Thursday, September 29, 2011

"Pathways to honor Trailblazers"

Pathways Pa., which offers services and advocacy for women, children and families, will honor its 2011 Trailblazers - including the Delaware County Daily Times - at a gala dinner in November.

Click here to read more.

Submit Comments to the Department of Labor - Protect Women from Pay Discrimination

Dollarnote siegel hqFrom our friends at the National Women's Law Center

The Department of Labor is currently considering creating a new compensation data tool that would make it easier to enforce laws that prohibit pay discrimination. Since 2006, the federal government has had NO tool to effectively monitor wage discrimination based on race, national origin and gender by private employers. This means that our tax dollars could possibly be going to federal contractors who are not paying women fairly. It's time to take a stand. Raise your voice: tell the Department of Labor to move us forward and collect wage data. 

Note: The comments you submit will be processed by the appropriate agency and then made publicly available on Regulations.gov.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Poverty in Bucks County

While I have been trying to keep up with the news on the latest poverty data, today was my first opportunity to work with it.  As I began to look at the changes from 2009 to 2010, I came across a surprising discovery: the highest percentage point increase in poverty in the five county area was not in Philadelphia - it was in Bucks County.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

More Than 11,000 PA Nonprofits Need to Update Their Tax-Exempt Status

Internal Revenue Service logoFrom the IRS and our friends at The United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania:
The IRS publishes a list of organizations that have had their federal tax-exempt status automatically revoked for failing to file an annual information return or notice with the IRS for three consecutive years. The Automatic Revocation of Exemption List (Auto-Revocation List) provides the organization's name, employer identification number (EIN), organization (subsection) code, last known address, effective date of revocation, and the date the organization's name was posted on IRS.gov.

The list will be updated monthly as organizations lose their tax-exempt status for not filing. Additional updates will be made as necessary. The date at the bottom of this web page indicates when this page was last updated.
You can download the list of Pennsylvania organizations in Excel or Adobe Acrobat.

Monday, September 26, 2011

PathWays PA E-Alert: September 26, 2011

Special Updates


SAVE THE DATE FOR THE PENNSYLVANIA CONFERENCE ON WOMEN – OCTOBER 25TH

What: Pennsylvania Conference on Women
Where: Pennsylvania Convention Center, 1101 Arch St., Philadelphia
When: October 25th, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The 8th Annual Pennsylvania Conference for Women will be held on October 25th – and includes a stellar line-up of speakers including iconic activist Gloria Steinem, CARE USA president and CEO Dr. Helene Gayle and actress America Ferrera – among many, many others.

The event brings together women from across the region for networking, skill building and community building, and includes such programming topics as personal development, social networking, career advancement and entrepreneurship. In addition, a small business boot camp will be held on October 24th.

For more information or to register, please visit their site.


Federal Updates

CENSUS SHOWS STARTLING LEVELS OF POVERTY

The Census Bureau figures show some startling statistics – 46.2 million Americans live in poverty, the highest rate since the 90s. And poverty rose in 49 states between 2009 and 2010. In addition, in 20 states, at least 15 percent of people have no health insurance.

In Pennsylvania, our urban areas are seeing an increase of those in poverty-up to 14.7 percent from 12.7 person in 2007. The overall rate of poverty in the state is 13.7 percent while 18.8 percent of Pennsylvania’s kids live in impoverished families. In addition, 28.4 percent of African-Americans and 33.5 percent of Latinos live in poverty. These facts come from the Keystone Research Center, who have an online table displaying facts by metro region.

These startling numbers show the strong need for good jobs and for job training in Pennsylvania. To let Congress know the need for these opportunities, please send this e-letter.

Friday, September 23, 2011

"Hunger experts, meeting in Phila., stew over 'food deserts'"

ApplesAt yesterday's antihunger symposium organized by Philabundance, PathWays PA was among several organizations who spoke on the need for more access to food, especially in "food deserts" where fresh produce and healthy options are hard to come by. Lyn Kugel of PathWays PA also discussed the high cost of making ends meet for Philadelphians:
Others speakers included Lyn Kugel, a senior director of PathwaysPA, a social service agency in Holmes, Delaware County.

Citing the high costs of housing, food, and child care in the area, Kugel said a single parent with one school-age child and one preschool child would need to make $54,705 annually to live without using public assistance.

