Bill 115.

Sep. 7th, 2012 04:33 am
moiread: (glasses • stock.)
Hey, guys? The Ontario government is trying to pass Bill 115, which will freeze teacher's wages and cut sick days.

That's bad. Teachers are overworked and underpaid as it is, and if you think that having teachers who are being continually shit on doesn't affect the quality of kids' education, then probably you need to think a little harder. My own job has been cut down to 1/9th the time it was three years ago, because taking away support from students and teachers alike is apparently the best way to save money. So yeah. That's bad.

What's worse is that they're also going to be retroactively taking away sick time and vacation time that has already been earned in previous years, under previous agreements. It breaks all the previous contracts under which teachers are still signed. It also gives the cabinet the power to force school board employees (which includes teachers) to pay back any money they receive that contravenes the Act, or demand that boards deduct it from employees' wages. All of that should be illegal.

But what's completely unacceptable and unconstitutional is that they're trying to circumvent union rights and labour laws by adding clauses to the bill that say it supersedes any existing human rights or labour law and cannot be subject to examination by any arbitrator or court of law. Yes, really. These clauses also give the cabinet the ability to completely block strikes or negotiation attempts. These clauses state that subsequent changes to legislation will be decided only by the cabinet, at will, without actually needing to take the changes to parliament for an official vote, let alone negotiate with the union or take input from elected trustees. And do you know what we call it when the people in power give themselves the ability to screw with laws without having to interact with elected representatives, boys and girls? We call that taxation without representation.

Many teachers have been protesting, and but the bill is being rammed through as quickly as possible -- it's likely to be passed by Monday or Tuesday of next week, in fact -- with only 4.5 hours given for public consultation. And frankly, unless a bunch of average folks step up to support the teachers in this, they are going to lose. There has been very little coverage of what's going on, for a start, and beyond that, labour laws are a confusing, messy headache. Sorting them out to determine how you should feel is pretty fucking daunting, so not a lot of people are doing it. And really, all it takes is one cry of, "BUT THINK OF THE CHILDREN!" and a bit of crafty rhetoric for our government to keep people from supporting teachers when they validly say that this is not okay and try to fight it.

To summarize: Under the guise of budget cuts and "Putting Students First" (the actual name of the bill), Bill 115 aims to slash benefits, take away previously earned benefits by breaking existing contracts, nix the ability for the teacher's union to call (or even threaten) a strike, and give the cabinet the power to circumvent unions and elected officials so that they can make decisions willy-nilly without the democratic process cramping their style.

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association thinks this is very, very bad and so should you.

I know a lot of you don't have kids yet, or don't want kids ever, or have kids who are currently too young to be in school. But this still matters. This is still not okay. It's not just about the kids, but also about the teachers themselves, who are largely a bunch of good, hardworking people who get the crap end of the stick enough as it is.

Please write to your MPP. Please? Even if none of you actually care that something this ugly is happening, can you just do it for me anyway?
moiread: (SEX ED • chlamydia.)
Originally posted by [livejournal.com profile] coffeeem at Help Us Support Planned Parenthood:
Note from me: I was initially suspicious about this, since the notice below doesn't say how much of one's V-gift donation actually goes to Planned Parenthood. But I found the answer in the original post's comments: 100%. All the money you spend to shower your friends with Planned Parenthood v-gifts will go to Planned Parenthood.

For those of you who don't approve of Planned Parenthood, your response is easy: Don't buy one of these. None of your LJ subscription money goes to PP. If you'd rather donate an equivalent amount to an adoption charity, or another organization providing inexpensive or free medical assistance, please do; all charity organizations are hurting for funds in this economy.


Originally posted by [livejournal.com profile] theljstaff at Help Us Support Planned Parenthood:


Join us in standing up for reproductive health and education. Planned Parenthood, the organization that delivers reproductive health care, sex education and information to millions of people worldwide, has come under fire in the U.S. lately, with many politicians on both state and federal level seeking to end funding (and in a few cases succeeding).

