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April 11, 2016 0

Time to Require Equal Pay for Equal Work

Diverse Business Team Discussing Work In Office

It’s April 12, 2016 – Equal Pay Day, the sym­bolic date that women need to work until to catch up with what men had earned by last Dec. 31.  The fact is that women who work full time, are paid an aver­age of 79 cents for every dol­lar paid to men — and on aver­age, African Amer­i­can and Latina women are paid even less.   It’s not a day to cel­e­brate, but it is a teach­able moment to focus on the need­less, costly, and dis­crim­i­na­tory gen­der wage gap – and on what we can do about it.

One high-profile exam­ple of unequal pay is that mem­bers of the U.S. Women’s Soc­cer team, the best team in the world, are paid less than their US male team coun­ter­parts.  Five mem­bers of the team recently brought a wage dis­crim­i­na­tion suit against U.S. Soc­cer with the Equal Employ­ment Oppor­tu­nity Com­mis­sion (EEOC).

Progress in Recent Years

  • In August 2014, Pres­i­dent Obama signed two direc­tives aimed at clos­ing the wage gap for Fed­eral work­ers.   First, an Exec­u­tive Order pro­hibiting fed­eral con­trac­tors from retal­i­at­ing against employ­ees for shar­ing their salary infor­ma­tion, mak­ing it eas­ier for women to dis­cover and address pay­check inequity. And, sec­ond, the Pres­i­dent instructed the Depart­ment of Labor to cre­ate new reg­u­la­tions requir­ing fed­eral con­trac­tors and sub­con­trac­tors to report salary infor­ma­tion to the gov­ern­ment, expos­ing salary inequities and thereby encour­ag­ing con­trac­tors to close the wage gap on their own.
  • And in Jan­u­ary, the EEOC issued com­ple­men­tary “Pro­posed Enforce­ment Guid­ance on Retal­i­a­tion and Related Issues.” ADL joined two dozen other national orga­ni­za­tions on a let­ter, drafted by the National Women’s Law Cen­ter, sup­port­ing the pro­posal and sug­gest­ing way to clar­ify the pro­tec­tions and safe­guards even further.

 

Learn, Raise Aware­ness – and Pro­mote Fairness.

On this Equal Pay Day, let’s com­mit to spread­ing the word about the dis­crim­i­na­tory pay gap between men and women – so we can close it.   Here are two great ways to get the word out:   MTV Pay Equity

  • MTV’s Emmy Award-winning “Look Dif­fer­ent” anti-bias cam­paign has cre­ated the “79% Work Clock” — a clock that chimes every day at 3:20 p.m. – sig­ni­fy­ing 79% of the 9–5 work­day, or the time, after which, women are no longer paid for equal work.  Their web­site includes a 79-Percent Cal­cu­la­tor to help indi­vid­u­als find the cor­rect time set­ting for their per­sonal work clocks based on their work hours and race — and to learn more about the gen­der wage gap in America.
  • The Anti-Defamation League recently devel­oped a High School les­son plan on the gen­der wage gap that pro­vides an oppor­tu­nity for stu­dents to reflect on their own opin­ions about sex­ism, under­stand the gen­der pay gap and its var­i­ous man­i­fes­ta­tions, and con­sider ways that it can be overcome.

Although we’ve made some progress in the fight for equal pay, much more needs to be done.  ADL and a broad coali­tion of civil rights and women’s groups sup­port The Pay­check Fair­ness Act (PFA HR 1619/S 862)), which would give teeth to the Equal Pay Act of 1963, which made it unlaw­ful for busi­nesses to pay men and women dif­fer­ent salaries for per­form­ing sub­stan­tially the same work. The PFA would make it ille­gal for com­pa­nies to retal­i­ate against employ­ees for dis­cussing salary dif­fer­ences and open­ busi­nesses up to civil lia­bil­ity for salary inequity.

By rais­ing aware­ness and demand­ing leg­isla­tive action, we can speed the day when the alarm clock rep­re­sent­ing the wage gap rings later and later in the day – until we will not need it at all.

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April 7, 2016 62

Alison Weir’s New Billboard Campaign Promotes USS Liberty Conspiracies

Ali­son Weir, the direc­tor of the anti-Israel orga­ni­za­tions If Amer­i­cans Knew and the Coun­cil for the National Inter­est, is behind a series of bill­boards that read “Help the USS Lib­erty Sur­vivors Attacked by Israel.”

