Tag Archives: Federal

New Automation Technology Delivers Bigger Piece of Federal Funding Pie for Schools with Struggling Lunch Programs

Hermosa Beach, CA (PRWEB) March 27, 2008

Food Service Solutions is now offering a software for schools that will improve their means of identifying poor students, while protecting their privacy. This will enable districts to establish accurate accounting records in order to qualify for maximum state and federal funding. Studies show that many schools suffer from insufficient funding because they fail to qualify every student who is entitled to a free or discounted lunch at the school cafeteria. With this new system in place, administrators and parents can also keep track of balances and student eating habits.

Answering the question “How poor are you?” may seem unsavory. But school districts that don’t properly assess the economic status of its student populations will have no luck sweetening the pot when requesting federal and state funds. As a result, schools facing rising food costs coupled with budget shortfalls have been forced to hike school lunch prices for paying students and rely more heavily on less nutritious processed food.

Sometimes, with older accounting systems, the truth is plain as day and unintentionally segregates poor school children from the throng. For example, students might be asked to verbally declare their status in a school lunch line – within earshot of other students. Or rather than pay with cash, students eligible for assistance are issued vouchers or ID cards that, when presented at meal time, immediately identified their economic status. The embarrassment causes some students to do without food rather than be seen as less fortunate.

The older accounting system was not user-friendly either. School officials could not see personal account balances as each student went through the line as they can with the new biometric technology. Instead, to check balances, administrators would have to print out an entire list of lunch accounts at the end of the day.

Also, while the card-carrying system kept the background of each student confidential, it created other problems. On days when they did not intend to eat lunch, some students would loan their cards to friends. As a result, cards were often lost or stolen and replacing them created more work for already busy school officials.

The FSS system has succeeded, in part, because it makes laborious – and sometimes ineffective – administrative tasks so much easier. The new system also makes it easier for student and staff customers to pre-pay for meals. The system offers a good way of tracking that money. Parents can go online, via the MySchoolAccount.com feature and see when their child has eaten, and if they have money in their account. If there’s a question, they can print out an accurate statement to clarify.

This new technology speeds up the verification process of all registered students so that school lunch lines move faster. Also, since there is no need to carry cash for payment – students can pre-pay meals – no student stands out as wealthy or poor.

For more info about biometric identification systems, write to FSS Inc. at 1227 Eleventh Avenue, Altoona, PA 16601; call (814) 949-2037; fax (814) 946-7572; or visit their website http://www.foodserve.com

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A Bigger Piece of Federal Funding Pie for Schools with Struggling Lunch Programs

Torrance, CA (PRWEB) August 29, 2008

Food Service Solutions is now offering a software for schools that will improve their means of identifying poor students, while protecting their privacy. This will enable districts to establish accurate accounting records in order to qualify for maximum state and federal funding. Studies show that many schools suffer from insufficient funding because they fail to qualify every student who is entitled to a free or discounted lunch at the school cafeteria. With this new system in place, administrators and parents can also keep track of balances and student eating habits.

Answering the question “How poor are you?” may seem unsavory. But school districts that don’t properly assess the economic status of its student populations will have no luck sweetening the pot when requesting federal and state funds. As a result, schools facing rising food costs coupled with budget shortfalls have been forced to hike school lunch prices for paying students and rely more heavily on less nutritious processed food.

Sometimes, with older accounting systems, the truth is plain as day and unintentionally segregates poor school children from the throng. For example, students might be asked to verbally declare their status in a school lunch line – within earshot of other students. Or rather than pay with cash, students eligible for assistance are issued vouchers or ID cards that, when presented at meal time, immediately identified their economic status. The embarrassment causes some students to do without food rather than be seen as less fortunate.

The older accounting system was not user-friendly either. School officials could not see personal account balances as each student went through the line as they can with the new biometric technology. Instead, to check balances, administrators would have to print out an entire list of lunch accounts at the end of the day.

Also, while the card-carrying system kept the background of each student confidential, it created other problems. On days when they did not intend to eat lunch, some students would loan their cards to friends. As a result, cards were often lost or stolen and replacing them created more work for already busy school officials.

The FSS system has succeeded, in part, because it makes laborious – and sometimes ineffective – administrative tasks so much easier. The new system also makes it easier for student and staff customers to pre-pay for meals. The system offers a good way of tracking that money. Parents can go online, via the MySchoolAccount.com feature and see when their child has eaten, and if they have money in their account. If there’s a question, they can print out an accurate statement to clarify.

