Lai Yee Chan, a house attendant who labored 24-hour shifts in New York Metropolis offering health-related private care, mentioned she obtained a $200 examine in late 2014 for roughly 6,000 time beyond regulation hours.
Chan mentioned she seen the difficulty as a case of wage theft and rallied different dwelling attendants and filed a class-action lawsuit in 2015 towards her employer. Now, years later, employees and advocates are talking out and protesting in Chinatown in response to what they are saying is an “insulting” settlement deal.
Chan, who works for the Chinese language-American Planning Council, noticed her organizing set off years of authorized battles and grassroots organizing. It culminated in a $30 million settlement in March between 1199 Service Workers Worldwide Union, the well being care union representing greater than 100,000 dwelling attendants within the metropolis, and 42 dwelling care businesses.
Divided evenly amongst all the employees, the settlement would give $250 — solely $50 greater than Chan initially obtained — to every individual, or lower than two days of again pay for a 24-hour shift employee, in response to the Ain’t I a Lady Marketing campaign, a women-led nationwide outreach effort to finish sweatshop circumstances.
The union mentioned solely 5% to 7% of the house well being aides it represents work 24-hour shifts, so employees like Chan will obtain considerably greater than $250. However even when the $30 million compensation fund had been break up amongst those that labored 24 hours, in response to estimations from “Ain’t I a Lady,” every individual would nonetheless obtain lower than $4,000 — a sliver of the whole time beyond regulation Chan is owed.
“It feels like they’re trying down on us Chinese language girls, like we’re so low cost and we’re simply begging for cash,” Chan, 67, advised NBC Asian American by means of an interpreter. “That is violence towards us, and we’ve had sufficient.”
Additional time pay for Chan alone, she mentioned, quantities to greater than $250,000.
Wayne Ho, chief government of Chinese language-American Planning Council, mentioned the company has for years advocated to abolish the 24-hour shift however has no energy to take action itself. As a result of the group is Medicaid-funded, he mentioned, it has to adjust to state charges and guidelines, and the state solely reimburses the company 13 hours for 24-hour shift work. Any change to the present system, he mentioned, is feasible solely by means of new laws.
“We acknowledge the 24-hour rule just isn’t honest for employees or sufferers, however it is a systemic problem,” Ho mentioned. “The answer begins at a state stage, not with one dwelling care company at a time.”
Research and lawsuits present that wage theft and labor legislation violations run rampant within the dwelling care trade, which is constructed on the backs of older immigrant Asian and Latina girls. New York state legislation permits employers to pay employees for 13 hours of a 24-hour shift, offered they obtain no less than eight hours of sleep — 5 of which have to be uninterrupted — and three hours of meal breaks.
For ladies like Chan, who has been a house attendant for greater than twenty years, these guidelines for mandated breaks are sometimes violated. For eight years, she mentioned she labored across the clock for a affected person who was left half-paralyzed by a stroke. In the course of the day, she cooked, fed and bathed him; at night time, she awakened each two hours to flip his physique sideways, so he wouldn’t choke in his sleep.
Sarah Anh, an organizer with the Ain’t I a Lady Marketing campaign, mentioned the settlement units a harmful and demoralizing precedent for weak employees in different industries preventing towards deplorable circumstances. Many ladies, in the meantime, proceed to work across the clock for half the pay.
“Probably the most insidious factor about this settlement is that it lets off employers with a slap on the wrist,” Anh mentioned. “What does it imply when girls — Asian girls, immigrant girls, Latino girls — sound the alarm about what occurs of their workplaces and do every thing you’re presupposed to do in American authorized society, and their employers are nonetheless behaving the identical manner as they had been seven years in the past?”
After suing the company, Chan mentioned she now works break up shifts from 8 p.m. to eight a.m., for 13 hours of pay. However she experiences power elbow ache and insomnia, for which she can’t afford remedy. Many years of around-the-clock work additionally took a toll on her household life: Her husband needed to stop his job to take care of their youngsters, whom she barely noticed as they had been rising up.