"That's startling," Kugel said, saying few single parents in the area make that much money.
To read the full article, please visit http://www.philly.com/philly/news/pennsylvania/130398213.html.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Harrisburg Update

Harrisburg Mar 5 2010 086The Senate returned to session last week and the House returns this week. Marcellus Shale development continues to dominate the agenda, with Governor Tom Corbett announcing his support of a local impact fee and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announcing a major reorganization. “These organizational changes will enhance the department’s ability to protect Pennsylvania air, water and land, and also will result in a consistent and predictable regulatory system,” Department Secretary Krancer stated. “This is an installment of delivering what Governor Corbett promised during the campaign; and I, along with the governor, am committed to protecting the environment and public health for the future of all Pennsylvanians by strictly and vigorously enforcing our environmental laws.” DEP specifically elevated the status of the Bureau of Oil and Gas Management to address Marcellus Shale natural gas extraction. For more information, please click here.

‘Tis the Season for Workplace Giving

Many of us think of the winter holidays as the season of giving to our families, friends and to those in need. But did you realize that every season can be a season of giving?

For those of us who take part in workplace giving programs, each fall brings a new opportunity to support nonprofit organizations throughout the next year. This year, when you are filling out your donation forms, please think about PathWays PA and what your donation can do for the families we serve.

With as little as $5 per pay period, PathWays PA can use your donation to purchase a crib for a new mother or a move-in package for a family’s first apartment. With your donation of $10 per pay period, PathWays PA can fund the purchase of a toddler bed, a safe car seat, and some beginning kitchen equipment for parents working to support themselves and their families.

There are five ways to support PathWays PA through your workplace giving:
  1. United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania: 01619
  2. United Way of Southeast Delaware County: Write PathWays PA on your form
  3. Combined Federal Campaign: 16357
  4. Pennsylvania SECA: 4113-0006
  5. Penn’s Way Campaign: Designate UWSEPA and our United Way number, 01619

(Don’t have a workplace giving program? You can donate directly to PathWays PA through JustGive.org by visiting http://www.justgive.org/nonprofits/donate.jsp?ein=23-2001837.)

Each year, PathWays PA serves over 6,000 women, children and families in the Greater Philadelphia area by providing opportunities and resources to reach economic self-sufficiency. This year, we are seeing the demand for our services grow even as available resources decrease. Your donation plays a vital role in the lives of families who want to succeed.

Shaila's Story:

At 17-years-old, Shaila had nowhere to go.

On the verge of homelessness, the young mother of two was referred to the PathWays PA Center for Families (CFF), a shelter for young mothers who have been victims of longstanding trauma, homelessness, abuse and/or neglect.

With the help of PathWays PA, Shaila has stabilized her life. She recently graduated high school and is now becoming more confident and self-sufficient with each passing day. Shaila is currently preparing to leave the Center for Families. She is enrolled at Delaware County Community College where she studies criminal justice, and is seeking employment that will help her pay a deposit on an apartment for her and her two daughters.

Shaila says, “Without PathWays PA, I wouldn’t have known what to do. I would be homeless right now instead of going to school, trying to find a job and getting ready to live on my own.”

With some guidance from PathWays PA’s Center for Families, Shaila was able to turn her life around, and now she’s well on her way to providing a safe and happy home for her two little girls.

Come to the Pennsylvania Conference for Women and Small Business Boot Camp


Gatherings like the Pennsylvania Conference for Women play a key role in fostering the connections that help women thrive in their personal and professional lives. In addition to inspirational keynote presentations, the conference offers informational workshops with specialized tracks, a small business boot camp, a Health and Wellness Pavilion, a LinkedIn Connection Lounge, more than 20 informational workshops and networking with peers and local leaders.

This year’s keynote lineup includes:
  • America Ferrera, award-winning actress
  • Martha Beck , columnist for O, the Oprah Magazine and award winning life coach
  • Gloria Steinem writer, lecturer, editor and women’s rights pioneer
  • Tory Johnson, “Good Morning America” contributor
  • Gretchen Rubin, author of the #1 New York Times and international bestseller, “The Happiness Project”

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Talk with White House Staff About Deficit Reduction and Jobs Creation

White House 06.02.08From our friends at the Coalition on Human Needs

Please join us in a conversation with White House staff about the President's New Deficit Reduction and Job Creation Plan:

2:00 p.m. Eastern time on Thursday, September 22
Call 800-401-8436


The President's just-announced plan, Living Within Our Means and Investing in the Future, is a comprehensive approach to solving the nation's short- and long-term problems. It includes the American Jobs Act, legislation investing $447 billion to fund teachers and public safety workers, modernize schools and other infrastructure, target job creation in low-income communities, provide extra help to long-term unemployed, youth, and other especially vulnerable groups, and protect the jobless with an extension of federal Unemployment Insurance.

