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[California Healthline] Lawmakers OK Bill To Speed Up Medi-Cal Provider Approvals
Aug 26, 2014 | Article

[California Healthline] Lawmakers OK Bill To Speed Up Medi-Cal Provider Approvals

Last week, California lawmakers passed a bill (AB 2051) that would shorten wait times for primary care clinics seeking approval to treat Medi-Cal beneficiaries, the Sacramento Business Journal reports. Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program. The measure now heads to Gov. Jerry Brown (D).
[Speak City Heights/KPBS] City Heights Skaters Look At Environmental — And Health — Impacts Of Building A Skate Park
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[Speak City Heights/KPBS] City Heights Skaters Look At Environmental — And Health — Impacts Of Building A Skate Park

It turns out skateboarding, despite its reputation as an extreme sport, is safer than football and basketball. That's according to a new report commissioned by the community group backing a new skate park in City Heights. The report also takes on concerns about skaters' high rate of contact with law enforcement and how to bolster gender equity in such a male-centered sport. The deep dive into the health benefits and implications of a potential development is a burgeoning trend in the planning world. The Mid-City CAN Youth Council began working with Human Impact Partners, a group pushing for such reviews for projects in low-income neighborhoods, on the health impact assessment last fall. Their goal was to garner public support and money for the skate park, which has since received full funding through a state grant. But city and regional leaders say they're increasingly widening the scope of their reviews beyond CEQA and its focus on air quality, geology and traffic patterns.
[Redwood Voice] They Never Told Me Why
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[Redwood Voice] They Never Told Me Why

Youth Journalist Lydia Anderson, age 16, tells her story: I grew up with two drug addicted parents. I was taught how to transgress the law and get away with it. I was taught and trained to fear authority—to know which police officers sold drugs just like my parents did, who would smooth my path if I got into trouble, who would throw me in a cell if I wronged him. And most of all, I was taught never to ask any official for help. Ever. Drugs swallowed my parents’ lives, something not unusual in this community. And my parents lost the ability and desire to parent me. I lived on the street along with many other kids in Del Norte County. I started living on my own when I was ten. I slept at friends’ houses some nights and some nights I slept outside. I was surrounded by drug addicts. No one signed me up for school, though I deeply desired to go. For more than a year and a half of this—of not laying in a bed to sleep, of not having a parent to help me, of not having the education I wanted, of being so hungry I forgot what feeling full was like—I decided I couldn’t take it anymore.
[Richmond Pulse] For Depressed Youth, A Chance to Break the Silence
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[Richmond Pulse] For Depressed Youth, A Chance to Break the Silence

When Amber Cavarlez was 16 years old, her mother was diagnosed with cancer. As the oldest child, she cared for both her mother and her younger brother. During the time that her mother was sick, and even after her mother’s passing, the family didn’t discuss what was happening, and Cavarlez kept what she was feeling to herself. Her younger brother was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and repeatedly attempted suicide while Cavarlez was in college. Still, there was no discussion. Over time, the silence in her life gave way to depression.
[South Kern Sol] Q&A: Meet Dr. Ontiveros, A Mentor for Pre-Med Students
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[South Kern Sol] Q&A: Meet Dr. Ontiveros, A Mentor for Pre-Med Students

Can you tell us a little about yourself, where did you grow up? I grew up in Baldwin Park. It was my younger brother and I. My dad is from Sinaloa and my mom is from San Luis Potosí. They came to the United States in 1977 when my mom was 19-years-old, and my dad was 20. I was a first-generation college student, and I didn’t know much about college. I did get lucky to get into UCLA, and it was because of a lot of support from my teachers.
[Quartz] Growing up poor erodes a sense of control over life well into adulthood, study finds
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[Quartz] Growing up poor erodes a sense of control over life well into adulthood, study finds

More than a half century after Stanford University’s landmark marshmallow test, in which children who managed to defer the pleasure of eating a candy for a few minutes were rewarded with two, self-control is still said to be the key to success. And current educational thinking exalts the value of overcoming obstacles with grit and perseverance. But those very qualities, said to lead to achievement and happiness, are eroded by the experience of childhood poverty, researchers say. A University of Minnesota study (pdf), released Wednesday by the American Psychological Association, presents evidence suggesting that growing up poor can influence people’s sense of control over their lives well into adulthood, even if they have become much wealthier. The result, the researchers say, is more impulsive decision-making and giving up quickly on challenging tasks in uncertain situations.
[The Root] Brutal Treatment of Black and Brown Youths Reflects Disregard for Their Lives
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[The Root] Brutal Treatment of Black and Brown Youths Reflects Disregard for Their Lives

