07/19/21 - Missouri Mondays - Good News but Much Still to Do! Take Action NOW!
We want to take an opportunity to thank those legislators who work hard for us in Missouri to ensure that all citizens are treated fairly, that we are protected, and that all legislation is in the best interests of every citizen. Many of our representatives work tirelessly to defeat the harmful legislation that we have shared with you, and they write and fight for bills that improve our lives.
Congratulations this week to Representative Keri Ingle, District 35 (Lee’s Summit), for her outstanding work on HB 557 & 560, which was signed into law July 14. This bill protects children who attend private, religious boarding schools. Such schools must now “notify the Missouri Department of Social Services of the existence of their operations and follow basic safety requirements, such as submitting to fire, safety and health inspections, and maintaining medical records for all residents. The bill also requires the schools to conduct background checks on all employees and volunteers, as well as guarantee parents have access to their children.” An investigation by The Kansas City Star, of abuse at the Circle of Hope Girls Ranch in Cedar County spurred Ingle to call for a special hearing to witness the stories of numerous victims. Due to an emergency clause, the bill became enforceable immediately. Thank you, Representative Ingle!
TAKE ACTION THIS WEEK!
WE MUST REMAIN VIGILANT AND DO OUR PART IN PROMOTING JUSTICE AND ACCOUNTABILITY IN MISSOURI.
TELL GOV. PARSON IT IS A NATIONAL DISGRACE TO LEAVE AN INNOCENT MAN BEHIND BARS. PARDON KEVIN STRICKLAND IMMEDIATELY!
Missouri made national news this Sunday in a CBS story about Missouri’s failure to free Kevin Strickland despite overwhelming evidence of his innocence. 48 Hours correspondent, Erin Moriarty asks the question, “So, what's going on in the state of Missouri?” Innocence is not enough in our state. Recently our Attorney General Eric Schmitt argued against Strickland’s release. UMKC Law Professor says “I do know that the Attorney General’s office for a long time has had a practice of opposing every case, regardless of its merit. They think that their duty is to defend every judgement, no matter the justice of it.”
Jackson County prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas, and 13 Missouri lawmakers, both Democrat and Republican, have all called for Strickland’s release. Although the legislature passed a bill this year that would allow prosecutors to seek release of a prisoner by asking a judge, that in itself may not be enough to free Strickland. The fastest and fairest way for him to regain his freedom is by Governor Parson issuing a pardon.
Watch the CBS Sunday Morning story here:
DEMAND THAT GOVERNOR PARSON PARDON STRICKLAND NOW!!
Phone Gov. Parson: 573-751-3222
SUBMIT YOUR COMMENTS TODAY ABOUT CRITICAL RACE THEORY OR THE 1619 PROJECT.
Recently, Republicans in Missouri have opposed the inclusion of any curriculum material related to The 1619 Project or Critical Race Theory in K-12 schools. Although the two are often conflated, they are not the same. The 1619 Project is a collection of materials and curriculum developed by Nicole Hannah-Jones, writers from The New York Times, and The New York Times Magazine that examines the history of race in the United States. “It aims to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of our national narrative.” Critical Race Theory was developed 40 years ago by legal scholars. It examines U.S. law and issues of race. Republicans are misrepresenting and using these concepts to stoke fears once again. “To an extent, the term “critical race theory” is now cited as the basis of all diversity and inclusion efforts regardless of how much it’s actually informed those programs.”
The Missouri Senate will hold an informational hearing today, Monday, July 19, at 12:30 regarding Critical Race Theory and the 1619 Project. Although public testimony will not be accepted, you can submit written comments to Senator O’Lauglin ℅ Fred Barnes at Fred.Barnes@senate.mo.gov.
You can listen to the hearing at http://chamber.senate.mo.gov:8180/SCR1
The Joint Committee on Education: https://www.senate.mo.gov/jced/index.htm
TELL GOV. PARSON TO AUTHORIZE COMPLETE FORGIVENESS OF UNEMPLOYMENT OVERPAYMENTS MADE IN ERROR TO HARDWORKING MISSOURIANS!
Phone Gov. Parson: 573-751-3222
Missourians who lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic and received unemployment assistance are being targeted and harassed by Governor Parson's administration.
The Department of Labor has developed a process for people who were overpaid benefits, but “State Rep. Peter Merideth, D-St. Louis, said that the waivers are a big step but that Gov. Mike Parson should have forgiven the money outright, “rather than creating some new bureaucratic process that people have to wade through.”
