Tuesday, April 15, 2014

More Than 900 Environmental Advocates Slain In A Decade As Concern For The Planet Grows

"We believe this is the most comprehensive global database on killings of environment and land defenders in existence," said Oliver Courtney, senior campaigner at Global Witness. "It paints a deeply alarming picture, but it's very likely this is just the tip of the iceberg, because information is very hard to find and verify. Far too little attention is being paid to this problem at the global level."

One Year After The Boston Bombing, A City Begins To Heal

TurboTax Fights To Keep Tax Filing Harder Than Necessary

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

GSP Progress Report On 2014 State Legislative Agenda

 From GSP:

The New Hampshire House and Senate wrapped up the first part of the legislative calendar last week, and we thought it would be a great time to share a progress report on our 2014 state legislative agenda. Here are some of the successes and setbacks to date – and what you can do to help bring us to the next level.

Raise the Wage: Increasing the State Minimum Wage
New Hampshire’s minimum wage has not kept up with the cost of living for more than 30 years, and is currently stalled at $7.25 an hour – or the equivalent of less than $300 a week for a full-time worker. Raising the minimum wage would help lift Granite State workers out of poverty, stimulate the economy, and help families across the state. Granite State Progress supports increasing New Hampshire’s minimum wage to $8.25 in 2015 and $9 in 2016 – and indexing it to the cost of living going forward.

The NH House voted to pass HB 1403 by a bi-partisan margin of 173-118. The next stop is the State Senate. You can read coverage of the vote and a statement from Granite State Progress in the Eagle Tribune.

Equal Pay for Equal Work: Paycheck Fairness Act
Equal pay for equal work is more than a motto – it’s the law. The Paycheck Fairness Act will define the conditions in which employers may legitimately pay differential wages to men and women who perform equal work; prohibit employers from barring an employee from disclosing information about his or her wages, salary and paid benefits as a condition of employment; and prohibit retaliation against an employee who discloses the amount of his or her wages.

The NH State Senate unanimously adopted SB 207, the New Hampshire Paycheck Fairness Act. Join us for a press conference ahead of the House public hearing on Tuesday, April 8th – Equal Pay Day. For more information contact Caitlin Rollo at (603) 225-2471 or caitlin@granitestateprogress.org.

Public Safety: Gun Violence Prevention
In the absence of Congressional action, it is important that states explore other options for preventing or reducing gun violence in our communities. Foremost among these is requiring universal background checks, which will keep guns out of the hands of felons, domestic abusers and the seriously mentally ill by requiring background checks for all gun transfers. An overwhelming 89% of Granite Staters support expanding background checks to cover all firearm sales – it’s time to have this conversation in New Hampshire.

The NH House initially signaled support for a background checks bill that would expand criminal background checks to all commercial gun sales—including online sales. Ultimately, however, the House did not pass the bill and also tabled a study commission on firearms violence, safety, and background checks. A full recount can be found here.

Granite State Progress is still closely watching SB 244, which passed the Senate late last week. SB 244’s original goal was to report the names of those who are prohibited purchasers of firearms due to mental health to be reported to the NICS background check system, and to establish a relief from disabilities (RFD) program to restore gun rights for people whose mental health treatment has ended—the appropriate formula. Granite State Progress supported these original goals, but the gun lobby amended version of SB 244 removed the portion reporting records to the background checks system and replaced the RFD program with a dangerous and untested “annulment” process that doesn’t take into account mental health history before gun rights are restored. As such, SB 244 gravely jeopardizes public safety. We will keep you posted on next steps for this bill – letters to the editor are most helpful at this point, and we can provide more information for your use, contact Zandra at (603) 225-2471 or zandra@granitestateprogress.org.

Good Government: Transparency & Accountability
Corporate special interests have been influencing our elections for years, but the corporate corruption of our legislative process is just as dangerous – and it’s growing. Granite State Progress teamed up with a bi-partisan group of legislators to introduce two bills that will increase disclosure and transparency for special interests who are working behind closed doors to do the most fundamental act of lobbying: writing our state laws.

HB 1440, which stands up to special interests by making them follow the same lobbying rules as everyone else, was recommended for interim study. We will continue to work towards a strong final report at the end of the year. HB 1207, which requires the source of model bills to be disclosed, was voted inexpedient to legislate -- the committee recommendation supported the concept but stated that it should be in House Rules instead of in statute. We disagreed heavily: bills originating in the Senate will not have the same disclosure, and House Rules change with administrations. However, we will work to submit language during the next adoption of House rules to stop corporate special interests from writing our state laws behind closed doors, and consider options for reintroducing this legislation next year.

