FALLS CHURCH, VA—Inova, Northern Virginia’s largest health system, announced it will eliminate use of plastic straws at its five
The health system reports it uses about three million straws per year, totaling about a mile in length each day. The ban will apply to
public spaces such as cafeterias and gift shops.
“Inova recognizes that be
ing a leader in healt
hcare means caring for our environment as well as our patients, said said J. Stephen Jones, M.D., president and CEO at Inova. “We understand the health of our planet affects the health of our patients and community, and encourage oth
ers in our industry to join this endeavor.”
ic items such as utensils, coffee stirrers, dishware and cups. These eco-friendly initiatives seek to keep plastic items from ending up in the Chesapeake Bay or other waterways.
The movement to ban plastic straws initiated from a viral 2015 videoof a turtle with a plastic straw stuck in its nose. Inova will join companies such as Alaska Airlines, Starbucks and Hyatt Hotels that have committed to plastic straw bans. Meanwhile, cities like Seattle have banned plastic straws, and DC is considering a ban as well.
The bans has sparked some outrage about banning plastic straws when people with disabilities need to use them. Inova said disabled individuals will have paper straws available to patients and others who need them, according to WTOP.
Inova aims to eliminate all plastic straws from its public areas by America Recycles Day on Nov. 15.
What do you think of Inova’s plastic straw ban? Let us know in the comments.
Yelp has added a new option to allow businesses to advertise the fact that they do not discriminate.
There have been a string of high-profile cases in the US over the past few years where business owners, typically citing evangelical Christian beliefs, have denied service to gay people on ‘moral’ grounds.
The issue has become contentious and is likely years away from a solution, with Republicans in Congress still firmly opposed to federal LGBT anti-discrimination protections.
From today, however, online review and listing service Yelp has added a facility for businesses to confirm they have pledged to be ‘Open to All’ and will not discriminate against minority groups, as part of a national campaign.
Yelp SVP Luther Lowe explained: “We’re introducing the ‘Open to All’ attribute today, allowing businesses to distinguish themselves as a safe and welcoming place to everyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, religion or disability.
When visiting the Yelp page of a participating business users will be able to see whether or not the business is ‘Open to All’. Just look for it under ‘More business info,’ where you’d typically check if they accept reservations or not.”
He explained : “Launched in response to the recent ruling on the Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission case, The Open to All campaign aims to step in where legislation falls short and help protect consumers from discrimination.
“Every day, consumers face varied degrees of discrimination. Beyond the LGBTQ+ community, this also unfortunately exists for many minority communities in our country and we are equipping consumers with the information they need to confidently patronize any place of business.
We encourage business owners who are proud to be ‘Open to All’ to take the pledge and opt-in to the attribute on your Yelp business page,“Today, many businesses are already pre-identified as ‘Open to All’ on Yelp, including New Day Craft, Luna Grill and Garden Fresh Restaurants.
“Business owners who make themselves as ‘Open to All’ will also receive a window decal to display in their storefront.”
So we have to get into the more insideious and less funny side of Mr Jones again.
He is deliberately trying to get people murdered… again.
He is invoking his armed and dangerous target audince… again.
And I’m pretty sure that only The Wine Cellar is going to cover it.. again.
We also get into Sex Worker raped and charged with “prostitution”.
The GOP in Florida is taking your gunzzzzz.
Supreme court denies Trump administration request to halt climate change lawsuit.
Republican Candidate Gay Sexy sex kills more than smoking.
Cops Pull Gun on Ving Rhames for breaking into his house by picking the lock with the key.
GOP lawmaker gets his catfish on with the fellas by using his girlfriends nudes without her consent.
Black Woman tries to stand her ground and gets treated like a Black woman trying to stand her ground.
Further…. Al-Semedy Jones’ Attorneys say he don’t make no sense.
Iowa man attempts to rape a woman because she dare said “no”.
Woman kills husband over a disagreement… guess what.
