13-21 year olds apply by Jan 19 for free Freedom to Read Advocacy program

BPL Freedom to Read Institute header

PEN America & the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) are co-hosting the first-ever Freedom to Read Advocacy Institute in February 2023! This free, online, 4-week program is open to all high school students nationwide. Apply by Thursday, January 19 – applications close at 11:59 p.m E.T. Learn more & apply.

More information about what the BPL offers students who want to be able to read all types of books – even ones that are banned in some places.

Is running the US government based too much on ‘norms’ –  and not enough on rule of law?

Vox article heading

I read the Vox article Are We In a Constitutional Crisis Yet? with a mix of interest, curiosity and concern. While all of the 13 law professionals interviewed agree that we’re in a difficult situation in regards to how the United States government is being run today, some say we’re not in a Constitutional crisis until the president refuses to obey a court order – an order which could be issued if Congress’ demands for information relating to its task of rounding up materials needed to impeach government officials are ignored. read more

In NYC you can still hate immigrants – but now it’s illegal to say so

Times Square, NY via Wikipedia

If you’re the type who enjoys hating on immigrants, telling people, “Go back home!” or threatening to call immigration on somebody, well, a word to the wise. Whilst in New York City, best keep those thoughts to yourself, ’cause now it’s illegal to speak them.

If you really can’t stop yourself from hating immigrants out loud, there’s a remedy for that: be prepared to pay the city a fine of up to $250,000 smackeroonies.

Programa de licencias de conducir para indocumentados en Connecticut ofrece enormes beneficios | Connecticut’s undocumented driver licensing program provides many benefits

Connecticut drive-only license
License image courtesy of Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles

Connecticut está disfrutando un éxito enorme con su programa de licencias para conducir para residentes indocumentados. Beneficia a residentes, la policía – que ya no pierden tiempo con las complejidades de procesar violaciones automovilísticos cuando el chofer no tiene licencia, las autoescuelas y también ha producido ingresos para el estado. Es un modelo ejemplar para otros estados. Ver el reporte (en inglés) de WGBH.

Connecticut is enjoying great success with its drive-only license program for undocumented immigrants. It benefits residents, police, state coffers and driving schools – and it’s a great model for other states to take note of. Read the WGBH article. read more

Free or Discounted Rides to Polls on Election Day (Nov. 6th) by Uber & Lyft

By Olivia Rizzo of NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

For some people half the battle of voting is getting to the polls, but this year voters can get some relief from a slightly unexpected source: Uber and Lyft.

Both ride share companies are offering free or discounted rides to voters on Nov. 6, and both companies are partnering with voting organizations that encourage people to register and then go out to vote.

free ride to voteAccording to Pew Research, 3 percent of registered voters who did not vote in 2016 cited “transportation problems” as the main reason they didn’t vote. Additionally, 14 percent of people cited that they were “too busy or conflicting schedule,” and “inconvenient hours or polling places,” which are issues that tend to affect low income communities.

This is why Lyft in particular said it wants to offer free rides to underserved communities.

Uber said in a press release it is partnering with When We All Vote to get people registered and with #VoteTogether and Democracy Works to offer free rides to polling places.

Uber is also sharing voter registration resources with users in the app.

In order to get a free ride to the polls on Elections Day, users will need to open the app, search for their polling place using the “get to the polls” button, and order a ride.

It appears that users will not be able to use the free ride for another location as the polling place search bar is separate from the standard location search bar.

Lyft announced its Election Day initiatives back in August, partnering with Vote.org, Turbo Vote, Nonprofit Vote, and other organizations which will distribute promo codes for 50 percent off rides to polling places. Lyft has also partnered with Vote Latino, the National Federation of the Blind, and Urban League affiliates to provide free rides to underserved communities.

Like Uber, Lyft is also encouraging its users to register to vote through the app, and partnered with When We All Vote and National Voter Registration Day to amplify their get out the vote efforts.

More information about how to get a free or discounted ride to your polling location can be found on Uber and Lyft’s websites.

In New Jersey, the deadline to register to vote was Oct. 16.

Uber’s website is www.uber.com
Lyfts’ website is www.lyft.com

Link to nj.com article