News and Events from Nebraska Appleseed – April 2013

In this April edition of “Appleseed in Action”

Take Action on Important Bills that Expand Opportunities for Nebraskans

Take-ActionNow is an important moment for YOU to take action on several important bills coming up soon for debate on the floor of the Legislature.

LB 216 – This bill would would take advantage of a federal option to create a system of transition services and support for young people who age out of Nebraska’s foster care system.  These critical services would better meet the needs of these young people in a more inclusive and age-appropriate way.  LB 216 is scheduled for debate in front of the Legislature this week.

Learn more: Read Appleseed’s fact sheet on LB 216. Read our blog about the youth advocates pushing for LB 216.

Take action to support LB 216. Call or write your state senator and tell them this bill gives young people transitioning from foster care a real opportunity to continue to be productive, healthy, and engaged members of our community as adults.

LB 577 – This bill would implement the Affordable Care Act’s new Medicaid program in Nebraska.  It would provide health care access to at least 54,000 uninsured Nebraskans, bring more than $2 billion in tax dollars back to our state, grow the economy, and save lives.

Learn more: Read Appleseed’s fact sheet on LB 577 and watch this video on how Medicaid works in Nebraska.

Take action to support LB 577.  Call or write your state senator and tell them this bill is a win-win for the health of Nebraska’s economy and our people.

Appleseed at the Unicameral

LEARN-MOREAppleseed was very active in March working with senators and testifying in front of committees on bills that support justice and opportunity for all Nebraskans.

Economic Justice

LB 309 – A bill introduced by Senator Kate Bolz that would streamline and improve Nebraska’s public benefits delivery system, known as ACCESS Nebraska. This bill is intended to make the system more simple and easier to navigate, helping both clients and workers. Appleseed supported this bill in front of the HHS Committee on March 14.

LB 330 – A bill introduced by Senator Sara Howard that would raise the gross income eligibility for Nebraska families who qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Bringing the rate to a more meaningful level would allow more families to take a job, or a wage raise, without losing the help they need to put food on the table. Appleseed supported this bill in front of the HHS Committee on March 14.

Read Appleseed’s fact sheet on LB 330

LB 368 – A bill introduced by Senator Sue Crawford that would create a subsidized employment pilot program within the Department of Health and Human Services, which would allow employers to grow their businesses and allow low-income workers to gain meaningful job experience. Appleseed testified in support of the bill in front of the HHS Committee on March 5 and released a public statement of support.  This bill has been designated a priority bill by Speaker Greg Adams.

Read Appleseed’s fact sheet on LB 368

LB 508 – A bill introduced by Senator Kathy Campbell that would incrementally increase the Aid to Dependent Children (ADC) maximum payment rate in Nebraska to a more adequate level. This bill would help parents provide for their children’s basic needs and prevent the unnecessary entry of children into the child welfare system.  Appleseed testified in support of the bill in front of the HHS Committee on March 5.

Read Appleseed’s fact sheet on LB 508

Fair Elections

LB 381 – A bill that would require all Nebraska voters to present a state-issued identification card with an up-to-date home address to their neighborhood poll workers every time they vote, which is not always affordable or possible for many Nebraskans. Appleseed is strongly opposed to this bill because it creates an unnecessary roadblock to the democratic process and undermines the voting rights of many older Nebraskans, those living in rural areas, students who move several times per year, and Nebraskans with low incomes.  Appleseed joined a large group of testifiers who opposed the bill in front of the Government, Military, and Veterans Affairs Committee on March 7.

Follow Appleseed at the Legislature

Now is the time for immigration laws that strengthen Nebraska families, businesses, and communities

As Nebraska’s members of Congress get ready to return to Washington, D.C., after the recess, now is a great time to take action and call their offices to urge common-sense immigration laws that create a clear and inclusive path to citizenship for aspiring Americans. A bill is expected to be introduced after the recess, which ends April 8.

Appleseed will send a delegation of Nebraskans to Washington D.C., for the April 10 national rally for immigration reform, featuring thousands of people from across the country calling on Congress to pass immigration laws that uphold our values of strong families and communities and bolster our economy.

We encourage you to call Nebraska’s U.S. Senators and your Congressman and tell them now is the time for a modern immigration system that includes a clear path to citizenship.

  • Sen. Mike Johanns (202) 224-4224 or (402) 476-1400
  • Sen. Deb Fischer (202) 224-6551 or (402) 441-4600
  • Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (202) 225-4806 or (402) 438-1598
  • Rep. Lee Terry (202) 225-4155 or (402) 397-9944
  • Rep. Adrian Smith (308) 384-3900 or (202) 225-6435

Match your donation to Nebraska Appleseed!

Appleseed’s Development Director Nic Swiercek is running his first half-marathon on May 5 in the Lincoln Marathon and he could use your support! Nic set a goal of raising $1,300 ($100 for each mile) for Appleseed’s mission fighting for justice and opportunity for all and to raise awareness about Appleseed’s campaign to expand access to health care coverage for 54,000 uninsured Nebraskans under the new Medicaid program being considered at the Unicameral (LB 577).

Here’s the exciting news: Two donors are offering a challenge match. If Nic raises at least $1,300 they will together match it with another $1,300!

Make a donation today and your gift will be matched dollar-for-dollar!

Show your support for Nic’s 13-mile run by making a donation today of:

  • $13 to donate $1 for each mile Nic runs.
  • $26 if you think Nic should run a full marathon instead!
  • $54 to donate $1 for every 1,000 uninsured Nebraskans who would get health coverage.
  • $130 to donate $10 for every mile Nic runs.

Donate today and double your gift!

Your donation will further Appleseed’s efforts fighting for justice and opportunity for all and lend Nic the motivation to run all thirteen miles in the Lincoln half-marathon.

Thank you!

Marcus Chaffee joins Appleseed staff

MarcusAppleseed is proud to announce Marcus Chaffee has joined the organization as a Policy Coordinator in the Economic Justice & Health Care Access programs. He has a B.A. in Urban & Economic Affairs from Valparaiso University in Valparaiso, Indiana, and a M.A. in Multicultural and Bilingual Education from the Universidad de Alcalá de Henares in Madrid, Spain.

Prior to joining Appleseed, Marcus served as an Americorps VISTA volunteer in the transitional housing program in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico. In his free time he enjoys organic gardening, outdoor sports, traveling, and cooking.

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