Everyday: Exposing the Radical Right Agenda
Granite State Progress will continue to lead the charge of shining a light on the extreme agenda of the fringe right, which includes everything from rolling back the FDA’s oversight to claims of Benghazi cover-ups and the fear of United Nations take-overs. In addition, allies can count on us to help thwart the attacks on women’s rights, voting access, and middle class families, and to promote equal protections under the law and other common-sense public policies that represent true Granite State values.

In the first three months of the year, Granite State Progress hosted a press conference to announce another out-of-state candidate for U.S. Senate, shined a bright light on Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity supplying NH college students with free alcohol to try to lure them away from signing up for health care coverage, ran an active online ad campaign to engage Granite Staters in the push to expand health care coverage to 50,000 lower income Granite Staters, and debunked conservative claims about the Affordable Care Act.

It’s been a busy couple of months, and we are so thankful to each of you for the work you’ve done to advance progressive solutions to critical community problems, from writing letters and attending rallies, to speaking in front of the legislature and at press conferences. There’s still work to be done before the legislative session wraps up in June, and we look forward to continuing to build on this momentum.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

ROCK THE SENATE Event Moved To Rep's Hall On April 3rd!

New Hampshire Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty


Come rally to repeal the death penalty in NH on April 3rd!

We're asking all repeal supporters to come to Concord and Rock the Senate for the hearing on the death penalty repeal bill (HB 1170) in the Judiciary Committee, in Rep's Hall in the State House. Since the capacity is 400 in the lower section alone, we face no space restrictions and if we want to MAKE A STATEMENT that NH can live without the death penalty, the most visible way to do that will be to show up in vast numbers. Please Register Now.

For those who can come early, please bring signs, posters, etc. (and we'll have more on hand) to show support outside the State House starting around 8:30, before the session begins at 9am. You are encouraged to bring a written statement that will be entered into the record.

We will again have a number of leaders, experts and citizens from NH ready to testify -- from the faith community, members of law enforcement, murder victim family members, former Attorneys General, former NH Supreme Court Justices, and others.
If you can drive others from your area to the event -- or if you need a ride -- please call or email us (contact info below).

Rep's Hall can accommodate a huge crowd, so there's no limit to how many can come.
See you there!

John-Michael Dumais, Campaign Director
April 3rd, 2014 8:30 AM   through  ???

NH State House
107 N. Main St
Rep's Hall
Concord, NH 03301
Phone: 603-230-2335

State House Votes On Assessment And Common Core

The NH House has been discussing the Education bills on assessment and Common Core and have voted for the following:

HB 1239, Relative to the implementation of new education standards. Inexpedient to Legislate (which kills the bill)   Roll Call  182-124
HB 1262, Relative to student assessment data privacy. Refer for interim study, RC 203-117
HB 1432, Delaying implementation of certain statewide assessments and studying the effects of delaying implementation of certain curriculum changes in the public schools. Refer for interim study RC 183-150.
HB 1496, Relative to the objectivity and validity of student assessment materials. Refer for interim study RC 210-123.
HB 1508, Terminating state participation in the common core education standards. ITL.

To learn more about the Common Core read our post The Common Core State Standards Are Not the Problem.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Free Beer and Creepy Uncle Sam Encourage College Students to Opt Out of Healthcare

Only in America!

Koch funded groups are supplying University of New Hampshire and Dartmouth College students with free alcohol to encourage them to oppose Obamacare and opt-out of quality, affordable health care coverage.

Americans for Prosperity and Generation Opportunity are hosting a “Thirsty for Freedom” event in Durham tonight, and a “Freedom on the Rocks” event in Hanover next week. In exchange for free drink tickets, students will hear about “big government’s war on youth” and be encouraged to skip out on health care coverage.

