Rachel Chalmers

Who gave Kushner clearance?

Last week it emerged that the president ordered the White House Chief of Staff to approve top-secret clearance for Jared Kushner, despite serious concerns from the CIA and the FBI. This was after Kushner lied about his meetings with a Russian lawyer, the Russian ambassador and the head of a Russian bank in his original application for security clearance.

As a result of this interference, Kushner has privileged access to sensitive information about the USA’s interests. Do you trust him to handle these secrets responsibly, in his closed-door meetings with Saudi Arabia? I certainly do not.

Who does the president think he is, to override the best advice of the intelligence community in so serious a matter of national security?


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


Call Nancy Pelosi and ask her to employ all the powers of Congressional oversight to uncover the truth about Jared Kushner. Shy on the phone? Resistbot is your friend.


We have a brand new shipment of sturdy tote bags, manufactured ethically in the USA, bearing the Stand Up San Francisco logo. Tote bags will be available at general meetings; pay what you can. Huge thanks to member Laura for design and coordination!


We know we’re behind on Slack invitations. If you’re still waiting, please let me know at rachel@standupsf.net. My apologies for the delay.


UPCOMING EVENTS


Senator Feinstein Office Action
Friday, March 15
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
REGISTER NOW

Stand Up SF General Meeting
Sunday, March 17
2:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Noe Valley Library, 451 Jersey Street
REGISTER NOW

Senator Harris Office Visit
Wednesday, March 20
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
REGISTER NOW

Thanks for all you do,

Rachel

Rachel Chalmers

Celebrate a win on gun reform

You did it. The Democratic House just passed the first major gun legislation in a generation. Of course, the bill now moves to the Senate, which is unlikely to pass it. But these kinds of bills send a message to the administration, and to America, that progressives will no longer tolerate inaction on gun control. This would have been impossible without our midterm gains. It would have been impossible without you.

This victory demonstrates the importance of the work you have done, and the importance of the work that remains. As Michael Cohen reminded us today, if Trump doesn’t lose the presidency in 2020, there may never be another peaceful transfer of power in the USA. We must keep fighting.


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


Call Nancy Pelosi and thank her for voting Yes on H.R. 1296, To regulate assault weapons.

Rachel Chalmers

Ban assault weapons now

The March for Our Lives went dark last week. The young survivors of the Parkland massacre have done extraordinary work in moving the conversation on gun control, but they needed time to grieve and heal.

They can’t do this alone. They need our help. Rhode Island Congressman David Cicilline has introduced an assault weapons ban, the first since Senator Feinstein’s in 1994. It already has a record number of co-sponsors.


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


Call Nancy Pelosi and ask her to vote Yes on H.R. 1296, To regulate assault weapons.

Rachel Chalmers

A fair day’s wage for a fair day’s work

The numbers are so familiar, they are boring. Women working full-time in the United States earn 80 cents for every dollar paid to their male peers. For women of color, the picture is far worse. Black women earn 61 cents, Native American women 58 cents, and Latinas only 53 cents. This wage gap holds in every state. The causes are complex, but this kind of systemic discrimination has proved intractable to any remedy but public policy.

HR7, the Paycheck Fairness Act, would make it safe for workers to compare their compensation, take salary history (often weaponized against women) off the negotiating table, and reaffirm the right of groups of workers who have suffered discrimination to take their complaints to the courts.


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


The good news is, HR7 is co-sponsored by every Democratic House member. Call Nancy Pelosi and thank her for supporting this timely and important legislation.

For extra credit – it’s only two days till the shutdown clock runs down again. Call Senators Feinstein and Harris and ask them to keep standing firm: no more physical barriers, and no additional ICE beds. Shy on the phone? Resistbot is your friend.

Rachel Chalmers

Patient Privacy at Risk…

The insidiousness of the Trump administration continues to creep into our lives, in ways large and small.  Now patient privacy is at stake.

For those of you not familiar, HIPAA is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996.  One of its functions is to establish policies for how patient information may be shared.

It’s already a bit confusing and shady.  (Granted, I’m currently binge-watching Handmaid’s Tale.)  In December, HHS announced that it is proposing a number of changes to HIPAA.  Among these changes, under the guise of “easing regulations,” would be that patients diagnosed with serious mental illness (SMI) or opioid use disorder (OUD) could have their medical records released without their consent.

Needless to say this is horrifying and unacceptable.  Ranking Democratic Senators Murray and Wyden have sent a letter to HHS expressing reservations about these proposed changes, calling it a “dangerous precedent”.  For a deeper dive into the subject, check out this great Twitter thread and this in-depth blog post.


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


We have until tomorrow night (February 12th) at midnight to submit public comments to HHSopposing these rule changes.  You may post anonymously if you wish.  Here is an excellent guide with tips on leaving the most effective message.

Many thanks to member Lee Abuabara for bringing this matter to our attention.  Glad you’re feeling better, Lee!