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So-Called Reform

What is my mom going to do with a work permit? Continue kneeling to the floor and dipping her hands into buckets of chemicals when her body is riddled with arthritis? Already thirty years of hard labor have slowly massacred her skin, joints and bones, her hopeful spirit trampled, spit on, kicked about. Why can't the President I once voted for give my mom what's hers: the freedom to be free, to travel home and meet her children without fearing she'll never see the ones born north again.

So-Called Reform
21 Nov 2014 - 1:35am

What is my mom going to do with a work permit? Continue kneeling to the floor and dipping her hands into buckets of chemicals when her body is riddled with arthritis? Already thirty years of hard labor have slowly massacred her skin, joints and bones, her hopeful spirit trampled, spit on, kicked about. Why can't the President I once voted for give my mom what's hers: the freedom to be free, to travel home and meet her children without fearing she'll never see the ones born north again. No one who truly believes in justice could ever be President, because to be President you must ignore morality for the sake of appearance.

Day of the Dead at the Downtown Community Job Center

On Tuesday November 4th workers of IDEPSCA's Downtown Community Job Center gathered in collaboration with CARECEN to celebrate the dead and have a meal in their honor. The workers created an altar with traditional decorations and laid candy, drinks, pictures and other articles those passed enjoyed while alive. Before eating, the workers also shared poems known as "calaveritas" full of humor, hope and longing.

Day of the Dead at the Downtown Community Job Center
4 Nov 2014 - 2:20pm

On Tuesday November 4th workers of IDEPSCA's Downtown Community Job Center gathered in collaboration with CARECEN to celebrate the dead and have a meal in their honor. The workers created an altar with traditional decorations and laid candy, drinks, pictures and other articles those passed enjoyed while alive. Before eating, the workers also shared poems known as "calaveritas" full of humor, hope and longing.

Photography Workshop at Mobile Voices

On October 25th, 2014, the Mobile Voices PCT participated in a photography workshop where we completed many hands-on activities to learn about the different effects of angles, lighting, distance and other things when taking pictures from our cell phones or digital cameras.

Photography Workshop at Mobile Voices
25 Oct 2014 - 5:46pm

On October 25th, 2014, the Mobile Voices PCT participated in a photography workshop where we completed many hands-on activities to learn about the different effects of angles, lighting, distance and other things when taking pictures from our cell phones or digital cameras.

Racism in a Post-Racial US

For the October 25th meeting of Mobile Voices, the Popular Communications Team opened with an activity in which each person present took a picture to represent his or her individual current state of emotion.

 

Racism in a Post-Racial US
25 Oct 2014 - 4:20pm

For the October 25th meeting of Mobile Voices, the Popular Communications Team opened with an activity in which each person present took a picture to represent his or her individual current state of emotion.

 

My picture depicts the amount of effort I have put into a critical paper for my MFA in Creative Writing program at Antioch University. In the late 1970s, writer James Baldwin wrote an open letter to President Carter asking him to take into consideration the situation of Black Americans whose condition had not improved even with the supposed success of the Civil Rights Movement. The thesis I have developed for my critical paper is that Baldwin could have written the same letter to the current President because Black Americans (for the purpose of this paper, this racial group is the main focus) continue to face racism in a supposed post-racial country. My current state of emotion is stress due to the amount of work I have put into this paper over the past two months as well as the many negative things I am learning about my country.

Health Care for All [CA SB1005]

Following the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as ACA or Obamacare, in 2010, thousands of US residents and citizens have been able to access health insurance either through Medicare/Medicaid or through the private market with the assistance of subsidies based on income. Everyone 18 years of age or older is able to (and must do so, or pay a fine) enroll in a health insurance program, except for undocumented immigrants, who are excluded.

Health Care for All [CA SB1005]
30 Sep 2014 - 3:09pm

Following the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as ACA or Obamacare, in 2010, thousands of US residents and citizens have been able to access health insurance either through Medicare/Medicaid or through the private market with the assistance of subsidies based on income. Everyone 18 years of age or older is able to (and must do so, or pay a fine) enroll in a health insurance program, except for undocumented immigrants, who are excluded. In California, however, State Senator Ricardo Lara (D) is pushing the passage of SB 1005 Health Care for All, which would allow access to health care to undocumented immigrants through state monies. 

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To deal with back pain, fevers, colds, or any other illness or symptom, Aura relies on a variety of over-the-counter pills and medications. When I visit her home, she comments on new medication she has seen on television that will help alleviate the pain in her hands and joints, a result of the heavy janitorial labor she completes to make ends meet. At work, she has taken a fall more than once, only to get up and visit her local Botanica (herb-based pharmacy) to buy back brace and teas to make the pain, which could be a result of a variety of reasons, bearable. With access to health insurance, this undocumented woman could afford the professional opinion of a trained physician instead of leaving her wellbeing to chance.

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When Inez started showing symptoms of a returning psychosis, her family could do nothing but wait until the situation worsened to merit an emergency room visit. Without papers, medical help and mental aid was not accessible, even if all of Inez' family members financially contributed to the effort. When Inez disappeared one day and returned home to explode in an incoherent rage, her family was finally able to commit her into a mental health institution. They, however, did not have a say as to where Inez would be taken and who would take her case. With access to affordable health insurance, Inez could have gotten proper treatment at an earlier stage and her family could have avoided the traumatical experience of "abandoning" their relative into the hands of a system they could have no say in.

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In my own experience, I think of what would have happened if I had no access to health insurance the two times a fever got out of control and I decided to seek medical attention at a hospital. For both visits, I was able to give a co-pay and set up a payment plan for my portion of the expenses after being discharged. No health insurance would have resulted in my acquiring for debts in the ten thousands. By no means are ACA and CoveredCA perfect. I have found it difficult to get information on my status due to long wait times, and website difficulties and even with co-pays, I still find medical attention obscenely expensive. But how much more difficult would my financial situation been without health insurance? How would my inability to cover my bills and seek preventive medical attention affect you? We are a community. And because of that, health care should be accessible to all.

 

[Names have been changed.]

[Picture from the internet.]

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