Monday, February 28, 2011

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: February 28, 2011

COME TO THE RALLY AND HEARING ON EARNED SICK DAYS!

Everyone Gets Sick— Not Everyone Has the Time to Get Better

2 out of every 5 workers in Philadelphia do NOT have a single paid sick day.

Help Us Tell City Council to Give ALL Workers a Chance to Earn Paid Sick Days.

WHEN: March 1, 2011 9:00 AM
WHERE: Room 401, Philadelphia City Hall

Join the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces at City Hall for a Rally and Press Conference and then help us pack the Hearing Room to show the importance of this bill. Enter City Hall at the north-east corner and remember to bring a picture ID.


Even if you have paid sick days remember a majority of restaurant, child care, and health care workers do not—the lack of paid sick days in Philadelphia impacts us all!

Federal Policy Update

NEW REPORT SHOWS MILLIONS OF PEOPLE WOULD SUFFER UNDER HOUSE BUDGET PLAN

At a time when 14 million people are out of work more may begin to struggle depending on what happens to the federal budget, according to a new report by the Coalition on Human Needs for the SAVE for All campaign.

According to the report, millions of people would lose services under the House of Representatives’ plan for the rest of fiscal year 2011. Here’s a sampling:
  • 218,000 young children would not be able to receive Head Start services;
  • 11 million patients would lose health care they would have received at Community Health Centers over the next year, with 3.2 million losing care in the next few months; 127 health center sites would have to close and 7,434 jobs would be lost;
  • 20 million low-income people, including 5 million children, 2.3 million seniors, and 1.7 million people with disabilities, would have access to anti-poverty services disrupted;
  • 9.4 million low-income college students would lose some or all of their Pell Grants;
  • More than 8 million adults and youth would lose job training and other employment services. Job training under the Workforce Investment Act would essentially be shut down until July 2012;
  • 81,000 low-income people, mostly seniors and some children, will no longer receive food packages and six states would not be able to join the program after being approved to do so;
  • 1.2 million poor households in public housing (two-thirds of whom are elderly or have a disability) would see maintenance and repairs on their apartments deteriorate due to cuts in the Public Housing Capital Fund;
  • 10,000 people with significant long-term disabilities would lose their rental assistance; most of these would lose their homes.
The report calls for any deficit reduction plan to instead:
  • Make major steps towards deficit reduction gradual and long-term, because the solutions will be much easier and the resulting pain much less severe if the economy is stronger;
  • Not rely primarily on cuts in domestic appropriations, which are not the cause of the ballooning federal deficit;
  • Include equitable revenue increases;
  • Reduce wasteful spending;
  • Protect low-income people from harm.
Please contact your members of Congress and urge them to protect families and workers in this year’s budget.

TAKE ACTION! URGE CONGRESS NOT TO MAKE CUTS TO CRUCIAL PROGRAMS

As the Senate gears up this week to debate the federal budget, Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW) and urges you to join advocates across the country, including PathWays PA, in sending a letter to Congress on the importance of crucial programs and services to millions of American families and elders as they rebuild from one of the worst economic recession's of our time.

The House has already passed a bill that includes devastating cuts to domestic programs and services. Included in the $65 billion cuts are LIHEAP, Community Service Block Grants, affordable housing grants for seniors and the defunding of job training programs such as YouthBuild and the Senior Community Services Employment Program (SCSEP).

Now is the time to take action. We encourage you to send your letter today, and include your story of how cuts will affect your community. We must show Congress how much these programs and services help low and middle-income families make ends meet.

State Policy Update

TOMORROW 42,000 PENNSYLVANIANS WILL LOSE THEIR HEALTH INSURANCE

The nearly 42,000 Pennsylvanians who are enrolled in adultBasic will lose their health insurance coverage at the end of today.

The Pennsylvania Health Access Network is leading a group of health care advocates and adultBasic consumers to gather outside the Governor' Mansion in Harrisburg to mark this occasion and send a message to Governor Corbett that the working Pennsylvanians who rely on adultBasic matter. Learn more here.

Some have said that the funding just is not there to continue adultBasic, but the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center has noted that there are options to keep this critical lifeline going.

Contact your members of the General Assembly and the Governor and urge them to find a way to continue this critical program.

Information/Events

5TH ANNUAL LEGS AGAINST ARMS 5K RUN/WALK & CELEBRATION OF YOUTH

WHEN: April 10, 2011 at 8:30am
WHERE: Saint Joseph's University, 5600 City Ave, 19131

Help send a strong message about the impact of violence in our city while raising funds for Physicians for Social Responsibility's youth violence prevention programs. The run is followed by a Celebration of Youth, featuring youth performances and fun and educational activities for young and old alike! The Celebration of Youth is free and open to all.

Click here for more information.


Click here for online registration!

DISCUSSION OF NEW LAW REGARDING WORKPLACE BREASTFEEDING

The Philadelphia Society of Human Resource Managers and the Maternity Care Coalition are holding a breakfast meeting to discuss a new law regarding workplace breastfeeding that has ramifications for workplaces and human resource

To boost breastfeeding support, Section 4207 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, signed into law on March 23, 2010, includes a provision that employers shall provide reasonable, unpaid break time and a private, non-bathroom place for an employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for one year after the child’s birth.

WHEN: Thursday, March 3rd 7:30-9:30 am
WHERE: Lowes Philadelphia Hotel, 12th and Market Streets

Employers with less than 50 employees are not subject to the requirement if it would cause undue hardship related to the size, financial resources, nature, or structure of the employer's business.

To register for the event, go here.

Special PathWays PA Information/Events

PATHWAYS PA’S 4TH ANNUAL ART SHOW – GREAT ART FOR A GREAT CAUSE

PathWays PA’s fourth annual PathWays to the Stars Art Show & Auction will be held on Sunday, March 27, 2011, from 3-7PM. The event will be hosted in the elegant Waterford Ballroom at the Radisson Hotel, located at 1160 First Avenue in King of Prussia.

More than 20 local artists will be involved with this year’s show, including Annette Alessi, Cheryl Decker-Sauder, Alice George, Robert Grieb, Marie Harris, Madeleine Kelly, Christa Krumbhaar, Martin May, Cathy Peluso and Dane Tilghman. This year’s event will also feature original art by the children residing at our Center for Families.

This year we are adding a new category of work to the art show. Attendees will be able to view, purchase and bid on original and highly creative work by local jewelry and ceramics artists and support the over 6,000 women, children and families PathWays PA serves each year. 100% of silent auction proceeds, along with 30% of art sale profits, will benefit the agency.

Last year’s PathWays to the Stars Art Show & Auction raised in excess of $13,000. With your help, this year’s event can be an even greater success! Tickets to the event are only $25 in advance or $30 at the door. To purchase tickets, or to show your support by purchasing a full page tribute ad ($250) in our souvenir program book, please call Pam at 610-543-5022 x234.

FINANCIAL PATH$

Financial Path$, a new program from PathWays PA, helps individuals and families build paths toward economic self-sufficiency through financial education, asset building and economic empowerment. This program provides one-on-one financial counseling and financial education workshops. Financial Path$ is committed to assisting everyone carve their path to self-sufficiency.

