbeat of challenges and headaches — like lack of access to affordable child care and paid sick days, discrimination and harassment, unpredictable work schedules, and barriers to reproductive health care.

Not to mention a wage gap. Yes, even in these low-wage jobs, women working full time, year round are paid 13 percent less than men.

Something’s got to give.

Pledge to support an economic agenda that works for women in low-wage jobs.

In our report, Underpaid and Overloaded: Women in Low-Wage Jobs, we outline an agenda that addresses the needs of low-wage workers. On the agenda:

  • Increase economic security
  • Support workers with family responsibilities
  • Enforce protections against employment discrimination
  • Create and expand pathways to educational opportunities
  • Strengthen opportunities for collective action

Sign the pledge — to show your support for taking action for women in low-wage jobs.

If we can make these policies a reality, they won’t only improve the lives of workers in low-wage jobs and their families. They’ll make our economy stronger for everyone.

Thank you for everything you do for women and their families.


National Women’s Law Center

P.S. Visit www.nwlc.org/LowWage to download the full report.

Climate Action Is Like Terrorism?


EPA Hearings Show Just How Much Polluting Energy Companies Are Desperate And In Denial

In early June, the Environmental Protection Agency issued the latest piece in the Obama Administration’s Climate Action Plan: a proposed rule to dramatically cut carbon pollution from America’s coal-fired power plants in the coming decades. The rule is an essential step for public health and for slowing the effects of climate change.

Today marks the next formal phase in the rule-making process: public hearings on the rule are taking place today and tomorrow in four cities around the country, with up to 1,600 people slated to offer their comments. These individuals include some of the foremost proponents and opponents of the rule — and the activity surrounding these hearings encapsulates just how desperate and out of touch polluters and their allies who oppose the rule are.

Take Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA). In remarks at an event at the Heritage Foundation, Kelly likened the new EPA rule to terrorism. “You talk about terrorism — you can do it in a lot of different ways,” he said. “But you terrorize the people who supply everything this country needs to be great — and you keep them on the sidelines — my goodness, what have we become?”

This isn’t the first time climate deniers and opponents of renewable energy solutions have made this outrageous comparison. In fact, Rep. Kelly is really just drawing from the talking points of polluters. The polluter-front group Environmental Policy Alliance ran a print ad in Washington, D.C. media last month making similar comparisons, and the Koch-backed Heartland Institute lost funding after running billboards that equated people who believe in global warming to the Unibomber in 2012.

Here’s another: At the public hearing on the EPA rule in Washington, D.C., the Vice President of coal mining giant Peabody Energy referred to the climate science of which 97 percent of scientists agree as “climate theory.”

On the other side, Center for American Progress Vice President of Energy Policy Greg Dotson also testified at the hearing, urging the EPA to stay committed to reducing emissions: “protecting our children from carbon pollution is your legal duty. And it’s everyone’s moral obligation.”

In addition, the White House released new evidence to coincide with the hearings that warns of the cost of climate inaction. The report estimates that delaying climate action to the point at which emissions rise to 3 degress Celsius above pre-industrial levels, rather than 2 degrees, would cost the U.S. economy $150 billion a year.

Here are just a few other facts on why the new EPA rule, and the projected 30 percent reduction in carbon emissions because of it, is so vital:

  • 6,600: The possible premature deaths avoided annually when a 30 percent cut in carbon emissions is achieved.
  • 150,000: The possible number of asthma attacks per year avoided when a 30 percent cut in carbon emissions is achieved.
  • 490,000: The possible number of missed school or work days avoided when a 30 percent cut in carbon emissions is achieved.
  • $93 billion: The possible economic value of the public health benefit when a 30 percent cut in carbon emissions is achieved.
  • $7: The amount in health benefits that Americans will see for every dollar invested as a result of this plan.

BOTTOM LINE: The new EPA rule is a huge step for public health and for our children’s futures. The companies that oppose this rule are desperate, dirty, and in denial. For other health threats like arsenic, mercury, and lead, we set limits on contaminants to keep people safe. But we let dirty power plants release as much carbon pollution into the air as they want. That needs to change.