Jane Hodes, lifelong activist, founder of Niebyl-Proctor Library

Jane E. Hodes, a longtime Communist Party member and activist for peace, social and economic justice, died June 6 at the Oakland, Calif. retirement home where she had lived for many years. She was 90 years old.

Obama, grassroots groups move to protect consumers from Wall Street

WASHINGTON — Condemning Wall Street’s “culture of irresponsibility” that plunged the nation into the worst economic crisis in 80 years, President Obama unveiled a sweeping plan June 17 to strengthen bank regulation and protect consumers from predatory lending and other financial abuses.

New study calls for action on rising hate crimes

Leaders of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights and the Anti-Defamation League held a June 16 conference call to release a new report called, “Confronting the New Faces of Hate Crimes in America.”

Economists, small business owners say health reform key to economic revival

The idea that the US can't afford comprehensive health care reform during a recession, as pushed by some opponents of President Obama's call for reform this year, is flat out wrong, said a statement signed by more than 330 economists and released this week by the Institute for America's Future.

Grassroots action: Join us in DC June 25, lobby for quality, affordable health care for all'

Under the banner “Health Care ’09: We Can’t Wait,” Americans across the country are being urged to get on busses, planes or trains or car pool to Washington June 25, “to lobby every Member of Congress in support of quality, affordable health care for all.” The national lobby day is being organized by Health Care for America Now, the national coalition of labor, community and social justice groups.

Anti-immigrant suspects in Ariz. killing have ties to white supremacists

(talkingpointsmemo.com) The recent murders of a Kansas doctor who performed late-term abortions and of a guard at the National Holocaust Museum have stoked fears of a rise in right-wing extremist violence -- just as that much-maligned DHS report predicted. And now it looks like we've got another one to add to the list...

COBRA's high cost bites into jobless safety net

When Jane Schiffler loses her job on July 1, the college administrator will face tough choices. 'To help make ends meet for me and my 7-year-old son, I've decided to give up our land line and just use a cell phone; to cancel our cable TV and just get the basic channels; to go to the library instead of buying books; and to cook at home instead of eating out,' says Schiffler, a single mother in New York City. 'But I haven't figured out what to do about our health insurance coverage, which remains my biggest--and most frightening--challenge.'

Civil rights groups urge 'huge groundswell' to end predatory lending

Black, Latino, and Native American Indian leaders at an online briefing on the “racial wealth gap” said it will take a tidal wave of public pressure to win passage of legislation outlawing predatory lending and other discriminatory practices in the face of opposition from the banking lobby.

Environmental movement, unions come together for healthy planet, workers rights

In a great piece of the latest issue of Grist, Kate Sheppard looks at the ways the union and environmental movements are working together to make sure the emerging energy economy is sustainable and fair to everyone.

Stronger laws against hate crimes needed

At a June 5 U.S. government-sponsored human rights panel discussion in Geneva, Switzerland, Wade Henderson, president and CEO of LCCR, called for the adoption of more effective hate crime laws in the United States. In his remarks, Henderson noted that in the U.S. 'the number of hate crimes reported has consistently ranged around 7,500 or more annually—that's nearly one every hour of every day.'

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