News and Events from Nebraska Appleseed – January 2014

In this Happy 2014 edition of “Appleseed in Action”:

  • 2014 Nebraska Legislature session kicks off
  • Support common-sense immigration laws
  • Appleseed argues in front of Nebraska Court of Appeals

2014 Nebraska Legislature session kicks off

NE_Appleseed_Icons_StateCapital-128Today the Nebraska Legislature begins what is sure to be an active 2014 session.  The Legislature will address bills dealing with many Appleseed issues during the 60-day session including:

  • Health care access for all Nebraskans
  • Fair wages for hard-working people
  • The Bridge to Independence program for young people aging out of foster care
  • An improved ACCESS Nebraska system

Each week, Appleseed will put out a weekly Legislative Update email to keep you informed about the most important bills we’re following at the State Capitol. Click here to sign up to receive our Legislative Updates.

Here are some key dates to know for the 2014 legislative session:

January 8 – First day of session, bill introduction begins

January 13 – First day of floor debate on carryover bills

January 21 – First day of committee hearings

February 28 – Final day of public hearings

March 4 – Start of full-day floor debate

April 17 – Final scheduled day of session

During the session, we will keep you informed on how you can take action on bills related to Appleseed’s key issues.  One step you can take today is to take a few seconds to sign this online petition started by Rebuild Nebraska to support a fair tax system that works for all Nebraskans.

Support common-sense immigration laws in 2014

IMG_0761As 2014 begins, national momentum continues to build for Congress to take action and update our outdated immigration laws that needlessly separate families and stagnate our economy.

You can make your voice heard today to support an earned, yet inclusive path to citizenship that would keep families united, grow our economy, and preserve our future.

The U.S. Senate passed an immigration bill that includes a path to citizenship in 2013, and now it’s the House of Representatives’ turn to fix this outdated system.

Please call or email your congressman today and urge them to support an updated immigration law with a pathway to citizenship.

Recent polls show more than 60 percent of Americans believe the U.S. needs a path to citizenship for immigrants, and there is optimism House Speaker John Boehner is prepared to consider moving on new immigration laws in 2014.

Let’s help make 2014 the year we finally fix our immigration laws to reflect our values, keep families together, and boost our economy.

Appleseed joins Legal Aid to argue ICWA case in front of Nebraska Court of Appeals

NE_Appleseed_Icons_Legal-128On December 18, Nebraska Appleseed, together with the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska, the Santee Sioux Nation, the Omaha Tribe of Nebraska and the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska, as members of the Nebraska ICWA Coalition, filed an amici curiae (friends of the court) brief in In re Interest of Shayla H., an Indian Child Welfare Act case before the Nebraska Court of Appeals.

The Indian Child Welfare Act, or ICWA, is a federal law that provides distinct requirements in child welfare cases involving Native American children with the intent to address the disproportionality of Native American children in foster care.

Appleseed Staff Attorney Robert McEwen joined Legal Aid attorney Pat Carraher (who represented the father) to argue on behalf of the amici (the four tribes and Appleseed) before the Nebraska Court of Appeals in this case.

Click here to hear the oral arguments made in In re Interest of Shayla H.

We believe this case could have significant implications for tribes and Native American children and families in Nebraska.  The Court of Appeals’ decision in the case will be released in the coming months, and we will keep you posted.

In the meantime, Appleseed’s collaborative efforts with the Nebraska ICWA Coalition to improve compliance with ICWA march on.  A bill to add clarity to Nebraska’s state ICWA statute, making the law better serve native children and families, will be introduced during the 2014 Nebraska Legislative session.

Join the fight to build a stronger, more just society in Nebraska in 2014

Consider giving a tax deductible donation to Nebraska Appleseed today

If you recently gave a donation – thank you! Your gift ensures Appleseed can take the fight for a more just society wherever we can do the most good – whether that’s at the courthouse, in the statehouse, or in the community.

Thank you!


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