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Killexams : Certification-Board Massachusetts action - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/MTEL Search results Killexams : Certification-Board Massachusetts action - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/MTEL https://killexams.com/exam_list/Certification-Board Killexams : 19 Massachusetts cops off the job due to new certification standards
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Nineteen Massachusetts police officers were relieved of duty due to new certification standards meant to increase public trust in law enforcement.

According to a report by WBZ, the 19 officers are off the job because they are no longer certified to serve in Massachusetts due to the findings of background checks.

Established in 2020, the Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission (POST Commission) is a criminal justice reform effort aimed at improving public safety and increasing trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve. The inception of the POST Commission comes as the nation grapples with concerns over police brutality and racial injustice.

Over the summer, the oversight commission processed the first batch of Massachusetts officers up for recertification. The 19 officers who were let go were part of a group of 8,729 cops whose last names begin with the letter A through H. The commission has another two years to process the rest of the officers. 

In April, police organizations and unions filed a lawsuit against the commission, calling them “highly invasive, improper, unfair, and irrational.” No decision has been made on the lawsuit.

POST Executive Director Enrique Zuniga told WBZ that the commission is considering concerns over how much information should be made available to the public. 

“Something that we’re very cognizant of, is whether we would disclose at all, unsustained or unfounded complaints,” Zuniga told the outlet.

Jamarhl Crawford, a police reform advocate, told WBZ he believes in “full and total access to records” because multiple complaints can shed light on patterns—even if the complaints are later dropped.

“The good guy’s ‘white suit’ has stains on it, and I think that in order to kind of restore the public faith, the only way to do that, is full accountability and transparency,” he told the outlet. “That’s what people have wanted.”

Sun, 25 Sep 2022 01:51:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.boston.com/news/local-news/2022/09/25/19-massachusetts-cops-off-the-job-due-to-new-certification-standards/
Killexams : 19 Massachusetts police officers off the job as result of the new law enforcement certification

BOSTON - The WBZ I-Team has learned 19 police officers are no longer certified to serve in Massachusetts because of a new effort to boost the public's trust in law enforcement.

"America and apple pie and 'Father Knows Best'. You know, kids wanted to grow up to be cowboys and police officers, not so much anymore," said police reform advocate Jamarhl Crawford. He was talking about the public's distrust in law enforcement, which Crawford says is an issue he's been tackling in Boston for decades.

Finally, now prompted by the public outcry over high-profile police brutality cases across the country, comes hope for a solution in Massachusetts. The Peace Officer Standards and Training, also known as the POST Commission, was tasked by the state legislature a couple years ago to background-check every officer in the state. The commission is doing something Massachusetts has never formally done before, officially certifying all police here.

The agency also has to create an online database where ordinary citizens can look up any officer's record. "I imagine initially, the ability for someone to type up a name and see fundamentally some disciplinary history and certification status," said POST Executive Director Enrique Zuniga.

But critics tell the WBZ I-Team the effort is falling short. According to numbers we obtained from POST, the commission has gone through officers whose last names begin with "A" through "H". Of 8,729 reviewed, 19 have been stripped of their badges. The commission has two more years to work through the rest of the alphabet.

"It confirms my skepticism," said Crawford. He said the number of officers denied certification seems low, considering how many officers he sees in headlines about alleged misconduct. Also, he said, the public database people were first told to expect four months ago, is taking too long.

Zuniga says it's because the commission is weighing all sides of a passionate debate over how much the public should be able to see. "The history is supposed to go all the way to the beginning," he said. There are questions about whether former officers should be listed, whether anonymous complaints should be included, and complaints that turn out to be unsubstantiated.

Retired Sgt. Jim Machado, of the Massachusetts Police Association, said he has concerns around officer privacy. "In a time where the legislature is looking to seal records and expunge records...when it comes to law enforcement, they're looking to open the book and look all the way back," he said.

Zuniga said the commission is working hard to be fair. "Something that we're very cognizant of, is whether we would disclose at all, unsustained or unfounded complaints," he said.

Crawford argues that sometimes, even if complaints are later dropped, they can reveal important patterns. "I believe in full and total access to records," he said. "The good guy's 'white suit' has stains on it, and I think that in order to kind of restore the public faith, the only way to do that, is full accountability and transparency. That's what people have wanted."

Several police organizations have filed a lawsuit against POST, arguing that parts of the certification review process are too invasive. There's been no decision on that yet.  

Thu, 22 Sep 2022 12:29:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.cbsnews.com/boston/news/massachusetts-police-officers-post-commission-i-team/
Killexams : Lawsuit: Young boys locked in dark closet, hit with ‘teacher’s stick’ at Massachusetts day care

METHUEN, Mass. — Two young boys were locked in a dark closet, deprived of the lunches their mothers packed for them and beaten with a “teacher’s stick,” according to a lawsuit filed against a day care in Methuen, Massachusetts.

