Tag Archives: Relief

Rights of Guantanamo Detainees and Military Personnel, Immigration Reform, Post-Catastrophe Relief, Among Issues Addressed by ABA Policy-Making Body

Boston (Vocus) February 17, 2009

The American Bar Association House of Delegates today adopted nearly three dozen new measures as ABA policy, including critical proposals affecting the rights of military personnel and Guantanamo detainees, immigration reform and relief after disasters.

To view the actions taken by the House, click here.

Among significant policies passed, the House voted to urge the Obama administration to ensure that any detainees who are expected to be charged with crimes be prosecuted in federal district courts, unless the attorney general certifies they cannot be prosecuted in such courts but can be prosecuted in other regularly constituted courts consistent with due process, the laws of war, the Geneva Conventions and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Delegates also urged that any detainees no longer considered to be enemy combatants be released or resettled, and any currently detained enemy combatants be granted prompt habeas corpus hearings with full due process.

Additionally, the House overwhelmingly opposed the imposition of federal jurisdiction over child custody cases involving members of the military. The House urged that states enact legislation to prohibit denial of custody to a servicemember based solely on absence due to military deployment.

The House also passed a resolution to help ensure access to justice and due process for those charged with civil immigration violations. This act was partly a reaction to a notable immigration enforcement action taken last year when 400 workers at a Postville, Iowa, plant were arrested without due process.

Two separate House resolutions dealt with a change to the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct, specifically addressing firm-to-firm lateral hires of lawyers. Prior to House action, a rule prohibited lateral-hire lawyers from representing clients with whom their new firm has a conflict of interest without a waiver from the affected clients. Both proposals set out to ease prohibitions on client representation, and after vigorous debate, the House approved the resolution requiring screening of lawyers to resolve such conflicts.

Other House resolutions included a set of comprehensive measures seeking to reduce harm and litigation after catastrophes. Citing recent disasters such as the California wildfires and flooding in the Midwest, the House adopted these measures, including ones that urge broadening the availability of insurance protection for storm damage, enacting programs to increase the availability of affordable insurance, establishing federal standards for damage-resistant building codes and encouraging capital markets to finance catastrophic risk, among other goals.

In other action, the House voted to urge prompt access to legal counsel for child victims of criminal conduct, encourage legislation enabling permanent legal residents of the United States to sponsor partners of the same sex for permanent residency and to urge the federal government to create an infrastructure in support of adult guardianship. Watch videos of prominent speakers and events at the Midyear Meeting, hear views of members attending and more at the Midyear Meeting Online Web site at http://www.abavideonews.org/ABA548/

With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.

Editor’s Note: The recommendations, as acted upon, are available online. Or, for additional information, contact ABA News at 312-988-6171 or 202-662-1090.

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Over 100,000 Starving Orphans in Haiti Have Been Passed Over for Food Relief

Sanford, FL (Vocus) April 1, 2010

MREUSA, a division of MRE Logistics announced today the release of a music video, Youll Be In My Heart”, a song for Haitis orphans on: helpfortheorphans channel on YOU TUBE http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gLJJqA4iYnA , to bring attention to its program to give MREs (Meals Ready to Eat) to orphans in Haiti.

The week after the earthquake MREUSA provided The Church of Scientology 32,000 meals to be shipped to Haiti, of which John Travolta personally delivered the first 3,600 along with medical supplies and equipment in his private jet.

The companys Director of Operations, Ken Lester Sr., stated, We are very committed to helping Haiti, and in particular the over 100,000 new orphans there, many of who are eating only twice per week”. We have a network on the ground there to get the MREs directly from the dock to the orphanages. The MREs are perfect for the children, as they provide excellent nutrition, can be stored without refrigeration, and do not require a heating source, as they are already fully cooked in their protective pouches. People cannot forget that it will take time and effort to help these children.

MRE USA is donating over 20,000 meals to be delivered the first part of April. These meals will be distributed to many orphanages throughout the country.

