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October 4, 2017 / Kendra Allen, Editor

The District’s paid family leave bill is still being debated

WORKFORCE | Last year, the DC Council approved a family leave bill, which gives workers in the District up to eight weeks of paid leave, amid debates over the proposed tax on business owners. Next week, councilmembers will discuss how the bill will be funded. (WAMU, 10/3)

“D.C. adopted a really solid paid and family leave program last year,” said Ed Lazere of the D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute, which on Tuesday published a report criticizing the bills that will be debated next week.

“We’re really concerned that these alternative bills that are being proposed and may be seen by some as neutral changes in the way the program is administered would undermine all the strengths of the law that passed. It would make it more complicated for businesses and much less likely that workers will take time off when they have a baby or an ill relative they have to care for,” he added.

IMMIGRATION | WRAG recently signed on to GCIR’s (Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees) Joint Foundation Statement on Immigration. Its basic belief is that immigrants and refugees are integral to the fabric of our society. As such, all signatories support diversity and inclusion, reject discriminatory policies, and commit to support our communities.

Over 200 foundations and philanthropy-supporting organizations have signed-on, including some individual WRAG members. The full statement and list of signatories can be found here.

ARTS & HUMANITIES
– The Ford Foundation has selected twenty-five artists who are committed to social justice for its Art of Change fellowship. The artists will create artworks that advance “freedom, justice, and inclusion”. (Ford Foundation, 10/2)

Related: WRAG understands how art can be used to underscore social justice messages and does this with its annual meeting centerpieces.

– Bryan Stevenson, director of Equal Justice Initiative, is creating America’s first large scale monument to honor the nation’s lynching victims (which is documented at a little over 4,000 individuals from 1877 to 1950). (Atlantic, 10/4)

EDUCATION | Montgomery County’s Blair High Schoolers Meet Lunch Buddies With New Phone App Designed to Combat Bullying (Bethesda Beat, 10/3)

HEALTH | Five counties in Northern Virginia have launched, or are in the process of launching, a website that hosts the health data of each county. (NVHF, 10/2)

PUBLIC SAFETY
– Local religious leaders held a vigil at the Washington National Cathedral yesterday for victims of the mass shooting in Las Vegas. (WAMU, 10/3)

– Justice Department to investigate Prince George’s Police employment practices (WaPo, 10/3)


Do you know what the first amendment actually covers? Take this quiz to test your knowledge.

– Kendra

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