Human Rights

Trump's Reviled Hotline for "Criminal Aliens" Flooded with Reports of UFOs

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 10:47
Nadia Prupis, staff writer

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Wednesday unveiled its controversial immigrant crime office, complete with a hotline for U.S. citizens to report alleged crimes committed by undocumented aliens—which was promptly overwhelmed with calls about extraterrestrials, UFOs, and First Lady Melania Trump.

Categories: Human Rights

As Trump Stokes Fear Among Immigrants, a Movement Builds on May Day

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 10:45
Amy Goodman, Denis Moynihan

Arturo Hernandez, like so many millions of immigrants, came to the United States in order to forge a better life for his family. He is one of the more than 11 million undocumented immigrants without whom the U.S. economy would grind to a halt, yet who are forced to live in the shadows, at risk of arrest, detention and deportation. Arturo spent nine months in 2015 living in sanctuary in a church, the First Unitarian Society of Denver.

Categories: Human Rights

'The Time is Golden and Now': Single-Payer Bill Advances in California

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 10:44
Deirdre Fulton, staff writer

With close to 1,000 supporters rallying outside, California's Senate Health Committee on Wednesday advanced a single-payer healthcare bill that has been described as a potential "catalyst for the nation."

Categories: Human Rights

100 Days of Resistance

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 10:29
Anthony Romero

It only took a day for the people to speak.

Categories: Human Rights

Now Is the Time for Single-Payer Healthcare in California

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 10:18
Jessie Lorenz

In the wake of the failed effort to repeal Obamacare, there’s a groundswell of support rising to bring the dream of single-payer health care to California.

Senators Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, and Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, have introduced Senate Bill 562, the Healthy California Act. SB 562 would make single-payer health care available to all Californians regardless of income or immigration status by providing essential services under Medi-Cal.

Categories: Human Rights

Fragrant Camouflage: In Honorable Opposition to State-Sponsored Fascism

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 10:11
Abby Zimet, staff writer

With the sometime-enlightened Radiohead planning a July show in Tel Aviv, Israel, the band is facing a fierce campaign to cancel what some deem "a benefit show on behalf of Apartheid, ethnic cleansing and brutal occupation." Along with petitions and criticism by BDS advocates, 50 high-profile artists and activists just wrote an open letter exhorting them to "do what artists did in South Africa’s era of oppression: Stay away, until apartheid is over."

Categories: Human Rights

Civil and Human Rights Coalition: Trump’s First 100 Days Marked by Utter Contempt for Civil Rights

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 10:03
The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement on the upcoming “first 100 days” of the administration of President Donald J. Trump:

Categories: Human Rights

The Time To Fix Presidential Primaries Is Now, Not In 2020. Here’s How.

Brennan Center - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 09:54
The Time To Fix Presidential Primaries Is Now, Not In 2020. Here’s How.Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 9:45amMedia Source: The Washington PostThe Time To Fix Presidential Primaries Is Now, Not In 2020. Here’s How.
Categories: Human Rights

Trump’s First 100 Days: A Disaster for the Planet and Our Families’ Health

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 09:52
Environment America

In his first 100 days, President Trump has taken dozens of actions that threaten clean air, clean water, our families’ health, and  treasured places from the Arctic Ocean to the Everglades. (Read our in-depth analysis of Trump’s first 100 days here.)

Categories: Human Rights

ACLU Releases Report on Trump’s 100 Days

Common Dreams - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 09:51

The American Civil Liberties Union today released a report on the civil rights and civil liberties record of the first 100 days of the Trump administration. These include the unconstitutional Muslim ban, the failed Affordable Care Act repeal, and the repeated attacks on LGBT rights. The organization also published a day-by-day accounting of the administration’s “100 Days of Failure.”

Categories: Human Rights

The Chosen One: Thoughts on a Better, Fairer, and Smarter Way to Choose Presidential Nominees

Brennan Center - Thu, 04/27/2017 - 05:30
The Chosen One: Thoughts on a Better, Fairer, and Smarter Way to Choose Presidential NomineesApril 26, 2017Walter Shapiro

There are a series of practical and effective reforms that could be put in place to create a more representative system that limits the chances of unpopular or controversial presidential candidates.