Billboard in Pennsylvania

Bill­board in Pennsylvania

The bill­boards, which have appeared so far in Cal­i­for­nia, Con­necti­cut, Mass­a­chu­setts, North Car­olina and Penn­syl­va­nia, are “paid for by www.honorlibertyvets.org,” a web­site that pro­motes the anti-Israel con­spir­acy the­ory that Israel inten­tion­ally tar­geted a U.S. war­ship dur­ing the height of the 1967 Six-Day War. This web­site as well as the GoFundMe page rais­ing money for the bill­boards are linked to anti-Israel activist Ali­son Weir.

The tragic assault by Israeli forces dur­ing the Six Day War in 1967 on an Amer­i­can ves­sel, the USS Lib­erty, has been a source of con­tro­versy and con­spir­acy the­o­ries since it occurred. Sev­eral gov­ern­ment inves­ti­ga­tions have con­cluded that the attack, in which 34 Amer­i­can ser­vice­men were killed and many more injured, was car­ried out in error. Fur­ther­more, every piece of infor­ma­tion declas­si­fied to date has sup­ported this conclusion.

Nev­er­the­less, the Honor Lib­erty Vets web­site claims Israel had a “motive” for attack­ing the Amer­i­can ship, stat­ing “One hypoth­e­sis is that Israel intended to sink the ship (with no sur­vivors) and blame Egypt because this might have brought the United States into the 1967 war.” The site also paints Israeli inter­ests as trump­ing America’s: “No nation or peo­ple should be above the law; nor should Amer­i­can inter­ests be sub­or­di­nated to the inter­ests of any for­eign nation. Those Israelis respon­si­ble for order­ing the attack and the result­ing mur­der of Amer­i­can sailors must be held account­able for their actions.”

For Weir, and oth­ers who sub­scribe to the belief that Israel inten­tion­ally tar­geted the ship with the goal of killing Amer­i­can ser­vice­men, the inci­dent and the alleged U.S. gov­ern­ment cover-up that fol­lowed pow­er­fully demon­strate the sup­posed treach­ery and power of the Jew­ish State and its Amer­i­can sup­port­ers. The story, told from this per­spec­tive, has become a pro­pa­ganda tool to under­mine the legit­i­macy of Israel.

These the­o­ries about the USS Lib­erty fit into Weir’s world­view, in which the Jew­ish State is a vio­lent aggres­sor that cor­rupts the Amer­i­can polit­i­cal sys­tem and pre­vents crit­i­cism of its con­duct from being voiced by the main­stream media. As a result, she con­tends, Amer­i­cans are kept in the dark about how their taxes fund Israeli mis­treat­ment of Palestinians.

In Weir’s dis­cus­sions of Israel’s influ­ence, she often employs anti-Semitic imagery and por­trays Israel as a ruth­less force that con­trols Amer­i­can pol­icy through bru­tal intim­i­da­tion and decep­tion. Weir views her­self and her orga­ni­za­tions as part of a grow­ing move­ment to pro­mote U.S. inter­ests by edu­cat­ing Amer­i­cans about the vast con­spir­acy to keep the truth about Israeli prac­tices hid­den from them.

Weir’s Coun­cil for the National Inter­est, an anti-U.S. aid to Israel group based in DC, pre­vi­ously employed bill­boards to dis­sem­i­nate its mes­sag­ing with a 2013 cam­paign called “Stop the Blank Check to Israel.” At least ten such ads, which read, “$8 Mil­lion a day to Israel just doesn’t make sense! STOP The Blank Check.org,” were erected in Atlanta.

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April 5, 2016 1

Anti-Immigrant Ideologue Michelle Dallacroce Calls It Quits

In an April 4th press release, vir­u­lently anti-immigrant activist Michelle Dal­lacroce has claimed that she will no longer be pub­licly active “in the polit­i­cal arena of ille­gal immi­gra­tion” and is per­ma­nently shut­ting down two anti-immigrant orga­ni­za­tions she founded in Arizona.

Dal­lacroce stated in her release that oth­ers within the anti-immigrant move­ment sab­o­taged her and tried to “destroy the rep­u­ta­tion” of one of her groups, the National Orga­ni­za­tion for Vic­tims of Ille­gal Alien Crime (NOVIAC), and this was why she was leaving.