It’s part of a despicable national tour by Koch-funded groups like Americans for Prosperity. One of the tour sponsors even told press:
“What we’re trying to communicate is, 'No, you’re actually not required to buy health insurance,'” Generation Opportunity President Evan Feinberg told Yahoo News in an interview about the campaign. “You might have to pay a fine, but that’s going to be cheaper for you and better for you.” (Yahoo News, Creepy Obamacare ad hits college campuses and your nightmares, Sept. 19, 2013)
Better for you than being able to go to a doctor when you get sick? Better for you than not going into medical bankruptcy as a 20-something year old because of an unforeseen accident?
Anti-Obamacare groups have hit a new low with this alcohol-fueled campaign to entice New Hampshire’s young adults to go without health care coverage. Young adults are more likely to be uninsured than any other age group, but under Obamacare they can stay on their parent’s plan until age 26, and they have options for premium assistance to help them afford private coverage on the marketplace. Groups that are playing politics with the health and well-being of New Hampshire’s young adults should be called out. Here’s how you can help:
  1. Write a letter to the editor criticizing Americans for Prosperity for targeting young adults and instead provide accurate information about the Affordable Care Act. Sample letter and newspaper information here.
  1. Share the link to Covering New Hampshire, the official free resource for Granite Staters on the Health Insurance Marketplace, with your friends and family and let them know they have until March 31st to sign up.
  1. Make a donation to Granite State Progress to support their work to expose and challenge conservative rhetoric.

New Hampshire’s college students and young adults deserve real information about the importance of health care coverage and the options available to them; you are a part of making that happen. Thank you in advance for taking action!

Thanks to Granite State Progress for keeping on top of these things!
Please consider a donation to the organization.

Learn More

Creepy Obamacare ad hits college campuses and your nightmares on Yahoo News

Koch Bros AFP-NH to Supply UNH Students with Free Alcohol to Oppose Obamacare, Not Sign Up for Health Coverage on Granite State Progress


Sunday, March 9, 2014

NH House Is Scheduled To Vote On Death Penalty Repeal Bill – HB 1170 – On March 12th

The NH House is scheduled to vote on the Repeal Bill – HB 1170 – on March 12 (not March 5 or February 19 as previously planned). HB 1170 is a bi-partisan bill for repealing the death penalty in NH. You can help by signing this petition and contacting your legislators.
  • HB 1170 eliminates the death penalty from all state statutes.
  • Those crimes which currently can be classified as “capital murder” will still be classified as “first degree murder,” the mandatory penalty for which is life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
  • It does not affect anyone currently on death row in NH.


  • Over 140 people in the US have been released from death row because they were innocent. As long as the death penalty is an option, there is a real and unacceptable risk of executing an innocent person.
  • The death penalty is unfair. All over the US, statistics show that if you are poor and from a minority community, you are much more likely to receive the death sentence for the same crime than if you are white and wealthy.
  • The legal costs for death penalty cases is 3 to 5 times more than the cost of incarceration for life. NH has spent over $5 million on the Addison case alone. Our tax money could be better spent on victim services and cold cases.
  • There is no conclusive proof that the death penalty deters violent crime or makes our communities safer. Life in prison without parole is adequate punishment for murderers.
  • The government should not be in the position of executing its citizens. Moreover, guards, doctors, nurses and and prison wardens who are forced to execute prisoners often suffer PTSD for years.
  • The drawn-out court cases and appeals elevates the story of the killer while it denies the real victims the healing and closure they need.
  • Killing another person for any reason is immoral. Why do we kill those who kill to show that killing is wrong?
 For more information about abolishing the death penalty visit NH Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty.

Keep up with progress of bill through the House here.

Strafford Town Democratic Committee's 6th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Dinner Recap/Photos

Strafford Town Democratic Committee's 6th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Dinner was a great success last night. As always they had the Bow Lake Grange Hall decked out in festive decor, orange and green this time. The Grange is always packed for their events, but this year the attendance was super-sized. Stan said the homemade corned beef and cabbage was very tasty and from the vegetarian side I can tell you the lentil loaf was moist and savory. They had carrots, potatoes, and turnips to round out the meal and Regina Flynn made Irish soda bread that wasn't to be missed. There were an assortment of fresh desserts for after the meal, but most people were too full to sample many of the delicious after dinner treats.

Regina was MC of the event and she keep everything moving smoothly for the night. George Maglaras, Chair of the Strafford County Commissioners, gave attendees an outline of happenings at the county level. George talked about the successes they have been able to produce, focusing on Strafford County's changing corrections and rehabilitation system. Representative Carol Shea-Porter was next to speak. Carol told us a few stories about working with her colleagues in Congress that provided insight and laughter. She went over some of the successes she felt were important to address, then turned to talking about some of the bipartisan efforts she has been present for. She ended by outlining some of what we could do to help in the upcoming election cycle. NH Representative Bob perry was the last person to address the crowd and he chose to close with detailing the importance of repealing Citizens United. He provided updates on what some communities are doing deal with corporate person-hood. Bob gave us some laughs, not all intentional which made for a fine finish for the guest speakers. Finally, the committee had there famous basket raffle. You can take a look at some of those below.

