NAACP’s Justice March from Selma to Washington, DC

NAACP Justice March From August 1 to September 16, America’s Journey for Justice–an historic 860-mile march from Selma, Alabama, to Washington, D.C.–will mobilize activists and advance a focused national advocacy agenda that protects the right of every American to a fair criminal justice system, uncorrupted and unfettered access to the ballot box, sustainable jobs with a living wage, and equitable public education. Issue Focus by State: Alabama – Economic Inequality Georgia – Education Reform South Carolina – Criminal Justice Reform North Carolina – Voting Rights Virginia – Youth Rally Washington, D.C. – Full advocacy agenda For more: .



Pres Obama visits Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma & El Reno FCI

PBO Choctaw Nation OKChoctaw Chief Gary Batton on PBO visit


July 11, 2015

WASHINGTON—The White House announced on Friday, President Barack Obama will visit the Choctaw Nation next week.

“On Wednesday, July 15th, the President will travel to Durant, Oklahoma, where he will visit the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and deliver remarks on expanding economic opportunity,” White House spokesman Keith Maley said.

The president will remain overnight in Oklahoma and visit a federal prison the next day where he will be interviewed for a documentary about the American justice system. The documentary will be broadcast this fall.

The president’s visit will be his second visit to an American Indian tribe since he became president of the United States. In June 2014, President Obama visited the Standing Rock Sioux Indian Reservation in North Dakota.


FACT SHEET: ConnectHome: Coming Together to Ensure Digital Opportunity for All Americans

Today, the President will travel to Durant, Oklahoma, to announce ConnectHome, a new initiative with communities, the private sector, and federal government to expand high speed broadband to more families across the country. The pilot program is launching in twenty-seven cities and one tribal nation and will initially reach over 275,000 low-income households – and nearly 200,000 children – with the support they need to access the Internet at home. Internet Service Providers, non-profits and the private sector will offer broadband access, technical training, digital literacy programs, and devices for residents in assisted housing units.

ConnectHome is the next step in the President’s continued efforts to expand high speed broadband to all Americans and builds on his ConnectED initiative that is on track to connect 99 percent of K-12 students to high-speed Internet in their classrooms and libraries over the next five years.  ConnectHome will help ensure that these students still have access to high-speed Internet once they are home.

For more:

Choctaw soldiers in training in World War I for coded radio and telephone transmissions

Choctaw soldiers in training in World War I for coded radio and telephone transmissions

Wednesday, July 15, 2015
President Obama meets with Choctaw Nation Chief Batton and Tribal Elders on expanding economic opportunity for for communities across the country
Durant High School, Choctaw Nation, Durant, Oklahoma



US Government & Indigenous Peoples Timeline 1819-2014 Civil Rights Timelines ™



(BOP) – On Thursday, July 16th, President Barack Obama is scheduled to visit the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI), El Reno, Oklahoma. This visit marks the first time in history a United States President has visited a federal prison while in office. He will be accompanied by Federal Bureau of Prisons Director Charles E. Samuels, Jr.

The President will meet with inmates and speak with staff. This is a great opportunity for the Bureau of Prisons (Bureau) to show President Obama, and the Nation, the outstanding work performed daily at all Bureau institutions in meeting our mission to protect society and prepare inmates for reentry. The Bureau is honored that the President decided to make this visit.

FCI El Reno is a medium-security federal prison housing more than 1,000 male offenders. Another 248 male offenders reside at an adjacent minimum-security camp. Originally authorized by Congress in 1930 as a facility to rehabilitate, train and educate young offenders, FCI El Reno has a long and diverse history within the agency. It is home to one of the two remaining farms in operation within the Bureau, the other being at the Federal Correctional Complex, Lompoc, California.

Excerpts from 7/14/15 President Obama’s remarks at the 2015 NAACP Conference:

“The United States is home to 5 percent of the world’s population, but 25 percent of the world’s prisoners.