There’s progress on the legislative stage. New York Metropolis Council Member Christopher Marte, D-Manhattan, who represents Chinatown and the Decrease East Facet, launched a invoice earlier this month to outlaw around-the-clock workdays for dwelling attendants, banning shifts longer than 12 hours besides in emergencies.
Previous to negotiating the settlement, Chan mentioned union representatives advised members that mentioned the well being care trade would collapse if the businesses had been pressured to pay the estimated $6 billion wanted to cowl again pay for each single employee.
Ho mentioned the company’s dwelling attendant program has a $200 million finances, greater than 95% of which is spent on worker compensation and advantages. Ought to the group be pressured to compensate each dwelling attendant, he mentioned, it might go bankrupt.
Neighborhood organizers like Anh discover the reasoning unacceptable.
“You may’t say, ‘The legislation will proceed to be damaged till we discover some magic pot of cash,’” she mentioned. “You may’t construct an trade based mostly on free labor of ladies.”
For the reason that settlement was introduced, dozens of different immigrant girls who work within the dwelling care trade have held quite a few protests on Chinatown’s streets. Chan, for her half, mentioned she received’t money out the settlement cash and that she plans to delay her retirement so she might preserve preventing to finish the 24-hour shift.
“I preserve my job as a result of I need to preserve folks knowledgeable,” she mentioned.
Anxious time for farmers pressured to make use of winter shops in drought | Science & Tech Information
David Exwood is glad along with his crop of oats. Like different cereals, they’ve benefitted from rain within the earlier a part of the 12 months after which the heatwave ripened the crop and dried it out earlier than harvesting.
But it surely’s nonetheless an anxious time. Not simply because combining his crop on flinty soil brings the danger of sparks and hearth.
He additionally rears beef and proper now, with no inexperienced grass for them to eat, he is having to feed them what he is saved for winter.
Impacts like that may trickle down on meals costs. And it isn’t simply livestock. Different crops, like potatoes, carrots, onions and sugar beet are thirsty and delicate to drought.
Yields of those are forecast to be 10 to 50% decrease than in a typical 12 months.
It is not but clear if this 12 months’s harvest will translate into larger meals costs – that largely is determined by how moist the winter is. But it surely’s a serious fear with excessive inflation and a looming price of residing disaster.
Mr Exwood, who can also be vice-president of the Nationwide Farmers Union, argues the problem of water shortage just isn’t a brand new one.
However successive governments have failed to usher in measures to encourage farmers to retailer extra water on farms and coordinate response higher between his sector, water corporations and the Setting Company.
“We’ve got sufficient water on this nation,” says Mr Exwood. “We simply want funding within the infrastructure to have it in the best place and the best time.”
One stress that emerges each time there may be drought are the restrictions positioned on farmers by the Setting Company to guard river and wetland habitats throughout drought.
You’ll be able to see their frustration some rivers, particularly chalk streams fed by aquifers, nonetheless have loads of water in them.
Nevertheless, these are among the most delicate to wreck from low water ranges, which concentrates air pollution and results in rises in temperature, each of which might be deadly to aquatic life.
Conservationists say earlier motion to cut back everybody’s consumption when the climate is dry can be a simple first step. However the one long-term answer, they are saying, is to revive extra wetland habitats, whether or not that is peat bogs, marshes and reedbeds or floodplains.
“Round 90% of these have disappeared within the final 100 years,” says Ali Morse, water coverage supervisor for the Wildlife Trusts.
“We have to make house for that water, we’ll see rising situations like this and we’ll see crops failing if we do not take this sort of motion.”
The message is not a brand new one – however by no means appears to trickle all the way down to motion on farms, or the encompassing countryside. Restoring wetland to cut back flooding and enhance drought resilience is already a part of the federal government’s landmark Setting Act.