As a youth justice advocate, I give lots of speeches and presentations to elected officials, the heads of national organizations, judges and attorneys. I talk about why children should never be sentenced to life without parole and other extreme sentences. I also helped launch the Incarcerated Children’s Advocacy Network, or ICAN, which brings together people who went to prison as children and are now working to end violence in their communities. But before I did any of this, I was a victim of racist police brutality. As protests continue following the death of unarmed black teen Michael Brown at the hands of a white Ferguson, Mo., police officer, I can’t help reflecting on my own experiences. I certainly am not comparing them to Brown’s death. I do believe, however, that both reflect a horrifying pattern in which too many police officers unleash their rage and frustrations onto African-American and Latino boys and young men. This extends to the courts, where black youths are sentenced to life without parole at 10 times the per capita rate of white youths.
[California Healthline] Bill Linking CalFresh to Medi-Cal Eligibility Set To Head to Governor
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[California Healthline] Bill Linking CalFresh to Medi-Cal Eligibility Set To Head to Governor

The Senate Committee on Human Services last week unanimously approved one final detail of a bill linking eligibility between the state food program and Medi-Cal. That action came two days after an Assembly floor vote passed the measure. SB 1002 by Sen. Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) now just needs to get Senate concurrence to head to the governor's desk. Concurrence is expected today on the Senate floor. Utilization numbers for the CalFresh food program are low, with only 43% of eligible Californians receiving benefits. That means more than half of the people who need food assistance in the state aren't getting it. De León said his bill will help fix that, by making paperwork a little easier.
[Los Angeles Times] Poll: 69% favor Prop. 45 measure on regulating health insurance rates
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[Los Angeles Times] Poll: 69% favor Prop. 45 measure on regulating health insurance rates

A new poll shows 69% of California voters back Proposition 45, a November ballot measure giving the insurance commissioner the power to stop excessive health-insurance rate increases. The Field Poll released Wednesday indicates broad support statewide for Proposition 45 ahead of what's expected to be a costly and contentious battle between consumer groups and health insurers. Overall, 69% of registered voters said they favored the health-rate regulation measure while 16% opposed it and 15% were undecided heading into the Nov. 4 election.
[California Healthline] Covered California Must Step Up Latino Outreach, Advocates Say
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[California Healthline] Covered California Must Step Up Latino Outreach, Advocates Say

Advocates say that Covered California needs to improve its outreach efforts to Latino communities across the state ahead of the health insurance exchange's second open enrollment period, which begins on Nov. 15, HealthyCal reports (Kritz, HealthyCal, 8/20).
[New America Media] State’s Spurning of $6 million Could Hurt Medi-Cal Renewals
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[New America Media] State’s Spurning of $6 million Could Hurt Medi-Cal Renewals

California led the nationwide charge in implementing the Affordable Care Act, including a provision in it that has helped a little more than 2 million more people sign up for the state’s low-income health insurance program known as Medi-Cal. But in spring, the Brown administration turned down a $6 million grant from The California Endowment (TCE) to keep those previously enrolled, as well as those newly enrolled poor people, on the insurance program. The grant originally was to be included in the budget but in negotiations over the May budget revision, the administration wanted it excluded. The Department of Finance argued against taking the TCE grant, saying that without renewal assistance, potentially hundreds of thousands of low-income residents would fall off the Medi-Cal rolls and thereby save the state money.
[KCET] Making Health Happen in South L.A.
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[KCET] Making Health Happen in South L.A.

On a particularly warm Saturday in the middle of August, South L.A. Assembly Member Reginald Jones Sawyer addressed the staff and members of several South L.A. organizations at a community conference held in West Adams. Scanning the crowd of residents and organizers, he said "this is the first time I have heard from my constituents about environmental issues." The Assemblyman spoke at the end of a day full of learning and networking, where residents participated in workshops designed to highlight how South L.A. organizations are working to find solutions to the staggering environmental health challenges facing the community.
[New America Media] CA Ethnic Voters Tip Scales in Support of Medi-Cal for the Undocumented
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[New America Media] CA Ethnic Voters Tip Scales in Support of Medi-Cal for the Undocumented