This new technology speeds up the verification process of all registered students so that school lunch lines move faster. Also, since there is no need to carry cash for payment – students can pre-pay meals – no student stands out as wealthy or poor.

For more info about biometric identification systems, write to FSS Inc. at 1227 Eleventh Avenue, Altoona, PA 16601; call (814) 949-2037; fax (814) 946-7572; or visit their website http://www.foodserve.com

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Biometrics Technology Helps Schools with Struggling Lunch Programs Get A Bigger Piece of Federal Funding Pie

Torrance, CA (PRWEB) October 10, 2008

Food Service Solutions is now offering a software for schools that will improve their means of identifying poor students, while protecting their privacy. This will enable districts to establish accurate accounting records in order to qualify for maximum state and federal funding. Studies show that many schools suffer from insufficient funding because they fail to qualify every student who is entitled to a free and reduced lunch at the school cafeteria. With this new system in place, administrators and parents can also keep track of balances and student eating habits.

Answering the question “How poor are you?” may seem unsavory. But school districts that don’t properly assess the economic status of its student populations will have no luck sweetening the pot when requesting federal and state funds. As a result, schools facing rising food costs coupled with budget shortfalls have been forced to hike food service prices for paying students and rely more heavily on less nutritious processed food.

Sometimes, with older accounting systems, the truth is plain as day and unintentionally segregates poor school children from the throng. Rather than pay with cash, students eligible for free and reduced lunch are issued vouchers or ID cards that, when presented at meal time, immediately identified their economic status. The embarrassment causes some students to do without food rather than be seen as less fortunate.

The older accounting system was not user-friendly either. School officials could not see personal account balances as each student went through the line as they can with the new biometric technology. Instead, to check balances, administrators would have to print out an entire list of lunch accounts at the end of the day.

Also, while the card-carrying system kept the background of each student confidential, it created other problems. On days when they did not intend to eat lunch, some students would loan their cards to friends. As a result, cards were often lost or stolen and replacing them created more work for already busy school officials.

The FSS biometric technology system has succeeded, in part, because it makes laborious – and sometimes ineffective – administrative tasks so much easier. The new system also makes it easier for student and staff customers to pre-pay for meals. The system offers a good way of tracking that money. Parents can go online, via the MySchoolAccount.com feature and see when their child has eaten, and if they have money in their account. If there’s a question, they can print out an accurate statement to clarify.

This new technology speeds up the verification process of all registered students so that food service lines move faster. Also, since there is no need to carry cash for payment – students can pre-pay meals – no student stands out as either eligible for free and reduced lunch or not.

For more info about biometric identification systems, write to FSS Inc. at 1227 Eleventh Avenue, Altoona, PA 16601; call (814) 949-2037; fax (814) 946-7572; or visit their website http://www.foodserve.com

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Struggling Schools Report A Bigger Piece of Federal Funding Pie

Torrance, CA (PRWEB) December 9, 2008

Struggling school districts are capitalizing on a system that helps to improve their means of identifying poor students, while protecting their privacy. This is enabling districts to establish accurate accounting records in order to qualify for maximum state and federal funding.

Recent studies have shown that schools suffer from insufficient funding when they fail to qualify every student who is entitled to a free and reduced lunch at the school cafeteria. With this new system in place, administrators and parents can also keep track of balances and student eating habits.

The new biometric identification technology from Food Service Solutions (FSS) of Altoona, Pennsylvania speeds up the verification process of all registered students so that food service lines move faster. Also, since there is no need to carry cash for payment — students can pre-pay meals — no student stands out as either eligible for free and reduced lunch or not.

The FSS biometric technology system has succeeded, in part, because it makes laborious — and sometimes ineffective — administrative tasks so much easier. The new system also makes it easier for student and staff customers to pre-pay for meals. The system offers a good way of tracking that money. Parents can go online, via the MySchoolAccount.com feature and see when their child has eaten, and if they have money in their account. If there’s a question, they can print out an accurate statement to clarify.

Sometimes, with older accounting systems, the truth is plain as day and unintentionally segregates poor school children from the throng. Rather than pay with cash, students eligible for free and reduced lunch are issued vouchers or ID cards that, when presented at meal time, immediately identified their economic status. The embarrassment causes some students to do without food rather than be seen as less fortunate.

The older accounting system was not user-friendly either. School officials could not see personal account balances as each student went through the line as they can with the new biometric technology. Instead, to check balances, administrators would have to print out an entire list of lunch accounts at the end of the day.