If you've never been to one of Strafford Town Democratic Committee's events, keep your eyes open for them. The crowd is always warm and welcoming; the events are well worth attending whatever the theme and worth every penny you spend.

Friday, March 7, 2014

A Story About Why We Need Libraries- By Kyle Leach

A Story About Why We Need Libraries- By Kyle Leach

My journey and experiences in life are not that different from tens of millions of people in our nation and billions around the globe. If we want better localities, if we really want a better world we have to entrust a large part of our future growth to libraries and allow them to empower, enlighten, and prepare us. We have to make a commitment to fight for them and make a conscious effort to use their services and programs. Now I'll tell you why they are so important to me personally.

The late seventies and early eighties were very hard years for Americans in the lower classes. The precursors that would lead to the decimation of the working class, to ever increasing poverty, homelessness, and dis-empowerment were already at work. My family lived a fairly comfortable life in the late seventies, just the four of us. Lower middle class is about where we would fall if you chose to label us. My mom was a public school educator; she taught sixth grade, worked the full school day and then spent most evenings grading or planning. She really loved teaching. My father was a pressman, a term you don't hear much anymore. He worked very hard. He worked long hours and often worked six or seven days to try to make ends meet. My mom worked in town and did not drive and my father drove two hours each way to get to work. We had a house and one car, but only because my mother's parents had helped to make those things happen. My brother and I were in school, four years apart, and we always had what we really wanted. One thing I really loved to do was read. I had lots of books and I always wanted more. I read voraciously and I can tell you from experience that the old adage that a person who reads, lives a thousand lives before they die, is very true. What's more important is how much I've learned from all those varied lives.

Like most people we were close to the financial edge and we had the unfortunate luck of being pushed over it as the eighties approached. My mom was quite ill for several years, requiring surgeries, hospitalizations, medications, etc. Her illnesses would compound over the next two decades.Within a couple of years we lost the house, the car, and everything that had been a part of our life, save each other, was gone. We always had a roof over our head, we always had food and presentable clothes to wear, and to a great degree my brother and I always had the things we needed for school. My parents made tremendous sacrifices to make sure that was true. For me libraries helped to fill the gaping hole left in our lives. No matter where we were there was always a library. On weekends we would all go to the library as a family. Well, my mom, brother and I would, dad would normally stay in the car and sleep. Working at night and working lots of double shifts will do that to you. I'd take out six books each time and have them read by the next weekend and my love of learning only increased with each book I read. Books, newspapers, magazines, reference materials were there for everyone. They had gallery shows at the library, poet, writer and author nights, cultural and historical features, book clubs, and art and craft activities. In every library community news was just as you walked in and if you expressed even a small interest in something, the librarians always knew what to point you to, whether it was in the form of a book, a person, or a place. I learned to use computers at the library, well if you don't count making that print out picture from code in school. Years later I'd be able to get films, music, and audio books at the library and programs just seemed to expand no matter what library you were in. Best of all every one of these things was available without a fee from the library.

I read the second book I ever read about LGBTQ at the library when I was a young teen. The first book was in a bunch of books that were hand me downs from a cousin; it was short, disheartening, and didn't really help me because the real issues of the protagonist were hidden. Being a teen I could go to the library alone and the librarians unknowingly helped me through some tough days; they kept me away from that edge which no one comes back from. They steered me clear of the psychology section and showed me the works of the great LGBT writers and poets of the late nineteenth century and the early and mid twentieth century. They showed me some of the works of emerging authors of the LGBT community, people who would eventually become household names; they showed me I had a bright future, even though I couldn't see it yet. It isn't easy being a gay teen in the South, but they made it a bit easier. The library was a sanctuary for me where the playing field seemed leveled. I was never bullied, I was never belittled for being smart or inquisitive or not seeing the distinctions everyone else seemed to hold so dear. I was always treated with dignity and respect. I learned to value myself there and to value other people even when they didn't agree with me. My second hand clothes and cheap glasses didn't matter at the library. The library helped to teach me what was really important in life. Community-building connections, is all that really matters. Taking care of each other is all that matters.

