U.S. Announces Delegation To Africa: Ebola Virus Humanitarian Effort, “Conservative Politicians For 3rd World Nations Relief.”


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From VOX.com and Julia Belluz:

 

“A violent virus”: views from Ebola‘s ground zero

 

Aid worker Ishmeal Alfred Charles says getting abducted as a child soldier during Sierra Leone‘s bloody civil war when he was 15-years-old was less scary than living there now under the Ebola threat.

 

“You knew the rebels were coming,” said the Freetown native in a recent interview from Sierra Leone, where he is among hundreds of aid workers trying to beat back the deadly virus in what is now the biggest-ever outbreak and the first to hit West Africa. “They’d attack a town, and so you made a move. You knew to hide.”

Now, he can’t flee. It’s too expensive to fly elsewhere. And he can’t hide from an enemy that could be lurking anywhere. Instead, he has stopped shaking people’s hands and he installed a hand-washing station—a bucket filled with chlorinated water—outside his house.

 

“You don’t know if the person you’re sitting next to is infected with Ebola, so all you’re trying to do is be as conscious as you can. Because we have heard of situations where whole families get infected… and you lose everyone in the family.”

 

For most people, Ebola is a distant threat, a nightmarish word that conjures up images of sudden and violent hemorrhaging. But for West Africans like Charles, it’s now an everyday possibility. “Wherever you go—on Facebook, in the community, on the phone, in Whatsapp messages—people are talking about Ebola.”

 

As a program manager with the Catholic aid agency Caritas, Charles now works to educate people about a virus that only recently emerged in Sierra Leone. He goes door to door, school to school, church to church; he talks to everyone he can reach about the disease; and he hands out hand sanitizer and chlorine. Sometimes, he uses megaphones in town squares, relaying public-health messages about sanitation and prevention. It’s a tedious process, he says, but it’s necessary.

 

“A lot of people still have denial about Ebola,” Charles says. “That’s one of the biggest challenges.”

 

Stories about medical personnel and the government trying to kill or capture Africans circulate, and it doesn’t help that when patients are taken into quarantine, they most often never return.

 

Dispelling these myths isn’t easy. “We show them films, photos of Ebola,” says Charles. “We try to make sure they understand, first and foremost, there’s a virus called Ebola and it’s real.”

 

So far in the current outbreak, there have been 1,323 confirmed and suspected cases of Ebola, and 729 deaths. No one knows why the virus sometimes jumps from the fruit bat—which most scientists believe is its animal host—into the human population. But bad infrastructure and the lack of sanitation practices in what are some of the poorest countries on earth don’t help with its containment.

 

The shortage of resources has made the work very difficult, says Monia Sayah, a nurse with Doctors Without Borders.

 

Sayah, who normally resides in Brooklyn, New York, has just finished two stints on the front line in Guinea, the West African nation where the disease first reemerged in March.

 

When she arrived, she said her biggest challenge was not trying to get people to believe the disease is real: it was figuring out how to care for the reality of so many sick patients.

 

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“The workload was very high,” she says of dealing with up to a dozen Ebola patients in quarantine. So was the mortality rate: at the beginning, about eight in ten patients were dying, close to the numbers in previous outbreaks of the Zaire Ebola virus, which killed 79 percent of those infected. (The death rate in the current outbreak has dropped to around 60 percent.)

 

“It’s very stressful because you’re constantly on alert: a patient here, a patient there. The physical stress of working is very hard because you lose a lot of fluid (wearing protective clothing), and get very tired in the heat as well.” All the while, trying to make sure she didn’t expose herself to the virus or accidentally cross-contaminate any person or thing.

 

When she’d arrive at the treatment facility in the morning, she’d put on a gown and then a waterproof and airtight suit, headgear, goggles, two pairs of gloves, and rubber boots. “Every inch of the body is covered,” she says. When she left 12 hours later, everything except for her rubber boots—which get decontaminated with choline solution—was burned.

 

Since there is no treatment or cure for Ebola, caring for patients meant hydrating them, feeding and washing them, helping them walk, and giving them antibiotics to ward off any bacterial infection so that their immune systems can fight the virus.

 

It also meant touching and comforting them. “They’re alone. They are isolated. Normally in this part of Africa people are never alone when they’re sick.” Most commonly, family members care for their loved ones at home—not strangers in a containment facility.

 

“We take them away from their families,” says Sayah. “We know we’re bringing them to a treatment facility, the place they should be to receive the best care, to isolate the virus. But the virus is inside a person.”

 

The other tricky thing about Ebola is how quickly it can overtake its host. “We have patients asking for lunch, and we would go to see them a few hours later, and suddenly they would just die. It’s a violent virus. You never know what’s going to happen.”

 

Since working in the field, she has seen people lose their entire families. She has watched teenagers perish before her eyes. In another case, she says, “I went to see a woman in the community, and she was lying in a pool of blood. I thought she had a miscarriage there was so much blood.” The medical team was able to get her to a treatment facility, and stop the bleeding, but she was already very weak and died shortly thereafter.

 

What’s so critical about Ebola, too, is making a differential diagnosis between what might be the lethal virus and any other number of diseases that have a similar profile at first.

 

“Trying to make a differential diagnosis is difficult because you’re in a village,” Sayah explained, “you have nothing with you. All you have is a thermometer.”  If you misdiagnose a negative patient, that can mean unnecessary isolation and trauma. If a positive patient is passed, that’s another potential site of infection—and more spread.