According to WFXT-TV, an attorney representing the mothers of the victims filed the civil lawsuit earlier this week in Essex Superior Court against the Children’s Center of the Faith United Methodist Church, alleging battery, assault, false imprisonment, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence, and invasion of privacy, court documents indicate.

Defendants in the lawsuit obtained by WFXT include the president of the Children’s Center, a handful of directors, and a trio of employees. They were identified as Mark Siegel, Sandra Lumb, William Callahan, Jennifer Picard, Leticia Cordero, Iris Cordero, Yarlene Betances, Unexie Santos and a Jane Doe.

According to the lawsuit, one of the victims, age 4, was “frequently” locked in a dark supply closet near the gymnasium as a form of punishment. Staffers at the day care allegedly told the boy that monsters were in the closet to scare him.

The lawsuit states the boy was routinely physically abused as a punishment, and employees beat him with what they called the “teacher’s stick.” The day care is also accused of failing to prevent the victim’s peers from bullying him. Additionally, when the boy had to use the bathroom, employees would reportedly “lock him in the restroom and shut the lights off.”

The boy further claimed that he was restrained to the point where he couldn’t breathe and was pinched and scratched by staffers. According to the lawsuit, the boy wasn’t allowed to eat the food his mother packed in his lunch box.

The other victim, age 3, was said to be locked in the same closet, and when he screamed for help, staffers allegedly told him to “shut the [expletive] up.” He also reported being beaten with the “teacher’s stick” and frequently being called a “baby.”

According to WFXT, both victims also claimed that they were often referred to as “disgusting” for having to use the bathroom.

The lawsuit showed both boys suffer from PTSD, anxiety, night terrors, and self-confidence issues, and they are now undergoing intensive therapy.

The mothers of the boys also reported “significant damage” from emotional distress and lost wages.

On Facebook, the Children’s Center was described as having a “loving, warm, nurturing, and safe environment for children.”

That Facebook page has since been taken down, according to WFXT.

Fri, 14 Oct 2022 08:31:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.actionnewsjax.com/news/trending/lawsuit-young-boys-locked-dark-closet-hit-with-teachers-stick-massachusetts-day-care/BSNFQNDSJRB23MTUCQT2I7WPVU/
Killexams : Class action lawsuit filed against DeSantis on behalf of migrants brought to Massachusetts