If you or your clients would be interested in learning more about this program please contact wrahemtulla@pathwayspa.org.

For more information become Financial Path$ friend on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. Stay turned as we will also be launching a blog very soon!

FREE TAX PREPARATION

PathWays PA offers FREE certified tax preparation at our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites throughout Philadelphia and Delaware counties. Free tax preparation is for taxpayers with an annual gross household income less than $50,000.

Keep your full refund and save your money:
  • No tax preparation fees
  • No E-filing Fees
  • No check cashing fees
  • Open a no-fee savings or prepaid debit card account
  • Purchase a risk free US Saving Bond
  • Find out it you’re eligible for SNAP (food stamps)

Taxpayers must being all necessary identification and required tax statement for taxpayer, spouse, and dependents.

Locations:
  • Philadelphia County – 3617 Lancaster Avenue Philadelphia PA
  • Delaware County – 310 Amosland Road Holmes PA

Call 610-543-5022 or 1-800-209-2914 to schedule your FREE tax appointment today!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

PathWays PA Job Postings - February 24, 2011

EITC Coordinator
This position will coordinate and provide data management and support in preparation for, during, and after the 20010/11 tax season. Site Coordinator experience preferred. This position coordinates scheduling of tax sites and preparers and also trains tax season staff and volunteers. Bachelor’s Degree required. Familiarity and commitment to helping low-income/TANF recipients preferred. This is a 6-7 month position beginning in January. Please fax resumes to: LD/EITC at 610-543-6483.

ABE/GED/ESL
Full-Time – Seasoned instructor to teach reading, writing, math, ESL, GED® prep and computer basics in North Philadelphia and Delaware County. Bachelor’s Degree and 2 years of teaching adults or children required. Strongly prefer instructor who has experience with the EL/Civics program sponsored by the state Bureau of Adult and Basic Education. Some evening work required. Must have access to reliable transportation. Training in CASAS and TABE preferred.
Provide instruction on a full-time basis, with 10 hours a week of ABE/GED classes at the PathWays PA EARN Center in North Philadelphia and 10 hours a week of EL/Civics in Delaware County, as per class schedules. Fax resume and cover letter with available hours to 610-328-2807 attn: LD/AE-GED/JP

ESL Teacher
Part Time PathWays PA is currently seeking English as Second Language (ESL) instructors with BA/BS degree and 2 + years of teaching experience. Knowledge of ESL in healthcare field preferred. Must travel independently in Philadelphia, Delaware, Chester, Montgomery, and Bucks Counties. Lesson-planning and attendance record-keeping, and assessments required. This is a part-time, hourly position. Bilingual a plus. Classes forming now, anticipate completion by the end of December. Fax resumes to LD/LK 610-328-2807.

Residential Worker
Part-time and Full-time - need caring and motivated individual to provide support and supervision for Delco group home serving women and children; HS/GED, Associates Degree and experience preferred; driver’s license required. Includes nights and weekends. Fax resumes to: LD/CFF 610-328-2807.

Childcare Worker
Child Learning Center at Delco Group home. Must have knowledge of early childhood development and ability to nurture and promote positive growth in pre-school age children. AA in Early Childhood Ed. Preferred. Salary $12/hour. Fax resume to LD/CFF 610-328-2807.

Cook
Experience in bulk food preparation. The cook/kitchen coordinator shall possess the skills necessary to prepare meals for large groups of people (40-50) and shall have knowledge of nutrition and nutritional meal planning. She/he shall have the ability to understand and follow the USDA mandated guidelines. The cook/kitchen coordinator shall possess the ability to manage food and kitchen supplies. The ideal candidate will have the ability to interact with people and will be flexible and tolerant in dealing with our residents. Prefer GED/HS Diploma. SERVSafe certification required - NO EXCEPTIONS! Must have reliable independent transportation. Location is not accessible by public transportation. Please fax resumes to: LD/CFF at 610-328-2807.

Mentoring Supervisor
Must possess a BSW or bachelor’s degree in related field of study - human services, counseling, or psychology. The Mentoring Supervisor will have experience with issues related to older adolescents and will have some knowledge and understanding of volunteer recruitment and retention. Candidate shall possess the ability to identify with and adapt to the goals and philosophies of the program. Candidate shall be a mature individual with knowledge of parenting issues, community resources, and the skills necessary to live independently. Candidate shall demonstrate insight, empathy, flexibility, perseverance, team orientation, and a LOVE for teens. Some week-ends and nights are required. Please fax your resumes to: LD/BD at 610-328-2807.

Live-in Advisor
Full-time and Part-Time positions available. To provide guidance, direction and supervision to older adolescent teen mothers and teen girls residing in our Supervised Independent Living Program including conducting some life and parenting skill groups. Live in a house with 3 to 4 girls and their children. Must be available during critical hours-5:00 PM to 8:00 AM- can work part-time during off hours. Must be mature and have an understanding of teen parent and teen girl issues and must have knowledge of basic life skills. Rent and utilities paid by agency plus small stipend and scheduled time off. Location: Philadelphia; Fax resumes to LD/SIL at 610-328-2807.

SIL Case Manager/Counselor
Candidate should have at least two years experience providing direct services to individuals and/or families. Additional requirements: ability to identify with and adapt to the goals and philosophies of the agency and the program; familiarity with the concepts of strength-based practice; and demonstrate empathy, flexibility, perseverance and team orientation. The Case Manager/Counselor should be a mature individual with the knowledge of the skills necessary to live independently. BSW or related Bachelor’s Degree required. Fax Resumes to: 610

Employer Account Representative
To develop employment opportunities for participants by networking and establishing relationships with the regional business community and matching customers to permanent, family-sustaining career-track jobs.
Job Requirements include:
  • Associate’s or bachelor’s degree preferred with at least 4 years of experience in human resources, job development, marketing and/or sales
  • Strong Analytical Skills
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Computer literate (Word/Excel)
  • Bilingual in English/Spanish preferred.
  • Identify, cultivate and maintain relationships with employers that offer appropriate jobs and internship opportunities for customers. Ensure that a majority of these jobs offer living wages and benefits.
  • Establish contact with customers in order to determine previous work history and employment interests to help customers chart an employment course.
Fax resumes to: 610-328-2807, attn: LD/JS/EARN

PathWays PA is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Stand for AmeriCorps

From our friends at AmeriCorps Alums.

This weekend, the House passed H.R. 1, legislation that would make deep cuts in government spending for the rest of the fiscal year. The measure – which eliminates AmeriCorps -- passed 235-189.

After hearing the news that AmeriCorps was being threatened, AmeriCorps alum Caleb Jonas decided he had to do something. From a coffee shop in Massachusetts, Caleb created a petition asking Congress to "Save AmeriCorps.” Caleb’s inspiring alumni action has already been signed by 40,000+ Americans -- without significant promotion from any major organization. Until now.

Your signature will help AmeriCorps Alums and Caleb reach his goal of 85,000 signatures -- one signature for every AmeriCorps member currently serving their country. DEADLINE: Thursday, 5 p.m.