 

Ebola specialists believe one of the key reasons this outbreak has spread so far is because of the shortage of health-care personnel to deal with it: if you don’t have enough people on the ground doing the labor-intensive job of tracing the contacts of positive patients and ensuring they are identified before becoming ill too, each missed case is the new beginning of more human-to-human spread.

 

Those missed cases are what worries Tarik Jasarevic, a World Health Organization worker on the ground in Guinea. He says that because of the geographic dispersal of the current outbreak—the demand for so many specialists in a relatively rare disease over several countries—mobilizing people and getting systems in place to care for everyone is problematic.

 

According to Jasarevic, you need these basic resources to contain an Ebola outbreak: “You need to have enough treatment centers so infected persons can be treated in adequate conditions. You need to have surveillance systems. You need to have a system where suspect cases and deaths are being reported so we can go in very safely and check on suspect sick people. We need to have lab capacity to make sure the people infected are identified.”

 

The WHO and other aid organizations have been short on many of these fronts right now, and the UN just pledged $100-million to help quell the current outbreak.

 

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For now, Jasarevic says he’s doing what he can in a very uncertain environment. “You try to wash your hands as much as you can. You try to make sure you don’t touch people who are sick. But you just don’t know who may be in contact with the virus.”

 

Thank you VOX.com and Julia Belluz

 

satiretv

U.S. Announces Delegation To Africa: Ebola Virus Humanitarian Effort, “Conservative Politicians For 3rd World Nations Relief.”

 

On Friday the White House announced a massive humanitarian effort to help the African nations dealing with the Ebola Virus. The White House releaded the following statement:

 

The White House Office of the Press Secretary

August 01, 2014

 

The Obama Administration’s Government-Wide Response to The Ebola Virus Outbreak In Africa

 

In conjunction with the worldwide effort to address the Ebola virus outbreak in Africa, I have instructed the following AmeriKKKans to be immediately drafted into service in our joint efforts to assist this horrific virus in Africa. I put out a nationwide call to all “patriots” in my concern that the homeland of all civilization, be saved from this tragedy effecting Africa.

 

Since the month of August has been unofficially designated as “lazy ass politician vacation time”, I choose this month to ship all these “embarrassment to America fools”, off to Africa.

 

The List Of Conservative “Volunteers”:

 

War Whore Senator John McCain

 

Ladyboy Senator Lindsey Graham

 

Batshit Crazy Rep. Michelle Bachman

 

Canadian Immigrant Senator Ted Cruz

 

Drunk House Speaker John Boehner

 

Outgoing Idiot Eric Cantor

 

Moron Rep Louie Gohmert

 

Dumbass Rep Steve King

 

Misogynist Mitch McConnell

 

The following civilians have been enlisted to accompany the politicians on this humanitarian effort….

 

Ted Nugent

 

Sarah Palin

 

Rush Limbaugh

 

Glenn Beck

 

Ann Coulter

 

Sean Hannity

 

The Complete Fox News Staff

 

Don Lemon

 

Andrea Mitchell

 

Wolf Blitzer

 

Jake Tapper

 

Chuck Todd

 

Allen West

 

Wayne LaPierre

 

George Zimmerman

 

The Koch Brothers have graciously volunteered their jet plane for the travel accommodations and have agreed to accompany this delegation to Ebola infected Africa.

 

The citizens of The United States Of America applaud these brave AmeriKKKans and our thoughts & prayers are with them.

 

If they return from this humanitarian voyage and are not infected with the deadly Ebola Virus, the FAA has made arrangements for this delegation to travel over the Ukraine war zone, in hopes the great Vlad Putin will shoot the aircraft down, using Russian supplied surface to air missiles.

 

God Bless The United States of America, and these brave selfless AmeriKKKans.

 

 

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Where In The World Is Barack™: California.


By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

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White House Schedule – July 23, 2014

 

President Barack Obama on Wednesday is in California, on a fundraising swing to benefit Democratic political operations.

 

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
HuMpDaY July 23rd, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
HuMpDaY, JULY 23rd, 2014

 

In the morning, the President will attend a House Majority PAC event at the Four Seasons Hotel San Francisco. This event is closed press.

 

In the afternoon, the President will attend a DCCC event at a private residence. There will be print pool coverage for remarks only.

 

Afterward, the President will depart San Francisco en route Los Angeles, California. The President’s departure from San Francisco International Airport and arrival at Los Angeles International Airport are open to pre-credentialed media.

 

Later in the afternoon, the President will attend a DNC event at a private residence. There will be print pool coverage for remarks only.

 

The President will remain overnight in Los Angeles.

 

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Wednesday, July 23 2014  All Times ET

 

12:10 AM: The President arrives San Francisco. Local Event Time:9:10 PM, San Francisco International Airport.

 

12:20 PM: The President attends a House Majority PAC event. Local Event Time:9:20 AM. Four Seasons – San Francisco.

 

2:00 PM: The Vice President delivers remarks to the NAACP National Convention. Local Event Time:11:00 AM. Mandalay Bay Convention Center – Las Vegas.

July 23, 2014 2:00 PM EDT

Vice President Biden Speaks at the NAACP National Convention

Audio Only

Las Vegas, Nevada,  White House LIVE Streaming

 

3:00 PM: The President delivers remarks and answers questions at a DCCC event. Local Event Time:12:00 PM. Private Residence – Los Altos Hills.

 

4:20 PM: The President departs San Francisco. Local Event Time:1:20 PM. San Francisco International Airport.

 

4:30 PM: The Vice President delivers remarks at a rally for Congressional candidate Erin Bilbray. Local Event Time:1:30 PM. Henderson Convention Center – Las Vegas.