Also, while the card-carrying system kept the background of each student confidential, it created other problems. On days when they did not intend to eat lunch, some students would loan their cards to friends. As a result, cards were often lost or stolen and replacing them created more work for already busy school officials.

Answering the question “How poor are you?” may seem unsavory. But school districts that don’t properly assess the economic status of its student populations will have no luck sweetening the pot when requesting federal and state funds. As a result, schools facing rising food costs coupled with budget shortfalls have been forced to hike food service prices for paying students and rely more heavily on less nutritious processed food.

For more information contact:

Robert Gray

rgray at foodserve dot com

FSS Inc.

Altoona, PA 16601;

Phone: (814) 949-2037

Fax (814) 946-7572

http://www.foodserve.com

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Federal Courts Rule Schools May Not Punish Cyberbullies; PC Pandora Says Parents Remain Key to Solving Problem


San Marcos CA (PRWEB) December 16, 2009

According to a recent article in the LA Times, student free speech is an age-old issue for schools. But as teenagers’ lives move more into cyberspace, bullying has a new breeding ground – and insults that may have once been somewhat private can now be disseminated to the masses with the click of a button. This is uncharted territory for school officials, who now find themselves dealing with e-mails, instant messages, profile pages, videos and other tactics that may result in hurt feelings or something more serious.

Last month, a federal judge in Los Angeles made a landmark decision. The court ruled that a Beverly Hills middle school had no grounds to discipline a cyberbully, who posted a four-and-a-half-minute video of herself and friends viciously badmouthing a fellow student, due to the bully’s right to free speech.

“The recent federal ruling gives a clear message to schools,” explains James Leasure, co-founder of Pandora Corp., makers of PC Pandora computer monitoring software. “‘It’s not your place to discipline.’ But the ruling gives an even clearer message to parents: you are the key to the cyberbullying solution.”

Free speech advocates are celebrating the ruling, believing many schools have over-reacted to several high-profile cases of cyberbullying. Legally speaking, it may have been the right decision; but the ethical/moral question now lingers heavily: how do parents to put a stop to this growing epidemic without the help of the schools?

Leasure says the solution is simple: Knowledge.

“In theory,” Leasure explains, “if a parent of a bully sees their child engaging in activity that is hurtful to others, they would stop it. The problem is: parents just don’t know what their kids are doing online. That’s where tools like our PC Pandora monitoring software come into play and it’s why they are essential in stopping the cyberbullying problem.”

There is a noticeable disconnect between how parents raise their kids in real life and online. Too often, parents watch their children closely in real life, but then turn their heads when kids go online. Statistics show that most parents give their kids un-monitored access to global communication and content. Leasure says that way of thinking needs to change.

“If parents implemented tools like PC Pandora to keep an eye on how their children interact in the digital community tonight, bullying could be dealt a huge blow tomorrow.”

AN EFFECTIVE SOLUTION:

PC Pandora is computer monitoring software that acts like a DVR and records all activity on your computer. With sequential snapshots of everything that happens on the screen, parents are able to effectively play back everything and anything their child does both on and offline. Further details of activity are made available in text-based files. Parents can review transcripts of emails sent and received, and instant messenger chats, logs of websites visited, keystrokes, peer-2-peer files shared, and programs accessed, plus Internet search queries, webcam output and more.

If a child is engaging in bully-like behavior online, even if they are just passing it on and enabling a bully to succeed, parents will know. They will also be able to see if their child is a victim, but is too afraid or embarrassed to say anything.

“The bottom line here is that parents are on their own, and we can’t afford to wait for the government to come up with a solution. Parents need the tools to fight this problem without the help of schools or the courts. PC Pandora is that tool,” says Leasure.

HOLIDAY TIMING:

The federal court ruling also has ironic timing. Just as the courts rule cyberbullies are free from the schools’ reach, parents are buying and preparing to give new computers to kids as holiday gifts, thus opening the door to potential instances of cyberbullying.

Leasure says it is imperative that every parent giving their child a new computer this year outfits that system with software to monitor internet activity.

“Parental awareness is truly the key to fixing this problem. If your child is the victim – or worse, the bully – it’s time to step in,” explains Leasure. “It’s not being over-protective or over-reactive; it’s being a 21st century parent. Monitoring software like our PC Pandora plays a vital role by providing information needed to be an effective Net-generation parent. With the insight our software provides into a child’s daily struggles, parents can begin to put a stop to Internet threats like cyberbullying.”

