Source: Libraries 4 Black Lives, 2016

Recent events have highlighted the undeniable travesty of systemic racism in America. This “call to action” unifies library efforts and demonstrates our unequivocal professional commitment to social justice and equity. We publicly affirm our support for the Movement for Black Lives and we commit to deepening racial equity work in our institutions and communities. Join the call for #FreedomNow. Help define the role libraries can play.

Dining Workers Strike at Harvard, World’s Richest University

Source: Samantha Winslow, Labor Notes, no. 452 November 2016

On October 5, instead of setting up breakfast for thousands of college students, 750 cafeteria workers at the richest university in the world kicked off their first strike in three decades.

Harvard University’s dining hall workers are demanding a living wage of $35,000 a year, and fighting administration efforts to increase co-pays on top of already costly health insurance plans.

Though their average wage is $22 an hour, workers say it’s a struggle to get by during summer breaks, when they’re out of work or forced to rely on lower-wage temp jobs. They say university administrators are unconcerned about the situation…..

Crisis in Flint Underscores a National Drinking Water Quality Problem

Source: Pam Hunter McFarland and Mike Anderson, Engineering News Record, Vol. 277 no. 11, October 12, 2016

….In many ways, the situation in Flint is unique. A state-appointed emergency manager in 2014 made a unilateral decision to switch the city’s drinking-water supply from Lake Huron, which provides Detroit’s water supply, to the polluted Flint River; then the city failed to ensure that proper corrosion controls were applied to prevent lead from leaching into the water. A few months later, citizens began complaining of vomiting, rashes and hair loss. A U.S. Justice Dept. probe is underway, and criminal charges have been filed against multiple parties, including the city’s former water supervisor.

In other ways, Flint is emblematic of a larger problem: Many cities across the country, particularly Rust Belt cities with older networks of drinking-water pipes and service lines, could be facing similar scenarios with not only lead but also other organic contaminants, such as perchlorate—a component of rocket fuel—and Legionella bacteria…..

Impact of Affordable Care Act Repeal

Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, December 7, 2016

Some 29.8 million people would lose health insurance coverage if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, data from the Urban Institute show. These fact sheets provide state-by-state data on the number of people who would lose coverage and the loss of related federal funding.
Republican Health Reform Repeal Plan Would Leave 30 Million More Uninsured
Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, December 7, 2016

Commentary: GOP’s Health Reform Strategy Amounts to Repeal Without Replacement
Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, December 5, 2016

How Public Pension Plan Demographic Characteristics Affect Funding And Contribution Risk

Source: Donald J. Boyd, Yimeng Yin, Rockefeller Institute of Government, December 2016

The Rockefeller Institute has introduced a Public Pension Stochastic Simulation Model that examines the year-by-year dynamics of pension fund finances. The model forecasts the long-term outcomes of specific plans with real-world characteristics under different investment return scenarios and funding policies. The report introducing the model is the third in a series focusing on the Rockefeller Institute’s Pension Simulation Project.
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