Saturday, January 11, 2020

Harder Invites Central Valley to Participate in First Annual Valentines for Veterans Program

Modesto, CA - January 11, 2020 - (The Stuff Gazette) -- Representative Josh Harder (CA-10) announced his first annual Valentines for Veterans initiative and invited his neighbors throughout the Central Valley to join him in making valentines to deliver to area veterans. The event gives local schools, families, individuals, businesses, and other organizations the opportunity to make valentines to show our ongoing appreciation for the service of our veterans. Rep. Harder will collect the valentines and distribute them to veterans through partner organizations including the Pacific Heroes Project as well as local American Legion and VFW chapters in advance of Valentine’s Day.

“I’m always working to make sure our vets get the benefits and support they earned through their selfless service to our country – but there’s more to be done,” said Rep. Harder. “My Valentines for Veterans program will give everyone a chance to make a small gesture that could have a large impact and remind our veterans that we won’t forget their heroic service.”

Valentines may be mailed or hand-delivered to Rep. Harder’s Modesto office at 4701 Sisk Road, Suite 202 Modesto, CA 95356. Cards are due on February 10th. Interested participants should contact Rep. Harder’s office at (209) 579-5458 for more information.

Representative Harder is reaching out to local schools and service organizations to encourage participation in the program. A flyer with more information is available here.

Since taking office, Rep. Harder has worked tirelessly to ensure our veterans receive the services they earned. Last year, Rep. Harder helped 300 veterans cut through red tape to access nearly $250,000 in earned benefits. He’s also passed legislation to help the families of fallen servicemembers, pushed the White House to cover health care for Vietnam Veterans who were exposed to Agent Orange, and announced a federal investment of $150,000 to support homeless veterans in the Central Valley.

If you would like to participate in the Valentine's for Veterans Effort in YOUR area, Click HERE for more information on how you can do that!!

Monday, January 6, 2020

Iranian General Dead, What's Next, Asks Physicians for Civil Defense

Tucson, AZ - January 6, 2020 - (The Stuff Gazette) -- After Iranian General Qassem Soleimani was killed by a U.S. drone strike, Iran has vowed reprisals. A senior commander of Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guards Corps claims that up to 35 "vital" US and Israeli targets are within Iran's reach.

Physicians for Civil Defense observes that in this age of "asymmetric warfare," civilians here, not just military installations "over there," are at risk.

"Iran's aspirations of being a nuclear power, with ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear warheads to America, have apparently not yet been achieved, but other methods of causing mass casualties and disruptions are available," states Jane M. Orient, M.D, president of Physicians for Civil Defense.

Scenarios include a mass hostage situation; a "dirty bomb"; and widespread blackouts and disruption of essential services because of cyberwarfare or terrorist attacks on the electric grid.

The horrific 2004 school siege in Beslan, Russia, could be reenacted here. Are local and federal authorities prepared?

The first radiation dispersal device (RDD or "dirty bomb") was found in a Moscow park in 1995. Besides the damage from the conventional explosion, the most devastating effect would be panic from fear of radioactive contamination. U.S. governmental authorities still do not make appropriate radiation-monitoring equipment widely available despite the existence of excellent, affordable technology, Dr. Orient states.

The electrical grid is vulnerable as shown when a sophisticated, professionally coordinated attack with military weapons took down the Metcalf electrical substation in Silicon Valley in 2014. Gunmen temporarily knocked out telephone and 911 service, and shot up 17 transformers. Physical control systems used in electric utilities, manufacturing, and oil refineries are being targeted by Iranian hackers.

"Americans have had another wake-up call about the dangers in our world," Dr. Orient said. "They should at the very least assess their ability to shelter in place for a period of time. They need to learn how to help themselves and their neighbors, and not assume the government will be immediately available to save them."

Physicians for Civil Defense distributes information to help to save lives in the event of war or other disaster.

January: National Mentoring Month

Reps. Susan Davis (CA-53) and Jim Renacci (OH-16) j introduced a bipartisan resolution recognizing January as National Mentoring Month, celebrating the quality mentoring programs throughout the nation and the mentors to our young people that provide crucial support and guidance as they develop into our next generation of citizens and leaders.

“Throughout my life, I've been lucky enough to work with incredible young people and see firsthand the life changing impact that committed mentors can have on our children,” said Davis, a senior member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce. “I was fortunate to have mentors who helped me succeed, and I had the opportunity to pay those efforts forward during my time with the Aaron Price Fellows program, a mentorship program aimed at fostering civically engaged students. I am thrilled to introduce this resolution which highlights the importance of these crucial mentorship programs across our country."

“I grew up with very little − paid my own way through school and was the first in my family to graduate college,” said Renacci. “Along the way, I was fortunate to have the advice and support of my parents and mentors to help me succeed. Not every child has that same support structure. That is why I’ve worked with other community leaders in Cleveland to start an empowerment program to connect students with business and community leaders. This resolution recognizes the influence mentoring programs have in helping students realize their educational and career goals and brings awareness to the need for further mentorship programs throughout the country.”

“Mentoring programs and supporters have leveraged National Mentoring Month as an opportunity to not only raise awareness but to get their communities engaged in this effort to provide a critical support to our young people,” said David Shapiro, president and CEO of MENTOR. “It’s only with this level of commitment and involvement that we can ensure every young person has the supportive relationships they need to grow and develop into thriving, productive and engaged adults.”

The Mentoring Effect, a national report, found that young people who were at risk of not completing high school, but who had a mentor were 55% more likely to be enrolled in college than those who did not. They were also 81% more likely to participate regularly in sports or extracurricular activities and 78% more likely to volunteer in their communities.

National Mentoring Month gives Members of Congress and Americans the opportunity to highlight mentoring programs that produce positive outcomes, and to focus on year-round strategies to grow their capacity and ensure that every young person who needs a mentor is connected to a caring adult.

National Mentoring Month is led by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2017.

Rep. Davis serves as Chair of the Congressional Mentoring Caucus, which provides Members of Congress the opportunity to work collaboratively on youth mentoring and develop policy that will improve youth access to high-quality mentors.