 

5:30 PM: The President arrives Los Angeles. Local Event Time:2:30 PM. San Francisco International Airport.

 

7:55 PM: The President attends a DNC event. Local Event Time:4:55 PM. Private Residence – Los Angeles.

 

The President will remain overnight in Los Angeles.

 

 

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On Thursday, the President will visit a community college in Los Angeles to deliver remarks on the importance of job-driven skills training, particularly for fast-growing sectors such as health care. Later, he will attend a DNC event. Further details about the President’s travel to Washington and California will be made available in the coming days.

 

On Friday, the President and the Vice President will welcome President Otto Perez Molina of Guatemala, President Juan Orlando Hernandez of Honduras, and President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador to the White House. The four leaders and Vice President Biden will discuss how to reinforce our ongoing collaboration to stem the flow of undocumented migrants from Central America to Mexico and the United States.

 

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Speeches and Remarks/Statements and Releases- July 23rd, 2014

 

Readout of the President’s Call with Indonesian President-Elect Widodo

 

Remarks by the First Lady at a “Drink Up” Event

 

Remarks by the President at the Embassy of the Netherlands

 

Presidential Nomination Sent to the Senate

 

President Obama Signs Washington Emergency Declaration

 

Readout of the President’s Call with Prime Minister Rutte of the Netherlands

 

Readout of the Administration’s Call With Governors on the Situation at the Border

 

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TheObamaCrat™ News.

 

breakingnews

Plane Crashes in Taiwan, 47 Trapped, Feared Dead

 

Published on Jul 23, 2014

A plane landing in stormy weather crashed outside an airport on a small Taiwanese island late Wednesday, and a transport minister said 47 people were trapped and feared dead.

 

 

 

Secretary of State John Kerry arrives in Tel Aviv to push for a cease-fire

 

Published on Jul 23, 2014

Secretary of State John Kerry traveled to Israel on Wednesday, to push for a cease-fire to end the fighting between Israel and Hamas

 

 

 

FOXNews Outraged That 911 Helps Dying Refugees

 

 

 

Typhoon downs trees, threatens landslides

 

Published on Jul 23, 2014

Typhoon Matmo brought heavy rain and high winds as it slammed into Taiwan. The island also faces the threat of landslides

 

 

 

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It’s A Twitter Storm™ That’s Raining Videos™


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It’s A Twitter Storm™ That Is Raining Videos™

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My new favorite anti gun ad……Listen to the accidental shooting statistics after the video.

 

 

 

 

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The Last 24™


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President Obama Hosts the 2013 Presidents Cup Team

 

Published on Jun 24, 2014

President Obama welcomes the 2013 Presidents Cup Team to the White House and delivers remarks, June 24, 2014.

 

 

 

Working Families Summit: “Career Ladders and Leadership”

 

Published on Jun 23, 2014

Mika Brzezinski moderates the third plenary session at the
White House Summit on Working Families in Washington, D.C., June 23, 2014.

 

 

 

Working Families Summit: “A 21st Century Economy that Works for Business and Workers”

 

Published on Jun 23, 2014

Claire Shipman and Katty Kay moderate the second plenary
session at the White House Summit on Working Families in Washington, D.C., June 23, 2014.

 

 

 

PBS News Hour For Tuesday, June 24, 2014

 

 

 

SCOTUS Ruling Limits EPA Regulatory Power

 

Published on Jun 24, 2014

Pubic Justice Executive Director Paul Bland and EcoWatch founder Stefanie Spear explain why SCOTUS ruling is being claimed as victory by environmentalists and coal industry alike.

 

 

 

Inside Story – Who are Nigeria’s Boko Haram?

 

Uploaded on Nov 8, 2011

After a wave of attacks hit Nigeria, Inside Story asks what motivates the Islamist group’s increasing violence in Africa’s most populous country.

 

 

 

Freedom Summer‘ leaders recall pivotal fight against racism

 

Published on Jun 24, 2014

A new documentary “Freedom Summer” looks back to the deeply segregated Mississippi of 1964, and the young people who came from around the country to lend a hand in the struggle against racism. For a look back at the moment, Gwen Ifill is joined by Freedom Summer coordinator Robert Moses, Freedom Summer volunteer Rita Schwerner Bender, as well as director of the film, Stanley Nelson.

 

 

 

The Road to Freedom Summer — Bob Moses on Reality Asserts Itself (5/8)

 

Published on Jun 23, 2014

Mr. Moses says one of the main ways we get to Freedom Summer is the assassination of Medgar Evers.

 

 

 

SD Republican Party votes to impeach Obama

 

Published on Jun 24, 2014

Impeaching President Barack Obama is a long-standing desire for many, but delegates for the South Dakota Republican Party decided to act instead of merely wish. In a 191-176 vote in favor of impeachment, delegates voiced their approval Saturday for removing from office the 44th president of the United States. Citing what the delegates claim are numerous violations of the oath of office, the resolution calls for Representatives in the House “to initiate impeachment proceedings.” RT’s Ameera David speaks with Robert Burgess, communications director for the South Dakota Republican Party, to learn more about the vote.

 

 

 

6/24/14: White House Press Briefing

 

Published on Jun 24, 2014

White House Press Briefings are conducted most weekdays from the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room in the West Wing.

 

 

 

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Dan Pfeiffer: “POTUS Replies”

 

 

This morning, Senior Advisor Dan Pfeiffer sent the message below to the White House email list to share the story of Rebekah — a hardworking mom from Minneapolis who wrote the President to share her story, and will meet with him later this week.