Our incarceration rate is four times higher than China’s.

We keep more people behind bars than the top 35 European countries combined.

In 1980, there were 500,000 people behind bars in America — half a million people in 1980. In 2015 there are 2.2 million.  It has quadrupled since 1980.  Our prison population has doubled in the last two decades alone.

Studies show that up to a certain point, tougher prosecutors and stiffer sentences for these violent offenders contributed to the decline in violent crime over the last few decades.  Although the science also indicates that you get a point of diminishing returns.  But it is important for us to recognize that violence in our communities is serious and that historically, in fact, the African American community oftentimes was under-policed rather than over-policed.  Folks were very interested in containing the African American community so it couldn’t leave segregated areas, but within those areas there wasn’t enough police presence.

Over the last few decades, we’ve also locked up more and more nonviolent drug offenders than ever before, for longer than ever before.   And that is the real reason our prison population is so high.  In far too many cases, the punishment simply does not fit the crime.  If you’re a low-level drug dealer, or you violate your parole, you owe some debt to society.  You have to be held accountable and make amends.  But you don’t owe 20 years.  You don’t owe a life sentence.  That’s disproportionate to the price that should be paid.

[United States] taxpayers are picking up the tab for that price.  Every year, we spend $80 billion to keep folks incarcerated — $80 billion.  Now, just to put that in perspective, for $80 billion, we could have universal preschool for every 3-year-old and 4-year-old in America.  That’s what $80 billion buys.  For $80 billion, we could double the salary of every high school teacher in America.  For $80 billion, we could finance new roads and new bridges and new airports, job training programs, research and development.  We’re about to get in a big budget debate in Washington — what I couldn’t do with $80 billion. For what we spend to keep everyone locked up for one year, we could eliminate tuition at every single one of our public colleges and universities.”

For the entire transcript:

FACT SHEET: Enhancing the Fairness and Effectiveness of the Criminal Justice System

Today the President will lay out the case for meaningful juvenile and criminal justice reform that makes our system, fairer, smarter and more cost-effective while keeping the American people safe and secure.  Across the political spectrum, there is a growing consensus to make reforms to the juvenile and criminal justice systems to ensure that criminal laws are enforced more fairly and efficiently.  Unwarranted disparities and unduly harsh sentences undermine trust in the rule of law and offend the basic principles of fairness and justice.  In an era of limited resources and diverse threats, there is a public safety imperative to devote the resources of the criminal justice system to the practices that are most successful at deterring crime and protecting the public.

This Administration has taken a series of actions to enhance fairness and efficiency at all phases of the criminal justice system and to better address the vicious cycle of poverty, criminality and incarceration that traps too many Americans and weakens too many communities.  Now, it is time for Congress to act.  Meaningful sentencing reform, steps to reduce repeat offenders and reform of the juvenile justice system are crucial to improving public safety, reducing runaway incarceration costs and making our criminal justice system more fair.

* A Smarter and Fairer Approach to Charging and Sentencing

* Enhancing the Credibility and Accountability of the Justice System

* Focus on Effective Prisoner Reentry and the Cycle of Incarceration

* Support for State and Local Law Enforcement

* Working with State and Local Law Enforcement to Build Community Trust

* Working with State and Local Law Enforcement to Build Community Trust

For more:

Thursday, July 16, 2015
President Obama delivers remarks on Enhancing the Fairness and Effectiveness of the Criminal Justice System
El Reno Federal Correctional Institution, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma


Restoring Overtime Pay

PBO Restoring Overtime Pay

Middle Class Economics Rewarding Hard Work by Restoring Overtime Pay

Middle class economics means that a hard day’s work should lead to a fair day’s pay.  For much of the past century, a cornerstone of that promise has been the 40-hour workweek.  But for decades, industry lobbyists have bottled up efforts to keep these rules up to date, leaving millions of Americans working long hours, and taking them away from their families without the overtime pay that they have earned. Business owners who treat their employees fairly are being undercut by competitors who don’t.