A group says it is suing Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and others over what it is calling a "fraudulent and discriminatory scheme" to transport nearly 50 Venezuelan migrants from San Antonio, Texas to the Massachusetts island of Martha's Vineyard without shelter or resources in place.The organization Lawyers for Civil Rights announced Tuesday that a federal civil rights class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of a class of affected immigrants, including the dozens flown to Martha's Vineyard, and Alianza Americas, a network of migrant-led organizations supporting immigrants across the United States.According to Lawyers for Civil Rights, the group of migrants in San Antonio were targeted and induced to board airplanes and cross state lines under false pretenses.In addition to DeSantis, Lawyers for Civil Rights said it is suing Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Jared Perdue, the state of Florida, and their accomplices."No human being should be used as a political pawn in the nation’s highly polarized debate over immigration,” Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, executive director of Lawyers for Civil Rights, said in a statement.“It is opportunistic that activists would use illegal immigrants for political theater,” said Taryn Fenske, DeSantis' communication director, in a statement late Tuesday.The lawsuit alleges that the defendants pretended to be good samaritans offering help and gave the migrants $10 gift certificates for McDonald's while they were in Texas."After luring Plaintiffs by exploiting their most basic needs, the Doe Defendants then made false promises and false representations that if Plaintiffs and class members were willing to board airplanes to other states, they would receive employment, housing, educational opportunities, and other like assistance upon their arrival," the lawsuit states.The migrants were temporarily housed in a Texas hotel, where their attorneys said they were "sequestered away from the migrant center" while the defendants procured and paid $615,000 for the private planes that took them to Martha's Vineyard. According to the lawsuit, the defendants spent $12,300 per passenger aboard the flights. The lawsuit claims that the migrants were told they were going to Boston or Washington, D.C., "which was completely false."Helena Olea, associate director for programs at Alianza Americas, said the migrants were given brochures that claimed to provide job placement, housing assistance, food assistance, English learning and eight months of cash assistance for income-eligible refugees."The persons who were flown to Martha's Vineyard were deceived, were misinformed," Olea said. "They are asylum seekers. They do not have access to those services." Click here to read the entire lawsuit filed on behalf of the migrants.The class action lawsuit comes a day after a sheriff in Texas announced he is launching a criminal investigation into the people responsible for transporting the group of migrants from San Antonio to Martha's Vineyard.Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar announced Monday that, to his office's understanding, a Venezuelan migrant was paid to recruit the migrants from the area surrounding the city of San Antonio's Migrant Resource Center. "They feel they were lied to. They feel that they were deceived in being taken from Bexar County — from San Antonio, Texas — to where they eventually ended up," Salazar said in an interview with CNN on Tuesday. "They feel like that was done through deceptive means. That could be a crime here in Texas and we will handle it as such." Salazar, an elected Democrat, railed against the flights that took off in his city as political posturing. But he said investigators had so far only spoken to attorneys representing some of the migrants and did not name any potential suspects who might face charges."I am very glad that the sheriff chose to open an investigation, I think that's the right thing to do," Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday.The group of migrants landed in Martha's Vineyard on Wednesday and were eventually brought to Joint Base Cape Cod on Friday.DeSantis said he paid for the flights from a state fund because those migrants were planning to travel to his state.Salazar did not mention DeSantis in a news conference that appeared to mark the first time a law enforcement official has said they would look into the flights.“I believe there is some criminal activity involved here,” Salazar said Monday. “But at present, we are trying to keep an open mind and we are going to investigate to find out what exact laws were broken if that does turn out to be the case.”Baker said he has not spoken to DeSantis, but the Florida governor said Tuesday — before the class action lawsuit was announced — that allegations the migrants were transported to Massachusetts under false pretenses are false."It was volunteer-offered transport to sanctuary jurisdictions," DeSantis said.On Sunday, Baker announced that he has activated up to 125 members of the Massachusetts National Guard to help the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency in its relief efforts for the group of Venezuelan migrants, who are currently housed in a dormitory-style space at JBCC. Julio Henriquez, an attorney who met with several migrants, said the migrants were told they were going to Boston and “had no idea of where they were going or where they were.”He said a Latina woman approached migrants at a city-run shelter in San Antonio and put them up at a nearby La Quinta Inn, where she visited daily with food and gift cards. She promised jobs and three months of housing in Washington, New York, Philadelphia and Boston, according to Henriquez.Salazar said the migrants had been “preyed upon” and “hoodwinked.”State Rep. Dylan Fernandes and state Sen. Julian Cyr, who both represent Cape Cod and the islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, met with the migrants on Monday and called for a federal investigation into the matter."Not only is this morally criminal, I think there are real implications here around human trafficking; around fraud, at a bare minimum; deprivation of liberty; kidnapping," Fernandes said."Not a single one of them are in violation of immigration law," Cyr said. "They presented as asylum seekers. These are Venezuelans who are escaping a communist dictatorship."Some Democrats have urged the Justice Department to investigate the flights, including California Gov. Gavin Newsom and U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, whose district includes San Antonio.Guesswork was rampant among government officials, advocates and journalists Tuesday about DeSantis’ next move, consistent with the element of surprise that he and another Republican governor, Greg Abbott of Texas, have sought to achieve by busing and flying migrants across the country to Democratic strongholds with little or no notice.Asked Tuesday about speculation that DeSantis may send migrants to his home state of Delaware, President Joe Biden said: “He should come visit. We have a beautiful shoreline.”DeSantis declined to confirm the speculation, based on flight-tracking software, that more migrants were on the move.MEMA continues to lead coordination efforts among state and local officials to ensure access to food, shelter and essential services for the migrants, according to the governor's office. The state is also offering to help individuals travel to their ultimate destination.Since the group of 49 people arrived, Martha’s Vineyard Community Services has raised approximately $269,000 to help and another $50,000 through a community foundation.Baker's office said those interested in supporting the emergency relief effort for the migrants should send an email to the Massachusetts Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters at MAVOAD@gmail.com.In a statement, Bourne Public Schools Superintendent Kerri Anne Quinlan-Zhoe said the school district is ready and willing to provide an education to the six migrant children who were brought to Joint Base Cape Cod.Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

A group says it is suing Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and others over what it is calling a "fraudulent and discriminatory scheme" to transport nearly 50 Venezuelan migrants from San Antonio, Texas to the Massachusetts island of Martha's Vineyard without shelter or resources in place.

The organization Lawyers for Civil Rights announced Tuesday that a federal civil rights class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of a class of affected immigrants, including the dozens flown to Martha's Vineyard, and Alianza Americas, a network of migrant-led organizations supporting immigrants across the United States.

According to Lawyers for Civil Rights, the group of migrants in San Antonio were targeted and induced to board airplanes and cross state lines under false pretenses.

In addition to DeSantis, Lawyers for Civil Rights said it is suing Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Jared Perdue, the state of Florida, and their accomplices.

"No human being should be used as a political pawn in the nation’s highly polarized debate over immigration,” Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, executive director of Lawyers for Civil Rights, said in a statement.

“It is opportunistic that activists would use illegal immigrants for political theater,” said Taryn Fenske, DeSantis' communication director, in a statement late Tuesday.

The lawsuit alleges that the defendants pretended to be good samaritans offering help and gave the migrants $10 gift certificates for McDonald's while they were in Texas.

"After luring Plaintiffs by exploiting their most basic needs, the Doe Defendants then made false promises and false representations that if Plaintiffs and class members were willing to board airplanes to other states, they would receive employment, housing, educational opportunities, and other like assistance upon their arrival," the lawsuit states.