Categories: Human Rights

ACLU Statement on Ann Coulter Speech

Common Dreams - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 21:28

Following news that Ann Coulter cancelled her appearance at the University of California, Berkeley, American Civil Liberties Union National Legal Director David Cole had this reaction:

Categories: Human Rights

Support the Workers'/Students' Strike on May Day

anti-Racism DSA - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 19:19
 Un Dia Sin Inmigrantes
Cosecha and DSA.
Cosecha, Immigrant Rights Organizations, Workers Centers and several unions  have launched  a  national strike billed as a “day without immigrants” to demonstrate that the country depends on the labor of immigrants and working class.  Thousands of students and  workers have already pledged to strike in what organizers expect to be the largest national strike since the Megamarches of 2006.
Join with DSA and this growing movement to strike on May 1. Don’t be left behind.  Organizers from Moviemento Cosecha have said that more than 400,000 workers have committed to strike. See story here
As the strike day approaches the presidents of the Almagamated Transit Union, the Communications Workers of America, the Nation Nurses United, and the United Electrical Workers  have urged their members to participate in the strikes, boycotts and protests in an outreach piece organized by Labor for Our Revolution.
We encourage DSA chapters, students and unions  to join in the massive strikes, boycotts, and other actions beginning on May 1. The movement will continue after May 1.  Information on the post May 1 events is at
Do you have a right to strike?Can workers strike for political issues ?What actions can workers at risk of retaliation take to protect themselves?In the lead up to the March Day Without Immigrants, the Centro de Trabajadores Unidos en Lucha (CTUL) suggested that their members who wanted to participate should take these  precautions to mitigate their risks:1  Tell your employer, in writing, your reason for striking2  Make sure the reason is directly related to your workplaceInform your employer that you will be back at work on your first workday after the strike.3. Send the message as a text and keep a copy of the text as evidence. If you are a member of a union, discuss your strike plans first with your union representative. See a detailed description of your right to strike and how to protect yourself here.
Cosecha is a new nonviolent movement fighting for permanent protection, dignity, and respect for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. Their name, "harvest" in Spanish, honors the long tradition of farmworker organizing and the present-day pain of the thousands of undocumented workers whose labor continues to feed the country. Committed to winning real victories for their community, Cosecha believes in using non-cooperation to leverage the power of immigrant labor and consumption and force a meaningful shift in public opinion.
Cosecha emerged from a year and a half of strategic planning by immigrant rights and DREAMer organizers who have watched politicians battle for their votes, only to stall legislation year after year. For this reason, Cosecha doesn't rely on traditional tactics or dance with political parties. Instead, they are going on the offensive and calling for a series of strikes and boycotts to show that this country cannot function without immigrants.In January DSA was one of many groups to  endorse the call by Cosecha for a Dia Sin Inmigrantes on May 1. You will find DSA’s logo on their partners page along with many of our usual allies such as National Nurses United and SEIU. The DSA NPC tasked our Immigrants’ Rights Committee to encourage DSA locals to support Cosecha in areas where Cosecha is active.  You can see a map of active Cosecha groups here. has offered to be allies and to provide support for the Cosecha efforts. They request support in the following manner.
Fundraising  There is a link on their web page to make donations.
Worker protection.  Cosecha wants to focus heavily on walkbacks and boycotts as part of worker protection. So getting allies like DSA  to show up for those particular actions and campaigns will be key, in addition to May Day participation.If members of your local DSA are willing to join in the worker protection efforts, contact DSA’s Immigrants’ Rights Committee at  Provide your name, your DSA local, and contact information.  We will try to put you together with Cosecha efforts in your region.  If you are not in DSA, conact Cosecha directly at   See below.
Here are Cosecha’s requests:

Worker Support - Here is the list of circles doing Cosecha led actions and supporting other actions <
In addition, we have launched a page for allies and supporters who want to take roles in walkbacks, boycotts, hotline operators for the days after the strike. Here is the page,
Strike Fund - We have launched our strike fund this week. Here is the information
Boycotts are planned for the future.  Please watch for announcements.We know that several DSA local chapters are participating in May Day efforts organized by a wide variety of coalitions partners. There will be marches and strikes in many regions.You can get in touch with the Immigrants’ Rights Committee here you for all you do.
Duane Campbell. Co- Chair.  Immigrants’ Rights CommitteeDSA. 

Categories: Human Rights

'Medicare for All' Bill Reaches a Record-Breaking 104 Co-Sponsors in Congress

Common Dreams - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 17:48
Physicians for a National Health Program

Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP), a group of 21,000 physicians, medical students and health professionals, announced today that H.R. 676, the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act has reached a record number of co-sponsors in the House of Representatives, now totalling 104.

Categories: Human Rights

Workers’ Memorial Day Reminds Us Why the Fight for a Safe Workplace Continues

Jobs With Justice - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 17:19

On June 18, 2016, Regina Elsea went to work at the AJIN USA auto parts manufacturing plant in Chambers County, Alabama. Two weeks away from getting married, she took the job in part, to help pay for her wedding. Regina’s job included overseeing the robots used to build parts supplied to Hyundai and Kia. When a robot stopped working that day, she attempted to fix the machine. The robot abruptly restarted and crushed Regina to death. She was 20 years old.

Following this tragedy, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration levied $2.5 million in fines against AJIN USA, citing 27 violations of federal safety rules. OSHA found AJIN failed to install safety measures to prevent the type of accident that claimed Regina’s life.