Today, President Obama announced that the Department of Labor will propose extending overtime pay to nearly 5 million workers. The proposal would guarantee overtime pay to most salaried workers earning less than an estimated $50,440 next year. The number of workers in each state who would be affected by this proposal can be found here.

The salary threshold guarantees overtime for most salaried workers who fall below it, but it is eroded by inflation every year.  It has only been updated once since the 1970s, when the Bush Administration published a weak rule with the strong support of industry.  Today, the salary threshold remains at $23,660 ($455 per week), which is below the poverty threshold for a family of four, and only 8 percent of full-time salaried workers fall below it.

President Obama directed the Secretary of Labor to update regulations relating to who qualifies for overtime pay so that they once again reflect the intent of the Fair Labor Standards Act, and to simplify the rules so they’re easier for workers and businesses to understand and apply.  Following months of extensive consultations with employers, workers, unions, and other stakeholders, the Department of Labor developed a proposal that would:

  • Raise the threshold under which most salaried workers are guaranteed overtime to equal the 40th percentile of weekly earnings for full-time salaried workers.  As proposed, this would raise the salary threshold from $455 a week ($23,660 a year) – below the poverty threshold for a family of four – to a projected level of $970 a week ($50,440 a year) in 2016.
  • Extend overtime pay and the minimum wage to nearly 5 million workers within the first year of its implementation, of which 56 percent are women and 53 percent have at least a college degree.
  • Provide greater clarity for millions more workers so they – and their employers – can determine more easily if they should be receiving overtime pay.
  • Prevent a future erosion of overtime and ensure greater predictability by automatically updating the salary threshold based on inflation or wage growth over time.

Learn more:


A Hard Day’s Work Deserves a Fair Day’s Pay

6/29/2015 9:16 pm EDT Barack Obama – huffingtonpost

It’s been a good few days for America.

On Thursday, the Supreme Court reaffirmed the Affordable Care Act. It is here to stay.

And, Democrats and Republicans in Congress paved the way for the United States to rewrite the rules of global trade to benefit American workers and American businesses.

On Friday, the Court recognized the Constitutional guarantee of marriage equality. With that ruling, our union became a little more perfect — a place where more people are treated equally, no matter who they are or who they love.

These steps build upon America’s steady progress in recent years. Out of the depths of recession, we’ve emerged ready to write our own future. Our businesses have created 12.6 million new jobs over the past 63 months — the longest streak on record. More than 16 million Americans have gained health insurance. More kids are graduating from high school and college than ever before.

But more work lies ahead, if we are to succeed in making sure this recovery reaches all hardworking Americans and their families.

We’ve got to keep expanding access to affordable health care. Right now, 22 states haven’t expanded Medicaid — even though, under the ACA, they can. We’ll keep encouraging those governors to do the right thing for their constituents. And we’re making sure people know all the ways that they can benefit from the ACA. Wednesday, I’ll go to Tennessee to meet Americans whose lives have been changed by this law, and to talk about how, instead of refighting settled battles of the past, we can move forward together.

We’ve got to keep making sure hard work is rewarded. Right now, too many Americans are working long days for less pay than they deserve. That’s partly because we’ve failed to update overtime regulations for years — and an exemption meant for highly paid, white collar employees now leaves out workers making as little as $23,660 a year — no matter how many hours they work.

This week, I’ll head to Wisconsin to discuss my plan to extend overtime protections to nearly 5 million workers in 2016, covering all salaried workers making up to about $50,400 next year. That’s good for workers who want fair pay, and it’s good for business owners who are already paying their employees what they deserve — since those who are doing right by their employees are undercut by competitors who aren’t.

That’s how America should do business. In this country, a hard day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay. That’s at the heart of what it means to be middle class in America.