It also includes $1.5 trillion in revenues from progressive sources as part of its 10-year deficit reduction plan. You may have heard the President speak of the "Buffett rule" - seeking revenue increases to prevent millionaires and billionaires from paying a lower effective tax rate than people of modest means.

This proposal also makes cuts to various mandatory programs totaling $580 billion over ten years:

  • More than $320 billion over 10 years in Medicare, Medicaid, and other health programs ($248 billion in Medicare, $51 billion in Medicaid, and between $21-$25 billion in other health care savings)
  • $31 billion in reduced agriculture subsidies plus $2.1 billion in savings from conservation programs
  • $42.5 billion in reduced benefits to federal employees
  • and other mandatory savings.
While much of these savings avoid reductions in assistance to low-income and vulnerable people, there will be some shifting of health costs to states and other benefit reductions that will affect low- and moderate-income people. There are no cuts to SNAP/food stamps, child nutrition programs, SSI, TANF, or other low-income mandatory programs, however.

Taking into account an estimated $1.2 trillion in annual appropriations (domestic, international, and military) already approved, and $1.1 trillion the Administration is counting as savings from the reduction in troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, $430 billion in lowered interest payments because of reduced deficits, AND the nearly $450 billion in increased jobs spending, the total net savings is estimated at $4.4 trillion over 10 years.

Listeners will be able to ask questions. Please take this opportunity to learn more and share your opinions with a White House policy expert. Please forward this to others in the human needs community.

White House Fact Sheet about the President's plan: http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2012/assets/joint_committee_reportfact_sheet.pdf

Full Obama Administration Proposal (80 pages): http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2012/assets/jointcommitteereport.pdf

Stop Foreclosures- Save HEMAP: Rally and Lobby Day

From our friends at PUP

Harrisburg
Tuesday, September 27
Rally 1 PM Capitol Rotunda
Free Bus leaves Philadelphia at
8:30 AM from 16th and JFK

  • The Homeowners Emergency Mortgage Assistance program (HEMAP) was suspended July 1 due to state budget cuts.
  • HEMAP, which has saved the homes of over 45,000 Pennsylvania families since 1984, offers low interest loans to allow homeowners to stay in their homes during temporary economic problems like unemployment, illness, etc.
  • With the unemployment and foreclosure crisis continuing into its 4th year, with no end in sight, PA needs mortgage help for our citizens. This is no time to end a successful program protecting deserving homeowners.
  • Come to Harrisburg on September 27 to support the $15 million needed to keep HEMAP available to PA homeowners.
  • Call 215-557-0822 to reserve a seat and check our web page at www.PASaveOurHomes.org.

Sponsored by the Pennsylvania Save Our Homes Coalition
C/o Philadelphia Unemployment Project 112 N. Broad St. Phila., PA 19102
215-557-0822 www.Philaup.org labor donated

PathWays PA Job Postings - September 20, 2011

Learning Center Group Supervisor
Experience in preschool setting and knowledge of early childhood development required. Willing to adapt to the goals and philosophies of our program and provide an environment that is non-punitive and strength based. Write curriculum for each age level as well as plan and implement daily lessons/activities. Coordinate the activities of the staff and aids in the Learning Center. Supervise all classrooms. Ensure health and safety standards are met within the learning center. Help out in the Learning Center as required to Supervise and provide physical care for children in the daycare. Encourage children to actively participate in educational and structured activities. Complete developmental screenings on children. Develop and implement individualized educational goals for children. Requires a minimum Associates Degree from an Accredited College or University, including 30 credit hours in early childhood education, child development, special education, elementary education, or the Human Services field and three years of experience with children. BSW preferred. E-mail or Fax resumes to: LD/CFF/LC at 610-328-2807.