The migrants were temporarily housed in a Texas hotel, where their attorneys said they were "sequestered away from the migrant center" while the defendants procured and paid $615,000 for the private planes that took them to Martha's Vineyard. According to the lawsuit, the defendants spent $12,300 per passenger aboard the flights.

The lawsuit claims that the migrants were told they were going to Boston or Washington, D.C., "which was completely false."

Helena Olea, associate director for programs at Alianza Americas, said the migrants were given brochures that claimed to provide job placement, housing assistance, food assistance, English learning and eight months of cash assistance for income-eligible refugees.

"The persons who were flown to Martha's Vineyard were deceived, were misinformed," Olea said. "They are asylum seekers. They do not have access to those services."

Click here to read the entire lawsuit filed on behalf of the migrants.

The class action lawsuit comes a day after a sheriff in Texas announced he is launching a criminal investigation into the people responsible for transporting the group of migrants from San Antonio to Martha's Vineyard.

Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar announced Monday that, to his office's understanding, a Venezuelan migrant was paid to recruit the migrants from the area surrounding the city of San Antonio's Migrant Resource Center.

"They feel they were lied to. They feel that they were deceived in being taken from Bexar County — from San Antonio, Texas — to where they eventually ended up," Salazar said in an interview with CNN on Tuesday. "They feel like that was done through deceptive means. That could be a crime here in Texas and we will handle it as such."

Salazar, an elected Democrat, railed against the flights that took off in his city as political posturing. But he said investigators had so far only spoken to attorneys representing some of the migrants and did not name any potential suspects who might face charges.

"I am very glad that the sheriff chose to open an investigation, I think that's the right thing to do," Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday.

The group of migrants landed in Martha's Vineyard on Wednesday and were eventually brought to Joint Base Cape Cod on Friday.

DeSantis said he paid for the flights from a state fund because those migrants were planning to travel to his state.

Salazar did not mention DeSantis in a news conference that appeared to mark the first time a law enforcement official has said they would look into the flights.

“I believe there is some criminal activity involved here,” Salazar said Monday. “But at present, we are trying to keep an open mind and we are going to investigate to find out what exact laws were broken if that does turn out to be the case.”

Baker said he has not spoken to DeSantis, but the Florida governor said Tuesday — before the class action lawsuit was announced — that allegations the migrants were transported to Massachusetts under false pretenses are false.

"It was volunteer-offered transport to sanctuary jurisdictions," DeSantis said.

On Sunday, Baker announced that he has activated up to 125 members of the Massachusetts National Guard to help the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency in its relief efforts for the group of Venezuelan migrants, who are currently housed in a dormitory-style space at JBCC.

Julio Henriquez, an attorney who met with several migrants, said the migrants were told they were going to Boston and “had no idea of where they were going or where they were.”

He said a Latina woman approached migrants at a city-run shelter in San Antonio and put them up at a nearby La Quinta Inn, where she visited daily with food and gift cards. She promised jobs and three months of housing in Washington, New York, Philadelphia and Boston, according to Henriquez.

Salazar said the migrants had been “preyed upon” and “hoodwinked.”

State Rep. Dylan Fernandes and state Sen. Julian Cyr, who both represent Cape Cod and the islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, met with the migrants on Monday and called for a federal investigation into the matter.

"Not only is this morally criminal, I think there are real implications here around human trafficking; around fraud, at a bare minimum; deprivation of liberty; kidnapping," Fernandes said.

"Not a single one of them are in violation of immigration law," Cyr said. "They presented as asylum seekers. These are Venezuelans who are escaping a communist dictatorship."

Some Democrats have urged the Justice Department to investigate the flights, including California Gov. Gavin Newsom and U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, whose district includes San Antonio.

Guesswork was rampant among government officials, advocates and journalists Tuesday about DeSantis’ next move, consistent with the element of surprise that he and another Republican governor, Greg Abbott of Texas, have sought to achieve by busing and flying migrants across the country to Democratic strongholds with little or no notice.

Asked Tuesday about speculation that DeSantis may send migrants to his home state of Delaware, President Joe Biden said: “He should come visit. We have a beautiful shoreline.”

DeSantis declined to confirm the speculation, based on flight-tracking software, that more migrants were on the move.

MEMA continues to lead coordination efforts among state and local officials to ensure access to food, shelter and essential services for the migrants, according to the governor's office. The state is also offering to help individuals travel to their ultimate destination.

Since the group of 49 people arrived, Martha’s Vineyard Community Services has raised approximately $269,000 to help and another $50,000 through a community foundation.

Baker's office said those interested in supporting the emergency relief effort for the migrants should send an email to the Massachusetts Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters at MAVOAD@gmail.com.

