Not-for-Profit Hospitals & Community Benefit: The Way Forward

Not-for-Profit Hospitals & Community Benefit: The Way Forward

On November 20th, Greenlining hosted a dynamic briefing on not-for-profit hospitals’ community benefit, co-sponsored by Assemblymembers Bob Wieckowski (25th District) and Rob Bonta (18th District) and focusing on how not-for-profit hospitals must be more transparent and invest more community benefit dollars into low-income communities and communities of color so that they don’t get sick in the first place. First, let me explain some terms: Not-for-profit hospitals receive tax-exempt status in exchange for fulfilling a duty to improve community health, a duty that is required by both state and federal laws. And while not-for-profit hospitals are tax-exempt nonprofit institutions, many of them are, in the 21st century, huge enterprises that often…
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Covered California May Face Voter Registration Lawsuit

Covered California May Face Voter Registration Lawsuit

It’s the law: Public assistance agencies have to help people register to vote. But one of California’s newest and highest-profile agencies isn’t doing it. Back in May, the Secretary of State formally designated Covered California – the new health insurance marketplace created by health care reform — as a public assistance agency under the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). This means that the agency must provide voter registration services to consumers. Advocates have been engaging Covered California ever since, to ensure voter registration services would be integrated into its application services by its October 1st launch date. You may recall my previous blog post about the tremendous potential Covered California…
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Move Over Movember: Why ‘Obamacare’ is important too

Move Over Movember: Why ‘Obamacare’ is important too

Men like a lot of things. They like sports. They like cars. They like telling you how much they like sports and cars. Okay, I’m exaggerating a bit. But while lots of men really do like sports and cars, one thing men often don’t like is going to the doctor. Study after study has shown that men are less likely than women to visit the doctor or pay attention to their lab results. This could explain why the average lifespan for men is six years shorter than women, and why men have a higher mortality rate than women for things like heart disease, stroke, and COPD. In fact, men have…
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Forgotten in California

Forgotten in California

Last week Greenlining was in Washington, D.C. to meet with financial regulators and high ranking members of Congress. We provided firsthand accounts of the uneven pace of economic recovery, and made suggestions on ways to expand economic opportunities. One issue we raised with regulators and banks is that Fresno and other San Joaquin Valley communities should be what are known as “full scope assessment areas.” Full scope assessment areas are an important part of a bank’s Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) performance evaluation (see my prior post for details about this important law).  These are the communities where regulators pay extra close attention to a bank’s community development performance. Regulators can’t…
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Earl Warren, John F. Kennedy and Civil Rights

Earl Warren, John F. Kennedy and Civil Rights

This week’s 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy is  reviving discussion of the Warren Commission, whose conclusions about the president’s murder are still disputed by conspiracy theorists.  Earl Warren, Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, headed that commission, but his real importance in history is his role in the civil rights movement. Kennedy supported civil rights, but approached the issue with great political caution. Warren effectively joined with great NAACP lawyer (and future Supreme Court justice) Thurgood Marshall to change history. In the early 1950s, Marshall brought a historic challenge to school segregation to the court, hoping to overturn “separate but equal” education, which had…
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Electric Vehicles for all!

Electric Vehicles for all!

I know what you’re thinking: Aren’t electric vehicles (EV’s) only for rich people?  Don’t worry, I used to think the same way. The word EV made me think of $80,000+ Teslas or similar high-end cars that I or my family could never afford. However, with technology moving forward at a fast rate, EVs have become more common, more accessible and more ready to bring clean air and fuel savings to the neighborhoods that need these benefits most. Those neighborhoods tend to be in communities of color, with lower incomes and high levels of air pollution.  And help is on the way in the form of a new campaign called Charge…
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