As if the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) did not have enough problems with religious extremists and a gaping religious exemptions clause that renders it almost useless and would give religious organizations, schools, hospitals and businness a free pass to continue discriminating LEGALLY against the LGBT community. NOW we have Senators Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) trying to attach a national so-called “right-to-work” law to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. The two filed an amendment attaching ENDA to the anti-union measure hours before it passed the key hurdle of cloture on its way to its to the floor debate and vote.
The idea behind right-to-work laws is much more complicated and deceiving than the name suggests. The laws prohibit unions from requiring dues payments from all employees in a unionized workplace. That creates a free-rider problem whereby workers who stand to gain higher wages and better job conditions from a successful union contract bargaining effort can refuse to help pay for those efforts. While the laws are often billed as rescuing workers from being forced to pay union dues, it weaken unions, and drives down wages. Workers in right-to-work states like Michigan and Indiana make about $1,500 less per year than those in other states and workplace safety and health insurance benefits are much weaker according to studies of the 22 states that operate under the policy.
Dirty GOP politics and corporate greed at the expense of civil rights and the well being of American citizens.
During a recent rash of iPhone robberies in LGBT area of Boystown in Chicago over the weekend disturbing audio has come forward of Chicago’s not-so-finest mocking and blaming the victims of crimes over the police radio.
In an audio recording of the police scanner traffic received by ChicagoPride.com, a male dispatcher is heard broadcasting a robbery in progress near North Halsted at 5:17 a.m. Sunday.
A male officer replies four minutes later that he found nothing in the area.
Less than 30 seconds pass before the dispatcher reports that the victim, a Hispanic male, placed a 911 call and was robbed by “four male blacks dressed as females.” An ambulance is dispatched.
The officer then states over the police radio, “If you wouldn’t stay out late, this wouldn’t happen.”
The dispatcher jokes, “If you wouldn’t mess with boys in dresses, this wouldn’t happen.”
About eight minutes after the initial dispatch, the victim received help from another officer responding to the call.
“Blaming the victim aspect of this incident is troubling,”said Christina Kahrl, Lakeview Action Coalition (LAC) volunteer leader and Equality Illinois board director. “LAC has been working with the Chicago Police Department to develop general protocols to ensure police sensitivity and competence on transgender issues, whether they are suspects or victims. The goal is that the police treat transgender folk with the same dignity and respect owed to all people.”
The Chicago Office of Emergency Management and Communications (OEMC) is looking into the matter but (of course) neither the officer nor dispatcher have been identified.