The House vote is just one step in the legislative process. The bill has been sent to the Senate for their consideration, and the Senate and the President will have opportunities to shape and influence the final spending package. But it is up to us to make certain that the final bill restores funding for service!

Want to do more? Check out all the ways alums are taking action and be sure to "like" Stand for AmeriCorps on Facebook.

Monday, February 21, 2011

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: February 21, 2011

COME TO THE RALLY AND HEARING ON EARNED SICK DAYS!

Everyone Gets Sick— Not Everyone Has the Time to Get Better

2 out of every 5 workers in Philadelphia do NOT have a single paid sick day.

Help Us Tell City Council to Give ALL Workers a Chance to Earn Paid Sick Days.

WHEN: March 1, 2011 9:00 AM
WHERE: City Hall, Philadelphia

Join the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces at City Hall for a Rally and Press Conference and then help us pack the Hearing Room to show the importance of this bill.


Even if you have paid sick days remember a majority of restaurant, child care, and health care workers do not—the lack of paid sick days in Philadelphia impacts us all!

If you have a story about how having or lacking paid sick days has impacted you please email kscully@pathwayspa.org. In addition please take a few moments to write a letter to your members of City Council.

Federal Policy Update

HOUSE APPROPRIATIONS BILL CUTS $60 BILLION FOR REMAINING FY 2011 BUDGET

Over the weekend, the House cut $60 billion from the remaining budget for the fiscal year, according to The New York Times. Since the Senate is not expected to follow suit, Congress only has four days next week to come up with a bill to fund the federal government for the remainder of the fiscal year. If no agreement is reached, the government could enter a shutdown in early March.

Hundreds of amendments were included in the bill, and The New York Times offers an amendment tracker to view key votes. Here is a breakdown of some of the key amendments:
Among amendments that were rejected was a restoration of $50 million in LIHEAP funding and a reduction of Amtrak financing.


Information/Events

AMERICA SAVES WEEK

The personal savings rate is near zero, most Americans are not saving adequately for retirement, and most lower-income households do not have adequate emergency savings for unexpected expenditures like a car repair. But with more societal encouragement and support, more Americans will be persuaded to build wealth, not debt.

During America Saves Week, individuals will be encouraged and assisted to assess their savings progress and take action to advance this progress. This encouragement and assistance will be provided by organizations and professionals with an interest in improving the financial security of individuals and families.
Take action and enroll as an America Saver today. When you sign up, you create and commit to a basic savings plan. You'll also receive savings advice and information through newsletters and emails, including the ability to:

A BETTER BUDGET FOR ALL: SAVING OUR ECONOMY AND HELPING THOSE IN NEED

The U.S. House is about to approve massive, unprecedented cuts in this year’s federal programs for housing, home energy, jobs, education, Head Start, and health care – painfully targeted at the poorest and most vulnerable Americans.

How would these plans change America?

Learn about these budget proposals and how they affect all of us. And learn how to be persuasive in defense of federal investments and protecting vulnerable people.

WHEN: Friday, February 25, 2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.

Register today! And if your organization hasn't yet signed the SAVE for All statement of principles, please take a look; saving services and help for vulnerable people requires a strong, united effort!

UNITED WAY WEBINAR REVIEWS IMPACT OF US BUDGET DEBATE

Recent media reports on funding cuts, President’s Obama’s budget proposal, and the federal debt limit, continue to create confusion around the budget and appropriations process.

For a detailed overview and explanation on the budget, United Way Worldwide will present an online seminar from 12:30-1:30pm on Thursday, February 24th called Demystifying FY 2011 Appropriations and the President’s FY 2012 Budget.

During the webinar, G. William Hoagland, Vice President of Public Policy and Government Affairs at CIGNA, will discuss the latest information available on funding for fiscal years 2011 and 2012. The workshop will explain the fundamentals of how the federal budget and appropriations process works.

To register for this presentation on the budget, click here.

WOMENOMICS FORUM

Please join numerous groups as they celebrate the 5th WOMENomics® Forum. The purpose is to bring together women of all ages to help identify women's economic issues and get practical, innovative ideas to improve quality of life.

WHEN: Saturday, March 26, 2011 8:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
WHERE: Towne House 117 Veterans Square Media, PA 19063

Keynote Speaker: Denise Romanelli, Director of Employee Development and Community Relations - Sun East Credit Union

Please RSVP by Friday, March 19, 2011. The cost is $25.00 per person; $10.00 per student. For more information and to register please click here.

Please call or email Teresa A. Miller with questions at tmiller@frontrowlaw.com or 610-566-5035.

FINAL BLUEPRINT CONFERENCE CALL: JOB CREATION

Please join the Progressive States Network on Tuesday, February 22nd, for a conference call on creating jobs and boosting local economies.

The call will focus on messaging and framing around several key policies, including green jobs workforce development, energy efficient schools and buildings, and innovative financing mechanisms for energy efficiency and clean energy projects.

You can RSVP for this call by clicking here.

Special PathWays PA Information/Events

PATHWAYS PA’S 4TH ANNUAL ART SHOW – GREAT ART FOR A GREAT CAUSE

PathWays PA’s fourth annual PathWays to the Stars Art Show & Auction will be held on Sunday, March 27, 2011, from 3-7PM. The event will be hosted in the elegant Waterford Ballroom at the Radisson Hotel, located at 1160 First Avenue in King of Prussia.


More than 20 local artists will be involved with this year’s show, including Annette Alessi, Cheryl Decker-Sauder, Alice George, Robert Grieb, Marie Harris, Madeleine Kelly, Christa Krumbhaar, Martin May, Cathy Peluso and Dane Tilghman. This year’s event will also feature original art by the children residing at our Center for Families.

This year we are adding a new category of work to the art show. Attendees will be able to view, purchase and bid on original and highly creative work by local jewelry and ceramics artists and support the over 6,000 women, children and families PathWays PA serves each year. 100% of silent auction proceeds, along with 30% of art sale profits, will benefit the agency.

Last year’s PathWays to the Stars Art Show & Auction raised in excess of $13,000. With your help, this year’s event can be an even greater success! Tickets to the event are only $25 in advance or $30 at the door. To purchase tickets, or to show your support by purchasing a full page tribute ad ($250) in our souvenir program book, please call Pam at 610-543-5022 x234.

FINANCIAL PATH$

Financial Path$, a new program from PathWays PA, helps individuals and families build paths toward economic self-sufficiency through financial education, asset building and economic empowerment. This program provides one-on-one financial counseling and financial education workshops. Financial Path$ is committed to assisting everyone carve their path to self-sufficiency.

If you or your clients would be interested in learning more about this program please contact wrahemtulla@pathwayspa.org.

For more information become Financial Path$ friend on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. Stay turned as we will also be launching a blog very soon!

FREE TAX PREPARATION

PathWays PA offers FREE certified tax preparation at our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites throughout Philadelphia and Delaware counties. Free tax preparation is for taxpayers with an annual gross household income less than $50,000.