But it surely’s already been criticised for being skinny on element and missing clear coverage targets for seeing adjustments by way of.
Polio detected in New York Metropolis wastewater
Well being officers discovered poliovirus in New York Metropolis wastewater, town’s Division of Well being and Psychological Hygiene introduced Friday. Which means polio is probably going circulating undetected within the metropolis.
The virus was beforehand detected in wastewater samples from Orange County and Rockland County, north of town, in Might, June and July. One case of paralytic polio was recognized in Rockland County final month, in an unvaccinated grownup.
“The chance to New Yorkers is actual, however the protection is so easy — get vaccinated in opposition to polio,” New York Metropolis Well being Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan stated in an announcement.
The Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention recommends youngsters get 4 doses of the polio vaccine: the primary at 2 months outdated, the second at 4 months, the third at 6 via 18 months, and the final between 4 and 6 years outdated.
Most individuals get these photographs as a part of their routine childhood immunizations. In New York Metropolis, round 86% of youngsters ages 6 months to five years outdated have acquired the primary three doses. Statewide, 79% of New Yorkers have acquired three doses by age 2.
However polio vaccination charges are far decrease in Orange and Rockland counties, at round 60% amongst youngsters beneath 2 years outdated.
New York State Well being Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett stated the invention of polio in New York Metropolis wastewater was “alarming, however not stunning.”
“For each one case of paralytic polio recognized, a whole bunch extra could also be undetected,” Bassett stated in an announcement.
The Rockland County affected person was contaminated with vaccine-derived polio, a pressure linked to stay, weakened virus utilized in an oral polio vaccine that’s not administered within the U.S.
An individual who takes the oral polio vaccine can briefly shed stay virus, so if a group has a low vaccination charge, the virus can then unfold. If it circulates extensively sufficient, it might mutate to be extra virulent.
“We have to do some sewer surveillance to seek out out precisely how intensive it’s,” stated Vincent Racaniello, a microbiology and immunology professor at Columbia College. “I’d guess that within the main cities the place individuals are touring from international locations the place they’re utilizing the infectious vaccine, you’d discover it within the sewers.”
In London, the UK Well being Safety Company lately detected polio in wastewater in eight of town’s 32 boroughs. Town is now providing booster photographs to youngsters ages 1 to 9.
The New York Metropolis well being division stated Friday that the majority adults who had been vaccinated as youngsters don’t want any extra photographs. However vaccinated adults who’re at elevated danger of publicity to the virus are eligible for a booster.
Unvaccinated folks above age 4 ought to obtain three doses as an alternative of 4, in line with the CDC. Those that are partially vaccinated ought to get the remaining doses, regardless of how a lot time has elapsed since their preliminary photographs.
Polio is extremely infectious, however round 72% of individuals contaminated haven’t any seen signs, in line with the CDC. One other 25% could develop flulike signs that are inclined to resolve inside days. Polio solely not often causes everlasting paralysis of the legs and arms. It could additionally end in meningitis (swelling of the mind and spinal twine membranes) or paresthesia (the sensation of pins and needles within the legs).
The CDC estimates that 2% to 10% of circumstances of paralytic polio amongst youngsters are deadly. Amongst adolescents and adults, the fatality charge is larger: 15% to 30%.
California burglars crash car into Beverly Hills Neiman Marcus
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A gaggle of burglars drove a automotive by the entrance door of a Neiman Marcus in California early Saturday morning to steal merchandise from the posh retailer, police stated.
The housebreaking took place round 4:45 a.m. on the retailer in Beverly Hills. Officers have been dispatched instantly to the shop after receiving a report of an alarm going off, police stated.
When regulation enforcement arrived, they discovered a dark-colored Chevrolet sedan had crashed by the metallic gate and window of the shop. The suspects had already fled with an undetermined quantity of merchandise and items.
Police Division detectives have begun conducting a follow-up investigation and gathering proof from the theft, police advised Fox Information Digital.
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