GOSHEN – Retired New York City Police officer Nicholas McAteer of Greenwood Lake was sentenced in Orange County Court on Friday to 18 years in state prison following his guilty plea to two counts of first-degree rape.
Nicholas McAteer, 46, previously pled guilty in his 2007 and 2011 rapes of two teenage girls.
At the time of his guilty plea, McAteer admitted to forcibly raping the girls including one in 2007 when she was 18 and the other, in 2011, when she was 15.
The judgment against McAteer satisfies an 82-count indictment, involving a series of sexual offenses he committed against the girls over a number of years.
Judge William DeProspo also sentenced McAteer a period of post-release supervision.
“Sex offenses are among the most despicable acts that people can commit against others, and can often have profound adverse impacts on victims, especially young victims,” said District Attorney David Hoovler. “In my office, we have made it a priority to treat sex offenses involving child victims very seriously, and will see appropriate, and significant, sentences for those crimes.”
Hoovler said Friday’ sentence against McAteer “will, hopefully, bring some measure of justice and closure to the young people that this defendant victimized, and to their families.”
The first rule of police fight club is that you should totally get caught doing police fight club.
We also have a short list of stories compiled by Phoenix Calida (@UppittyNegress on the twitter).
We have our short breaks.
1. With Nina Turner reppin’ for #HoodProgressives on CNN.
2. With MJ Rodriguez talking about trans employment in cis-sexist entertainment.
We have a Black serial killer with Black victims.
Canada is getting their deportation on with that DNA game..
Bernie Sanders is doing something that would help poor Black people, so of course, Imani (@AngryBlackLady) Gandi thinks it’s racist because only middle class and #RichBlackLivesMatter
A Bay Area man will stand trial on charges he murdered a sex worker and dumped her body in a trash bin at a shopping center last year.
But defendant William Li’s attorney said while there was evidence his client may have moved the body of 30-year-old Lijun Wang after she died, there wasn’t enough evidence to prove Li killed the victim.
Li has pleaded not guilty to a criminal complaint alleging he killed Wang the night of Feb. 5, 2017, according to court records.
Wang, a Chinese national who came to the country in February 2016, was working as a sex worker to pay off debts incurred while traveling to the United States, police said. Wang, who was 5-feet-3-inches tall and weighed 90-pounds, was found dead, wrapped within three bags on Feb. 6, 2017, in a trash bin.
On Wednesday investigators testified Wang’s cause of death was “asphyxiation by neck compression” and that she was killed less than 24 hours before she was found.
After a two-month investigation, police arrested Li in San Mateo. Li initially admitted to being in a romantic relationship with Wang, and investigators said Li was tied to “the organized crime” group for which Wang worked as a prostitute, but did not say what Li’s role was.
Detective Jeff Horn, said police haven’t identified a direct motive, although they have considered that problems in the romantic relationship between Wang and Li could have led to Wang’s death. But they believe Li is the killer based on cell phone call records and geolocation records, Li’s statement to detectives and other “strong circumstantial evidence.”
That evidence, according to testimony Tuesday and Wednesday, included surveillance video from a nearby business that shows a car that matched the description of Li’s near the trash bin, the night before a homeless man found Wang.
Forensic experts also testified chips of paint found on Wang’s body matched at least two paint samples from the San Mateo auto body shop where Li worked. The chips were also in the trunk of Li’s car.
Web histories on computers and an iPhone seized during the investigation included searches on the Sun-Star’s coverage of murder and how to delete phone records, Merced Police Detective Allen Adrian testified.
Li’s attorney, Merced-based Jeffrey Tenenbaum, rejected the broken relationship story and police allegations Li was involved with a sex-trafficking organization. Tenenbaum says the evidence doesn’t point to more than a platonic relationship between the two.
Wang, Tenenbaum said, was Li’s masseuse, adding that Li helped Wang with legal issues. Tenenbaum said the purpose of a meeting between the two the day of the murder was for Li to give back Wang’s passport because she requested it.
Tenenbaum also said a lack of motive or any evidence suggesting Li killed Wang meant the murder charge didn’t fit.