Keep your full refund and save your money:
  • No tax preparation fees
  • No E-filing Fees
  • No check cashing fees
  • Open a no-fee savings or prepaid debit card account
  • Purchase a risk free US Saving Bond
  • Find out it you’re eligible for SNAP (food stamps)

Taxpayers must being all necessary identification and required tax statement for taxpayer, spouse, and dependents.

Locations:
  • Philadelphia County – 3617 Lancaster Avenue Philadelphia PA
  • Delaware County – 310 Amosland Road Holmes PA

Call 610-543-5022 or 1-800-209-2914 to schedule your FREE tax appointment today!


PATHWAYS PA OFFERS LANGUAGE/CIVICS COURSES

PathWays PA is offering a course meant for those interested in learning and improving their English while also covering:
  • United States History
  • Work Skills
  • Citizenship Process
  • Employment
  • Math
  • Reading

WHEN: Mondays & Wednesdays - 9:30 - 12:00 OR Tuesdays & Thursdays 5:00 - 7:30
WHERE: Darby Borough Hall, 821 Summit Street, Darby PA

For more information about the class, please contact Kelly Binder at 610-543-5022 X 227 or kbinder@pathwayspa.org.

Images courtesy of: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Capitol-Senate.JPG

House Appropriations Bill Cuts $60 Billion for Remaining FY 2011 Budget

2007USCapitolatNightOver the weekend, the House cut $60 billion from the remaining budget for the fiscal year, according to The New York Times.  Since the Senate is not expected to follow suit, Congress only has four days next week to come up with a bill to fund the federal government for the remainder of the fiscal year.  If no agreement is reached, the government could enter a shutdown in early March.

Hundreds of amendments were included in the bill, and The New York Times offers an amendment tracker to view key votes.  Here is a breakdown of some of the key amendments:
Among amendments that were rejected was a restoration of $50 million in LIHEAP funding and a reduction of Amtrak financing.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Women's History Month

Votes for womenThis coming March marks the 15th year that National Women’s History Month is being celebrated in the United States. This important designation, which started as Women’s History Week in Sonoma County, CA, in 1978, has grown into a celebration of women throughout the country. This year’s National Women’s History Month theme, “Our History is Our Strength,” focuses on the tenacity, courage, and creativity of women and how these skills led to important historical achievements. It pays tribute to the millions of women who have taken action to improve the lives of other women, both in their own era and for future generations. This National Women’s History Month also marks the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day (March 8) and the 100th Anniversary of California women winning the right to vote.

The National Women’s History Project suggests many options for celebrating National Women’s History Month in your community. You can talk to teachers about planning events in school to mark the occasion, write to your local newspapers, radio and TV programs asking them to honor women who are pioneers, or work with a legislator to issue a proclamation marking the important achievements of women. Visit the National Women’s History Project for more ideas, including a sample proclamation that you can use.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Federal Budget Updates and Actions

Dollar symbolApologies for not writing about this sooner, but the Policy Department has been in the midst of attending a national conference and preparing for a local hearing on earned sick time.  While we were busy, a budget proposal for the rest of the fiscal year (from March 4 until September 30) was announced, as well as President Obama's proposed budget for 2012.

Note: Congressional Staffers are also looking for your thoughts on HR 1.  A new service, POPVOX, is among organizations collecting statements.  To learn more about POPVOX, please visit https://www.popvox.com/home. 

Also, The New York Times has put together a graphic representation of the federal budget proposal, showing the various cuts and increases to spending.  You can check it out on their website.

Here is a roundup of budget information that we have gathered from our friends and colleagues. Tell us about more in the comments!

Adult Education
AmeriCorps/Corporation for National and Community Service
Food and Nutrition Programs
Head Start
Health and Human Services Programs
Healthcare
Higher Education
Housing
LIHEAP
Mental Health
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance
Workforce Development

Adult Education
At the federal level, adult education may be in line for a small increase under President Obama's 2012 budget. According to PAACE, the budget includes $635.0 million for Adult Education State Grants, ($6.8 million more than in the 2011 Continuing Resolution), $23.3 million for Adult Education National Leadership Activities ($12 million more than in the 2011 Continuing Resolution), and $17.2 million for Workforce and Community Transition Training for Incarcerated Individuals State Grants. However, while there is an overall funding increase for adult literacy, states will receive approximately 10% less in state grant funding for adult literacy services.  Pennsylvania is likely to lose additional funding due to a population decline.

Within the state grant amount, $75 million will be available for integrated English literacy and civics education services to immigrants and other limited English proficient populations. $50.8 million is also available for a new Workforce Innovation Fund, which will make grants to projects that innovate and validate strategies for improving service delivery and outcomes to WIA beneficiaries.

Within Adult Education National Leadership Activities, the new funding would be split between an impact evaluation of college bridge programs that help adult learners move from adult basic education to postsecondary education/training and the development of a technology infrastructure for adult learners and educators.

AmeriCorps/Corporation for National and Community Service
According to AmeriCorps Alums, the budget bill currently in the House of Representatives would eliminate funding for the Corporation for National and Community Service, which includes AmeriCorps, a network of national service programs that engage Americans in intensive service to meet the nation’s critical needs in education, public safety, health, and the environment. AmeriCorps volunteers work across the country (including here at PathWays PA) to respond to national disasters, build the capacity of nonprofit organizations, and increase civic participation and service.  While President Obama still has AmeriCorps funding in his 2012 budget, AmeriCorps Alums asks that people call their Congressperson this week to support the program

Food and Nutrition Programs
While many of the programs that assist nutrition are entitlement programs and cannot be cut, FRAC reports on a number of proposed funding decreases and funding elimination in the House 2011 Continuing Resolution proposal.  Under the resolution, Women Infants and Children (WIC) funding is set to be cut by $747.2 million, an amount that may be adequate but leaves no room for expected price increases as well as increased demand.  WIC provides Federal grants to States for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non-breastfeeding postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk.  The Commodity Supplemental Food Program also faces a cut of $20 million, which will need to be absorbed over a seven month period and will likely result in large caseload reductions.  TEFAP (distribution and storage of food) will remain at the same funding level, but FEMA Emergency Food and Shelter funding will be cut by 50% to $100 million. Nutrition Programs Administration is set for a $3 million funding cut.

Meanwhile, the following programs will be zeroed out:
  • Congressional Hunger Center
  • Hunger Free Communities grants
  • TEFAP infrastructure grants
  • Community gardens

Head Start
According to the Pennsylvania Head Start Association, the proposed 2011 Continuing Resolutions budget cut to Head Start would result in 1000 staff members in Pennsylvania losing their jobs and 7000 children and families dropped from Head Start programs. The Association further reports that for every $1 invested in Head Start, the US receives $7 in "increased earnings, employment, family stability, and decreased welfare dependency, crime costs, grade repetition, and special education."

Health and Human Services Programs
A 121 page document explaining how the President's 2012 budget proposal would affect HHS programs is available at http://www.hhs.gov/about/FY2012budget/fy2012bib.pdf.