In a statement, Bourne Public Schools Superintendent Kerri Anne Quinlan-Zhoe said the school district is ready and willing to provide an education to the six migrant children who were brought to Joint Base Cape Cod.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Wed, 21 Sep 2022 03:38:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.wcvb.com/article/class-action-lawsuit-for-migrants-in-massachusetts/41300374
Killexams : Judge denies plaintiffs' class action certification in Title IX suit against UM

A U.S. District Judge denied class action certification in a sex-based discrimination lawsuit against the University of Montana involving over 70 current and former employees on Monday.

Through a series of legal tests on current precedent, Chief Judge Brian Morris ultimately decided that the plaintiffs did not meet the requirements to grant them class status in terms of typicality and that they did not demonstrate the university’s liability “is subject to common proof.”

“Even after a year of litigation, there continues to be no evidence that supports the Plaintiffs’ class claims,” said Dave Kuntz, the university’s director of strategic communications. “This holds true despite the months of discovery and litigation that Plaintiffs have pursued.”

Chief Judge Morris’ decision was made without prejudice, meaning the plaintiffs could make another motion for class action status in the future.

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“The court believes it appropriate to permit plaintiffs ‘a second bite at the class-certification apple,’ given the importance of the issues in this case and the previously discussed evidentiary difficulties discrimination cases present,” Morris wrote in conclusion.

The plaintiffs' legal team, Hillary Carls and Sherine Blackford of Blackford Carls P.C. in Bozeman, said they are preparing their case. 

"On behalf of our 16 clients, we look forward to their day in court," the attorneys said in a statement to the Missoulian. "Regarding the Court’s recent order discussing the women who are not named plaintiffs in this case, we are pleased that the Court has given us clear guidance in the early stages of this litigation on the evidence needed and the path to advocating for these absent women if and when we request class certification in the future." 

The Title IX suit was initially filed last August by three former and one current university employee and alleges that UM and the Montana University System fostered and encouraged a culture that resulted in unequal treatment of female employees. The original plaintiffs in the suit include Catherine Cole, Barbara Koostra, Mary-Ann Sontag Bowman and Rhondie Voorhees.

Title IX of the federal Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.

Within about two weeks of the filing, 18 more women joined with similar allegations of gender discrimination and harassment. At a hearing in June, the plaintiffs' lawyers said they had identified more than 70 other current or former UM employees as eligible class-action members.

Following the June hearing, 12 more women formally joined the suit, bringing the total number of plaintiffs to 16 current and former employees.

“Looking forward, the university remains confident that the allegations are not supported by facts, that class certification will not be granted in the future and that the claims themselves lack merit,” Kuntz said.

“The university continues to be committed to empowering its employees and creating opportunity for all,” Kuntz added. “This includes the proactive diversity, equity and inclusion work embraced by the university.”

Since Seth Bodnar took the reins as president of the university, 78% of campus promotions have been female employees and a majority of new hires have also been women, according to Kuntz.

"Hey folks. Sharla here. I wanted to share a few words about Breast Cancer Awareness Month."

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Tue, 04 Oct 2022 09:07:00 -0500 en text/html https://missoulian.com/news/local/judge-denies-plaintiffs-class-action-certification-in-title-ix-suit-against-um/article_9af7b04c-2186-5dda-920d-ef62b4837a94.html
Killexams : State medical boards may be roadblock to wider telemedicine abortion

In the post-Roe landscape, advocates for abortion rights are pinning hopes on telehealth as one way to provide access in states with newly imposed limits. Startups like Abortion on Demand and Hey Jane have expanded their capacity to offer telemedicine services, prescribing abortion pills by mail in early pregnancy. Pro-access states, including Massachusetts last month, have enacted measures to protect providers of abortion care from legal penalties.

But these efforts, beyond facing legal maneuvers from abortion opponents, are likely to run up against an ostensibly more neutral institution responsible for physician licensing, regulation and discipline: state medical boards.

The U.S. is one of the few countries that requires individual state-by-state licensing for physicians — a system that for decades pre-pandemic kept most physicians practicing in a single state despite national standards, guidelines and regulations for how healthcare is delivered today. For a brief period, the pandemic changed everything: many state emergency orders waived requirements for out-of-state medical licenses, allowing providers to treat patients anywhere in the U.S. Several emergency orders also mandated that insurance companies cover telehealth visits, a boon to many who wanted to avoid risking exposure by traveling to a clinic or hospital setting. Telehealth went from less than 1% of care pre-pandemic to as high as 30% by some estimates.

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Beginning in 2021, though, many states’ emergency orders began to expire, and as a result, old regulations have returned in all but 10 states.

“It was really bizarre to see this whole system that made a tremendous amount of sense in the pandemic suddenly just go away without great reason,” said Samyukta Mullangi, a physician and hematology-oncology fellow at Memorial Sloan Kettering who has studied the licensing system.

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Then in June came the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, eliminating the constitutional right to abortion and ushering in strict abortion limits in about half the states.