During the month of May, you can send a specially designed Planned Parenthood vgift to your friends to help support this cause. (And if you need someone to send it to, [livejournal.com profile] frank is always happy to receive gifts!) There are three variations ($1, $5 and $10) for you to choose from, but they'd all look good on your profile when your friends know that you stand by something so important.

                    

Thank you all for your help in our support for Planned Parenthood. This promotion ends June 1, 2012; LiveJournal is not affiliated with Parent Parenthood. For more information about Planned Parenthood, please visit: http://www.plannedparenthood.org/

-The LiveJournal Team


(If you'd like to help spread the word that we're raising funds for Planned Parenthood, you can crosspost this entry in your own journal or community by using the repost button below!)
moiread: (dude • stock.)
(Disclaimer: If you are reading this, you are not the person with whom I am angry, and I do not expect any of you to ever be this much of an asshole, but I am going to say it anyway because I need to get this off my chest.)

Look. I understand that you have opinions about women's sexuality that are coming from your interpretation of your particular religion. I respect your right to your religion. I do. I may have all kinds of other feelings about your particular choice of religion, or about religions in general, but I respect your right to have one and to live your religion as you see fit within the limits of the law and basic human rights.

But when the group is discussing the legitimate treatment of ovarian cysts through the use of the hormones available in oral contraceptive pills, you do not get to tell me that you "have a different opinion" because you're Catholic.

You have a different opinion on what? OVARIAN CYSTS? Did I miss the part where you obtained a medical degree in the last thirty minutes and now you want to contest the diagnosis? Are you advocating for prayer in lieu of treatment? Do you think cysts are some kind of divine punishment and therefore should be left alone? Seriously, what? What part of the treatment of ovarian cysts do you have a different opinion ondue to your religion? Because from here it just looks like you opened your mouth without thinking first and let a little steaming turd drop out.

We were not discussing sex. We were not discussing religion. We were not discussing you. We were discussing medical treatments for medical conditions using available medications. I understand that those other aspects are part of a similar, related discussion happening in many other places at the moment, but that is not what we were talking about. You have missed the point entirely.

And frankly, it offends me on a personal level that you would even have the gall to say it, considering the medical condition in question is something I have been fighting for the last thirteen years, something that has caused me a lot of pain and grief and hospital visits, that has left me with deep emotional scars that I have had to work on healing. Just because I have the good fortune to live in a country that isn't completely fucking batshit about medical care doesn't magically negate my strong connection to this particular topic.

Maybe you didn't know it was personal to me. I can see how that would be the case, as I rarely talk about my medical problems outside of LJ or Twitter. But I expected you to be smart enough to figure out that it's got to be personal to somebody, whether you know them to be within earshot or not, and I hoped you would be classy enough to treat the topic accordingly.

TL;DR version: My ovarian cysts have nothing to do with your fucking religious views. Shut the fuck up.
moiread: (POLITICS • canada/NDP.)
We interrupt this recent string of posts about medical issues to bring you a post about my other favourite topic: POLITICS!

Behold, an awesome video on FPTP:

moiread: (recoil • kristin k.)
This is all I have to say about the election results. I am so angry right now. If you either didn't vote or chose not to vote strategically, you should probably not talk to me for a few days*.

I really do my best to respect people's choices on this, but the fact that I personally know some people who were too lazy to even try and now I get fucked over is really hard not to be livid about. I get that one single person doesn't personally lose an election for everybody, but there were clearly enough people in the same apathy/delusion camp to make this happen.

I really struggle to forgive deliberately deciding to vote like a dumbass and just expecting everyone else to pull the weight and make things work out for you, and I actually can't forgive not even trying to make things better. I just can't. It goes against everything I am and everything I respect in other human beings.

(* No, I'm not joking. I wouldn't normally put a statement like that through a medium like LiveJournal, because it feels passive-aggressive and classless, but it's honestly the safest option at the moment. It prevents me from saying some very unfriendly things to some of my friends when they poke me in IM windows tonight because they have the gall to bitch to me about the results.)
moiread: (POLITICS • canada/NDP.)
Why "First Past The Post" sucks as a voting system and exactly why we are struggling under a Conservative minority government at the moment, the fuckers:

moiread: (POLITICS • canada/maple leaf.)
Canadian Government VS Harper Government.