On Ken Sr.’s last visit to Haiti; it was revealed that much of the International food relief has not gotten to the orphanages. His hope is to deliver at least 200,000 meals per month, until the orphanages can get a better hold on the overwhelming situation.

Those interested can go to http://www.mreusa.com and sponsor a single meal, or as many as they wish, to be delivered to a child. The organization enlisted the volunteer services of singer/songwriter Randall Richards, who recorded for A&M Records in the 70’s, and wrote songs for Anne Murray, Frankie Vallie, The Hollies, Eddie Kendricks, Marilyn McCoo, and others. His singing career was cut short due to health reasons. In recent years, he has been working with AIDS orphans in Africa.

Randall has come back from over 30 years out of the entertainment industry to help the orphans in Haiti by producing and singing the music video. As part of the MRE USA team He has traveled to visit the orphans in Haiti since the quake, and will continue to go back at least once per month to personally help in the delivering of the MREs.

The Film School at Valencia Community College under the direction of program chair, Ralph Clemente, also donated services and crew to make the music video and a documentary on the orphan situation in Haiti.

For interviews contact: Randall Richards 386-785-9229 or Ken Lester 407-403-3899

Email: r_richards_2000(at)yahoo(dot)com

NRPA Launches National Hunger Relief Initiative at Indianapolis Douglass Park

Ashburn, Va. (Vocus) June 22, 2010

The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is pleased to announce the launch of its national hunger relief initiative supporting summer and before/after school food programs, which took place on Monday, June 21, 2010, at Indianapolis Parks and Recreations Douglass Park. NRPA received a $ 2.1 million grant from the Walmart Foundation for this initiative. Spanning two-years, it will enable agencies like Indianapolis Parks and Recreation to serve an estimated 4.9 million meals to children nationwide.

As millions of families across the United States are struggling financially due to the recession, child hunger is significantly on the riseparticularly during the summer months when school is not in session, said Barbara Tulipane, CEO of NRPA. Today we celebrate the launch of our national hunger relief program with the gift from the Walmart Foundation, which will bring nutritious meals to millions of children in needfighting hunger in a real way and laying the foundation for learning and growth.

U.S. Senator Richard Lugar attended to enjoy breakfast with the day campers and speak about his commitment to securing legislation that supports hunger relief and nutritional education programs for those in need.

Walmart Foundation representatives also attended. The grant is part of Walmarts recently announced $ 2 billion commitment to help end hunger in America through its Fighting Hunger Together initiative, which includes $ 250 million pledged to support hunger relief organizations at the national, state and local levels through 2015.

For questions about the event, including local media inquiries, please contact Jennifer McGilvray, Indianapolis Parks & Recreation public information officer, or 317.327.7035.

Tax Relief, Rather Than Hikes a Reality : Liberty Tax Outlines Top Tax Changes and Expiring Benefits

VIrginia Beach, VA (PRWEB) January 07, 2011

Americans are ringing in 2011 with an immediate pay increase rather than tax hikes. Social Security taxes (FICA) will be cut by 2 percentage points for 2011 so employees will pay 4.2 percent of wages earned to Social Security instead of 6.2 percent. For every $ 10,000 of wages, the yearly increase in the paycheck will be $ 200. With that good news, Liberty Tax sizes up some of the recent new tax changes and expiring tax items to keep in mind for 2010 filing and 2011 tax planning:

The 2010 Tax Relief Act provided another patch for the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT). The AMT exemption amount has increased to $ 47,450 for individuals and $ 72,450 for joint filers.

Taxpayers can also deduct nonrefundable personal credits in 2010 such as the child tax credit to reduce their AMT liability, added John Hewitt, CEO of Liberty Tax Service. Without the patch the, AMT exemption amount would have decreased to $ 33,750 for individuals and $ 45,000 for joint filers.

Its back in for some extender tax measuresagain. The state and local sales tax deduction, the higher education tuition and fees deduction, the $ 250 classroom expense deduction for educators, and charitable contribution of IRA proceeds were all extended again for 2010 and 2011.

