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Home country: USA
Current location: Southern California
Member since: Sun Mar 20, 2011, 12:05 PM
Number of posts: 49,152

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LAUSD reaches historic deal, meets demands of union workers following 3-day strike

Source: KTLA.com

The “historic” deal includes a 30% pay increase that Local 99 of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) had been seeking along with a vast expansion of benefits including:

-$2 per hour increase for all employees effective January 1, 2024
-6% ongoing wage increase retroactive to July 1, 2021
-7% ongoing wage increase retroactive to July 1, 2022
-7% ongoing wage increase effective July 1, 2023
-Members working at least part-time (four days or more) or more will receive fully paid healthcare benefits along with their dependents.
-$1,000 bonus for current employees with the district from 2020-21 “during adverse circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
-Raise the minimum wage to $22.52 an hour
-Increase hours and compensation for paraprofessionals serving students with special needs
-Invest $3 million in an Education and Professional Development Fund for SEIU members

The tentative agreement will be moved to union members to vote for its approval. If approved, the deal could prevent schools from being shuttered again as members were not opposed to another strike if negotiations failed to pan out.

“This week, the eyes of our entire nation were on the cooks, custodians and classroom aides who make education possible in Los Angeles, a workforce overwhelmingly made up of women and people of color,” said Max Arias, Executive Director of SEIU Local 99. “We emerged stronger than ever from this week’s strike and showed the entire nation that unions are the most powerful force for economic opportunity and equity. Members’ sacrifice, courage, and strength – and the solidarity of 35,000 teachers of UTLA – led to this moment.”

Read more: https://ktla.com/news/local-news/lausd-negotiations-continue-as-3-day-strike-ends-no-deal-reached/

A huge win for LA school workers, and for LA Mayor Karen Bass, who worked very hard to produce a deal.

Torrance pays $750k to owner of car painted with swastika by cops

The city of Torrance has paid $750,000 to the owner of an impounded car that allegedly was spray-painted by police with a swastika in 2020. The payment settles a $6 million federal lawsuit by car owner Kiley Swaine, who did not learn of the alleged involvement of two former Torrance police officers until nearly two years after the damage to his 2004 Hyundai Elantra.

The swastika incident led to the discovery that some officers were engaging in racist and homophobic text messages, including jokes about having “gassed the Jews,” urinating on a Black man and beating up a woman.

The texts featured several variations of the n-word and referred to detainees as “monkeys,” “moon crickets”  and “savages.” So far, at least four officers have been terminated or resigned in the aftermath of the scandal. Fifteen officers had been placed on leave pending an investigation.

“I have been suing police officers for 39 years and I have never seen anything like this,” said Swaine’s attorney, Jerry Steering of Newport Beach. “It never ceases to amaze me that quite often the very people entrusted by our citizens to protect us from dangerous criminals are more dangerous than the criminals.”


Florida man dies from brain-eating amoeba, possibly after rinsing nose with tap water

A man in Florida died from a brain-eating amoeba that he may have contracted after he rinsed his sinuses with tap water, health officials said.“

"You CANNOT be infected by drinking tap water,” the Health Department emphasized in its statement.

The agency urged members of the public to use distilled or sterile water when they rinse their sinuses, a practice that typically involves neti pots. "Tap water should be boiled for at least 1 minute and cooled before sinus rinsing," the release said.

Symptoms of an N. fowleri infection include headaches, fever, nausea, loss of balance, disorientation, seizures and a stiff neck. The disease progresses quickly after symptoms start, and patients usually die within 18 days or less.


Brain-eating amoeba in Florida tap water? This could explain a lot of things...

California city bans people from living in tents amid homeless crisis

CULVER CITY, Calif. — A new anti-camping ordinance aimed at clearing out homeless encampments has been met with fierce criticism from leaders and residents who say it will displace the most vulnerable to make way for gentrification in this rapidly changing city.

Council members in Culver City, where a new 4.5-acre Apple campus has been proposed and where the median price of a home is just shy of $1 million, voted earlier this week to ban tents and makeshift structures in public spaces, a step other nearby cities have tried only to be stopped by legal challenges.

With more than 170,000 people living in tents and cars and sleeping outdoors on sidewalks and under highway overpasses, California is the epicenter of the nation’s homeless crisis, yet few, if any, communities have been able to make a significant dent in the number of unsheltered residents living within their borders.

A 2018 federal court decision stemming from an Idaho ordinance found that criminalizing homelessness, including prohibiting sleeping in public, violates the U.S. Constitution and amounts to "cruel and unusual punishment" if no shelter beds are available.


Number of migrant border crossings drops to lowest level in two years, DHS says

Source: NBC News

The number of encounters U.S. Border Patrol agents had with undocumented migrants crossing the southern border between legal ports of entry dipped below 130,000 in January, their lowest monthly number in two years, according to a spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security. 

Overall border crossings, which include undocumented migrants who present themselves at legal ports of entry, also fell from December’s record monthly high of more than 250,000 to 156,000. 

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas told reporters last week that he credits new Biden administration policies that opened legal pathways for some migrants to apply from their home countries, while also blocking more migrants from entering at the border under Title 42 Covid restrictions.

A senior Homeland Security official told NBC News that while daily numbers at the border are down to 2021 levels at just over 4,000 a day, the problems driving migration have not been solved. Migrants fleeing desperate situations in failed states throughout the Western Hemisphere will continue to congregate in Colombia, northern Mexico and elsewhere on their journeys north, the official said. 

