A quarter of a million dollars. I wonder what the total is statewide?
Dialogue is crucial, but so is our state government recognizing that poor people are human beings and residents.
I agree with a lot of what you say, but is anyone really surprised?
What's interesting is that we aren't talking about lifting the residency requirement for the rest of City employees. How is that fair or reasonable or good for morale? Why should the employees with the strongest union and the highest levels of compensation be freed of this requirement while the rest of us are forced to remain (my partner works for the City?) I'd seriously urge the other employees to revolt and sue for equal treatment.
We also need to have a discussion about retention - why is the City Police Academy providing tax payer subsidized training for officers who leave after a few years for more lucrative paying jobs in "better" municipalities? If your training is covered by City, perhaps you should have to work for the City for 10 years or so much like doctors and teachers have certain requirements.
Does anyone think that the firefighters and public works unions will be far behind on this matter?
This is a positive step. In November of this year, the Human Rights Campaign will issue the second edition of their municipal equality index - that's going to be a great tool to help our region identify concrete measures that are doable on the municipal level.
I believe you, Bram. Wagner's evolution is fine, but this is 2013 and we've already been down this path with Dan Onorato who couldn't see fit to provide domestic partner benefits for his own employees (and now works for a health insurance company) in spite of his professed evolution.
Thank you for publishing this. The Trevor Project is an amazing resource. Persad Center is also doing outreach into rural communities, but I think that PFLAG tends to be the trail blazers and thank God for them!
" And his friendliness to gay causes was more than one would have expected — or than Pittsburgh had previously gotten — from a conservative, Catholic mayor."
I'm gad you used the word "gay" instead of LGBTQ. Signing a pledge to support marriage equality hardly offsets the damage Ravenstahl has done or the lack of accomplishment.
His Administration bungled a change in the way income tax on domestic partner benefits are collected, a fail that caught many of us off guard and created financial hardships that could have been avoided with planning. But I guess that only hurt City employees so no big whoop?
His Administration failed to provide adequate police protection - as required - for the Dyke March and only did so when he was publicly called on the carpet in front of his Advisory Committee. But that's only some random women? Why can't they just be in the Pride Parade which had plenty of police protection right?
His LGBTQ Advisory Committee hasn't done much of anything. I received an email every six months or so asking me to update my contact information. No reports, no letters, no updates, no visible action. If I report a concern to them, I'l redirected to Ravenstah's staff. ???
His Administration seems to be okay with the web filter software for the City automatically labeling the word "lesbian" as pornography. The only vocal complaintant is an anti-Ravenstahl lesbian blog which is caught in the filter (me!) so who the fuck cares right? Never mind that it is patently offensive & creates a hostile work environment. It is also easy to fix so why would we expect the CIS team to address it? Competency? Bah!
Yes, Luke Ravenstahl is a friend to the affluent white gay men in Pittsburgh - and I suppose that is a step forward. Thankfully, Bill Peduto understands that the LGBTQ community includes many more people and will likely accomplish more for all of us by simply using his own car to attend the Dyke March.
If the owner knows the identitites of people who committed a crime in his business, he doesn't need to chat with the victims. He needs to call Zone 3 and provide that information to the police. Period. Its great that he wants to talk with the women who were assaulted in his business and perhaps address their concerns. But .... I hope now that Zone 3 is aware he has information, they are already interviewing him.
Imagine how refreshing it would be to see gay bashers caught and brought to justice. What is he waiting for?
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