The new law continued the temporary increase in the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) through 2012. Prior to 2009, the credit percentage for the EITC for a taxpayer with two or more qualifying children was 40 percent of the first $ 12,570 of earned income. The percentage increased to 45 percent of the first $ 12,570 of earned income for taxpayers with three or more qualifying children. The EITC phase-out range has also been adjusted upward by $ 1,880 for joint filers to eliminate any marriage penalty.

Without action, the Child Tax Credit (CTC) would have decreased from $ 1,000 per qualifying child to $ 500 per qualifying child in 2011. The Tax Relief Act also continued to allow the CTC to be used against AMT. and continued the refundable portion of CTC (additional CTC) threshold to be 15% of the earned income above $ 3,000. Without action the threshold would have returned to $ 10,000.

The inheritance tax returns for tax year 2011. The first $ 5 million of an estate can pass tax-free to heirs, anything over will be taxed at 35%.

Conversions to Roth retirement plan. Beginning in 2010, the modified AGI and filing status requirements for converting a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA were eliminated. For any 2010 rollover from an IRA other than a Roth IRA to a Roth IRA, any amounts that would have been included as income will be included in income in equal amounts in 2011 and 2012. A taxpayer can choose to include the entire amount in income when filing a 2010 tax return.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act brought on some immediate health care changes for individuals for filing a 2010 tax return. Lifetime limits on benefits and restrictive annual limits are now prohibited. The adoption tax credit and assistance exclusion has increased by $ 1,000 to $ 13,170. The bill makes the credit refundable and extends it through 2011. Theres a 10% tax on tanning services that started July 1, 2010.

The First Time Home Buyer Credit is among some expiring tax measures. But also as a reminder, if a taxpayer claimed the first-time homebuyer credit for a home purchased in 2008, they generally must begin repaying it in 2010. Some other tax measures that have just expired are the $ 2,400 exclusion from income of unemployment payments, the government retiree credit, and the extra $ 3,000 IRA deduction for employees of bankrupt companies.

About Liberty Tax Service

Liberty Tax Service is the fastest growing income tax preparation company in the industrys history. Founded in 1997 by CEO John T. Hewitt, a pioneer in the tax industry, Liberty Tax Service has prepared over 8,000,000 individual income tax returns. With 41years of tax industry experience, Hewitt stands as the most experienced CEO in the tax preparation business, having also founded Jackson Hewitt Tax Service

Liberty Tax Service (http://www.libertytax.com) provides computerized income tax preparation, electronic filing, refund loans, and online filing through eSmart Tax at http://www.esmarttax.com. Each office offers customers audit assistance, a money back guarantee, and free tax return checking.

Freedom Debt Relief Offers Best Ways To Use Tax Refunds To Get Out of Debt

San Mateo, CA (Vocus/PRWEB) March 30, 2011

The U.S. federal income tax filing deadline is April 18, and many taxpayers who filed early are already receiving income tax refunds. That makes this the right time for those individuals to make smart moves to get out of debt, said Kevin Gallegos, vice president of Freedom Debt Relief, LLC (FDR).

The Internal Revenue Service indicates that 78 percent of U.S. individual taxpayers receive an income tax refund. In 2008, the most recent information available, the average individual refund was nearly $ 3,000. Many surveys find that about half of U.S. taxpayers who receive an income tax refund spend the money immediately. Others are more prudent and save their refund. But what is the smartest way to use a tax refund?

Freedom Debt Relief analyzed several top choices and prioritized them as they apply to most taxpayers:


Lutheran World Relief, The Lutheran ChurchMissouri Synod and United Nations Foundation Announce $45 Million Campaign to Fight Malaria

Detroit, MI (PRWEB) June 30, 2011

Lutheran World Relief(LWR), The Lutheran ChurchMissouri Synod (LCMS) and the United Nations (UN) Foundation announced on Monday an unprecedented partnership to mobilize Lutherans in the United States in the fight against malaria in Africa.