Regina’s story is not unique. In 2015, more than 4,800 people were killed at work, a six-year high. Today, the AFL-CIO reports that Latinos have a fatality rate that is now 18 percent higher than the overall working population. According to the same study, those ages 65 and older are nearly three times more likely to die from work-related causes.

April 28 marks Workers’ Memorial Day, a time for us to honor the memories of men and women who died on the job and continue fighting for safe and healthy workplaces for all. Workers’ Memorial Day coincides with the anniversary of the enactment of the Occupational Safety and Health Act in 1970. Working people, labor and environmental advocates who wanted to hold corporations accountable for preventable deaths, chronic illnesses, injuries, and other serious accidents galvanized Congress to create the landmark legislation.

This Act established the Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA, the federal agency tasked with enforcing that employers provide adequate safety and training for the people who work for them. OSHA protecting lives and preventing injuries, and punishing businesses when they fail to do so. Since its passage, the Occupational Safety and Health Act saved more than 553,000 lives.

Despite OSHA’s important role, its resources are limited. The agency employs just 1,838 people to inspect 8 million workplaces. By next Workers’ Memorial Day, OSHA’s capacity to keep Americans safe could further diminish. OSHA operates under the Department of Labor, with a mission to “improve working conditions.” President Trump’s budget proposal cuts 21 percent of the department’s funding, which could gut the quantity and quality of health and safety inspections.

In addition to the proposed cuts, the Department of Labor continues to stall a major safety regulation. In March 2016 the Obama administration issued the “Silica Rule,” requiring corporations to limit their use of the toxic substance in worksites by 2017-2018. Exposure to silica dust causes an array of life-threatening health problems, including lung cancer and kidney disease. The Committee for Occupational Health and Safety found that 95,808 people died from long-term exposure to toxic substances, like silica. Earlier this year the Trump administration delayed the date in which companies have to comply with the Silica Rule, arguing that the rule shouldn’t move forward until a Labor Secretary is in office. With 2.3 million men and women exposed to the dangerous substance, the AFL-CIO estimates that 160 people could die as a result of the delay.

Even as Congress appears ready to confirm President Trump’s pending nominee for Labor Secretary—Alexander Acosta doesn’t inspire confidence that he’ll keep workplaces safe. When asked by Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) during his confirmation hearing about whether he’d move forward with the Silica Rule, Acosta refused to directly answer whether the Labor Department should regulate the cancer-causing agent at all. Acosta also dodged explaining how the Department of Labor could successfully investigate workplace safety if Trump’s anemic budget proposal passes.

Of course, government agencies alone will not ensure people work in healthy and safe environments. Joining in union is a key way to increase worker safety. According to a recent study by the New York Committee for Occupational Health and Safety, non-union employers are the least safe. Seventy-nine percent of fatal accidents at construction sites were non-union and “severe violators” of health and safety regulations are almost always non-union employers.

150 people dying each day from hazardous working conditions, is 150 too many.

As we mourn those we’ve lost, Workers’ Memorial Day serves as a clarion call to action to end deaths of working people once and for all. Please take a minute to reach out to your members of Congress. Urge them to fully fund OSHA so the agency can provide fundamental health and safety inspections and trainings. It’s up to us to hold our elected leaders accountable to demand corporations put people above profits. Together, we can ensure that Regina Elsea and thousands of others will not have died in vain.


Categories: Human Rights

RESIST DAY #97: What You Can Do Today

Common Dreams - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 16:59
Common Dreams staff

Resistance in your community, across the country, and around the globe

Categories: Human Rights

100 Days of Harm to Women and Counting

Brennan Center - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 16:42
100 Days of Harm to Women and CountingDorothy SamuelsApril 26, 2017

Well, it could have been worse. That is the best that can be said of the assaults on women’s equality and reproductive freedom carried out during the first 100 days of Donald Trump’s presidency.

Categories: Human Rights

Because 'Solidarity Is Key,' Labor Leaders Amplify Call for Peoples Climate March

Common Dreams - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 16:42
Andrea Germanos, staff writer

Days before the Peoples Climate March, a number of labor leaders are helping to amplify the mobilization, joining the chorus demanding an "economic policy that works for working people and the planet."

Among those releasing a statement on Wednesday is Mary Kay Henry, international president of Service Employees International Union (SEIU), who called for holding "corporate polluters" accountable.

Categories: Human Rights

Legislating In the Super Pac Era

Brennan Center - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 16:14
Legislating In the Super Pac EraWalter ShapiroApril 26, 2017

The power of Super PACs is one of the reasons for Trump’s thin legislative record.

Categories: Human Rights

Trump’s Hundred Days of Rage and Rapacity

Common Dreams - Wed, 04/26/2017 - 16:07
Ralph Nader

The Lawless-loving corporatists have worked overtime to besmirch the word “regulation” (or law and order for corporations) and edify the word “deregulation,” to help bring about their dream state of  dismantled or weakened regulation.

Categories: Human Rights