Didn’t get the email? Be sure to sign up.


Hi, all –

Every day, the Office of Presidential Correspondence sorts through thousands of letters. Every night, President Obama reads ten of them. Some people write to share what his decisions mean in their daily lives, to talk about the economy, or to ask a question about a policy. Others just write in to say hello.

Each letter is a chance for President Obama to hear directly from folks across the country about the sorts of issues they face every day.

The President makes notes in the margins, and sits down to reply personally. He often sends the letters to the staff as reminder of what we are fighting for or to ask us to follow up on an issue raised in the letter. So when Rebekah, a hardworking mom from Minneapolis, wrote in to share how much harder it’s become to get ahead and do right by her family, you can bet the President set that letter aside for a reply.

But he’s not just doing that. He’s meeting Rebekah in person this Thursday to spend a day in her shoes. Watch President Obama tell her story, and find out why he’s traveling to her town.

 

When the President travels to Minnesota, he’ll launch the first in a series of “day-in-the-life” visits across the country this summer. He’ll spend a day with Rebekah — and he’ll meet with her family and community members to discuss the issues that matter to them, host a town hall, and talk about the steps we need to take as a country to help more Americans like Rebekah get ahead.

I know the President is excited to talk with her — and Americans like her. So all this summer, he’ll meet with folks who’ve written in to share what their lives are like. He’ll be hitting the road and traveling to communities across the country — sitting around diner booths and kitchen tables to talk about the issues that matter to them.

Rebekah’s story is representative of the experiences of millions of Americans: Even though our economy’s made a historic comeback, too many middle-class Americans are still stretched too thin, and there’s more work to do.

Make sure you see Rebekah’s story — and then tune in on Thursday as the President travels to Minnesota.

 

 

A Letter to the President: Rebekah

 

Published on Jun 23, 2014

The President reads a letter from Rebekah, a hardworking mom from Minneapolis who wrote to the President about what she sees, what she thinks needs changing, and her struggle to get ahead. The President chose to highlight Rebekah’s story because it is representative of the experiences of millions of Americans: While our economy’s made a comeback, too many Americans are still stretched too thin and the President knows there’s more work to do.

 

 

 

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Here’s What You Missed: The White House Summit on Working Families

 

 

President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the White House Summit on Working Families, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel, Washington, D.C., June 23, 2014President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the White House Summit on Working Families, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel, Washington, D.C., June 23, 2014 (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

Yesterday, the White House, in partnership with the Department of Labor and the Center for American Progress, hosted a Summit on Working Families with the aim of having a national conversation and set a concrete agenda to bring American workplaces into the 21st century.

 

That conversation brought together businesses, economists, labor leaders, legislators, advocates, and working citizens to talk through the very real issues facing the full spectrum of working families — from low-wage workers to executives.

 

And you didn’t have to be in Washington to participate join in. Americans across the country tuned in and raised their voices online.

 

As Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett noted yesterday: “This is a movement, not a moment.” So if you missed the event yesterday, you can still add your voice. Take a look at our recap of yesterday’s Summit, and if you’ve got a story tell — get involved.

 

Read More

 

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Senate Delays Hurting Our National Security

 

 

As the President’s National Security Advisor, I am focused every day on keeping our country secure and our citizens – at home and abroad – safe. But these goals are hindered and our stature abroad is weakened when we are not fielding a full team. That’s why I urge the Senate to let the President’s qualified ambassadorial nominees get to work on behalf of the American people.

Right now, 48 nominees for ambassador are pending and 26 are on the Executive Calendar and eligible for confirmation by the full Senate – 16 of whom are career Foreign Service Officers. Together, all ambassadorial nominees have been waiting an average of 161 days, while those on the Executive Calendar have been waiting an average of 262 days. This is simply too long.

These crucial posts are vacant and American interests are therefore underrepresented. The longer we wait to fill these roles the harder it becomes to maintain our effective American diplomacy.

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Consider:

  • Kuwait borders Iraq and is a vital strategic partner that requires the highest level engagement given the current situation. Yet our post there remains without an ambassador. Now more than ever, it is crucial that our ambassador to the State of Kuwait is confirmed.

 

  • In Africa, a quarter of our ambassadors are awaiting Senate confirmation. And in combating regional instability and serious challenges such as Boko Haram, key partners including Niger, Cameroon, and Mauritania – as well as our delegation to the African Union – need ambassadors in place now. And with the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit planned for later this summer, it’s crucial that we display our commitment to partnering with leaders from across the continent for the good of Africa and the United States.

 

  • ASEAN will play a crucial role in the East Asia Summit in November 2014, which the President will attend. Substantively and organizationally, we need an ambassador in place to lay the groundwork for a successful Summit. We need a leading voice in our seat at the ASEAN table as tensions in the region have escalated surrounding China’s actions in the South China Sea.

These are only a few of many reasons it is critical to our national security that America fields a full team in our global engagement. The qualified individuals nominated to serve our country need to be confirmed without delay and allowed to do their important work leading our complex and vital interagency teams that are working to protect American interests around the world.

While there is a potential path to confirmation without bipartisan support, our nation’s security is stronger when we act together, and so I call on all members of the Senate to agree to confirm these nominees today so we can get them in place now.

president-obama-money

Sylvia Mathews Burwell Sworn In as the New HHS Secretary

 

 

Vice President Joe Biden swears in Sylvia Matthews Burwell as Secretary of Health and Human ServicesVice President Joe Biden swears in Sylvia Mathews Burwell, as Secretary of Health and Human Services, with her husband Stephen holding the bible, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. June 24, 2014. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

 

This afternoon, the Vice President ceremonially swore in Sylvia Mathews Burwell as the new Secretary of Health and Human Services.