Today most U.S.-based providers offering telemedicine abortions serve patients only in the states in which abortion is still legal. Doctors who may wish to help patients obtain abortion via telemedicine have to navigate new questions of legal jeopardy along with the logistics of obtaining licenses in states with abortion restrictions.

In July, the state of Massachusetts passed a sweeping reproductive rights law that protects its providers who wish to offer telemedicine abortion care to patients located in states where abortion is banned. The law prohibits the extradition of Massachusetts providers who do so, and also prevents Massachusetts law enforcement from providing information regarding any inquiry into such cases. Connecticut passed similar legislation in May, and at least eight other states have enacted measures to protect providers who provide abortion from legal penalties.

Legal sources caution, however, that these protections  should not be interpreted as an absolute safeguard for telemedicine visits when the patient is not physically in the same state as the provider.

Kathryn Fay, an OB-GYN physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital who specializes in family planning, says uncertainty is part of why more providers even in a place like Massachusetts haven’t jumped to offer telemedicine abortion to patients out of their own state. There are still many other questions, she said.

“Even with this protection, who’s going to pay the legal fees if another state brought a criminal case against a clinician?” she said hypothetically. At this point, standard malpractice insurance coverages usually do not explicitly address this. “And even if someone is protected in Massachusetts, but they’re a criminal in Texas, what happens if they’re flying to California and have a layover in Texas?’

“The problem is even legal experts say there isn’t precedent that can be referred to to understand if those holes are actually holes, and how big those holes are,” Fay said.

A related chaos of conflicting state-by-state regulations has long-existed regarding medical marijuana prescriptions and telehealth. Medical marijuana is legal in only 37 U.S. states, and many do not recognize out-of-state registrations for medical cannabis patients. Clinicians typically undergo a state-specific training course to prescribe medical marijuana and the conditions allowed differ by each state. States like South Dakota and Florida currently ban telehealth visits for medical marijuana consultations, despite telemedicine expansions for this purpose during the pandemic by over two dozen states. The varying regulations has led to complications for patients and providers alike.

Meanwhile, the process to become licensed out-of-state has reverted to one entailing significant personal cost to the physician and enormous amounts of paperwork for the vast majority of states. In rare cases, licensure in other states can require an interview with the state medical board. Additionally, to maintain licensure, each state requires updated paperwork, training, and individual fees every one to four years.

“Logistically speaking, for widespread telemedicine abortions, licensing is one of the primary barriers,” Fay said. She finds the thought of trying to become licensed in all 14 of the states currently banning abortions to be daunting. To become licensed in just Massachusetts took over six months. “To replicate that many-fold, seems not only cost-prohibitive, but time-limited,” she said. “I don’t know when a clinician would actually be able to start helping people in those states.”

An agreement known as the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact has gained popularity as a way to streamline the application process across the 34 participating states. The compact seeks to minimize redundancies by sharing information about a physician’s application and eligibility across state lines. However, it does not eliminate costs — on top of the non-refundable $700 fee to join the compact, a physician could still end up paying hundreds of dollars more for each additional license sought.

The history of state-based medical licensing dates to the 13 colonies, before the United States of America was officially founded, said Humayun Chaudhry, president and CEO of the Federation of State Medical Boards, the organization which represents the 71 state medical and osteopathic boards in the United States and its territories.

“Really since the beginning of the nation, there’s been this notion of licensure, discipline, regulation at the local level,” he said. At that time, each colony had its own system for licensing and regulating its physicians. When the United States formed, it was decided that this would remain the purview of individual states, a principle with its basis in the 10th Amendment.

Many, like Mullangi, argue that this system hasn’t kept up with how modern medicine is practiced. She authored an opinion piece in the Journal of the American Medical Association calling for a national license to practice medicine, or, failing that, at least a significant update of medical licensing practices. While in the past, community physicians relied heavily on local resources and made house calls, she explained, today national standards dictate how medical residents are trained, and all physicians must pass national exams to maintain board certification.

“It’s not that we would practice medicine differently in Florida versus New York,” she said.

Chaudhry argues otherwise, although agrees the differences can be subtle given that much of modern medicine is evidence-based. For example, in an urban environment with an abundance of sub-specialty physicians like cardiologists, it would be common practice for a general practitioner to send patients having a heart attack to them for consultation and further care.

“But if you were living in a rural area where there aren’t as many specialists, it may be perfectly acceptable for an internist to manage that case,” Chaudhry explains. “That said, part of the reason that the Federation of State Medical Boards was founded back in 1912 was to encourage common approaches, common standards while respecting the states’ rights under the 10th Amendment.”

Medical boards have many other reasons to retain the current system. They can block competition from out-of-state providers. They have the power to discipline doctors based on complaints, often from patients — through public reprimand, probation or suspending their licenses to practice medicine — without consulting with other bodies. After all, says Chaudhry, the main goal of the state board is to “protect the public, not physicians.”