A 2-hour trial of the PC Pandora monitoring software is available at the PC Pandora website.

Cyberbullying Statistics:

A recent survey of 655 US teens, ages 13 to 18, was conducted by Cox Communications in association with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The study found that “cyberbullying is widespread among today’s teens, with over one-third having experienced it, engaged in it, or know of friends who have who have done either.” More specifically:

Approximately 1 in 10 teens have cyberbullied someone online or by text message and 1 in 5 have been cyberbullied by someone else.
Two-thirds of teens (68%) believe cyberbullying is a serious problem
Teens who have been cyberbullied most commonly think it was to be mean or for fun or entertainment. However, cyberbullies are most likely to say they did it to get back at someone or because someone deserved it.
4 in 5 teens believe cyberbullying is easier to get away with (81%) and easier to hide from parents (80%) than bullying in person.
Nearly half of those who have been bullied (46%) say that the bully was caught, but only 1 in 4 of those who say they have been a bully (28%) admit that they themselves have been caught.
Three-quarters of teens (75%) think there should be stricter rules about online bullying.

About PC Pandora: Pandora Corporation was formed with one goal – to help our customers monitor, control and protect their families and themselves online. First released in mid 2005, PC Pandora has been constantly upgraded to industry-leading specifications and has received accolades from users, reviewers and even school districts and law enforcement agencies, who use the program to help in the day-to-day supervision of the children and citizens they are charged with protecting. The company website devotes space to helping parents by providing them with 18 Tips to Safe Surfing and Pandora’s Blog, where current news in the world of online safety is discussed regularly. PC Pandora has vaulted into a leadership position for parental control software by boasting a combination of features that are unparalleled in the monitoring industry. In 2008, Version 5.0 was released, again widening the spectrum of coverage and protection offered by the program. In addition, the company has made the PD Pandora Internet Safety Symposium available to schools and law enforcement as a free resource for spreading internet safety awareness to parents. PC Pandora is also now available through the Pandora Corp. store at Amazon.com. Currently in version 5.3, the next release of PC Pandora will incorporate Pandora LIVE, a web-based service that will allow parents to check content from anywhere through a secure server.

Reporters and Producers: Looking to cover this topic? We are your technology solution component. Software is available to journalists for review and testing. Staff members are available for interviews. Let us help you show your audience how easy it can be to keep their kids safe.

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Former Special Agent Leads Insider’s Guide to Careers in Federal Law Enforcement

San Jose, CA (PRWEB) May 26, 2010

This June, Henley-Putnam University will continue its successful “Insider’s Guide” free webinar series with Insider’s Guide to Careers in Federal Law Enforcement, led by Colonel Michael Angley, former U.S. Air Force Special Agent and Senior Military Advisor to Henley-Putnam University.

During the webinar on June 3, Col. Angley will provide an overview of the law enforcement community; what it means to be a federal agent; a breakdown of agencies and career options within the field; significant changes to law enforcement following the attacks of September 11, 2001; essential qualifications and skills required by each agency; the best educational and degree options available; and benefits and tuition reimbursement available per the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

Insider’s Guide to Careers in Federal Law Enforcement will take place Thursday, June 3, at 2:00 PM EDT (11:00 AM PDT). Those interested in participating in the webinar should register at https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/764452499. The webinar is open to the public and completely free of charge.

The webinar series, launched in 2009, was designed to bring the hands-on experience of former members of the CIA, Secret Service, FBI, and intelligence and federal law enforcement community to those seeking careers in Strategic Security. Registration information for upcoming webinars is available on Henley-Putnam’s website at http://www.henley-putnam.edu/594-238.htm.

The series is one of many career resources offered by Henley-Putnam University. The university’s mentoring program assigns degree students with a high-level faculty or expert mentor to support them in making career decisions. In addition, through its online career portal, Henley-Putnam helps students research careers, explore university programs, prepare for a job search, locate employers and gain basic knowledge of the Strategic Security field.

For more information on Henley-Putnam University’s Strategic Security certificate and degree programs, please call admissions at 888.852.8746 or visit http://www.Henley-Putnam.edu.

ABOUT COLONEL MICHAEL ANGLEY

Colonel Michael Angley is Senior Military Advisor to Henley-Putnam University. He is a retired U.S. Air Force Colonel and a retired career Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI) Special Agent. He has over 25 years experience conducting counterintelligence and counterterrorism operations around the world and in the United States. Colonel Angley is a seasoned criminal investigator as well, holding five command assignments throughout his career. When he retired in 2007, he was one of OSI’s senior-most Special Agents in command of OSI Region 8, Air Force Space Command. Colonel Angley is also the award-winning author of the Child Finder Trilogy (http://www.childfinder.us), a mystery/thriller series featuring an Air Force OSI Special Agent protagonist.