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/JP/EARN
Part-Time Mentoring Coordinator
The Mentoring Coordinator will have experience with issues related to older adolescents and will have some knowledge and understanding of volunteer recruitment and retention. They shall possess the ability to identify with and adapt to the goals and philosophies of the program. They shall be a mature individual with knowledge of parenting issues, community resources, and the skills necessary to live independently. They shall demonstrate insight, empathy, flexibility, perseverance, and team orientation. A BSW or bachelor’s degree in related field of study is required. Please e-mail or fax resumes to: 610-328-2807, attention: LD/KM.

Part-Time Residential Worker
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. Hours are 6:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Fax resumes to: LD/CFF at 610-328-2807.

Life Skills Coordinator
The Residential Life Skills Coordinator shall possess the knowledge and skills necessary to teach life skills and the maturity necessary to interact with women from various backgrounds. They shall be organized, non-judgmental, and shall demonstrate good problem solving skills. The Coordinator will work individually with clients who are unable to maintain an acceptable level of safety, cleanliness, and organization. They will assure that the house is maintained in accordance with all licensing and accreditation guidelines and standards. A High School Diploma/GED and three years experience working with women and children is required, but an Associates or BA degree in social services is preferred. Please fax resumes to: 610-328-2807, attention: LD/CFF.

PathWays PA is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

It's Adult Education and Family Literacy Week - Show Your Legislators the Importance of Education!

Wpm02 16This Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, please take a moment to tell your legislators about the need for job training and educational opportunities for adults.  While nearly 2/3rds of jobs will require some form of postsecondary education by 2018, 90 million adults in the United States will not be ready to meet those needs.

We need job-training opportunities as part of any job plan to ensure that all workers and employers can take advantage of the current job market and help prepare America for the future. Please take a moment to tell your legislators how important job-training is.

On "Poverty Day," the Census Shows 400,000 More Families are Living Below the Federal Poverty Level

Each year when the Census Bureau releases new numbers on poverty in the United States, the day of the release is called (rather unimaginatively) "Poverty Day."  Today's Poverty Day shows some sobering data- especially when we consider that these are families living below the Federal Poverty Level, which is far lower than what families need to make ends meet.

We'll be sharing statistics from Pennsylvania over the coming days and weeks, but here is an overview from the Census for the nation:
Poverty
  • The poverty rate in 2010 was the highest since 1993.... Since 2007, the poverty rate has increased by 2.6 percentage points.
  • In 2010, the family poverty rate and the number of families in poverty were 11.7 percent and 9.2 million, respectively, up from 11.1 percent and 8.8 million in 2009.
  • The poverty rate and the number in poverty increased for both married-couple families (6.2 percent and 3.6 million in 2010 from 5.8 percent and 3.4 million in 2009) and female-householder-with-no-husband-present families (31.6 percent and 4.7 million in 2010 from 29.9 percent and 4.4 million in 2009). For families with a male householder no wife present, the poverty rate and the number in poverty were not statistically different from 2009 (15.8 percent and 880,000 in 2010).

"DHS honors students who beat the odds"

Students at the Achieving Independence Center, where PathWays PA provides services, were honored for overcoming the tremendous obstacles that occur when aging out of the foster care system. Without a strong support system, young men and women, leaving foster care are more likely to experience unemployment, dependency on public assistance and homelessness. If you would like to learn more or mentor youth aging out, please call PathWays PA at 215-574-9194.


Pathways PA E-Alert: September 12, 2011

Special Updates

Stop the Real Contagion

Have you seen the preview for Contagion - the new blockbuster film about a global flu pandemic?

What's most frightening about this star-studded film is that flu epidemics are real, and they can spread quickly - especially in the Philadelphia, where over 200,000 hard hard-working people without paid sick days are forced to choose between their financial security and their health when they get sick. During the recent H1N1 outbreak, seven million of the people caught the flu from their co-workers. Less serious flus and colds can also disrupt our lives.

Please take a moment to send this video to City Council so that they can stop the real contagion in Philadelphia.

To view the video, click here.

What Else Can You Do?

1. Call your members of City Coucil today by simply dialing 800-584-6813. Before the call is put through there will be a short message you can listen to for information about what you can say. After you place that call you are welcome to call any of the other Council members as well. Make this call today and please share the number with others. City Council spoke for the people of Philadelphia when they passed the paid sick days bill. Don’t let the Mayor silence us with his veto – call City Council today and let them know that Philadelphians want and deserve paid sick days.
2. Come out to City Hall on Thursday, September 15th to urge City Council in person to override the mayor’s veto. For more information, click here.