This is critical in the post-Roe era, as state medical boards use different standards of proof to justify such actions. When it comes to abortion care, therefore, what may be considered grounds for a revocation of a medical license in one state may not be so in another, separate from abortion’s legal implications, which already differ by state. In Ohio, for example, the state medical board is authorized to take disciplinary action against a physician for actions considered a felony, like abortion, even if that service occurred in a different state where the physician was also licensed.

Importantly, state licensing fees often constitute a dominant amount of the state’s medical board or health budget. In fiscal year 2019, for example, Georgia took in $6.4 million from licensing fees; California $56 million.

“It’s hard to ignore that these license fees can total in the millions of dollars,” said Mullangi. “That becomes a very powerful revenue stream for states.”

And there may be political or ideological reasons for boards to maintain strict local control. Medical board members are usually appointed by a state’s governor — not voted for by fellow physicians as is often the case in other trade organizations. Per the Federation of State Medical Boards’ recommendation, at least 25% of the members have no health care background and instead represent “public interest” of the state. A recent Mother Jones investigation found that the state medical board can become stacked with campaign supporters and political allies who can shape boards to execute an anti-abortion agenda. In Iowa, a Catholic priest who had campaigned against Planned Parenthood and fought against telemedicine abortions as early as 2010 was appointed to the state’s medical board by Gov. Terry Branstad. In Ohio, a Covid-19 skeptic and president of Ohio Right to Life was  re-appointed to the Ohio medical board by Gov. Mike DeWine earlier this year despite significant backlash.

Chaudhry said the federation of state medical boards has been engaged in “critical conversations” about whether to recommend that states and territories update their policies in light of the Dobbs v. Jackson decision. He encourages lawmakers to work with their state medical boards before proposing legislation.

“We are watching what happens,” he said.

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Fri, 07 Oct 2022 10:18:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.statnews.com/2022/10/07/telemedicine-abortion-roadblock-state-medical-boards/
Killexams : State board to vote on revoking police certifications for officers

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Fri, 30 Sep 2022 12:45:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/local/2022/09/30/salem-police-department-oregon-marion-county-sheriff-certification-officers/65466610007/
Killexams : Save Money and Energy: Rule Your Attic With ENERGY STAR

NORTHAMPTON, MA / ACCESSWIRE / October 17, 2022 / Sealing air leaks around your home and adding insulation are two of the most cost-effective ways to improve energy efficiency and comfort in your home. By tackling both projects, you can maximize your comfort and save up to 10% on your annual energy bills.

Every October, ENERGY STAR's Rule Your Attic campaign aims to help homeowners Boost their insulation levels. Insulation helps keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Here are some key pieces of information to remember:

  • There are several common types of insulation- batt fiberglass, blown fiberglass cellulose, rock wool, foam board, and spray foam. When correctly installed, each type of insulation can deliver comfort and savings, especially during the hottest and coldest times of the year. Learn more about the types of insulation at HomeDepot.com.

  • Insulation that has been certified by EPA-recognized third-party certification bodies is independently tested to ensure it delivers performance while meeting strict safety standards. Just look for the Seal and Insulate with ENERGY STAR mark on products at your local retailer.

  • Insulation performance is measured by R-value-its ability to resist heat flow. Higher R-values equal greater insulating power. Different R-values are recommended for walls, attics, basements, and crawlspaces based on your area of the country (see Recommended Home Insulation R-Values).

The Home Depot, Monday, October 17, 2022, Press release picture

Adding attic insulation is DIY project if your attic is accessible and not too difficult to move around in. However, if upon inspection of your attic you find any major issues like mold, moisture or exposed wiring, consider hiring a contractor to correct these problems before proceeding.

Insulation works best when air is not moving through or around it. So, whether you do it yourself or hire a contractor, remember to seal air leaks before installing insulation to make sure you get the full R-value from the insulation you buy.

Find out how easy it is to Rule Your Attic and see what experts have to say about boosting energy efficiency on The Home Depot's Eco Actions website. Visit HomeDepot.com for information, including simple sealing and insulating projects for the whole house.

Keep up with all the latest Home Depot news! Subscribe to our bi-weekly news update and get the top Built from Scratch stories delivered straight to your inbox.

The Home Depot, Monday, October 17, 2022, Press release picture

View additional multimedia and more ESG storytelling from The Home Depot on 3blmedia.com.

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SOURCE: The Home Depot

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Mon, 17 Oct 2022 01:50:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.yahoo.com/now/save-money-energy-rule-attic-135000975.html
Killexams : Clean Air Action Network sues Moreau Planning Board and Biochar Solutions

MOREAU — Clean Air Action Network of Glens Falls has filed a lawsuit seeking to stop Saratoga Biochar Solutions from going into the Moreau Industrial Park. 

The Article 78 petition by the environmental group names as defendants the Moreau Planning Board, Biochar CEO Ray Apy and Saratoga Biochar Solutions.