“I will grant you that there’s been a lot of evidence presented that Mr. Li transported a dead body,” Tenenbaum said to Horn on the witness stand Wednesday. “But how can you be certain that Mr. Li killed this woman?”
The difference, Tenenbaum said, meant charging Li with being an accessory to murder after the fact rather than murder. The former is a less serious felony with a lighter possible sentence.
But in a preliminary hearing, a judge has to determine if the murder case should go to trial based on a “reasonable suspicion” it happened.
On Tenenbaum’s insistence that there was no motive for murder, Judge Ronald Hansen said there also was no motive for Li moving Wang’s body other than the allegation that Li killed her.
“There is no motive, no direct evidence,” Tenenbaum said, noting Li has a family with three kids, and works hard as a mechanic. “He maintains his innocence.”
Li’s next hearing is scheduled for Aug. 20.
Deadliest Catch costar Edgar Hansen on Friday admitted sexually abusing a 16-year old girl last fall. Hansen admitting to touching the girls genitals and making her touch his genitals.
In exchange for his plea to fourth-degree assault with sexual motivation, Hansen, 47, was given a suspended sentence of 364 days in jail, meaning he will not spend time behind bars. He also received two years’ probation and various fees and fines totaling $1,653, with an additional $4,800 fine suspended, court records show.
Hansen was further ordered to undergo a sexual deviancy evaluation and treatment and provide a DNA sample to law enforcement.
The prosecuting attorney’s office agreed not to pursue any charges that may arise in the future in connection with the case, which was first reported on by the Seattle Times.
In a brief handwritten statement accompanying his guilty plea, Hansen acknowledged “touching [the victim’s] private areas … for the purpose of my own sexual gratification.”
The assault occurred on Sept. 30 in Snohomish County, Washington, court records show. The victim, described only as a 16-year-old girl, reported her abuse to her therapist in late October, saying it took place at a local home.
The victim said Hansen “kissed her on the lips, touched her vagina and had her touch his penis,” prosecutors stated in a probable cause affidavit.
Investigators spoke with Hansen’s wife, who said she “confronted him” after learning of the abuse, the affidavit shows. He “initially denied” it but “eventually admitted that he kissed [the victim] and touched her inappropriately.”
In his statement with his plea, Edgar wrote that he has “commenced treatment to ensure that nothing like this assault ever happens again.
RealNetworks, the Seattle company best known for pioneering streaming media in the early days of the web, is deploying a controversial new product. The company said it will offer a new facial recognition technology, called SAFR, for free to K-12 schools to help upgrade their on-site security systems.
SAFR can be used with the same cameras that traditional surveillance systems to recognize students, staff, and people visiting schools. RealNetworks said that in addition to security, the tool can also help with record-keeping and “campus monitoring.” The technology is compatible with Mac, iOS, Android, and Windows.
“SAFR from RealNetworks is highly accurate facial recognition software powered by artificial intelligence,” the company explains on the SAFR site. “It works with existing IP cameras and readily available hardware to match faces in real-time. Schools can stay focused and better analyze potential threats such as expelled students, and those who pose a threat from within and outside the school.”
“We feel that’s going to enhance the security of schools but also lead to more convenience, a simple way of entering a school campus,” RealNetworks Chief Technology Officer Reza Rassool explained.
The ACLU has been vocal in its criticism of facial recognition technology and said there are big red flags with this program.
“I think often it’s put out there by well-intentioned people but the impacts are often felt by vulnerable communities,” said Shankar Narayan, the technology and liberty project director with the ACLU or Washington.
Developers said they understand those fears but said individual districts control the data. Narayan worries a system like this might keep some parents from coming to campus “what are these systems recording, who gets the data for what purpose is that data going to be used?”
Narayan said undocumented immigrants or parents with a criminal history might be hesitant to come to their child’s school.
RealNetworks said they understand that some people might be a little skittish with the technology and that’s why they believe the program should be voluntary.