Healthcare
Maternity Care Coalition reports that the 2011 Continuing Resolution would make a number of health related cuts.  Maternal Child Health Block Grants, which support children with special needs, newborn screening and genetic services, lead poisoning and injury prevention and health and safety promotion, faces a $50 million cut. Community Health Centers could lose $1 billion, including $480 million directed to children's health services. The centers provide primary health care in communities without physicians or other medical centers that serve the uninsured.  Additionally, even though the fiscal year is five months old, the Family Planning (Title X) and Teen Pregnancy Prevention Discretionary Grant stand to lose all of their regular FY 2011 appropriations.  For talking points and ways to contact your legislators, please read the MCC Newsletter.

Higher Education
According to The United States Student Association, the 2011 Continuing Resolution and the President's 2012 budget both present cuts to higher education funding.  The Continuing Resolution cuts the maximum amount of a Pell Grant by $875, while also cutting funding to Hispanic-Serving Institutions and Historically Black Colleges and Universities.  Furthermore, the Resolution eliminates funding for the Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG) and federal support for tribal colleges.

In the President's 2012 budget, Pell grants remain at the same funding level, but will no longer be made available for summer school and government subsidies on the interest rates graduate students pay on their loans while still in school.

The United States Student Association offers the following actions:

Housing
Under the 2011 Continuing Resolution, housing spending would be cut by $61 billion according to The Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania.  These cuts would include decreases in funding to public housing, CDBG, housing counseling, Section 202, Section 811, and to a lesser degree HOME.

While the House Resolution will be voted on this week, the Housing Alliance suggests scheduling meetings with Senators next week when they are in their home districts to ask for their support on housing issues.  Detailed action steps are available on their website.

LIHEAP
According to the United Way of Southeastern Delaware County blog, the President's 2012 Budget includes a 66% reduction in Low-Income Heating and Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funding.  According to LIHEAP advocates, this could leave 3.5 million households without the energy assistance they need.

Mental Health
On Friday, February 18, the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare will be hosting a special live event on their blog to discuss behavioral health funding and take questions.  Those interested can visit MentalHealthcareReform.org to leave their questions, and return on Feb. 18th at 2:00 pm to hear answers or to ask additional questions you might have.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance
According to the National Community Tax Coalition, the President's 2012 budget includes a $4 million cut to Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Programs (VITA), bringing total funding down from $12 million to $8 million.  VITA services are critical to low-income families who otherwise may not get their taxes prepared or may use paid preparers, thereby losing hundreds of dollars in unneeded fees and loans.  If you host a VITA site, please complete this brief, anonymous survey about the demand that you have been seeing at tax sites.

Workforce Development
Workforce development funding is under serious threat in the 2011 Continuing Resolution and in the 2012 budget proposal.  President Obama’s budget proposes an 8% reduction in workforce development funds, while the House majority has proposed a 100% reduction in funding for workforce development.

Workforce development funding is critical in supporting job seekers with training opportunities and placement, including CareerLink support services and Individual Training Accounts for education, while also providing employers with valuable hiring and retention services. Please take a moment to call your Congressperson or send this letter in an e-mail or via fax (preferably on letterhead) urging them to support continued workforce development funding.  You can find contact information for your legislators at https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml.

The House will conclude their budget debate in only a couple of days, so it is essential that this information is shared with your Representative TODAY.

PathWays PA Job Postings - February 2011

EITC Coordinator
This position will coordinate and provide data management and support in preparation for, during, and after the 20010/11 tax season. Site Coordinator experience preferred. This position coordinates scheduling of tax sites and preparers and also trains tax season staff and volunteers. Bachelor’s Degree required. Familiarity and commitment to helping low-income/TANF recipients preferred. This is a 6-7 month position beginning in January. Please fax resumes to: LD/EITC at 610-543-6483.

ABE/GED/ESL
Full-Time – Seasoned instructor to teach reading, writing, math, ESL, GED® prep and computer basics in North Philadelphia and Delaware County. Bachelor’s Degree and 2 years of teaching adults or children required. Strongly prefer instructor who has experience with the EL/Civics program sponsored by the state Bureau of Adult and Basic Education. Some evening work required. Must have access to reliable transportation. Training in CASAS and TABE preferred.
  • Provide instruction on a full-time basis, with 10 hours a week of ABE/GED classes at the PathWays PA EARN Center in North Philadelphia and 10 hours a week of EL/Civics in Delaware County, as per class schedules.
  • Start classes on time and conduct them for the prescribed time, and assist with outreach for enrollment, including phone contacts, distribution of fliers and student briefings or orientations.
  • Maintain accurate documentation on each student’s progress (attendance, etc.) and other issues.
  • Provide case management to students: Making phone calls when students have missed one day of class and keeping accurate documentation on dates and times of contact with students.
  • Provide weekly reports on student status: Documentation of students’ attendance, work improvements, any GED® testing (internal and external). 
  • Compile written summaries of lessons and class activities. Maintain appropriate educational materials/supplies for students and classroom with approval from supervisor. 
  • Conduct Pre- and Post-Testing on all students if needed, and ensure that all instructor assessment training requirements are met. 
  • Participate in all required professional development for EL/Civics and ABE/GED instruction. 
Fax resume and cover letter with available hours to 610-328-2807 attn: LD/AE-GED/JP
ESL Teacher
Part Time PathWays PA is currently seeking English as Second Language (ESL) instructors with BA/BS degree and 2 + years of teaching experience. Knowledge of ESL in healthcare field preferred. Must travel independently in Philadelphia, Delaware, Chester, Montgomery, and Bucks Counties. Lesson-planning and attendance record-keeping, and assessments required. This is a part-time, hourly position. Bilingual a plus. Classes forming now, anticipate completion by the end of December. Fax resumes to LD/LK 610-328-2807.

Residential Worker
Part-time and Full-time - need caring and motivated individual to provide support and supervision for Delco group home serving women and children; HS/GED, Associates Degree and experience preferred; driver’s license required. Includes nights and weekends. Fax resumes to: LD/CFF 610-328-2807.

Childcare Worker
Child Learning Center at Delco Group home. Must have knowledge of early childhood development and ability to nurture and promote positive growth in pre-school age children. AA in Early Childhood Ed. Preferred. Salary $12/hour. Fax resume to LD/CFF 610-328-2807.

Cook
Experience in bulk food preparation. The cook/kitchen coordinator shall possess the skills necessary to prepare meals for large groups of people (40-50) and shall have knowledge of nutrition and nutritional meal planning. She/he shall have the ability to understand and follow the USDA mandated guidelines. The cook/kitchen coordinator shall possess the ability to manage food and kitchen supplies. The ideal candidate will have the ability to interact with people and will be flexible and tolerant in dealing with our residents. Prefer GED/HS Diploma. SERVSafe certification required - NO EXCEPTIONS! Must have reliable independent transportation. Location is not accessible by public transportation. Please fax resumes to: LD/CFF at 610-328-2807.

Mentoring Supervisor
Must possess a BSW or bachelor’s degree in related field of study - human services, counseling, or psychology. The Mentoring Supervisor will have experience with issues related to older adolescents and will have some knowledge and understanding of volunteer recruitment and retention. Candidate shall possess the ability to identify with and adapt to the goals and philosophies of the program. Candidate shall be a mature individual with knowledge of parenting issues, community resources, and the skills necessary to live independently. Candidate shall demonstrate insight, empathy, flexibility, perseverance, team orientation, and a LOVE for teens. Some week-ends and nights are required. Please fax your resumes to: LD/BD at 610-328-2807.