The lawsuit claims that the Moreau Planning Board did not follow the legal process necessary when it approved the site plans submitted by the company and that board members failed to follow the recommendations of the State Environmental Quality Review Act, or SEQRA, when making their decisions. 

The petition was filed on Sept. 26 in Saratoga County Court.

Saratoga Biochar proposes to manufacture an agricultural fertilizer from hundreds of thousands of tons of sewage sludge, which would be trucked in annually from Long Island, Metro-New York City, Western Connecticut and Massachusetts, and the Hudson Valley, according to a news release from CAAN on Thursday.

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Apy said on Thursday he is confident the board and his company will easily defeat the petition.

"It is an unfortunate delay for us," he said. 

Check back at poststar.com for more on this story. 

Jana DeCamilla is a staff writer who covers Moreau, Queensbury, and Lake George. She can be reached at 518-742-3272 or jdecamilla@poststar.com.

Thu, 13 Oct 2022 07:02:00 -0500 Jana DeCamilla en text/html https://poststar.com/news/local/clean-air-action-network-sues-moreau-planning-board-and-biochar-solutions/article_97d012a4-4b1f-11ed-a9de-b78a0d2144b1.html
Killexams : Ron DeSantis, other Florida officials hit with class action lawsuit by migrants flown to Massachusetts

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and other state officials are facing a class action lawsuit filed by migrants who were flown to Massachusetts last week. 

The case, filed in the District of Massachusetts Tuesday, names the State of Florida, the Department of Transportation, its secretary, Jared W. Perdue, as well as the governor – both in their official and personal capacities. 

A Texas sheriff on Monday said he is launching a probe against Florida over the transportation of migrants in his county to Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.  (Photo by Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The lawsuit alleges that DeSantis and others "designed and executed a premeditated, fraudulent, and illegal scheme centered on exploiting this vulnerability for the sole purpose of advancing their own personal, financial and political interests." 

The lawsuit alleges that unidentified "Doe Defendants," collaborating with the named defendants, identified and targeted class members by "trolling streets outside of a migrant shelter in Texas and other similar locales, pretending to be good Samaritans offering humanitarian assistance." 

DESANTIS RIPS INTO OUTRAGE OVER MARTHA'S VINEYARD FLIGHTS: ‘I DIDN’T HEAR A PEEP' ABOUT BIDEN FLIGHTS

Fox News has reached out to DeSantis’ office.

DeSantis sent two planes full of migrants to Martha’s Vineyard from Texas last Wednesday as part of his pledge to drop off illegal immigrants in liberal states. Martha’s Vineyard is famously known as a playground of rich progressives, including former President Obama, who bought a multimillion-dollar house there in 2019. 

"So the groups in Texas that we've identified, the majority if not all of the individuals that originated in Texas and ended up on the flight to Martha's Vineyard were indeed homeless, hungry, sleeping outside in parking lots," Florida officials said. "Many have been in a shelter at some point previously and had been kicked out, did not have a place to go, and essentially we're wandering homeless along the border."

Immigrants gather with their belongings outside St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Wednesday Sept. 14, 2022, in Edgartown, Mass., on Martha's Vineyard. (Ray Ewing/Vineyard Gazette via AP)

DeSantis proposed Delaware or Martha’s Vineyard as a destination for such migrants, but his office explained at the time that they could also be sent "to other 'progressive' states whose governors endorse blatant violations of federal immigration law."

DeSantis' office later said the migrants had been given more options to succeed in Massachusetts.

"Immigrants have been more than willing to leave Bexar County after being abandoned, homeless, and 'left to fend for themselves,'" DeSantis spokesperson Taryn Fenske said. "Florida gave them an opportunity to seek greener pastures in a sanctuary jurisdiction that offered greater resources for them, as we expected."

TEXAS BORDER AGENTS BUST MULTIPLE HUMAN SMUGGLING ATTEMPTS LEADING TO 20 ARRESTS

The Venezuelan migrants who were flown to the wealthy Massachusetts island from San Antonio on Wednesday said they were told they were going to Boston. Julio Henriquez, an attorney who met with several migrants, said they "had no idea of where they were going or where they were."

He said a Latina woman approached migrants at a city-run shelter in San Antonio and put them up at a nearby La Quinta Inn, where she visited daily with food and gift cards. She promised jobs and three months of housing in Washington, New York, Philadelphia, and Boston, according to Henriquez.

Salazar said the migrants had been "preyed upon" and "hoodwinked."

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Some Democrats have urged the Justice Department to investigate the flights, including California Gov. Gavin Newsom and U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, whose district includes San Antonio.

The Associated Press and Fox News’ Jessica Chasmar contributed to this report.

Tue, 20 Sep 2022 10:22:00 -0500 Fox News en text/html https://www.foxnews.com/politics/ron-desantis-other-florida-officials-hit-class-action-lawsuit-migrants-flown-massachusetts
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