ABOUT HENLEY-PUTNAM UNIVERSITY

Founded in August 2001, Henley-Putnam University is a leading educational institution specializing in the field of Strategic Security. The University offers accredited online Bachelor and Master of Science Degrees in Intelligence Management, Terrorism and Counterterrorism Studies, and the Management of Personal Protection; a Doctoral Degree in Strategic Security; and several certificate programs. Henley-Putnam prepares law enforcement, military, intelligence, and private industry professionals with the networks, skills, and insights to advance in their careers and protect the future. Henley-Putnam University, which is committed to building a student and alumni network that will serve its community, is an accredited member of DETC (http://www.detc.org) and offers 125 courses taught by hands-on faculty members from all branches of the military and law enforcement fields, including the FBI, CIA, DoD, DIA and Secret Service. For more information, visit the Henley-Putnam University website (http://www.Henley-Putnam.edu), or call 888.852.8746.

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eGuardian CEO Addresses Federal Trade Commission Roundtable

Ontario, CA (PRWEB) June 4, 2010

eGuardian CEO Ron Zayas has been invited to attend a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) roundtable to review the Commission’s Children’s Online Protection Act (COPPA) Rule.

Zayas will participate in a panel discussion entitled “Emerging Parental Verification Methods, including Parental Access to and Review of Children’s Personal Information.”

“I’m very excited to have the opportunity to be a part of this important event,” Zayas said. “eGuardian can be a powerful instrument to curb the problem of personal information being disseminated online, and the process begins when the parent and their child are both aware of the potential dangers. Together, we can make a difference.”

The Rule was enacted in 2000 and requires Website operators to obtain parental consent before collecting, using, or disclosing personal information from children under 13. The roundtable will explore such topics as whether the Rule should be applied to emerging media such as mobile devices, interactive television, and interactive gaming, and potential expansion to cover more items of information that might be collected from children. A review will also be conducted of the parental verification methods used by Website operators.

eGuardian, designer of the child-safe Internet, is a service that protects children on social networking sites and allows parents to be more involved in their children’s online activities.

“This is an important subject, and we welcome any chance to work with other interested parties to improve online child protection and security, as well as parental access and verification,” Zayas said.

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Breaking News: New York divorce Attorney Lisa Beth Older discusses Federal Court’s July 8, 2010 ruling on Gay marriage


New York, NY (PRWEB) July 12, 2010

New York City divorce, custody and appellate lawyer Lisa Beth Older, Esq. appeared on Fox Five News on July 9, 2010 to provide legal analysis for a television segment on the latest Court ruling on Gay Marriage, commenting on the Federal Ban against gay marriage and the Judge who called the ban unconstitutional.

On July 8, 2010 the United States District Court Judge Joseph Tauro, appointed to the Court by Richard Nixon, struck down DOMA, or the Defense of Marriage Act, as unconstitutional as applied to Massachusetts. ( Mass.v. US Dept of Health, et al., Civil Action No. 1:09-11156-JLT). DOMA was struck down because the law failed to provide equal protection of the law for gay and lesbian couples and because it impinged upon a States’ right to define marriage, stripped the States of the right to legislate under the 10th amendment to the constitution, and disallowed the State from equally distributing federal funds amongst its citizenship, thus invoking invidious discrimination against its citizens.

The Federal Ban against gay marriage codified as the “Defense of Marriage Act” or referred to as “DOMA”, was enacted by the Clinton Administration in 1996.

The act of the Federal District Court in striking down DOMA lends strong support to gay and lesbian couples in their legitimate quest to have equal rights, and to also have equal access to New York Courts for the purpose of seeking relief as to their children in disputes involving custody visitation, child support and divorce rights attendant to same sex marriages performed in alternate States.

