A bill introduced by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis regarding the ongoing protests against racism and police violence would all but provide an incentive to inflict harm on people participating in those demonstrations. HERE
Tampa folks: we have an opportunity to push some of the power of the voices in the streets into public policy through the Tampa City Council and provide an avenue for the community to have a say in how they are policed through the Citizen Review Board for the Tampa Police Department. Below are instructions to comment at Thursday’s Council workshop on the Citizen Review Board changes --- Here’s what we are asking for:
1. Rather than the mayor having the majority of appointments, neither the mayor, nor any other individual, should have the power to appoint more than one third of the CRB’s members.
2. The CRB should have its own independent attorney that it does not share with any other city-government subdivision.
3. The CRB should have a budget for investigations and the ability to retain outside investigators or, alternatively, the CRB’s independent attorney should be able to retain outside investigators on the CRB’s behalf.
4. The CRB should have its own administrative staff or, alternatively, a coordinator from Community Affairs should replace the coordinator designated by the Chief of Police for purposes of setting the meeting agendas and other responsibilities other than training CRB members and providing TPD updates.
5. The CRB should have control over its own agenda (rather than have it set by TOD) and decide for itself what to investigate/review, including the ability to investigate complaints received directly from the public.
6. The CRB should have discretion to review any Internal Affairs investigation where discipline is pending.
7. If the CRB requests information/documents from TPD (outside of issuance of a subpoena), TPD should be required to provide the information/documents within 30 days or request an extension of time, which the CRB should have discretion to grant or deny. TPD should only be permitted to withhold requested information/documents from the CRB if providing same would violate a law, in which case such legal basis should be provided to the CRB in writing.
8. The CRB member participating in an interview panel for a prospective TPD officer should receive all documents/materials regarding the candidate at the same time as other interview panel participants (and in any event, at least seven days before any interview panel takes place).
9. A prospective CRB member with a criminal record and/or history of litigation against the City of Tampa should not be categorically disqualified from appointment. Rather, this information should be considered by City Council and/or the Mayor when making appointment decisions.
10. CRB membership should reflect the racial, gender, ethnic, national origin, religious, linguistic, sexual orientation, socioeconomic, and age composition of the City of Tampa population.
We need to emphasize the importance of having subpoena power and how civilian-review boards are assets to their communities, as opposed to thorns in the side of law enforcement. If you’ve felt moved to be in the streets at all this summer, this is a concrete way to direct that energy to change.
Please sign up to comment before 9AM Wednesday! Public comment sign up is closed after that. The workshop takes place 9AM Thursday!
“This is an attempt to chill legitimate dissent and somehow equate protests against police killing Black people with criminal activity despite the clear evidence that the protests occurring in Florida are overwhelmingly peaceful,” said Kelly Benjamin, co-founder of Tampa for Justice.
“The governor is attaching himself to Donald Trump’s propaganda and manufacturing a non-existent law and order crisis in Florida,” said Senate Democratic Leader Audrey Gibson. “It’s political fearmongering to bolster a president’s re-election bid.” HERE
Tampa's PRIDE used to hold the distinction of the state's largest LGBT pride event. From 2005 to 2013, Hillsborough County enforced a ban on acknowledging, participating or promoting anything to do with gay pride events. The ban was spearheaded by then GOP County Commissioner Ronda Storms
It wasn't repealed until we elected progressive democrat Kevin Beckner. --- Do we want to go back to that? Progressives have been making great progress with the addition of Kemp, Smith and Overman. --- Now they have to it again!
For perhaps the first time in our history, ordinary Americans are worried about whether the world’s oldest democracy can actually pull off a democratic election.
We asked a bipartisan group of five experts to unspool their own specific disaster scenarios.
On November 19, a skirmish breaks out in Tallahassee between pro-Biden protesters and armed white-nationalist groups. Several people are killed, and multiple buildings are vandalized or burned. The next day, violence and looting continue all over Florida. Several Molotov cocktails are hurled into the state capitol.
On November 21, GOP governor Ron DeSantis mobilizes Florida National Guard troops to “restore order,” and on November 22, after some prodding from the White House, he formally requests that Trump send military personnel to help law enforcement suppress what he describes as “an insurrection.”
Please consider supporting Kathy Lewis for the Florida State Senate, and Lt. Governor David Zuckerman for Governor of Vermont. Both of these candidates discuss people with disabilities in their platforms. Kathy Lewis needs your help to win. David Zuckerman does, too. State Senator from Vermont, Dick Sears, is also supporting people with disabilities with his bill to provide accessible, commercially available legal cannabis to the people of Vermont. He is running for re-election and needs your help. We need elected officials who will take our issues seriously.
In the United States, we have an underfunded, under-enforced ADA, absolutely subpar public transit, non-equitable housing being made worse by gentrification in working class neighborhoods, poor healthcare, and a loophole that allows for sub minimum wage to be paid to disabled workers. People with serious disabilities who are on disability welfare lose their coverage should they get married. Mental health is frequently forgotten about, and can cause unnecessary danger for people — especially people of color — with LEOs (Law enforcement officers). Education is at times a nightmare for people with disabilities seeking accommodations, or for the desperate parents of children with disabilities. People with disabilities across the spectrum are grossly underrepresented in government.
The state of disability rights in the United States is atrocious. We need candidates and officials to put our rights on the forefront, and often times, to represent our respective communities. We need people with physical, mental, neurological, & developmental disabilities to see political figures fighting for them, and representing their communities. We need to see more people like Senator Tammy Duckworth, Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, and attorney Haley Moss. We need to support more people like candidate Kathy Lewis, Lt. Governor David Zuckerman, and Senator Dick Sears.
Please support good, pro disability candidates for public office, and support the Stogie! We are currently banned from posting blog articles on Facebook; please reach out to Facebook and let them know that they made a mistake in censoring the Stogie! Thank you friends.
About 100 people gathered at Farmworkers Village in Immokalee on Friday, just a few feet away from where 37-year-old Nicholas Morales-Bessannia was fatally shot by a Collier County Sheriff’s deputy. HERE
Conspiracy theories around the "deep state," billionaire Democrat philanthropist George Soros and QAnon have become a constant fixture on Spanish-language YouTube programs, WhatsApp clips and pro-President Donald Trump Facebook groups aimed at a Latino audience. HERE
MaskUP St. Pete is an inspired collection of gender neutral face mask, designed and produced in St. Petersburg, Florida.
The line was born during the Covid-19 quarantine while Ella & Jaeden were quarantined and watching the pandemics chaos unfold. With so little known about Covid-19, you could observe debate everywhere concerning wearing mask and the following panic over the lack of availability of mask.
Looking for a solution this brand has since become Ella & Jaeden's passion project and primary focus. --- VISIT THEMHERE