The campaign, called the Lutheran Malaria Initiative (LMI), aims to raise $ 45 million to contribute toward the global goal of eliminating malaria deaths in Africa by 2015. Malaria, a preventable and treatable disease, continues to devastate communities and perpetuate a cycle of poverty. According to the World Health Organization, nearly 1 million people die of malaria each year and every 45 seconds a child dies in Africa. In many communities where LWR and the LCMS work, extreme poverty creates conditions that allow malaria to take hold and spread with deadly consequence.

At a news conference held Monday at Detroits Historic Trinity Lutheran Church, leaders of the LMI partnership joined representatives from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund), to announce the campaign and discuss the crucial role of churches and faith-based institutions in the effort to end malaria deaths.

Rev. John Nunes, president and CEO of Lutheran World Relief, opened the news conference. I am excited to be here today with the LMI partners, Nunes said. This is a day that has been years in the making, and for which millions around the world have been waiting.

Dr. Matthew C. Harrison, president of The Lutheran ChurchMissouri Synod, spoke next. The Lutheran footprint for providing care and mercy to those suffering is enormous, Harrison said. For decades, we have been working with partners and fellow Lutherans at the end of the dirt road. Today, we are delighted to come alongside the LMI partners to take a huge bite out of this horrid disease.

Gloria Edwards, co-chair of the LMI National Campaign Cabinet, offered insights on her inspiration for becoming involved in the initiative. My husband and I believe in saying yes to the open doors God places before us, she said. We went to East Africa not long ago and saw a young woman in a malaria-induced coma. We also saw other young children who demonstrated how to use a bed net, and how to let their parents know when they are not feeling well so that they can be taken to the doctor. We are excited to be a part of helping more children and families know how to prevent malaria as well as what to do when they get sick with the disease.

In closing the news conference, Nicolas Demey, corporate partnerships officer with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, said, It is an honor to work with LMI to help end malaria deaths in Africa. We have the tools and know what we need to do to end these needless deaths. We can do it.

Following Mondays news conference, Kathy Calvin, CEO of the UN Foundation, added: Between 40 percent and 60 percent of health care in developing countries is provided by faith-based organizations, like our Lutheran partners, Calvin said. It is inspiring to see how the Lutheran community in the U.S. can help the UN reach families in rural villages on the other side of the world.

The news conference is available online at http://www.youtube.com/lutheranmalariavideo.

Lutheran World Relief (LWR)

Lutheran World Relief is an international nonprofit organization that works to end poverty and injustice by empowering some of the worlds most impoverished communities to help themselves. With partners around the world, LWR seeks to promote sustainable development with justice and dignity by helping communities bring about change for healthy, safe and secure lives; engage in Fair Trade; promote peace and reconciliation; and respond to emergencies. LWR is headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, and has worked in international development and relief since 1945.

LWR is a ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), The Lutheran ChurchMissouri Synod (LCMS), individuals and parish groups in international relief, development, advocacy, and social responsibility.

The Lutheran ChurchMissouri Synod (LCMS)

The Lutheran ChurchMissouri Synod is a mission-oriented, Bible-based, confessional Christian denomination headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri. Founded in 1847, the church body, which ranks as one of the largest Christian denominations in the United States, has more than 2.3 million baptized members in some 6,200 congregations and more than 9,000 pastors. In addition, the LCMS owns and operates KFUO radio, two seminaries, and 10 colleges and universities. Its congregations operate the largest Protestant parochial school system in America.

The LCMS has relationships and active mission work in some 88 countries around the world and, in the last five years, has awarded more than $ 35 million through more than 900 domestic and international grants for emergency response and disaster relief. Today, the LCMS is in full doctrinal fellowship with 33 other confessional Lutheran church bodies worldwide and is a founding partner of Lutheran Services in America, a social ministry organization serving one in every 50 Americans.

The United Nations Foundation (UN Foundation)

The United Nations Foundation, a public charity, was created in 1998 with entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turners historic $ 1 billion gift to support UN causes and activities. The UN Foundation is an advocate for the UN and a platform for connecting people, ideas and resources to help the UN solve global problems. They build partnerships, grow constituencies, mobilize resources and advocate policy changes to support the UNs work for individual and global progress. The Foundations workfocused on select global problemsis decreasing child mortality, improving disaster relief, protecting diverse cultures and environments, creating a clean energy future, empowering women and girls, and improving U.S.-UN relations.