On June 5, Secretary Burwell was confirmed by a strong, bipartisan majority of Senators. In a statement that day, President Obama commended the Senate and reiterated his support for Secretary Burwell as a proven manager:

 

I applaud the strong, bipartisan majority of Senators who today confirmed Sylvia Mathews Burwell as America’s next Secretary of Health and Human Services. Sylvia is a proven manager who knows how to deliver results, and over her career she has built deep relationships with Democrats and Republicans alike. I’m confident Sylvia’s unparalleled experience will serve her well in her new role as she works to ensure the safety of our food and drug supply, protect our nation from outbreaks or bioterror attacks, keep America at the forefront of medical research, and make sure every American has access to quality, affordable healthcare.

 


 

Learn more:

Related Topics: Health Care

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President Obama Joins a Roundtable Discussion at the Working Families Summit

June 23, 2014 | 1:42 | Public Domain

 

President Obama participates in a roundtable discussion at the White House Summit on Working Families in Washington, D.C.

 

 

 

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Speeches and Remarks

Remarks by National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice at the White House Forum on Global LGBT Human Rights

 

 

Dr. Jill Biden, USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah, and U.S. Ambassador Catherine Russell to Travel to Africa

Dr. Jill Biden will travel to Zambia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Sierra Leone from June 30 – July 7, 2014. Rajiv Shah, Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and Catherine Russell, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, will also travel with Dr. Biden.

 

During their travel, Dr. Biden, Administrator Shah, and Ambassador Russell will highlight how girls’ education and women’s participation in government, the economy, and civil society can accelerate economic development, improve health and educational outcomes, strengthen democratic governance, and foster peace and security. These themes will also be woven throughout the upcoming U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit held in Washington, D.C. in early August.

 

Additional details about the trip are forthcoming.

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Statements and Releases

FACT SHEET: Advancing The Human Rights Of LGBT Persons Globally

Remarks by National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice at the White House Forum on Global LGBT Human Rights

It’s great to be here, and particularly great to see such a wonderful collection of faith leaders, human rights activists, private sector representatives and colleagues in government all in one place.  Protecting and upholding human rights, especially for our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender brothers and sisters, is work to which we all are called, so thank you, thank you so much for joining us here today.

 

The inexhaustible pursuit of equality, the drive to expand opportunity, the unshakeable conviction that human dignity and human rights are the natural endowment of all humankind—these are qualities that are fundamental to our American character.  For many Americans, they are also essential to our personal story.  I would not be standing here today if those who came before me had not pried open doors that had long been shut to people who look like me.  So, I feel a responsibility and a personal passion to help others enjoy the same opportunities that I have been blessed to receive.  It’s what drives me as a public servant and as a mother, because I do not want my children, or anyone else’s, to have their life choices limited by how they look, who they worship, or whom they love.

 

Universal human rights are not bestowed by governments or powerful majorities, they are God’s gift and the birth right of all people.  They belong to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender men and women as surely as they belong to anyone in the human family.  As President Obama has said so eloquently, “If we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.”

 

It offends our common humanity when men or women anywhere in the world are beaten or abused, or when individuals anywhere have their rights restricted because of who they are.  And, it doesn’t just harm those who are targeted.  It rends the bonds that knit society together.  Trust recedes; suspicion spreads.  Entire countries are deprived of vital contributions from citizens in minority groups.

Read More

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Presidential Actions

Presidential Memorandum — Delegation of Reporting Functions Specified in Section 1206(b) of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014

 

Presidential Memorandum — Enhancing Workplace Flexibilities and Work-Life Program

 

 

http://freedom50.org

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1964 Police:Dogs Attacks Civil Rights

1964 KKK w/ Confederate &  Gadsden 'Don't Tread On Me' flags

Freedom Summer Murders

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The Last 24™: The White House Summit On Working Families Edition.


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White House Working Families Summit

 

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President Obama Stops for Lunch On his Way To The White House Working Families Summit

 

 

 

 

Working Families Summit: “Family Matters

 

 

 

The Vice President Speaks at the Working Families Summit

 

 

 

6/23/14: White House Press Briefing

 

 

 

President Obama Speaks at the Working Families Summit

 

 

 

The First Lady Speaks at the Working Families Summit

 

 

 

A Letter to the President: Rebekah

 

 

 

Live from the White House Summit on Working Families

 

 

 

The White House Summit on Working Families is happening today — and businesses, economists, labor leaders, policymakers, advocates, and citizens are joining together for a national conversation about how we can update our workplaces to better help families in the 21st century succeed at work and at home.

 

Americans both at the Summit and around the country are adding their voices to that conversation. Take a look at what they’re saying — and add your own voice using #FamiliesSucceed

 

#FamiliesSucceed: White House Summit on Working Families

On June 23, the White House Summit on Working Families brought together businesses, economists, labor leaders, policymakers, advocates, and citizens for a national conversation about how we can create workplace policies that give modern American families the best chance to succeed.

 

 

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Presidential Perks

 

 

 

Watch from Anywhere: The White House Summit on Working Families

 

 

Today is the White House Summit on Working Families — bringing together businesses, economists, labor leaders, policymakers, advocates, and citizens for a national conversation about how we can create workplace policies that give modern American families the best chance to succeed at work and at home.