Live-in Advisor
Full-time and Part-Time positions available. To provide guidance, direction and supervision to older adolescent teen mothers and teen girls residing in our Supervised Independent Living Program including conducting some life and parenting skill groups. Live in a house with 3 to 4 girls and their children. Must be available during critical hours-5:00 PM to 8:00 AM- can work part-time during off hours. Must be mature and have an understanding of teen parent and teen girl issues and must have knowledge of basic life skills. Rent and utilities paid by agency plus small stipend and scheduled time off. Location: Philadelphia; Fax resumes to LD/SIL at 610-328-2807.

PathWays PA is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

PathWays PA Special E-Alert: Support Women's Health and Paid Sick Days

STOP THE ATTACKS ON WOMEN’S HEALTH CARE!

Join Raising Women’s Voices of Southeastern Pennsylvania, a coalition which PathWays PA is a member of, for a Rally in Support of Women’s Health Care

WHEN: Thursday, February 17th at 11:30 AM
WHERE: Thomas Paine Plaza in front of the Municipal Services Building, 1417 JFK Blvd (across from City Hall)

WHAT’S AT STAKE?
  • Legislation in both Harrisburg and Washington DC aims to stop women from using their own money to purchase health insurance that covers abortion.
  • Some members of Congress are proposing to entirely eliminate all federal funding for family planning and reproductive health services which will lead to more unintended pregnancies.
  • They are also proposing deep cuts in federal funding for maternal and child health.

For more information please visit www.raisingwomensvoices.net or follow Raising Women’s Voices of Southeastern PA on Twitter @RWVofSEPA


COME TO THE RALLY AND HEARING ON EARNED SICK DAYS! 

Everyone Gets Sick— Not Everyone Has the Time to Get Better

2 out of every 5 workers in Philadelphia do NOT have a single paid sick day.

Help Us Tell City Council to Give ALL Workers a Chance to Earn Paid Sick Days.

WHEN: March 1, 2011 9:00 AM
WHERE: City Hall, Philadelphia

Join the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces at City Hall for a Rally and Press Conference and then help us pack the Hearing Room to show the importance of this bill.

Register to attend at: http://rallyforearnedsicktime.eventbrite.com

Even if you have paid sick days remember a majority of restaurant, child care, and health care workers do not—the lack of paid sick days in Philadelphia impacts us all!

To learn more about the need for earned sick time visit http://earnedsicktime.blogspot.com.

Monday, February 14, 2011

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: February 14, 2011

Federal Policy Update

URGE YOUR MEMBERS OF CONGRESS TO SUPPORT HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES THAT SUPPORT VULNERABLE AMERICANS

The House of Representatives is poised to pass a bill which will cut $100 billion from the current-year federal budget, with most reductions focused on federal support for basic health and human services for vulnerable Americans.

Below are some of the cuts in the proposal:
  • An end of funding for Title X, the federal family planning program, in this current fiscal year. Title X provides Pap tests, birth control, STD screening and treatment, breast exams, and more to millions of low income Americans. It's care that saves lives.
  • A $1.1 billion cut in Head Start, a program that provides comprehensive education, health, nutrition, and parent involvement services to low-income children and their families.
  • A $758 million cut to the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, which provides supplemental food to infants, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant and postpartum women,
  • A $210 million cut to Maternal and Child Health Block Grants, which supports children with special needs, newborn screening and genetic services, lead poisoning and injury prevention, and health and safety promotion;
  • A $1.3 billion cut to Community Health Centers, $480 million of which is directed to children’s health services.
  • A $400 million cut to the Low Income Heating Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) Contingency Fund, which assists low income households in heating and cooling homes.
  • A nearly $560 million cut to IDEA (special education) grants to states.
  • A $1.07 billion cut to the Public Housing Capital Fund, which provides capital funding for Public Housing Agencies that own or operate Low Income Public Housing.
  • A $551 cut, or 67%, for Housing for the Elderly and a $210 million cut, or 70%, for Housing for Persons with Disabilities.

It is absolutely imperative that your Members of Congress hear from you today and urge them to support basic health and human services for vulnerable Americans. For a detailed list of the budget reductions included in the $100 billion budget cut proposal, go here.

SEND A MESSAGE TO CONGRESS THIS VALENTINE’S DAY

What if we could use the power of Valentine's Day to stand up for kids and get Congress to focus on preschool and quality, affordable childcare? Thanks to MomsRising it turns out, you can!

Make your own Valentine’s card to tell your Congressperson why programs for kids and families like preschool and childcare make your heart glow.
That's right, this year we're getting crafty (with a nifty high tech edge) for Congress.

MomsRising created an online valentine-creation-station where in less than 1 minute you can create a valentine for your Congressperson. You can help remind Congress what kids need for Valentine's Day this year - programs like preschool and quality, affordable childcare.

State Policy Update

HAS YOUR ORGANIZATION BEEN IMPACTED BY THE STATE BUDGET? TAKE THIS SURVEY!

The United Way of Pennsylvania, The Southeastern Pennsylvania Budget Coalition, and many other organizations are circulating a survey to gauge the impact of state budget cuts to organizations across Pennsylvania. Many programs and organizations have seen funding cuts in the past two years and it is critical to capture this information so we can show legislators just how many cuts have already occurred.

Please take a moment to answer this short, 12 question survey about the impact of cuts on your organization!


Information/Events

STRENGTHENING AMERICA’S VALUES AND ECONOMY (SAVE) FOR ALL


The Coalition on Human Needs is leading the effort to create a new campaign, Strengthening America’s Values and Economy (SAVE) for All – a coalition of national, state and local organizations working to protect important services from harmful federal budget cuts. Please read the campaign’s Statement of Principles and urge your organization to also sign on in support.

The campaign will develop materials that make the case for the involvement of federal resources, engage grassroots advocates, employ media strategies and contact members of Congress with messages consistent with the campaign's Statement of Principles.

Organizations must sign on to the principles by Wednesday, February 16.

Thank you to our friends at Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW) for sharing this information with PathWays PA.

CITY SOUP PHILADELPHIA HIGHLIGHTS CITY’S HUNGER CRISIS

Areas of Philadelphia are some of the hungriest in the nation. Recent statistics show that 1 in 3 Philadelphians are on the brink of hunger. City Soup Philadelphia (CSP) was formed to mobilize the city’s residents as one community to fight this “silent crisis.”

CSP is an interactive web-based tool designed to bring participants up to speed on the issue of hunger in the Greater Philadelphia region. Through the program, participants share a simple bowl of soup with a community of their choice - their family, co-workers, neighbors, or religious congregation, and use the City Soup weekly resource and educative guide to jump start conversation and learning about the issue of hunger and its possible solutions.

Visit the City Soup website to register, participate and make a difference.

MEETING THE CHALLENGE: EDUCATING HOMELESS CHILDREN IN PENNSYLVANIA

Please join the 2011 Meeting the Challenge: Educating Homeless Children in Pennsylvania statewide Conference. This one and one-half day professional development event is sponsored by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and coordinated by the Center for Schools and Communities.