“Under the current law known as DOMA, the federal government does not recognize same sex unions” says New York City divorce lawyer Lisa Beth Older, Esq. “DOMA narrowly defines marriage, and derivative parentage rights, as a union between a man and a woman.” DOMA states that parties to a same sex unions shall not be allowed to take advantage of federal benefits and protections given to and enjoyed by heterosexual couples. Examples of the kind of benefits prohibited to gay and lesbian couples are the benefits derived from any Federal program, such as being allowed to sign of joint tax returns, being allowed to receive health insurance benefits, having federal burial rights for surviving spouses of a deceased gay and lesbian service man or service woman, and other such federal benefits stemming from federal employment. While DOMA does not expressly preclude States from passing their own laws affirming gay and lesbian marriage, DOMA does expressly allow a State to not recognize a same sex marriages performed in alternate State that has in fact legalized gay and lesbian marriage. The legitimacy of DOMA affects all gay and lesbian couples in Iowa, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont, along with the District of Columbia.

The lawsuit against the legitimacy of DOMA was filed by the Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defense group, and a second companion case was filed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the Federal District Court.

The Obama Administration is likely to appeal the law to the United States Circuit even though he campaigned for president in favor of repealing DOMA. Obama will need to make a tough decision soon.

Proponents of the law say that the Justice Department is bound to enforce and defend laws of the land.

Presently there are five States that recognize gay and lesbian marriage, those being New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Iowa , as well as the District of Columbia. This ruling will likely have gay and lesbian couples rallying for similar law suits against DOMA in their respective States.

Thus, if Obama decides to appeal the ruling to the United States Circuit Court, and if the higher Court agrees with Judge Tauro’s ruling then, and if the Justice Department appeals that holding as well the case will likely go all the way to the United States Supreme Court. If DOMA is found unconstitutional. there, then DOMA will no longer be the law of the land. If the opposite result appertains, and DOMA withstands the legal challenge, then DOMA still prevails and the ban against gay and lesbian marriage will be stronger than ever. This is a frightening prospect for gay and lesbian couples across the board who deserve equal protection under the law.

Gay and lesbian Marriage has been recognized in Massachusetts since 2004. Now that a Federal Judge has struck down DOMA, gay and lesbian spouses or couples of same sex unions will now be allowed to apply for federal benefits, this only after the automatic fifteen (15) day automatic Stay lapses and absent any newer stays by the Circuit Court. This ruling will open the flood gates for legal action by gay and lesbian citizens of States that have legalized same sex marriage.

Lisa Beth Older, Esq. opines that the Federal ruling will also likely affect gay and lesbian custody rights. Where there is marriage, there is divorce. As such, it will be interesting to see what effect if any the ruling of the Federal Court striking down the Defense of Marriage Act will have on New York Family Court cases.

The Federal Court ruling will have an impact on gay and lesbian disputes in New York. “The New York Court of Appeals is charged with dealing with problems of law stemming from paternity, child support, custody and divorce” says New York appellate and divorce lawyer Lisa Beth Older. At present, New York does not recognize gay and lesbian marriage and divorce and in many instances limits standing of gay couples to sue in family court. However, in a recent series of cases coming down from the New York Court of Appeal in May 2010 the New York’s highest Court has begun to seriously grabble with the problem of how to deal with children of gay and lesbian marriages or gay and lesbian unions in custody and support cases.

Prior to May 4, 2010, if a child of a New York same sex couple was conceived through artificial insemination, and if the subject child of that union was not adopted by both gay and lesbian parents in New York, then the non-adoptive, non- biological parent had no standing to sue for custody and visitation, and the biological parent had no responsibility to provide child support for the child. Now, the law as to child support and gay couples has changed dramatically. As of May 4, 2010 the Court of Appeals, in the Matter of H.M. v. E.T held that a same sex partner may sue a non-biological partner for child support, regardless of the lack of adoption or biological ties. This holding broke new ground for Gay and lesbian rights by expanding the notion of parentage beyond the borders of heterosexual couples with an emphasis on the child’s attachments and on the “best interest of the children.” There, the Court of Appeals recognized the right of a gay and lesbian woman to sue for child support in Family Court as against a same sex parent. This ruling has large consequences as it gives the State Courts power to define who is a parent for purposes of child support.

As to the rights of gay and lesbian couples to sue for custody, the New York Court of Appeals is not as liberal. The holding in the Matter of Alison D. v. Virginia M. (77 N.Y.2d 651, 1991) stated that New York parenthood requires that there be a biological or adoptive relationship between parent and child before custody may be asserted. However, the Court of Appeals in May 2010 diverted from this position, at least in part. While reviewing a New York lower court holding on a visitation case involving a same sex marriage of Vermont, the case of Debra H. v. Janice R (Court of Appeals May 4, 2010, NY slip opinion 0375), the Court held that New York must now recognize Debra H.’s parental status under the law of Vermont.