Opposition to the Affordable Care Act is waning among California Republicans, and just over half of the state’s voters support extending Medi-Cal coverage to undocumented immigrants, according to survey findings released this week. Ethnic voters are chief among the supporters of expanding Medi-Cal to the undocumented – some 73 percent of Latinos, 62 percent of African Americans, and 57 percent of Asian-Pacific Islander Americans – tipping the scales in favor of a statewide program (51 percent overall). Moreover, close to 2 out of 3 voters agree that Medi-Cal (the state’s health care coverage program for low-income children and adults) is important to either themselves or their family members; three years ago, just over half of voters said this.
[Boyle Heights Beat] New LAUSD disciplinary policy restricts use of citations, arrests for minor offenses
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[Boyle Heights Beat] New LAUSD disciplinary policy restricts use of citations, arrests for minor offenses

With the new school year underway, the Los Angeles Unified School District is expanding its discipline initiatives, and embracing non-punitive enforcement strategies. This means students will no longer be ticketed for violations such as most campus fights, petty theft, vandalism, trespassing or possession of tobacco or small quantities of marijuana. Most offenses will instead be dealt with by school administrators, or centers offering problem solving and support. In a news release, Superintendent John E. Deasy said, “This is another of many policy shifts intended to decriminalize student behavior, when possible, and keep youth in school and out of the juvenile justice system.”
[KPCC] Gov. Brown announces legislation to provide migrants kids with legal help
Aug 25, 2014 | Article

[KPCC] Gov. Brown announces legislation to provide migrants kids with legal help

California state officials and lawmakers have introduced a plan that would provide money for pro-bono legal assistance to recently arrived unaccompanied child migrants now living in California. The legislation proposes providing $3 million to qualifying non-profits to provide legal help for unaccompanied child minors, the majority of whom land in the immigration court system without legal representation. It was announced Thursday by Governor Jerry Brown, Attorney General Kamala Harris and members of the state Senate and Assembly. “These young people have legal rights and responsibilities, but they cannot fully participate in complex immigration proceedings without an attorney,” said Harris, according to a statement from the governor's press office. “It is critical that these children, many of whom are fleeing extreme violence in Central America, have access to due process and adequate legal representation.‎”
[Huffington Post] More care, less fear
Aug 25, 2014 | Blog

[Huffington Post] More care, less fear

By Robert K. Ross, M.D., President and CEO of The California Endowment, and Tonya Allen, President and CEO of the Skillman Foundation, who are co-chairs of the Executives' Alliance to Expand Opportunities for Boys and Men of Color -- a growing network ...
3 Fresno- are school districts participate in got milk? Breakfast challenge
Aug 20, 2014 | Article

3 Fresno- are school districts participate in got milk? Breakfast challenge

Fresno, Clovis and Central Unified schools districts will compete in the annual Breakfast Challenge organized by the California Milk Processor Board, creator of the 'got milk?' campaign, in an effort to encourage daily breakfast consumption among students. Running through October, the campaign will include 15 school districts throughout California that will compete for $40,000 in prizes. During the three-week challenge period, school's will track their breakfast participation and the campus with the greatest increase in their district will win $3,000.
Fresno unified will offer free breakfasts, lunches to all students
Aug 21, 2014 | Article

Fresno unified will offer free breakfasts, lunches to all students

Fresno parents can say so long to milk money and signing weekly checks for their youngster's midday meal at school. Starting this year, every Fresno Unified student -- no matter their parents' income -- will get to eat breakfast and lunch for free. About 84% of the district's 73,000 students already get two free meals a day, which is paid for through two federal government programs. Now, with new funding from federal sources, an additional 12,000 students will get to eat at no charge.
More caring, less fear
Aug 22, 2014 | Article

More caring, less fear

Since last week, the nation has focused its attention on Ferguson, Missouri, where a white police officer brutally shot and killed Michael Brown, an unarmed African-American teenager. Mr. Brown's killing and its aftermath have sparked a deep sadness and anger in the community and around the nation. Unfortunately, shootings of unarmed and defenseless African-American males by law enforcement occur all too frequently in our nation. Michael Brown is neither the first such victim, nor likely the last. This latest tragedy represents a deeper and far more disturbing trend: the targeting of our young men of color.
Fresno clergy hope to help restore calm in Ferguson Missouri
Aug 20, 2014 | Article

Fresno clergy hope to help restore calm in Ferguson Missouri

Fresno clergy convened with ministers from across the country Wednesday in Ferguson, Mo., to offer prayers and support for a community that has been rocked with violent protests since the death of an unarmed black teenager at the hands of a white police officer. Fresno pastors D.J. Criner, Booker T. Lewis II and Bryson White are part of an effort by Faith in Community, an affiliate of a national network of faith-based organizations, to convene clergy in the St. Louis suburb.
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