WHEN: April 28-29
WHERE: Radisson Hotel Valley Forge, 1160 First Avenue, King of Prussia PA

This conference will provide valuable information for educators, homeless liaisons, shelter personnel, educators, pupil services personnel, guidance counselors, social workers and other professionals working with the homeless population.

Conference topics will include: The Effective Use of Title I Set Asides for Students Experiencing Homelessness; Working with Unaccompanied Youth; Head Start Collaborations; Fostering Education/Child Welfare Connections; Reaching and Teaching Highly Mobile Children and Youth; How to Be an Effective School District Homeless Liaison; Meeting the Needs of the Rural; Homeless Population; Skills for Working with the Urban Homeless Student Population; Eliminating Transportation and Other Barriers for Homeless Students; and Navigating the New PAHCI Data Collection System.

Keynote addresses will be provided by Frank Kros of Upside Down Organization in Baltimore regarding "Brain-Inspired Ways to Understand and Respond to Poverty" and Dr. Kenneth Ginsburg who will speak about "Fostering the Internal Resilience of Students at Risk."

For more information and to register for this important event please go to: http://homeless.center-school.org/index.cfm?pageid=4363

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact call (717)763-1661, ext. 156 or email lbecker@csc.csiu.org.

“HOW TO GET FOOD HELP: A CONSUMER GUIDE TO FNS PROGRAMS”

The National WIC Association (NWA) and the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) are excited that the Office of Strategic Initiatives, Partnerships & Outreach of USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service has developed “How To Get Food Help: A Consumer Guide to FNS Programs!” 

The low literacy, clear language brochure is targeted at consumers who may be new to navigating social services and assistance applications. FNS hopes that the brochure clearly explains all FNS programs that consumers apply to directly, and that the brochure gives them basic information to identify which programs might be right for them. The brochure also offers basic next steps to get them started in the application process, as well as links and toll-free numbers for more information. “How To Get Food Help” will be a useful tool to add to your outreach strategy.

FNS provides a PowerPoint presentation with the brochure for outreach events, volunteer/employee training, and meetings with funders/supporters.

To download a PDF of the brochure and get more information and tips on how to use it in outreach activities, please click here.

Special PathWays PA Information/Events

FINANCIAL PATH$

Financial Path$, a new program from PathWays PA, helps individuals and families build paths toward economic self-sufficiency through financial education, asset building and economic empowerment. This program provides one-on-one financial counseling and financial education workshops. Financial Path$ is committed to assisting everyone carve their path to self-sufficiency.

If you or your clients would be interested in learning more about this program please contact wrahemtulla@pathwayspa.org.

For more information become Financial Path$ friend on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. Stay turned as we will also be launching a blog very soon!

FREE TAX PREPARATION

PathWays PA offers FREE certified tax preparation at our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites throughout Philadelphia and Delaware counties. Free tax preparation is for taxpayers with an annual gross household income less than $50,000.

Keep your full refund and save your money:
  • No tax preparation fees
  • No E-filing Fees
  • No check cashing fees
  • Open a no-fee savings or prepaid debit card account
  • Purchase a risk free US Saving Bond
  • Find out it you’re eligible for SNAP (food stamps)

Taxpayers must being all necessary identification and required tax statement for taxpayer, spouse, and dependents.

Locations:
  • Philadelphia County – 3617 Lancaster Avenue Philadelphia PA
  • Delaware County – 310 Amosland Road Holmes PA

Call 610-543-5022 or 1-800-209-2914 to schedule your FREE tax appointment today!


PATHWAYS PA OFFERS LANGUAGE/CIVICS COURSES

PathWays PA is offering a course meant for those interested in learning and improving their English while also covering:
  • United States History
  • Work Skills
  • Citizenship Process
  • Employment
  • Math
  • Reading

WHEN: Mondays & Wednesdays - 9:30 - 12:00 OR Tuesdays & Thursdays 5:00 - 7:30
WHERE: Darby Borough Hall, 821 Summit Street, Darby PA

For more information about the class, please contact Kelly Binder at 610-543-5022 X 227 or kbinder@pathwayspa.org.


Images courtesy of: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Heart_icon_red_hollow.svg

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Has Your Organization Been Impacted by the State Budget? Take This Survey!

The United Way of Pennsylvania, The Southeastern Pennsylvania Budget Coalition, and many other organizations are circulating a survey to gauge the impact of state budget cuts to organizations across Pennsylvania. Please take a moment to answer this short, 12 question survey about the impact of cuts on your organization!

Saving Money Made Fast and Easy

(Employers or community organizations: Want to offer free tax preparation at your location? Call 610-543-5022 to schedule on site tax service today!)

Path Ways PA offers FREE certified tax preparation at our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites throughout Philadelphia and Delaware counties!

FREE TAX PREPARATION is for taxpayers with an annual gross household income less than $50,000.

Call 610-543-5022 or 1-800-209-2914 to schedule your FREE tax appointment today!

  • Keep your full refund and save your money!
  • No tax preparation fees
  • No F-filing fees
  • No check cashing fees
  • Open a no-fee savings or prepaid debit card account
  • Purchase a risk-free US Savings Bond
  • Find out if you’re eligible for SNAP (food stamps)
  • Taxpayers MUST bring all necessary identification and required tax statements for taxpayer, spouse and dependents.

Locations:

Delaware County
310 Amosland Road, Holmes, PA 19043
620 Engle Street, Chester, PA 19013
2501 Seaport Drive, Chester, PA 19013

Philadelphia County
3617 Lancaster Avenue, Phila, PA 19104
926 W. Allegheny Avenue, Phila, PA 19133

DelCoAD to Hold Free Financial Services Fair

All are invited to attend DelCoAD's first annual Financial Services Fair at the Booker T. Washington Community Center in Chester on Saturday, February 12th from 10am-4pm at their premiere site, Chester Housing Authority's Booker T. Washington Community Center, 611 Central Avenue in Chester. DelCoAD, sponsored by Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development (PHENND) and the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania, is a member of the National Community Tax Coalition.

Chester, PA-The rush for the tax refund is on and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance programs nationwide are working to assist taxpayers in accessing that refund free of cost. Delaware County Asset Development group, a consortium of agencies, educational and financial institutions sponsors nine of these sites in Delaware County. This year for the first time, DelCoAD and its partners are offering a day-long "Super Site"--a Financial Services Fair where anyone who made under $50,000 in 2010 can receive free tax preparation without an appointment, as well as access other financial services, all at the Booker T. Washington Community Center in Chester this Saturday from 10am-4pm.

Through the IRS-sponsored Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, volunteers electronically file federal and state tax returns, helping low wage workers access the Earned Income Tax Credit of up to $5,666, making it one of the largest and most effective anti-poverty tools in the United States.

"This wonderful opportunity will enable clients to have their taxes prepared and learn about tools to maximize their refunds, all in the same place," said Georgia Julius, VITA Coordinator. "We are excited about the opportunity to impact more taxpayers and offer additional services."

