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Sen. Kay Hagan Calls for Action on Climate

Washington, DC—Thursday evening on the Senate floor, North Carolina Senator Kay Hagan made an impassioned speech on the threat of global warming to North Carolina’s future. Dave Rogers, Field Director with Environment North Carolina, issued the following statement in response:

“Sen. Hagan showed Thursday that she understands the urgency of addressing global warming. She understands what failing to act could mean for North Carolina’s famous coastline and our agricultural heritage. Given the PR campaign by the dirty energy industry to spread junk science and deny climate change, we thank the senator for standing up with science and speaking the truth.”

Trauma of executions ripples outward

Trauma of executions ripples outward
March 6, 2014 By Kristin Collins

NCCADP Partner Spotlight: UNC Death Penalty Project

The law students sat quietly as capital defense attorney Mark Rabil described the experience of watching one of his clients be executed. Covered in a sheet with IVs trailing from his arms, the man looked around at the roomful of people who would watch him die. His eyes rested on Rabil’s as he mouthed the word “No.” And then Rabil watched as the man he had spent years trying to save from the execution chamber turned blue and died.

South Carolina is not our competition, 2014.

Forbes just released it’s annual list of America’s 20 fastest growing cities. Raleigh is number 2, right after Austin, Texas.

Their criteria include access to talent, in other words, an educated workforce. That we are number 2 shows that the funds we invested in education over the past 20 years are paying off in business development today. Business needs an educated workforce. Putting tax dollars into public schools is one of the best investments we, as a state, can make to draw business and jobs to our state.

Those who can teach, those who cannot make laws about teaching. (And why standardized testing doesn't work.)

I love learning. I want to be a civil rights attorney when I grow up. However, every day my dream seems harder to reach. North Carolina lawmakers are destroying education, one law at a time. Last year NC lawmakers passed laws that suspended pay for teachers with master’s degrees, assistant teachers have been cut, charter schools only have to have 50% of their teachers licensed, taxpayer money is going towards vouchers to allow some students to go to private schools, and teacher tenure will be replaced with one, two, or four year contracts by 2018. Wonderful teachers are leaving in swarms, but can we blame them? I would leave too.

“Shalefield Stories” Released: Residents on the frontlines of fracking share stories of illness, water contamination, and more

Raleigh, NC — As the future of fracking in North Carolina hangs in the balance, residents in Pennsylvania, where drillers are already running roughshod, recounted their stories of illness, water contamination, and damage to their livelihoods from fracking and drilling operations. Environment North Carolina Research & Policy Center released “Shalefield Stories” as the latest evidence that the controversial drilling practice should be kept far away from our water and communities.

“We’ve seen the environmental devastation of fracking add up across the country. But beneath the numbers are real people like Judy from Bradford County whose tap water became contaminated with barium and arsenic after the drillers started fracking on her land,” said Liz Kazal, field associate from Environment North Carolina Research & Policy Center. “These are their stories, and it is our responsibility to heed their words of warning on fracking.”

NC Harm Reduction Coalition’s Overdose Prevention Program Shows Successful Impact, Receives National Attention

NC Harm Reduction Coalition’s Overdose Prevention Program Shows Successful Impact, Receives National Attention

The North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition (NCHRC) is saving lives and bringing overdose victims back from the brink of death with its community-based Overdose Prevention Program (OPP). On April 9th, 2013, North Carolina passed one of the most comprehensive drug overdose prevention laws in the country called the “911 Good Samaritan and Naloxone Access Bill.” Also known as SB20, NCHRC which advocated for this bill’s passage, quickly acted to disseminate and implement this life-saving law. The OPP provides free overdose reversal kits and training to those likely to experience or witness an overdose. “Since the OPP became fully operational on August 1st, NCHRC has dispensed close to 550 overdose rescues kits, and 35 lay individuals have reported they successfully administered naloxone, the antidote for opiate overdose, and saved someone’s life,” stated NCHRC’s Executive Director Robert Childs.

Transgender Day of Remembrance

Transgender Day of Remembrance
by Loftin Wilson

On November 20th, 2013, as night falls, people all over the world will gather by candlelight and read a list of names. The people on this list lived all over the world, from Istanbul to Brazil to Florida to Wisconsin. They were of all ages, some as young as thirteen. Their lives were all very different, but they are all on this list for one reason -- sometime during the last year, each of them lost their life because of anti-transgender hate violence.

People who are transgender -- people whose gender identity or gender presentation is different from or more complex than the sex they were assigned at birth -- live all over the world, in every culture and every country. We exist in every community and every walk of life. And even though data about the lives of transgender people is consistently under- and mis-reported, it is clear that people who are transgender or gender-nonconforming (and people who are perceived to be) experience violence at disproportionate, disturbing rates. One recent analysis concluded that “the majority of transgender people will experience violence in their lifetimes, and that risk for violence starts at an early age.”

Attention shoppers!

From Roses with no bloom? Art Pope's new store:

Roses typically targets poor and minority communities as its consumers.

And critics of Pope, who happens to be Gov. Pat McCrory’s budget director, contend that this administration in general, and Pope in particular, has targeted poor and minority communities with a variety of policies: cutting jobless benefits, refusing Medicare expansion payments, pushing more restrictive voting policies that disproportionately affect minorities.

Statewide and even beyond, there have been calls for boycotts of Pope’s stores, which include Maxway and Roses.

Closer to home, the Carolina Peacemaker sounded the same call.

Wrote the local African American weekly’s editor, Afrique Kilimanjaro, in an Aug. 29 column:

Fracking by the Numbers: What's in store for North Carolina?

As Governor McCrory and members of N.C. General Assembly continue pushing to open up North Carolina to hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, a new report by the Environment North Carolina Research and Policy Center called “Fracking by the Numbers” highlights the risks to North Carolina if the current moratorium on fracking is lifted.

The report is the first study of its kind to measure the footprint of fracking damage nationally to date— including toxic wastewater, water use, chemical use, air pollution, land damage and global warming emissions.

“In state after state, fracking polluted our air, water, and landscapes. If fracking is allowed in North Carolina, this is the kind of damage in store for areas like the Deep River” said Liz Kazal, field associate with Environment North Carolina. “North Carolina’s air, water, and land are just too important to risk. Governor McCrory and the General Assembly need to act now to protect North Carolinians’ air and water.”

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