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (The Global Fund)

The Global Fund is a unique, public-private partnership and international financing institution dedicated to attracting and disbursing additional resources to prevent and treat HIV and AIDS, TB and malaria. This partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and affected communities represents an innovative approach to international health financing. The Global Funds model is based on the concepts of country ownership and performance-based funding, which means that people in countries implement their own programs based on their priorities and the Global Fund provides financing on the condition that verifiable results are achieved.

Since its creation in 2002, the Global Fund has become the main financier of programs to fight AIDS, TB and malaria, with approved funding of US$ 21.7 billion for more than 600 programs in 150 countries (as of December 2010). The Global Fund works in close collaboration with other bilateral and multilateral organizations to supplement existing efforts in dealing with the three diseases.

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Catholic Relief Services Urges Senate to Protect Development Food Aid in Farm Bill

Baltimore, MD (PRWEB) April 24, 2012

Catholic Relief Services, the official international humanitarian organization of the Catholic Church in the United States, is urging the Senate Agriculture Committee to fund food aid for development programs at a minimum of $ 450 million in the reauthorization of the Farm Bill.

There are certainly many things in this bill we like, said Bill OKeefe, CRS Vice President for Advocacy. But we are concerned that it could have a real negative impact on long-term projects designed to alleviate hunger and nutrition problems in developing countries around the world.

While the Senate Farm Bill as introduced reauthorizes Food for Peace food aid program funding at $ 2.5 billion a year and provides greater flexibility in how those resources can be usedboth laudable movesit also calls for development food aid to receive only 15 percent to 30 percent of overall Food for Peace resources, guaranteeing funding of only $ 275 million a year.

CRS position is that development food aid needs to be funded at a minimum of $ 450 million a year.

We understand that some will say the $ 275 million is a minimum figure that can rise, but our experience, particularly in a time of tight budgets, is that the minimum is all these programs will get, OKeefe said. This could really damage our countrys food aid program, cutting almost 40 percent from our development programming budget.

CRS points out that it was this kind of long-term development work that made many communities in East Africa more resilient, helping them avoid famine during the recent devastating drought. The ongoing success of such development work can be seen in Burkina Faso as it weathers the current Sahel food crisis; in Haiti as the agricultural sector helps the country recover from the 2010 earthquake; and in Bangladesh, where such work helps poor farmers survive cyclical floods.

We know that people will always needand receiveassistance during emergencies. But CRS also knows that development work means that fewer will need such help in the future, OKeefe said. This is the type of smart investment that the U.S. should be making with its assistance programs.

CRS is also concerned that the cost recovery requirements in the bill as introduced do not adequately take into account the variations in overseas markets and shipping requirements, and could end up doing damage to aid programs.

CRS does applaud many provisions in the bill, including the Committees efforts to make Local and Regional Procurement of food aid permanent with a $ 40 million yearly program that would be implemented in conjunction with the McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program, as well as the Committees direction of studying and supporting resiliency efforts in the Horn of Africa.


Catholic Relief Services is the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States. The agency provides assistance to people in need in nearly 100 countries, without regard to race, religion or nationality. For more information, please visit http://www.crs.org or http://www.crsespanol.org.

In the Spirit of Thanksgiving: Catholic Relief Services Offers Good NewsFor a Change

(PRWEB) November 20, 2012

In todays world, bad news about poverty, disease and disaster abounds. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, Catholic Relief Services offers another perspective. Good NewsFor a Change highlights major strides in the fight against global poverty that are making a real difference in peoples lives.

This first annual report includes infographics that at a glance demonstrate the progress being made around the world, in part because of the generosity of the American people in the form of poverty-focused international humanitarian assistance as well as donations to private agencies like CRS. These infographics use metrics issued by widely recognized international agencies like the World Health Organization, UNICEF, UNECSO and UNAIDS.