 

Americans across the country are tuning in and adding their voices from their desks, living rooms, and dining room tables.

 

Don’t miss a thing — here are all the ways you can participate in the Summit, no matter where you are:

 

  • Follow along online at www.workingfamiliessummit.org. There, you’ll find a full schedule of speakers, and panels — as well as a livestream of all of the main remarks and plenary sessions. In between, HuffPost Live will host and moderate digital breakout sessions featuring Summit particpants and Americans from around the country, via Google+ Hangout.

 

  • Add your voice to the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #FamiliesSucceed. We’ll be tweeting remarks and helpful facts and graphics from White House accounts all day. Follow the conversation, and add your voice.

 

 

  • Share how 21st-century workplace policies would help your working family succeed. Visit WhiteHouse.gov/working-families to share what your working family looks like, and how you’ll be uniquely helped by 21st-century workplace policies. There will also be a story-sharing wall at the Summit, where attendees can fill out cards with this information and post their own story in a central location.

 

 

 

Family-Friendly Workplace Policies Are Not Frills — They’re Basic Needs

 

 

This morning, the Huffington Post published the following op-ed from the President, discussing the need for family-friendly policies in our workplaces. The op-ed is part of a series of essays about the issues facing working families, leading up to today’s White House Summit on Working Families.

 

Watch the Summit live at www.workingfamiliessummit.org.

 


As President, my top priority is rebuilding an economy where everybody who works hard has the chance to get ahead.

 

That’s the subject of the first White House Summit on Working Families, which is taking place today. We’re bringing together business leaders and workers to talk about the challenges that working parents face every day and how we can address them.

 

Take flexibility – the ability to take a few hours off for a school play or to work from home when your kid is sick. Most workers want it, but not enough of them have it – even though studies show that flexibility makes workers happier, and helps companies lower turnover and raise productivity.

 

Take paid family leave. Many jobs don’t offer adequate leave to care for a new baby or an ailing parent, so workers can’t afford to be there when their family needs them the most. And the United States is the only developed country in the world without paid maternity leave.

 

Take childcare. Most working families I know can’t afford thousands a year for childcare, but often, that’s what it costs. I recently got a letter from a woman in Minnesota whose kids’ preschool is so expensive, it costs more every month than her mortgage.

 

And take the minimum wage. Nearly 28 million Americans would benefit if we raised the minimum wage to $10.10. And we’re not just talking about young people on their first job – the average worker who would benefit from an increase is 35 years old. Many have kids. And a majority are women. Right now, many full-time minimum wage workers aren’t even making enough to keep their kids out of poverty.

 

Family leave, childcare, flexibility, and a decent wage aren’t frills. They’re basic needs. They shouldn’t be bonuses – they should be the bottom line.

 

Parents who work full-time should earn enough to pay the bills and go to work every day knowing that their kids are in good hands. Workers who give their all should know that if they need some flexibility, they can have it – because their employers understand that it’s hard to be productive when you’ve got a sick kid at home or a childcare crisis. And talented, hard-working people should be able to say yes to a great new opportunity without worrying that their family will pay the price. Nearly half of all working parents surveyed say they’ve chosen to turn down a job, not because they didn’t want it, because it would be too hard on their families. When that many members of our workforce are forced to choose between a job and their family, something’s wrong.

 

Some businesses are realizing that family-friendly policies are a good business practice, because they help build loyalty and inspire workers to go the extra mile. JetBlue offers a flexible work-from-home plan for its customer service representatives. Google increased their paid parental leave to five months – and the rate of women leaving the company decreased by half. Cisco lets their employees telecommute as needed, which they estimate saves them over $275 million every year.

 

And there’s a bigger economic case here, too. The strength of our economy rests on whether we’re getting the most out of all of our nation’s talent – whether we’re making it possible for all our citizens to contribute to our growth and prosperity. That’s the key to staying competitive in the global economy. Right now, we’re leaving too many people on the sidelines who have the desire and the capacity to work, but are held back by one obstacle or another. It’s our job to remove those obstacles. That’s what supporting working families is all about.

 

States are getting on board, too. California, Rhode Island, and New Jersey give workers paid family leave. Connecticut offers paid sick days. So does New York City. Since I asked Congress to raise the minimum wage last year, 13 states have taken steps to raise it on their own.

 

But all Americans should get to benefit from these policies. That’s why we need to see some action here in Washington.

 

I’ll work with anyone – Democrats or Republicans – to increase opportunity for American workers. But in this year of action, whenever I can act on my own, I will.

 

Today, I’ll sign a Presidential Memorandum directing every agency in the federal government to expand access to flexible work schedules, and giving employees the right to request them.

 

I’m calling on Congress to pass the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, because too many pregnant workers are forced to choose between their health and their job. They can get fired for taking too many bathroom breaks, or forced on unpaid leave just for being pregnant. It’s inhumane, and it needs to stop.

 

And to help parents trying to get ahead, I’m directing my Secretary of Labor to invest $25 million in helping people who want to enroll in job training programs, but don’t currently have access to the childcare they need to do it.

 

I take this personally – as the son and grandson of some strong women who worked hard to support my sister and me; as the husband of a brilliant woman who struggled to balance work and raising our young ladies when my job often kept me away; and as the father of two beautiful girls, whom I want to be there for as much as I possibly can – and whom I hope will be able to have families and careers of their own one day.

 

We know from our history that our country does better when everybody participates; when everyone’s talents are put to use; when we all have a fair shot. That’s the America I believe in. That’s the America I’ll keep fighting for every day.