Lisa Beth Older states that “the case of Debra R. is just start. More must be done by the legislature and the Courts in interpreting these laws of access to Family Court through the prism of the United Stated Constitution.” Holding on to the last vestiges of Matter of Allison, supra, the Court held that while New York still does not recognize a gay and lesbian parent’s right to sue for custody of their child absent an adoptive or biological relationship to the child, if the child is born of a legally recognized same sex marriage in another State where same sex marriage is legal, that parent may indeed sue for custody. This may be a step in the right direction.

Accordingly Judge Taro’s federal ruling banning the Federal government from legislating unequally between gay and lesbian and heterosexual couples, by giving rights to heterosexuals without giving equal rights to gay and lesbian couples bears on New York State’s power to overrule and strike down any State law that unconstitutionally fails to provide equal access to the Courts, equality, due process of law, and justice to all of its citizens. The Federal holding will serve as a platform to empower New York State Courts to start providing all couples, gay and lesbian alike, equal access and standing to utilize the Courts for purposes of suing for custody, visitation and child support. This ruling would allow brave Courts throughout this country to challenge State laws that discriminate against one set of parents while allowing other parents to have access to the court system to secure their rights of access to gay and lesbian parents.

The Federal District Court holding, while only relevant to Massachusetts, supports the notion that State and Federal governments may not pass and enforcing laws that discriminate against some of its citizens, while providing government benefits to other groups of citizens. By way of deduction, this holding would support the fact that both Federal as well as State governments should not pass and enforce laws that deny equal access to the Courts. Under the Constitutional provisions of equal protection of the law, all citizens, whether they be gay, lesbian or heterosexual must be afforded equal and identical benefits of due process of law through access to our State Courts for the purpose of disputing custody and visitation claims. Derivatively all children would benefit from a proactive Court whose aim is to protect innocent children, whether they be the product of gay or heterosexual couples.

New Webinars, Seminars & Certification Classes Announced for New Federal Health Claim Appeals Regulations on July 22, 2010 from HHS, DOL & Treasury

Hanover Park, IL (PRWEB) August 5, 2010

ERISAclaim.com announced the nation’s first series of new Webinars, Seminars & Certification Classes for healthcare providers to comply with new Federal Appeals Regulations issued on July 22, 2010 by HHS, DOL and the Treasury. Effective 09/23/2010, all healthcare providers must comply with new Federal Appeals Regulations affecting about 193 million Americans according to DOL, and simultaneously to comply with existing Federal Appeals Regulations, ERISA, for about 176 million Americans.

ERISAclaim.com has been offering these educational Webinars, Seminars and Certifications Classes on ERISA for 10 years and on new Health Reform Laws since the Health Bill was signed into law by President Obama on 03/23/2010. The new Federal Appeals Regulations issued last week, on July 22, 2010, have provided us with more complete and specific guidance on the practical appeals for all healthcare providers. These ongoing Webinars, Seminars and Certification Classes were scheduled on bi-weekly, monthly and customer request basis to teach basic, practical and expert level of appeals practice strictly in accordance with new and existing Federal Appeals Regulations for all types of claim denials and delays.

“ERISAclaim.com has been the only teaching and consulting company in the country in the past 10 years that is offering comprehensive and advanced ERISA Appeals and PPACA training programs for healthcare providers,” said Dr. Jin Zhou, President of ERISAclaim.com.

Dr. Zhou further pointed out that according to the News Release from HHS, DOL and the Treasury on July 22, 2010, accompanying the promulgation of new Federal Appeals Regulations, a new federal grants program will provide States with $ 30 million to educate patients, general consumers, to learn how to do ERISA internal and NAIC external appeals, and “on average, about 40 percent of denials are reversed on external appeal” as stated in the preamble of the new Federal Appeals Regulations.

“If and when the patients can do appeals to reverse more than 40% denials, yet our providers are still wondering if we should even learn about ERISA and PPACA, or still researching if ERISA or PPACA has anything to do with our reimbursement, we shall be all fired”, said Dr. Zhou, in responding to some confusions from providers as to whether the new Federal Appeals Regulations have anything to do with providers or any teeth in reality.