Federal Updates

House votes to strip funding for McKinney Vento from HUD bill

A bill in the House of Representatives for the fiscal year 2012 budget for the Department of Housing and Urban Development failed to include reauthorization of McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Grants, which have empowered homeless families to transition back into housing since 1987.

The National Alliance to End Homelessness is asking people to contact their representatives to urge restoration of funding for the McKinney Vento Homeless Assistance Grants.

For more information on talking points and contacting your representative, check the Alliance’s update on the matter.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Share Your Comments: Tell USDA You Want to Keep the National School Lunch Program Strong and Available to All Children

Lunch boxesFrom our friends at FRAC

Through September 15, USDA will be accepting comments on its interim rule, National School Lunch Program: School Food Service Account Revenue Amendments Related to the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.

Follow this link to find out how to submit comments.

SUBMIT YOUR COMMENTS
Tell USDA how it can lessen the possible negative impact of increased school lunch prices on vulnerable families and the viability of the program itself.

And tell USDA that you support the requirement for schools to generate as much revenue as they spend on nonprogram foods (commonly called “competitive foods”).

Click here to find FRAC model comments (MS Word document).

The proposed regulations are open to public comment through September 15, 2011.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

WHAT’S IN THE RULE?
This interim rule requires school districts to increase their paid school lunch fees each year if they are charging less than the federal free lunch reimbursement rate. This provision is expected to decrease participation in the National School Lunch Program among children who are not qualified for free or reduced-price school meals. USDA’s cost benefit analysis of the rule estimates that 1.6 million children who live in households with incomes between 185 and 200 percent of poverty will be impacted negatively by the rule.

The rule also requires schools to conduct cost-accounting of their nonprogram foods (i.e. a la carte, snack bar and other vended snacks) to ensure that they generate enough revenue to cover costs. This provision of the rule is expected to generate increased participation and revenue in the National School Lunch Program.

Path from poverty: Woman's strength realized through hard times

From an article by Leigh Zaleski

Sociologists and advocates for the poor use alternative formulas to determine the minimum level of income required for a family to sustain itself. The Self-Sufficiency Standard, for example, considers regional variation in living expenses and accounts for food, housing, child care, health care, transportation, taxes and other costs.

Last year, the Standard estimated the cost of living in York County for a single parent with a preschooler and school-age child was $42,114, which requires an hourly wage near $21.60. In comparison, the federal poverty line for a family of three is $18,530, which comes out to $9.50 an hour earned by a single parent working 40 hours a week.

One in five households in Pennsylvania lacked self-sufficiency wages last year, according to an analysis by the Center for Women's Welfare at the University of Washington. In 85 percent of these households, at least one adult was working.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Pathways PA E-Alert: September 6, 2011

FEDERAL UPDATES

FEDERAL UPDATES
 
Tell your legislators the importance of skilled jobs programs
 
We know that across the country, Americans are looking for jobs so that they can support their families and acheive their dreams.  What is less known is that across the country, employers are searching for workers - but too often they come up empty because they can't find workers with the skills and education needed to perform in the workplace.  We need job-training opportunities as part of any job plan to ensure that all workers and employers can take advantage of the current job market and help prepare America for the future.  Please take a moment to tell your legislators how important job-training is.
 
To write your legislator, click here.
 
 
Support Programs That Keep More Money in Your Pocket! 
 
As Congress takes on the task of deficit reduction, we have a unique opportunity to advocate for programs and services that ensure families have more access to the money they earn each year.  Among these programs are refundable tax credits - usually seen in the form of the Earned Income Tax Credit, or EITC.  
 
The EITC and other refundable tax credits have resulted in extraordinary economic impact to the nation in general,and our state and local communities in particular. Just as important, the EITC is designed to – and has been proven to – promote work. Without earning anincome, families do not qualify for the EITC and other refundable tax credits, a fact which brings adults into the labor force.
 
Please take a moment to tell your legislators how important these programs are, and ask them to ensure they remain in the budget during the deficit reduction process.
 
To send a customizable letter, please click here.