I have to tell you that as I went through my twenties and early thirties my use of libraries went down. It wasn't a conscious effort, but as I put more effort into personal endeavors and built a life for myself I didn't seem to need the library so much. Relationships came and went. Jobs came and went. Things ambled in and out of my life based on whim and need and to be honest I became somewhat self concerned like so many of us do. Now that I've reached middle age I've realized that push for self realization was a false, indulgent, unsustainable, endeavor. When I first came back to libraries they were patiently waiting for me in the background. They had not stayed the same, rightfully so; to be stuck in the past is the worst fate I can imagine for a library. The great stacks still exist in most libraries, but now they have ample space for meetings and collaboration. More modes of imbibing information exist and libraries do their best to keep up with our ever changing consumption of data and media. Transliteracy is a central piece to most mission statements and the cultural and digital advancement of patrons is globally linked. One thing that hasn't changed is their commitment to building communities and opening opportunities for everyone.

Libraries gave me the intellect, the compassion, and the wisdom to be a good citizen. There is no better institution poised to empower such a large cross section of our people than libraries. Libraries exists to strengthen our localities and make them whole. Libraries do not focus on specific groups in their communities; they are all inclusive. Libraries do not try to place band aids on systemic issues, they confront them where they originate, within each individual. Libraries seek to unite us through our differences and our similarities. Different genders, races, ages, people from varied backgrounds and modes of thought can all come together in one place with no entrance fee or price tag attached. Libraries are the last existing localized nexus that truly can unite us all. In the face of constant defunding of social services and infrastructure, shrinking budgets, and lack of vision from many of our elected officials, we need to invest in libraries more than ever to strengthen and rebuild our communities.

How A Coal Company Can Make Whistleblowers' Lives Miserable

Coal Miners Say They Were Surveilled, Harassed After Making Safety Complaints

Woman's Lawsuit Alleges Horrifying Abuse By Border Officers, Including Cavity Searches And Forced Bowel Movements

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Who’s Writing Our State Laws?- Support HB 1207 And HB 1440

From GSP:

Who’s writing our state laws?

That’s something we should all care about. Drafting legislation is the most fundamental act of lobbying, yet New Hampshire has a huge, gaping hole for reporting and disclosure of this lobbying activity – allowing corporate special interests to write state laws behind closed doors, often without any disclosure or transparency as to who is writing them and why.

That’s why Granite State Progress worked with a team of legislators to introduce two ground breaking transparency and good government bills - HB 1207 and HB 1440.

Knowing who is writing our state laws is an important part of having an open and transparent government. HB 1207 would simply require model bills to list their origin. HB 1440 would work to close the lobbying loophole. Legislators, public, and the press have a right to know who is drafting our laws.

Join us by calling on your state legislators to vote ought to pass on HB 1207, and to urge them to recommend HB 1440 for interim study.

Many people are aware of how special interests influence our elections, but the rest of the year they are working to corrupt our legislation process too. Groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) even act as a matchmaking service between corporate lobbyists and legislators – providing an avenue for Big Oil companies like ExxonMobil to sit at the same table with legislators to endorse anti-environment legislation, or for-profit schools to draft legislation that erodes our public school system to the benefit of that company's bottom line.

HB 1207 and HB 1440 shine a bright light of transparency and accountability on who is drafting our state laws and why. These laws would apply equally to conservative and liberal groups, to Democrats and Republicans, to partisans and non-partisans. Good government should be a shared democratic value.

Take action now: sign a petition urging legislators to support HB 1207 and HB 1440.

Allowing outside groups to push model bills in New Hampshire with no fingerprints is dangerous to democracy. These two bills will make the original drafters and intent of the legislation a stronger part of the conversation when legislators are debating a policy, and will go a long way to changing the conversation around many of the bills that seek to attack or undermine our respective issue priorities.

Click here to sign the petition

Mike Cryans For Executive Council

As Executive Councilor, Mike will invest in the economy, protect taxpayers, and fight to strengthen New Hampshire’s middle class, as he did as Grafton County Commissioner. During his 17 years serving the people of Grafton County, almost all of them side by side with Ray Burton, Mike demonstrated the temperament of a bipartisan problem solver working across the aisle to fight for the interests of Grafton County.

Protecting Taxpayers:

Mike has a proven record of saving the taxpayer money by finding more effective and cost-efficient methods to administer  government services and facilities. As County Commissioner he asked the tough questions and fought to hold government contractors and State agencies accountable to the taxpayer. As a result county construction projects have come in under budget saving taxpayers hard earned money, including the construction of a county prison, which Mike was able to reduce from half its projected cost.