As Dr. Zhou shared with concerned but confused providers, the preamble of the new Federal Appeals Regulations estimated that about 193 million people will be affected by these interim final regulations, 18% of large employer plans and 30% of small employer plans will relinquish grandfather status in 2011, and more than 10 million individuals each year are covered under non-grandfathered policies. [Interim Final Rules, Page 43339-40] < http://www.dol.gov/federalregister/PdfDisplay.aspx?DocId=24056>

According to the News Release from HHS, DOL and the Treasury on July 22, 2010, “The new appeals regulations were issued by the Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor, and the Treasury. Consumers in new health plans in every State will have the right to appeal decisions, including claims denials and rescissions, made by their health plans. This includes the right to appeal decisions made by a health plan through the plan’s internal process and, for the first time, the right to appeal decisions made by a health plan to an outside, independent decision-maker, no matter what state a patient lives in or what type of health coverage they have.”

“The Affordable Care Act puts patients in control of their healthcare,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “Today, if your health plan tells you it won’t cover a treatment your doctor recommends, or it refuses to pay the bill for your child’s last trip to the emergency room, you may not know where to turn. The Affordable Care Act provisions announced today will provide patients with new important new rights and resources that will help ensure they get the care they need.”

“The appeals rules today will extend important protections and simplify the system for consumers,” said Labor Secretary Hilda Solis. “And they will ensure that consumers in new health plans have access to internal and external appeals processes that are clearly defined, impartial, and designed to ensure that, when health care is needed and covered, consumers get it.”

“The Affordable Care Act provisions we’re announcing today will ensure that consumers have access to a fair, thorough and uniform appeals process if their claim is denied,” said Michael Mundaca, Assistant Treasury Secretary for Tax Policy. “With these new patient protections, we’re providing consumers with another strong defense against insurance company abuses.”

<http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/newsroom/2010/ebsa072210.html>

More importantly, new Federal Appeals Regulations will provide providers and consumers with immediate protections and remedies by immediate external independent reviews and lawsuit in the courts if the health plans failed to strictly adhere to all requirements of the new Federal Appeals Regulations, concluded by Dr. Zhou.

ERISAclaim.com is dedicated to helping healthcare providers and hospitals come to complete compliance with new Federal Appeals Regulations, by offering most comprehensive forms of and advanced quality and expertise in Webinars, Seminars and Certification Classes for the new Federal Appeals Regulations, for compliant maximum reimbursement.

For more information, please visit http://www.erisaclaim.com/Appeal_Department.htm, or contact Dr. Jin Zhou, president of ERISAclaim.com, at 630-808-7237.

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New Health Reform Guide Provides Effective Way to Track, Understand and Comply With Dozens of New Federal Health Insurance Regulations

Washington, DC (PRWEB) November 30, 2010

Atlantic Information Services, Inc. (AIS) — AIS, publisher of industry-leading newsletters, AIS’s Health Reform Week, Health Plan Week, Drug Benefit News, Report on Medicare Compliance and ACO Business News, is pleased to announce its newest publication, A Guide to Health Insurance Reform. The guide and its accompanying CD include an extremely well-organized set of all pertinent regulations, with HHS guidance and insights from experts. Go to http://www.aishealth.com/Products/lhrg.html for publication details.

When the rulemaking process has finally run its course years from now, more than 25 separate sets of federal rules will have been issued to address just the aspects of reform that deal with health insurance benefit design. Regulations dealing with these issues have already been published: rescissions, appeals and external reviews, coverage of preventive services, child-only coverage, lifetime and annual limits, access to care protections, grandfathered plan status, dependent coverage to age 26 and early retiree reinsurance.

Furthermore, 15-20 additional sets of rules still to come — from medical loss ratios to insurance exchanges to age bands and gender bias — are set in stone by the reform statute. And in 2011 and beyond, there may well be additional changes heaped on top of this year’s enormous changes, if the politics of reform shift and/or Congress goes back to fix flaws in the original legislation.

A Guide to Health Insurance Reform is designed to help health plans, hospitals and other providers, employers, pharmaceutical companies and others save valuable time and resources — and minimize their risks of costly noncompliance — with easy-to-read summaries of federal regulations that are interwoven with Agency Guidance and Commentary and Analysis from experts in the field in 28 different regulatory areas related to:

— Benefit Design

— Eligibility/Guaranteed Issue

— Premium Rules

— Exchanges

— And Health Insurance Administration

For more information on A Guide to Health Insurance Reform and to view a detailed Table of Contents, visit http://www.aishealth.com/Products/lhrg.html.

About AIS

AIS develops highly targeted news, data and strategies for managers in hospitals, health plans, medical group practices, pharmaceutical companies and other health care organizations. Learn more at http://www.AISHealth.com.

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