In today's first issue I'd like to start off with what the President has achieved in reference to Civil Rights, which includes funding and the President's targeted actions. I have listed three WTFs for my first issue down below, and I as mentioned in yesterday's blog, I don't want to spread lies, so if you feel I wrote something false, please help me by letting me know. If you want to debate me, that will be fine too, but I won't go back and forth for hours trying to explain something that isn't true. I will provide references to each WTF at the end of each achievement.
WTF-1Funds to help our Children and Youth who have disabilities - $12.2 billion in new funding went towards the "Individuals with Disabilities Act" using the "American Recovery and Investment Act" to help pay for it. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 appropriates significant new funding for programs under Parts B and C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Part B of the IDEA provides funds to state educational agencies and local educational agencies to help them ensure that children with disabilities, including children aged three through five, have access to a free appropriate public education to meet each child's unique needs and prepare him or her for further education, employment, and independent living. Part C of the IDEA provides funds to each state lead agency designated by the Governor to implement statewide systems of coordinated, comprehensive, multidisciplinary inter-agency programs and make early intervention services available to infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families. [References at the U.S. Department of Education website here.]
WTF-2The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act - Ledbetter, a former supervisor at a Goodyear tire plant in Alabama, sued the company after discovering several months before her 1998 retirement that, for years, she was paid less than her male counterparts. A jury awarded Ledbetter more than $3 million. But the Supreme Court overturned that judgment in March 2007, ruling 5-4 that a 180-day statute of limitation for her to file a lawsuit had started from the first instance of discrimination, meaning that her suit about more than a decade of discrimination was untimely.
The Democratic Congress took up Ledbetter's cause, drafting legislation that would set the clock running when the discriminatory action was discovered. But in April 2008, the Senate was unable to overcome a threat of filibuster. Then-candidate Obama even left the campaign trail to vote for the act; he later launched a mostly accurate attack against McCain for opposing the measure. Ledbetter appeared at the Democratic convention to praise Obama for supporting the measure, noting, "My case is over. I will never receive the pay I deserve. But there will be a far richer reward if we secure fair pay."
Obama included a vow to reverse the effects of the Ledbetter decision in a major campaign document, his "Blueprint for Change."
Fast forward to Jan. 29, 2009. President Obama signed the Ledbetter Act, saying, "Ultimately, equal pay isn't just an economic issue for millions of Americans and their families. It's a question of who we are and whether we're truly living up to our fundamental ideals." Promise Kept. [Reference 1, Reference 2, Reference 3]
WTF-3Presidential Memorandum extending benefits to same sex partners of federal employees - For far too long, many of our Government's hard-working, dedicated LGBT employees have been denied equal access to the basic rights and benefits their colleagues enjoy. This kind of systemic inequality undermines the health, well-being, and security not just of our Federal workforce, but also of their families and communities. That is why, last June, I directed the heads of executive departments and agencies (agencies), in consultation with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), to conduct a thorough review of the benefits they provide and to identify any that could be extended to LGBT employees and their partners and families. Although legislative action is necessary to provide full equality to LGBT Federal employees, the agencies have identified a number of benefits that can be extended under existing law. OPM, in consultation with the Department of Justice, has provided me with a report recommending that all of the identified benefits be extended. [Reference 1, Reference 2, Reference 3]
Please make sure to read Issue No. 002 tomorrow as I continue with WTF-4
Everyday on BLADE 7184
Everyday on BLADE 7184