Michelle Dallacroce twitter

Michelle Dal­lacroce

How­ever, Dallacroce’s rea­son for call­ing it quits may have more to do with how she tried but failed to upstage another anti-immigrant orga­ni­za­tion that cov­ered the same ground as NOVIAC. In other words, she may have lost an anti-immigrant group turf war.

Dal­lacroce founded NOVIAC in Feb­ru­ary 2016. Pre­vi­ously, she was the founder and head of the so-called Moth­ers Against Ille­gal Aliens (MAIA). Her new anti-immigrant orga­ni­za­tion, NOVIAC, was actu­ally quite sim­i­lar in nature to a rival anti-immigrant group, The Remem­brance Project, founded by Maria Espinoza in 2009. Espinoza’s orga­ni­za­tion attracted pub­lic­ity to the anti-immigration move­ment by pro­mot­ing pro­pa­ganda about crime vic­tims allegedly killed by undoc­u­mented immi­grants. The Remem­brance Project also gained national atten­tion when pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Don­ald Trump invited mem­bers of the group onstage at one of his cam­paign ral­lies in Novem­ber 2015. The Remem­brance Project sub­se­quently helped Trump stage meet­ings with the fam­i­lies of vic­tims whose assailants were undoc­u­mented immigrants.

Dal­lacroce seemed to eye her rival’s Trump con­nec­tion envi­ously. As part of her effort to pro­mote NOVIAC, Dal­lacroce report­edly sent a set of doc­u­ments via email, snail mail and through a rep­re­sen­ta­tive to the Trump cam­paign out­lin­ing the goals of the orga­ni­za­tion. In one doc­u­ment, dubbed the “NOVIAC Pro­posal,” she urged the Trump cam­paign to take three steps: assign an ille­gal immi­gra­tion spokesper­son for the cam­paign; cre­ate a per­ma­nent orga­ni­za­tion called the National Orga­ni­za­tion for Vic­tims of Ille­gal Alien Crime; and develop and imple­ment a NOVIAC web­site. The packet also included a let­ter to Trump encour­ag­ing him to con­sider the pro­posal and a let­ter addressed to “all Vic­tims of Ille­gal Alien Crime” encour­ag­ing them to endorse the project as well.

Though Dal­lacroce gave credit to The Remem­brance Project for keep­ing “vic­tim family’s sto­ries” alive, she asserted that “these vic­tims’ sto­ries are too impor­tant to the fab­ric of Amer­ica to be left to grass­roots orga­ni­za­tions.” She added that NOVIAC would “legit­imize these fam­i­lies on a NATIONAL LEVEL [empha­sis in orig­i­nal] to com­pete with other nation­ally rec­og­nized victim’s organizations.”

Appar­ently, Maria Espinoza did not appre­ci­ate Dallacroce’s attempt to encroach on her orga­ni­za­tion. Accord­ing to Dal­lacroce in a Face­book post that was sub­se­quently removed, she and her sup­port­ers were blocked from The Remem­brance Project’s Face­book page in mid-March after Dal­lacroce left a com­ment and a link on the Col­orado Remem­brance Project’s Face­book page adver­tis­ing NOVIAC (how­ever, the link does not seem to have been removed). In the since-deleted Face­book post­ing, Dal­lacroce alleged that Espinoza had full knowl­edge of her “NOVIAC pro­posal” to the Trump cam­paign but that Espinoza refused to par­tic­i­pate and would “rather block, obstruct and deny access,” than work together.

In her press release about call­ing it quits, Dal­lacroce asserted that today’s anti-immigration move­ment is filled with “lies, decep­tion and manip­u­la­tion” that did not exist when she cre­ated MAIA in 2006. With­out nam­ing The Remem­brance Project, she accused other peo­ple and orga­ni­za­tions of “steal­ing the intel­lec­tual prop­erty and ideas from our orga­ni­za­tion, in order to sab­o­tage my good name and to destroy the rep­u­ta­tion of the newly found [sic] orga­ni­za­tion NOVIAC.”

In real­ity, it appears that Dal­lacroce is bow­ing out of the anti-immigrant movement—at least for now—because she did not receive the sup­port she expected for NOVIAC. While it is unclear what Dal­lacroce will do next, she and Espinoza do share a com­mon thread. While their orga­ni­za­tions claim to stand up for the vic­tims of crimes, they actu­ally serve to demo­nize immi­grants and pro­vide a plat­form for bigotry.

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