Tracking the latest developments in the fight for a fair America
About a million-and-a-half Americans, mostly elderly, are in nursing homes. Mortality rates in nursing homes are high, and abuse and neglect are common.
When victims and their families sue nursing homes for deaths or injuries resulting from improper care, they often find their path to court blocked by arbitration agreements the nursing homes had them sign at the time of admission. Arbitration agreements require people to give up their rights to go to court and force them to resolve cases through arbitration instead. In arbitration, cases are decided by private arbitrators who rely on companies such as nursing homes for repeat business. Arbitrators are bound by neither precedent nor rules of court procedure, and their decisions usually cannot be appealed. Because nursing homes think they have a better chance in front of a paid arbitrator than a judge and jury, nursing-home arbitration agreements have proliferated in recent years. Read more
With the starting of new administrations (both on the state and federal levels), many 501(c)(3) organizations are wondering what they can say in furtherance of their missions. This is particularly true for organizations that exist to protect and advance progressive values and causes that benefit all of us. While c3s cannot imply they will work to support or oppose any elected officials when they are next up for election, they can actively be involved as new administrations take shape and begin governing.Nonprofits and foundations have an important role to play in advancing the interests of constituents who are affected by government policies. Alliance for Justice’s Bolder Advocacy program encourages nonprofits and foundations to speak up and take part in protecting and promoting progressive values. To help you shape their activities and messages in the coming weeks and months we have prepared a new fact sheet, Can We Really Say That? Post-Election Advocacy for 501(c)(3) Organizations. Be a strong (and rule-following) voice for your mission. Be BOLD.
TRUMP TO DISCUSS SCOTUS WITH MCCONNELL, SCHUMER, FEINSTEIN: “President Donald Trump will meet Tuesday afternoon with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, to discuss his Supreme Court choice, according to an administration official,” Politico reported.
McConnell stated that he is “confident we’ll get a Supreme Court nominee confirmed,” in a FOX News Sunday interview. McConnell has also refused to rule out the use of the “nuclear option,” which would reduce the majority needed to confirm the nominee from 60 to 51 votes. Read more
Today, the US Supreme Court heard arguments in two cases that confront the role that race should play in determining legislative districts. Bethune-Hill v. Virginia State Board of Elections, concerned with Virginia state legislative districts, and McCrory v. Harris, focused on North Carolina congressional districts, ask the Court to clarify the law on racial gerrymandering. While these cases and others involving redistricting are multi-faceted and complicated from a legal perspective, they all essentially ask how an individual’s vote should be counted. The National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) believes no vote should be diluted, because a representative democracy should truly mirror its people. Read more
In a speech honoring the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the annual convention of the Federalist Society, Justice Samuel Alito laid out a stark vision of “constitutional fault lines.” He expressed dismay that the First Amendment, in particular, is under attack. In this regard, Justice Alito is undoubtedly correct: The First Amendment will face serious perils in the years ahead. He is, however, utterly wrong about who presents the threat.
During his talk, Justice Alito bemoaned attacks on both religious liberty and free speech. He expressed grave concern that religious liberty was under attack, saying, “It’s not dark yet, but it’s getting there.” Justice Alito also defended the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United, which granted corporations and unions the right to spend as much as they wished during election cycles. Specifically, he lamented that more than 40 Senators have called for a new constitutional amendment essentially overturning the Citizens United decision. Read more