 

 

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President Obama at Chipotle

 

President Barack Obama orders his lunch at a Chipotle Mexican Grill after walking there with several participants attending the White House Summit on Working Families at the nearby Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C., June 23, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

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Barack meets a fan at Chipotle Mexican Grill

Barack meets a fan at Chipotle Mexican Grill

The Bear is Loose

 

 

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Year Up gives young adults skills for the job search

 

 

 

Michelle Obama Makes It Personal at WH Summit

 

 

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FACT SHEET: The White House Summit On Working Families

 

Remarks by President Obama at the White House Summit on Working Families | June 23, 2014

Omni Shoreham Hotel
Washington, D.C.

1:51 P.M. EDT

 

THE PRESIDENT:  This crowd looks fired up.  (Applause.)  Already, everybody have a seat.  Have a seat.  You look like you’ve been busy.

 

AUDIENCE MEMBERS:  Yes!

 

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  We’re just waiting on you.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  I know that’s right.  (Applause.)  I know that’s right.  (Laughter.)  Good afternoon, everybody.  Have a seat, have a seat.

 

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  I love you, Mr. President.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  I love you back.  (Applause.)  I do.  Well, welcome to the White House Summit on Working Families.  (Applause.)  And thanks to all of you for joining us.  I know that for most of you, you are taking time off of work or family, or both, to be here.  And I know that’s a sacrifice.  And I know just juggling schedules can be tough.  And in fact, that’s one of the reasons that we are here today.

 

I want to thank our co-hosts, Secretary of Labor Tom Perez — give him a big round of applause — as well as Neera Tanden and everyone at the Center for American Progress for the great work that they did.  (Applause.)  Thanks as well to all the members of Congress who are participating, especially Nancy Pelosi and the members of the Democratic Women’s Working Group.  (Applause.)  And a long-time friend and champion of families and women and veterans, Connie Milstein — we could not have pulled this off without Connie’s great assistance, so we want to thank Connie.  (Applause.)

 

So I just walked over to Chipotle for lunch.  (Laughter.)  I caused a lot of havoc, as you might expect.  (Laughter.)  It had been a while since I had the burrito bowl, and it was good.  (Laughter.)  And I went there with four new buddies of mine.  One of them is a father of a four year old and a two month old who has worked with his wife to come up with a flexible plan where he works three or four days a week.  She works three or four days a week.  And the reason is because, as Roger put it, he thinks it’s important that he is able to bond with this kids just as much as his wife is.

 

Read The Entire Transcript Here.

 

 

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Op-Ed by President Obama on the White House Summit on Working Families

In an op-ed published on the Huffington Post, President Obama writes about the importance of today’s White House Summit on Working Families and his commitment to creating a 21st century workplace that works for all Americans.

 

The following op-ed by President Obama appeared on the Huffington Post.

 

Family-Friendly Workplace Policies Are Not Frills — They’re Basic Needs

 

Family-Friendly Workplace Policies Are Not Frills — They’re Basic Needs

 

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As President, my top priority is rebuilding an economy where everybody who works hard has the chance to get ahead.

 

That’s the subject of the first White House Summit on Working Families, which is taking place today. We’re bringing together business leaders and workers to talk about the challenges that working parents face every day and how we can address them.

 

Take flexibility — the ability to take a few hours off for a school play or to work from home when your kid is sick. Most workers want it, but not enough of them have it — even though studies show that flexibility makes workers happier and helps companies lower turnover and raise productivity.

 

Take paid family leave. Many jobs don’t offer adequate leave to care for a new baby or an ailing parent, so workers can’t afford to be there when their families need them the most. And the United States is the only developed country in the world without paid maternity leave.

 

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Take childcare. Most working families I know can’t afford thousands a year for childcare, but often, that’s what it costs. I recently got a letter from a woman in Minnesota whose kids’ preschool is so expensive it costs more every month than her mortgage.

 

And take the minimum wage. Nearly 28 million Americans would benefit if we raised the minimum wage to $10.10. And we’re not just talking about young people on their first job — the average worker who would benefit from an increase is 35 years old. Many have kids. And a majority are women. Right now, many full-time minimum-wage workers aren’t even making enough to keep their kids out of poverty.

 

Family leave, childcare, flexibility and a decent wage aren’t frills. They’re basic needs. They shouldn’t be bonuses — they should be the bottom line.

 

Parents who work full-time should earn enough to pay the bills and go to work every day knowing that their kids are in good hands. Workers who give their all should know that if they need some flexibility, they can have it — because their employers understand that it’s hard to be productive when you’ve got a sick kid at home or a childcare crisis. And talented, hard-working people should be able to say yes to a great new opportunity without worrying that their families will pay the price. Nearly half of all working parents surveyed say they’ve chosen to turn down a job not because they didn’t want it, but because it would be too hard on their families. When that many members of our workforce are forced to choose between a job and their family, something’s wrong.

 

Some businesses are realizing that family-friendly policies are a good business practice, because they help build loyalty and inspire workers to go the extra mile. JetBlue offers a flexible work-from-home plan for its customer-service representatives. Google increased its paid parental leave to five months — and the rate of women leaving the company decreased by half. Cisco lets their employees telecommute as needed, which they estimate saves them over $275 million every year.

 

And there’s a bigger economic case here, too. The strength of our economy rests on whether we’re getting the most out of all of our nation’s talent — whether we’re making it possible for all our citizens to contribute to our growth and prosperity. That’s the key to staying competitive in the global economy. Right now, we’re leaving too many people on the sidelines who have the desire and the capacity to work, but are held back by one obstacle or another. It’s our job to remove those obstacles. That’s what supporting working families is all about.