Missourians need Governor Parson to forgive not just the federal portion of overpayments, but all overpayments. Missourians shouldn't need to worry about what portion of the benefits they received, through no fault of their own, is going to be withheld from their paychecks.
Despite bi-partisan support for forgiveness, Governor Parson continues to act in a cold and callous manner. Missouri has a record surplus of revenue, and Governor Parson's administration is imposing liens and withholding tax returns to make up for his administration's mistake.
Call Governor Parson at 573-751-3222 and use the script below:
"Governor Parson, you have the power and authority to authorize the complete forgiveness of unemployment overpayments made in error to hardworking Missourians. You must recognize the harm that forcing repayment can and will cause for Missouri families, and immediately ensure the Department of Labor stops collections on both the federal and state portions of unemployment overpayments."
MEDICAID EXPANSION CASE BEFORE MISSOURI SUPREME COURT
Last week the Missouri Supreme Court heard arguments in the Medicaid Expansion lawsuit filed against the state after Gov. Parson and the GOP majority Legislature refused to allocate funds for expansion. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of three women who were denied access to Medicaid services they would have been eligible for on July 1 when expansion went into effect. The court is expected to rule soon due to the July 1 enrollment date.
“What is at stake here is life-saving health care,” Joel Ferber, director of advocacy for Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, said to reporters after oral arguments concluded. “Our lead plaintiffs and our clients are desperate for the health care they need.”
Read the Docket Summary for the Medicaid Expansion case here: https://www.courts.mo.gov/page.jsp?id=171834&year=2021&month=07&day=13&splitdocket=No
HELP PROTECT THE RIGHT TO VOTE IN MISSOURI!
MISSOURI VOTER PROTECTION COALITION (MOVPC) MEETING
Monday July 19 at 10AM
Join Missouri Voter Protection Coalition Zoom meeting with statewide advocates working to protect the right to vote in Missouri.
Sign up HERE or text “MOVPC” to 66866 and watch for an email with details and the link to join the meeting
AS HIGHLY CONTAGIOUS DELTA VARIANT SPREADS, MISSOURI BECOMES COVID HOTSPOT AND IS AMONG THE LOWEST ADULT VACCINATION RATES IN THE U.S.
Missouri is again in the national news as COVID ravages the state, especially in southern counties that continue to resist the vaccine.
From The Independent--
“The state health department reported 1,394 additional COVID-19 cases Sunday as the seven-day average of reported daily cases hit 1,956 per day, up 121 percent since June 30 and the highest since Jan. 30. There were 1,440 people being treated as inpatients in Missouri hospitals as of Thursday, the highest since Feb. 10 and up 129 percent from the low this year on May 23.” https://missouriindependent.com/2021/07/18/the-surge-is-coming-springfield-mayor-ken-mcclure-warns-other-missouri-cities/
From The Atlantic--
The hospital is now busier than at any previous point during the pandemic. In just five weeks, it took in as many COVID-19 patients as it did over five months last year. Ten minutes away, another big hospital, Cox Medical Center South, has been inundated just as quickly. “We only get beds available when someone dies, which happens several times a day,” Terrence Coulter, the critical-care medical director at CoxHealth, told me.
Find COVID-19 Vaccines statewide & KC Metro, COVID-19 Testing & Recovery Treatment KC Metro HERE: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1i1vCikZiGfMulA8tFCDSJbEKV5N37S1JU_TSlgs699A/edit?usp=sharing
PLEASE SHARE THIS LINK! LET’S GET VACCINATED MISSOURI!
Missourians Vaccinated - as of Sunday July 11 The New York Times
40% of Missourians are fully vaccinated - (48% in the U.S.)
46% of Missourians have received at least one dose - (55% in the U.S.) ~~~~~~~~~~
Total COVID-19 Cases and Deaths in Missouri
544,725 confirmed cases and 9,474 deaths as of Sat July 17 MO Dept of Health and Senior Services
661,143 total cases and 10,111 deaths as of Sun July 18 The New York Times
THANK YOU! for answering the Missouri Mondays CALL TO ACTION!
Invite your friends and neighbors to join us and sign up for Missouri Action Alliance and this Missouri Mondays email at moactionalliance.com/signup
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Missouri Action Alliance