Please, for fuck's sake, get that giant smarmy asshole out of the way.

GO VOTE.

Nov. 2nd, 2010 11:18 am
moiread: (glasses • stock.)
For my American friends:

You can find your voting location by texting "WHERE" to 30644. You can also visit http://onyourballot8.vote411.org/ to find what'll be on your ballot, so that you can know in advance and research candidates. (Factual data on candidates is also available there, along with where to find your voting location, what the voter requirements are, a spot where you can register to vote, etc, etc.)
moiread: (POLITICS • canada/maple leaf.)
If you're in Zone 5, please consider voting for Pam Fitzgerald as your School Board Trustee. She's really awesome. I have tons and tons of respect for the programs she runs to keep kids in school (and they work, having improved dropouts rates from over 50% to under 10% in the areas these programs currently run). And in general, I want to say that while I know a lot of my friends have no involvement with or investment in Ottawa public schools, please remember that I do. I especially work with at-risk kids, and this is really important to me. If you have absolutely nothing else to go on, pick someone based on my best interests.

If you're in Ward 7 (Bay Ward), please for the love of God don't vote for Terry Kilrea or George Guirguis for City Councillor. Guirguis is actively racist; I have personally heard him name-call "those dirty Muslims" and opine that they should have various horrible things done to them. (If it wasn't a few years ago and I'd had a recording device, I would be going to the Citizen with it. Seriously.) It doesn't matter if you think he might have some good ideas otherwise; if you're stupid enough to rant like that to strangers in your restaurant, you shouldn't be allowed in a position of authority over the public. Kilrea is just an huge fucking idiot. I don't care who you vote for otherwise -- read up on the candidates, decide what you think is best -- so long as you are not in Ward 7 and are not voting for either of those two guys.

And if you're voting for Mayor, please consider voting for Jim Watson. He's someone I've interacted with personally, and he has a long history (20 years!) of doing really fantastic things in the various positions he's held (including City Councillor, former Ottawa Mayor, MPP Ottawa West-Nepean, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Minister of Consumer and Business Services, etc). If it were not for the fact that I really like Clive Doucet's O-Train plan and actually believe it is achievable, I would have voted for Jim and am still torn about the fact that I didn't. I mean, this is the guy who got so pissed off at government overspending that he flat-out refused his salary hikes when he got promoted up the political ranks, donated it to charity instead, did the same thing with his severance pay from the same promotions, and then pushed through a rollback of salaries for everyone working city-level politics. And that's just one example of direct action and effective policy change on his resume. He is provably good at the job, because he has done it before, and he doesn't promise things he can't deliver.

I voted in the advance polls on the 14th, but the "real" day is October 25th. Just so y'all know.
moiread: (joy! • stock.)
I am so happy right now. After tonight's episode -- and not even the full episode, just a few minutes of it -- I can almost forgive this season for all the stupid. I don't even care. They had a long-take gay kiss! On mainstream TV! We had two men, in a car, talking about being attracted to each other, followed by teasing almost-kisses, and then finally with a long, long take of them actually kissing. I was so, so worried that they'd cut away, because they always cut away. As the seconds ticked by, I thought for sure it was going to happen any moment now. Any moment. Any moment. And then it didn't. And it still didn't. And it continued to not cut away until it was done. The whole scene lasted several minutes. Whatever else Alan Ball has raked through a shitpile this season, I can say with joy and admiration that he did good there. I think that's the first real proper extended gay male kiss I've seen on a popular show, ever. I am so, so happy!
moiread: (ME • boobies!)
HAPPY BOOBQUAKE DAY!

I can't participate yet because I work in an elementary school, but I will totally tit it up when I get home. It will be Giant Boobs Around The House Day.
moiread: (POLITICS • obama/vroom vroom!)
He revived one especially for this week:



(Because, you know, I'm really happy for you guys that your health care is better than it was, but until it's actual public universal health care, it still fails.)

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