 

States are getting on board, too. California, Rhode Island and New Jersey give workers paid family leave. Connecticut offers paid sick days. So does New York City. Since I asked Congress to raise the minimum wage last year, 13 states have taken steps to raise it on their own.

 

But all Americans should get to benefit from these policies. That’s why we need to see some action here in Washington.

 

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I’ll work with anyone — Democrats or Republicans — to increase opportunity for American workers. But in this year of action, whenever I can act on my own, I will.

 

Today, I’ll sign a Presidential Memorandum directing every agency in the federal government to expand access to flexible work schedules, and giving employees the right to request them.

 

I’m calling on Congress to pass the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, because too many pregnant workers are forced to choose between their health and their job. They can get fired for taking too many bathroom breaks, or forced on unpaid leave just for being pregnant. It’s inhumane, and it needs to stop.

 

And to help parents trying to get ahead, I’m directing my Secretary of Labor to invest $25 million in helping people who want to enroll in job-training programs, but don’t currently have access to the childcare they need to do it.

 

I take this personally — as the son and grandson of some strong women who worked hard to support my sister and me; as the husband of a brilliant woman who struggled to balance work and raising our young ladies when my job often kept me away; and as the father of two beautiful girls, whom I want to be there for as much as I possibly can — and whom I hope will be able to have families and careers of their own one day.

 

We know from our history that our country does better when everybody participates; when everyone’s talents are put to use; when we all have a fair shot. That’s the America I believe in. That’s the America I’ll keep fighting for every day.

 

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Statements and Releases – June 23rd, 2014

 

Statement by the Press Secretary on the Conviction of Journalists in Egypt

 

Message to Congress — Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to the Western Balkans

 

Notice to Congress — Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to the Western Balkans

 

Presidential Nomination Sent to the Senate

 

 

President Obama to Award the Medal of Honor

On July 21, 2014, President Barack Obama will award Ryan M. Pitts, a former active duty Army Staff Sergeant, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.  Staff Sergeant Pitts will receive the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions while serving as a Forward Observer with 2nd Platoon, Chosen Company, 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade, during combat operations at Vehicle Patrol Base Kahler, in the vicinity of Wanat Village in Kunar Province, Afghanistan on July 13, 2008.

 

Staff Sergeant Pitts will be the ninth living recipient to be awarded the Medal of Honor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan.  He and his family will join the President at the White House to commemorate his example of selfless service.

 

PERSONAL BACKGROUND:

Staff Sergeant Pitts separated from the service on October 27, 2009 from Walter Reed Army Medical Center.  He currently lives in Nashua, New Hampshire, where he works in business development for the computer software industry.

 

Staff Sergeant Pitts enlisted in the Army in August 2003 as a Fire Support Specialist (13F), primarily responsible for the intelligence activities of the Army’s field artillery team.   After completion of training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and follow-on parachutist training at the U.S. Army Airborne School, Fort Benning, Georgia, he was assigned to Camp Ederle, Vicenza, Italy, as a radio operator with the 4th Battalion, 319th Field Artillery Regiment and 173rd Airborne Brigade where he deployed to Afghanistan.  His final assignment was with the 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment “The Rock”, 173rd Airborne Brigade as a Forward Observer which included a second combat tour to Afghanistan.

 

At the time of the July 13, 2008 combat engagement, then-Sergeant Pitts was a Forward Observer in 2nd Platoon, Chosen Company, 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment 173rd Airborne Brigade as part of Task Force Rock. His heroic actions were performed at Vehicle Patrol Base Kahler, in the vicinity of Wanat Village in Kunar Province, Afghanistan.

 

His personal awards include the Bronze Star Medal w/ “V” Device, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal w/ three Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal with Bronze Clasp and two Loops, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Two Campaign Stars, Global War on Terrorism Medal, Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon with Numeral “4”,  NATO Medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Valorous Unit Award, Combat Action Badge, Pathfinder Badge and Parachutist Badge.

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

THE MEDAL OF HONOR:

The Medal of Honor is awarded to members of the Armed Forces who distinguish themselves conspicuously by gallantry above and beyond the call of duty while:

 

  • engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
  • engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or
  • serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.

 

The meritorious conduct must involve great personal bravery or self-sacrifice so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his or her comrades and must have involved risk of life. There must be incontestable proof of the performance of the meritorious conduct, and each recommendation for the award must be considered on the standard of extraordinary merit.

 

 

Readout of the President’s Call with President Putin of Russia

 

President Obama spoke with Russian President Putin today about the situation in Ukraine.  President Obama welcomed President Poroshenko’s peace plan and urged that Russia and separatist leaders work closely with the Ukrainian government to take concrete steps to implement it.  The President called upon President Putin to press the separatists to recognize and abide by the ceasefire and to halt the flow of weapons and materiel across its border into Ukraine.  The President emphasized that words must be accompanied by actions and that the United States remains prepared to impose additional sanctions should circumstances warrant, in coordination with our allies and partners.  The President and President Putin also discussed the removal of chemical weapons in Syria and ongoing efforts to reach a comprehensive solution to ensure that Iran’s nuclear program will be exclusively peaceful.

 

Obama Grabs a Bite at Chipotle Before Summit

 

 

 

Obama: Paid Leave Basic Need, Not Bonus

 

 

 

President Obama Grabs a Bite at Chipotle Before Summit!!

 

 

 

 

The White House Summit on Working Families {Full Summit}

 

 

 

 

 

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