The Philadelphia area is among the nation's leaders in low-income population. DelCoAD partners and affiliates, including fiscal sponsor PathWays PA, PECO, EntrepreneurWorks, Bryn Mawr Trust, Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Delaware Valley and Chester Housing Authority will offer energy assistance, screening for public benefits, credit and housing counseling, prescription assistance and more. This year, the combined efforts of DelCoAD partner organizations will reach over 2,000 low-income working families to build economic security in our most vulnerable communities.

For more information, call Georgia Julius at 610-543-5022 or visit www.delcoad.org.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Presentation at Women and Influence Conference

This weekend PathWays PA spoke at WOMEN'S WAY's Women in Influence Conference at a session entitled the How and Why of Social Media in Advocacy. Below is our powerpoint presentation that includes examples of the ways PathWays PA uses social media to advance our work and inform the public about important issues.

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: February 7, 2011

State Policy Update

HB 42 WOULD WOULD LEAVE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF UNINSURED PENNSYLVANIANS BEHIND

Today the House Health Committee will be voting on HB 42, a bill that would prohibit Pennsylvania from implementing a key part of the federal Affordable Care Act. HB 42 prohibits implementation of health care reform based on the individual mandate of the new law.

It's critically important that legislators hear from us about this bill. Below are just some of the things Pennsylvania will miss out on if health care reform is repealed:

  • Over 2 million people with pre-existing conditions will no longer protected from discrimination
  • 2.2 million seniors who receive free preventive care and other benefits from Medicare through the Affordable Care Act will have their benefits put at risk
  • Nearly 180,000 small businesses will not receive tax breaks
  • Over 32,000 young adults will no longer be able to stay on their parent's plan
Tell Harrisburg you support reform and oppose any efforts to derail it! Tell them you don't want to go backwards to a time when getting sick means you could lose everything.

Federal Policy Update

WOMEN AND HEALTH REFORM 

Last week, the Senate voted down a bill that would have repealed health care reform. Despite this victory for reform, the House is now considering another bill, H.R. 3, that would radically restrict access to an abortion, make abortion coverage harder to get in the private insurance market and narrow the already tightly limited exceptions allowed under current funding restrictions.

Current law allows coverage of abortion for women in the Medicaid program only when the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest or when it is necessary to save the woman's life. H.R. 3 would not allow abortion coverage to protect a woman whose pregnancy might make a chronic health condition, like heart disease, worse. It would also deny abortion care for a woman when her fetus has a condition that makes it unlikely to survive. And it could even allow public hospitals to refuse to treat a woman with serious pregnancy complications who needs an abortion to protect her life or health.

Congress is considering H.R. 3 now - contact your Representative now to oppose this attack on women and health reform!

SIGN A STATEMENT TO SAVE SERVICES 

Federal programs and services which foster economic progress and provide much-needed protection for low- and moderate-income individuals face severe threats in this Congress. Elected officials have proposed deep cuts to education, housing, and other vital domestic programs. The new House leadership is expected to cut domestic programs by about 20 percent in 2011.

The threats are real, but we can successfully oppose these cuts if we all work together to demonstrate the value of and need for these services. The Coalition on Human Needs has launched the Strengthening America's Values and Economy For All Campaign - an initiative to SAVE low- and moderate-income people from loss of economic security due to threatened severe cuts in federal funding, and to SAVE the federal capacity to spur economic recovery and progress for the benefit of all.

If your organization would like to join in the efforts please sign the SAVE For All statement of principles. Advocacy groups, service providers, faith-based organizations, labor, policy, and civil rights groups are all urged to sign. The deadline for signing is February 16.


Information/Events

HELP SUPPORT EARNED SICK TIME IN PHILADELPHIA 

Did you know that 41% of workers in Philadelphia are forced to choose between going to work sick, or sending a child to school sick, or losing their pay or possibly their job? The majority of workers without paid sick days are those preparing and serving our food and caring for our children.

Philadelphia's City Council has the opportunity to ensure that all workers in the city have access to earn paid sick days. Please urge your members of City Council to support workers their families and their communities, by supporting the Promoting Healthy Families and Healthy Workplaces Act (Bill No. 080474).

Workers should have the opportunity to earn a minimum amount of paid time. Please take a few moments to write a letter to your members of City Council. For more information visit the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces Blog.


SUMMER INTERNSHIP OPPORTUNITY

For 22 years, NASI's internship program has focused on developing young leaders in the social insurance field. This year they will have places for 18 to 21 summer interns.

Think about the talented young people you know-students, mentees, friends, interns, and relatives-and encourage them to apply for an exciting summer in Washington, DC.
NASI's internship programs --The Washington Internship on Social Insurance, The Somers Aging and Long-Term Care Internship, The Nathan J. Stark Internship for Non-Profit Development, and The Eileen Sweeney Graduate Internship in Disability Policy - offer a wide array of opportunities and a $3,500 stipend.

Descriptions of the programs and the online application form are available on the individual internship pages and on NASI's Internship Opportunities page.

Visit NASI's Internship Opportunities page for additional information on their internship programs and how to apply. The deadline to apply is March 1, 2011. If you have any questions, feel free to call NASI at 202-452-8097 or email NASI at internships@nasi.org.

Special PathWays PA Information/Events


FINANCIAL PATH$ 

Financial Path$, a new program from PathWays PA, helps individuals and families build paths toward economic self-sufficiency through financial education, asset building and economic empowerment. This program provides one-on-one financial counseling and financial education workshops. Financial Path$ is committed to assisting everyone carve their path to self-sufficiency.

If you or your clients would be interested in learning more about this program please contact wrahemtulla@pathwayspa.org.

For more information become Financial Path$ friend on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. Stay turned as we will also be launching a blog very soon!

FREE TAX PREPARATION
 
PathWays PA offers FREE certified tax preparation at our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites throughout Philadelphia and Delaware counties. Free tax preparation is for taxpayers with an annual gross household income less than $50,000.

Keep your full refund and save your money:
  • No tax preparation fees
  • No E-filing Fees
  • No check cashing fees
  • Open a no-fee savings or prepaid debit card account
  • Purchase a risk free US Saving Bond
  • Find out it you're eligible for SNAP (food stamps)
Taxpayers must being all necessary identification and required tax statement for taxpayer, spouse, and dependents.
Locations:
  • Philadelphia County - 3617 Lancaster Avenue Philadelphia PA
  • Delaware County - 310 Amosland Road Holmes PA

Call 610-543-5022 or 1-800-209-2914 to schedule your FREE tax appointment today!

PATHWAYS PA OFFERS ENGLISH LANGUAGE/CIVICS COURSES 

PathWays PA is offering a course meant for those interested in learning and improving their English while also covering:
  • United States History
  • Work Skills
  • Citizenship Process
  • Employment
  • Math
  • Reading

WHEN: Mondays & Wednesdays - 9:30 - 12:00 OR Tuesdays & Thursdays 5:00 - 7:30
WHERE: Darby Borough Hall, 821 Summit Street, Darby PA

For more information about the class, please contact Kelly Binder at 610-543-5022 X 227 or kbinder@pathwayspa.org.