Too often, we focus on problems, said John Rivera, CRS Communications Director. We thought wed take a different approach. Drawing on our tradition of Catholic Social Teaching, with its focus on the Common Good and Integral Human Development, we decided we would emphasize both our grounding in the Gospel as well as our effective action for improving the lives of the people we serve. Hence, Good NewsFor a Change.

The infographics cover the gamut of humanitarian action:

Compliance Science Launches Extended Donation Drive for Hurricane Sandy Relief Efforts

New York, New York (PRWEB) December 10, 2012

Compliance Science, Inc. (CSI) announced today the launch of its donation drive to benefit Hurricane Sandy relief efforts for those affected in Far Rockaway.

CSI has partnered with Community and Family Head Start in Far Rockaway that will allow for simple, straightforward supply donation and delivery to families that have been affected by Hurricane Sandy.

Although CSI staff has individually volunteered for grassroots relief efforts, as a company, we wanted to invite the CSI Community clients, partners, and peers to join us in a dedicated rebuilding effort. said Mitchel Kraskin, Founder and CEO. We hope that through a combined endeavor, we can help those devastated by Hurricane Sandy.

The drive runs through mid January. Interested parties can visit http://www.complysci.com/sandyhelp for further details.

About Compliance Science

Compliance Science is a New York City based global leader in providing web-based regulatory compliance technology and services to the Financial Services community. Clients include leading RIA’s, B/D’s, PE Firms, Hedge Funds, Banks, Pension Plans, Public Companies – all of whom rely on CSI to help protect them from the specter of reputational damage and revenue loss from non-compliant activities.

About Community and Family Head Start

Head Start provides comprehensive services to low-income families and their children, including health, nutrition, social, and in addition to education and cognitive development services with an emphasis on the role of parents as their child’s first and most important teacher


Media Contacts

For any questions related to this press release, please contact

Compliance Science: Hazel Alvarado at 212.327.1533, Hazel.Alvarado(at)complysci.com

Community and Family Head Start Far Rockaway: Cynthia Cummings at 718.771.4002×112,


Colorado Coaches Contribute To Katrina Relief

Denver, CO (PRWEB) December 6, 2005

In an effort to help those in need, Denver Coach Federation (DCF) members are using their life coaching talents to support Katrina Victims in various, unique ways.

Beth Myers of DCF was sent down with the American Counseling Association to coach the volunteers who decided if an evacuee received money or not. The conditions were tragic, you smelled it all around you. People did and still do need a lot of coaching, Said Myers, We worked 15-20 hour days and coached around not giving into your panic and fears, staying present with the people youre out there to help, and helping people retain their optimism.

The New Orleans Police Benevolent Association is the main target of our coaching. Said DCF member Walli Carranza, We have 13 volunteer coaches helping out. We provide coaching support for the decision makers who sent men and women into the front lines because theyre the ones who took the heat of the negative community response.

Frank Traditi of the DCF is spearheading an organization called Volunteers For Careers. The group of 900 volunteers, many of them DCF career coaches, are providing free job search coaching to individuals who lost their jobs due to Katrina. Although the effort is still in its early stages, said Traditi, we already have more than 4,000 victims that have engaged with us. We are working with the Dept. of Labor at the national level. Volunteersforcareers.com first started as a response to help 9-11 victims and has now reopened its doors for those who have lost jobs due to Katrina.

Long-time DCF member Reuel Hunt was involved in the creation of Crisis Response Coaching (CRC), a leadership project composed of volunteers offering free coaching services to volunteers, first responders, and victims of any crises, such as Hurricane Katrina. CRC has partnered with Red Cross and FEMA and plans to begin services in December.

About the Denver Coach Federation:

The DCF is a professional organization of personal and business coaches in the Denver area that educate the public about coaching, foster growth and outreach into the Denver community, and strengthen coach leadership and sustainability. The DCF adheres to the ethical guidelines and standards of the International Coach Federation. The DCF, which has 100+ members, offers a free Find a Coach service via its website (http://www.denvercoach.com).

DCF Contact:

Christie Cestero, PR Director

Phone: (303) 744-8522

Email: christie@coachingquest.com

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