Investing in New Hampshire’s Economy:

The first district’s Executive Councilor does more than approve state contracts and confirm judicial and executive appointments; they are the advocate for the dozens of communities spanning four counties and over half the state’s land mass. Just as he has done as County Commissioner, Mike will make investing in New Hampshire’s economy one of his top priorities. That includes investing in the region’s infrastructure; maintaining the roads and bridges that New Hampshire businesses rely on every day to transport their products and sustain area’s important tourism economy.  Mike believes that a successful economy begins with success in the classroom.  As Executive Councilor, he will fight to increase funding that prepares the next generation for the jobs of the 21st Century, and provide for programs that provide a pipeline from local schools to decent middle class jobs.

Strengthening the Middle Class:

Equally important as investing in the programs and infrastructure that sustain the area’s economy, Mike will advocate for measures that protect working families and strengthen the middle class. He will work with local businesses to provide them with access to resources that will make them more competitive and lower health insurance burdens. On the Council, Mike will fight for working families and the vulnerable, advocating for medicaid expansion, an increase in the state minimum wage,  strengthened consumer protections, and Mike will support efforts to help our seniors.

For more information visit his website:

Follow him on Facebook:

Visit him on Twitter:

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Jen Senko-The Brainwashing Of My Dad By Fox, Rush Limbaugh & Hate Media


"I was inspired to make this film after watching my father – a non-political Democrat – turn into a right-wing fanatic after a change in his car commute exposed him to reactionary shows on talk radio. The changes in his behavior drove me to research the changes in the media over the last 30 years – and the effect of those changes on the country was indisputable. As the media have been co-opted more and more by special interests, documentarians have become the new journalists. My hope is that after seeing my film, people will question what the media tells them, and will insist on laws that would hold them accountable." Jen Senko

Study Finds Keystone XL Would Have Much Larger Impact Than State Department Suggests

HB 1633 In House Ways And Means Committee Today-On Casinos, Don’t Fall For The Smooth Talk

Editorial from Concord Monitor- On casinos, don’t fall for the smooth talk 

HB 1633. The House Ways and Means Committee will vote on this bill today March 4 at 10 a.m. in Room 202 of the Legislative Office Building. HB 1633 is the bill that establishes a casino regulatory structure and authorizes a casino in Salem. It will decide the issue this session. It is crucial that you urge your State Representative to vote against it. Regulation doesn't make a bad idea better. No state stops at one casino.

Granite State Coalition Against Expanded Gambling
& Casino Free NH

Friday, February 28, 2014

LTE -Yes For Lee

To the editor: 

I urge all registered voters in Lee to show up at the polls on Tuesday, March 11. Further, I encourage you to vote yes on Article 4 which will not cost the town anything, but affirm that Lee would like to join with numerous other towns across New Hampshire to amend our Constitution.

Currently 16 other states have signed onto a proposition urging (in various words) that 1. Constitutional rights were established for people, not corporations, and 2. Money is not speech, and, therefore, regulating political contributions and spending is not the same as regulating speech.

We ask that our elected state and national representatives bring forth laws to this effect, or as we move forward, we, as a nation, will amend the constitution the same way that women earned their right to vote.

This is a bipartisan proposition as there is no advantage to either party when there is a lack of transparency in our political system and the money that funds it. Join me on March 11 and vote to put the election process back in the hands of the people.

Ann Wright


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Banned4Life Takes Aim At FDA's Anti-Gay Donation Policy

The FDA bans gay men from donating blood... Let's change this policy together.

 Did you know?

These are the facts and figures

1. The FDA permanently bans MSM (men who have sex with other men) from donating blood.
2. Every 2 seconds someone needs blood (America’s Blood Centers).
3. About 1 in 7 hospital patients will receive a blood product (America’s Blood Centers).
4. Less than 10% of the US population donates annually. If one more percent of all Americans would donate blood, blood shortages would disappear in the foreseeable future (America’s Blood Centers).
5. NAT (Nucleic Acid Testing) has been used for the past 10 years to screen blood against HIV. NAT is able to detect infection less than two weeks post infection. This method is much more reliable and sensitive than the conventional methods that were used (Caplan, 2010).
6. In 2006, the AABB, Red Cross and ABC(America’s Blood Centers) presented to the FDA their belief, “that the current lifetime deferral for men who have had sex with other men is medically and scientifically unwarranted” (AABB).