Read more: https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/immigration/number-migrant-border-crossings-drops-lowest-level-two-years-dhs-says-rcna69558

Another Republican talking point proven to be a lie.

Family of Trump Supporters Dead in Murder Suicide Pact

Morgan Daub, 26, and her parents, James Daub, 62, and Deborah Daub, 59, were found dead on the ground in the backyard of their home in York County, Pennsylvania, on the morning of Jan. 25, after police responded to a request for a welfare check from a neighbor. 

The West Manchester Township Police Department has since said that notes left inside the house indicate that the family recently made a "joint decision" to end their lives. Police believe Deborah Daub shot and killed her husband and then was shot and killed by Morgan, who died by suicide. Police said there were no signs of forced entry or struggle and no evidence that anyone else had been present.

Stabley said the Christian, churchgoing family “was never shy about letting anybody know what their beliefs were” when it came to religion and politics. Morgan and Deborah “very, very huge” supporters of former President Donald Trump, Stabley said.

“They were just so hell-bent on Trump winning, like this could be in the end if he doesn’t,” Stabley said, referring to an instance when he saw them just before the 2020 election. He said he stopped seeing the two after that.


California Substitute Fired For Slamming Student To Ground After Being Called The N-Word

The teacher believed the student’s prior use of the derogatory word was disrespectful. During the confrontation, you can also overhear a student asking the teacher, “you’re going to fight with a student?” It’s unclear whether the teenager himself or one of his classmates posed the question. The educator insisted that he wasn’t trying to fight and that his hands were behind his back.

While shoving the teacher twice, the student can be heard saying, “I’m not playing with you, Bro,” before the instructor loses his temper. The teacher aggressively grabbed the student and threw him to the floor, demanding him to “Say it again."

According to reports, the instructor was fired on the spot. The following day, hundreds of students participated in a peaceful protest organized by the Black Student Union. Their demonstration was in response to the prevalence of the N-word on campus.

According to Markeith Anderson, a junior at the high school, the term is frequently used there.



Elon Musk security member allegedly rams man with car in South Pasadena: police

At the location, police contacted a 29-year-old man from Connecticut who said he had just exited the northbound 110 Freeway and stopped in a parking lot on Mission Street to use his phone.  

That’s when another vehicle pulled directly in front of him, blocking his path, the 29-year-old told police. 

The driver of that vehicle exited and approached the man, accusing him of following his car on the freeway.  

Then, as the driver was leaving the parking lot, he struck the 29-year-old victim with his vehicle.  


I guess Musk is back in town. Dude's paranoia is a public menace.

China's new covid nightmare could become a global catastrophe

President Xi Jinping’s government had imposed draconian requirements for lockdowns, tests and forced quarantines during most of the pandemic. But once lifted on Dec. 7, the measures were followed by little guidance from the top. China’s party-state usually declares that everything is under control. Now, it appears to be quite unsettled. A wave of omicron infections is sweeping Beijing and might soon hit the rest of China. It has triggered panic buying of food and cold remedies. A government known for its rigidity and certitude stopped reporting some daily infections data and deactivated the ubiquitous covid-19 tracking app, adding to the uncertainty. Instead of basking in newfound freedom to go out, many people are scared, hunkering down inside.

China has troubled days ahead. Among those 60 years and older, only about 69 percent have received booster shots, and the uptake is even less among those over 80 years old. They are extremely vulnerable to omicron, and reports from China have indicated that a surge of deaths has already started, with crematoriums working around the clock. Mathematical models predict 1 million or more deaths early next year. China’s government has announced a plan to accelerate vaccination campaigns for the elderly, who have been hesitant to get the shots. For a long while, China has grossly underreported deaths due to covid and probably will continue to do so.
Mr. Xi’s motive for ditching the zero-covid policy was to kick-start a lagging economy, burdened by lockdowns and worker unrest. But the new approach might deal a roundhouse blow to the economy. It is causing widespread disruption to production and supply chains. Should China’s manufacturing slow, the world will feel the pain in the form of shortages and inflation.

China unwisely eschewed the effective mRNA vaccines for less-effective Chinese-made shots. The population has not been widely exposed to omicron, and thus lacks natural immunity. A potential lifeline is an aerosol vaccine developed by CanSino Biologics. It is being offered as a booster, in the form of an inhaled mist taken in through the mouth, after studies show it triggered an immune system response in people who had previously received two shots of a Chinese vaccine. The best strategy is pressing this vaccine and importing millions of mRNA shots, too.


Scientists finally know why people get more colds and flu in winter

In what researchers are calling a scientific breakthrough, scientists behind a new study may have found the biological reason we get more respiratory illnesses in winter. It turns out the cold air itself damages the immune response occurring in the nose.In fact, reducing the temperature inside the nose by as little as 9 degrees Fahrenheit (5 degrees Celsius) kills nearly 50% of the billions of virus and bacteria-fighting cells in the nostrils, according to the study published Tuesday in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.
“Cold air is associated with increased viral infection because you’ve essentially lost half of your immunity just by that small drop in temperature,” said rhinologist Dr. Benjamin Bleier, director of otolaryngology at Massachusetts Eye and Ear and an associate professor at Harvard Medical School in Boston.

As it turns out, the pandemic gave us exactly what we need to help fight off chilly air and keep our immunity high, Bleier said.

“Not only do masks protect you from the direct inhalation of viruses, but it’s also like wearing a sweater on your nose,” he said.

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