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Ballot Initiative

As Petition Deadline Looms, Stop Cop City Wins More Time And Volunteers

On Thursday, July 27, a federal judge ruled in favor of four DeKalb County residents who sued the city of Atlanta earlier this month, arguing that they should be allowed to collect petition signatures because they live so close to the proposed facility. Under current rules, all petition signers and signature witnesses must be registered to vote in the city of Atlanta. The preliminary injunction granted by U.S. District Court Judge Mark Howard Cohen not only bars the city of Atlanta from banning non-resident signature collectors but also extends the signature collection period, giving organizers until Sept. 25 to collect all signatures.

Labor Unionizing Is Now On Track To Be A Constitutional Right In Illinois

Illinois - As companies like Starbucks and Amazon continue their efforts to stop employees from unionizing, voters in Illinois passed a historic measure to safeguard the right to organize in Tuesday’s midterm elections. The Workers’ Rights Amendment (WRA) would enshrine in the Illinois state constitution “the fundamental right [of workers] to organize and to bargain collectively … for the purpose of negotiating wages, hours, and working conditions, and to protect their economic welfare and safety at work.” The amendment also prohibits the state from passing any legislation in the future that interferes with, negates, or diminishes those rights — ensuring Illinois will never enact an anti-union “right-to-work” law like several of its neighboring states have done in recent years, including Wisconsin, Indiana and Kentucky.

Slavery Was On The Ballot In The US Midterms

As children in the US learn in schools, slavery was abolished over 150 years ago during the nation’s Civil War in 1863. And yet, on the November 8 2022 midterm elections, five states, Oregon, Tennessee, Vermont, Louisiana, and Alabama, voted on ballot measures that would end slavery in those states. How is the US still be contending with slavery in 2022? The 13th Amendment to the US Constitution, ratified in 1865, abolished slavery. However, it contained a powerful exception—slavery would be legal as punishment for a crime. As a result, hundreds of thousands of prison workers are held in involuntary servitude, often unpaid and always below minimum wage. Tennessee, Vermont, and Alabama voted yes on ballot measures that would end all exceptions to involuntary, forced, and unpaid labor within prisons within their respective state constitutions.

Colorado: Universal Free Meals To Students Is Close To Reality

Colorado - Colorado voters are largely in favor of Proposition FF, which would provide the state’s students with free school meals — no matter their families’ incomes. With tax deduction limits in place, the price tag would fall on wealthy Coloradans. About 55% of voters backed the measure, with 1,011,114 votes, as of 9:07 a.m. on Wednesday, according to unofficial results on the Colorado Secretary of State Office’s website. That number includes all 64 counties, although post-election reporting is still in progress. The initiative would establish and fund the Healthy School Meals for All Program. It would boost taxes for households with incomes higher than $300,000 by curbing state income tax deductions. The move would impact about 114,000 joint and single-filer tax returns, or about 5% of those filed in Colorado.

Voters Could Help Stem The Homelessness Crisis In L.A.

Los Angeles, California - After increasing nearly 25% between 2018 and 2020, the homeless population in the Los Angeles area has grown more slowly over the past two years. According to the latest count from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, L.A. County’s unhoused population grew from 66,436 in 2020 to 69,144 in 2022, an increase of 4.1%. While there are numerous reasons for this downtrend, government intervention has played an important role. Such measures as Project Roomkey, which used federal, state and local funds to keep more than 10,000 residents in hotels and motels during the Covid-19 pandemic, showed that even modest public programs can make a significant impact on the city’s housing crisis, even as the initiative’s remaining residents lost their housing at the end of September.

How This Rural Wisconsin County Put National Health Care On The Ballot

Dunn County, Wisconsin - Citizens of Dunn County, Wisconsin, have a plan to place national, publicly-funded health care for everyone on their November 8th county ballot.  In June and July at meetings of the County Board of Supervisors, many spoke of a broken health care system and their proposal to fix it.  After the third meeting, the Board voted unanimously to put the following question on the ballot: “Shall Congress and the President of the United States enact into law the creation of a publicly financed, non-profit, national health insurance program that would fully cover medical care costs for all Americans?” Located in central west Wisconsin and blessed with lakes and farmland, Dunn County is far from bustling cities.

‘Massachusetts Is Not For Sale’ Campaign

Massachusetts - As the organized opposition to the “Big Tech loophole law” ballot initiative grows in Massachusetts, a number of key consumer, community, and civil rights groups have joined with workers’ rights advocates to announce their commitment of activating and growing the coalition opposing that initiative under a new name: Massachusetts is not for Sale. The new Massachusetts is not for Sale name also reflects the concerns shared by coalition members regarding the record-shattering infusions of cash that Big Tech employers are pumping into the coffers of the corporate-funded committee advocating for the passage of the Big Tech loophole law both at the State House and as a November 2022 ballot question.
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