For more:


Additional Information


PBO Higher Wages SOTU quote

PBO @ UW-La Crosse

Thursday, July 2, 2015 – 2:20 PM ET
President Obama delivers remarks on the economy
Recreational Eagle Center, University of Wisconsin-La Crosse,
La Crosse, Wisconsin

Summer Food Service Program 2015

During the school year, many children receive free and reduced-price breakfast and lunch through the School Breakfast and National School Lunch Programs.

What happens when school lets out?

Hunger is one of the most severe roadblocks to the learning process. Lack of nutrition during the summer months may set up a cycle for poor performance once school begins again. Hunger also may make children more prone to illness and other health issues. The Summer Food Service Program is designed to fill that nutrition gap and make sure children can get the nutritious meals they need.

Want to help end hunger this  summer? Here are a few ways you can help:

How To Apply

Find meals for children call:

National Hunger Hotline at 1-866-3-HUNGRY or 1-877-8-HAMBRE

For the entire article:

Farm to Summer Resources

Local foods and agriculture-based activities at Summer sites can improve the quality and appeal of Summer Meals, address the summer learning and nutrition gap, bolster your Farm to School efforts with year-round programming, and support local and regional food systems all year long. USDA’s Farm to Summer team has a number of resources available for States interested in promoting the use of local foods their sponsors:


G7 Summit 2015


The Group of 7 (G7) is a group consisting of the finance ministers and central bank governors of seven major advanced economies as reported by the International Monetary FundCanadaFranceGermanyItalyJapan, the United Kingdom, and the United States meeting to discuss primarily economic issues. The European Union is also represented within the G7. The G7 are the seven wealthiest major developed nations by national net wealth, representing more than 64% of the net global wealth ($263 trillion) according to the Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report October 2014. The IMF’s Managing Director usually participates. Recent G7 meetings include that of May 2013 in Aylesbury, United Kingdom with an emergency meeting in The Hague, Netherlands on March 24, 2014. Most recently, there was a meeting in Brussels on June 4, 2014.

The G7’s precursor was the ‘Group of Six’, founded ad hoc in 1975, consisting of finance ministers and central bank governors from FranceWest GermanyItalyJapan, the United Kingdom and the United States, when Giscard d’Estaing invited them for an “informal gathering at the chateau of Rambouillet, near Paris […] in a relaxed and private setting”.  The intent was “to discuss current world issues (dominated at the time by the oil crisis) in a frank and informal manner”.  Canada became the seventh member in 1976, after which the name ‘Group 7′ or G7 was used.  During 1986–87 the G7 with its finance ministers and central bank governors superseded the G5 as the main policy coordination group, particularly following the Louvre Accord of February 1987, agreed by the G5 plus Canada and endorsed by the G7.

For more:


Leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, US, European Council & European Commission
Leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, US, European Council & European Commission

G7 Summit 2015 
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

The heads of state and government of the Group of Seven (G7) will be meeting at Schloss Elmau in Upper Bavaria on 7 and 8 June 2015. In addition to the global economy and foreign, security and development policy, they will be discussing the UN conferences to be held in 2015 as well as the post-2015 agenda.

Other key issues they will be addressing include:

  • Protection of the marine environment, marine governance and resource efficiency,
  • Antibiotic resistance, neglected and poverty-related diseases, and Ebola,
  • Retail and supply chain standards, and
  • Empowering self-employed women and women in vocational training.

The leaders of the G7 countries will also discuss energy security, including as part of the Rome G7 Energy Initiative. In addition, they will continue the ongoing G7 process in regard to development policy.

A community of shared values
The G7 countries have a special responsibility when it comes to shaping our planet’s future. As a community of shared values, the G7 must work towards establishing peace and security and ensuring people can live a self-determined life. Freedom and human rights, democracy and the rule of law, peace and security, prosperity and sustainable development are core principles agreed by the G7.

“The heads of state and government of the G7 do not accept the Russian Federation’s illegal annexation of Crimea. As a community of values, they have therefore decided to hold their meetings without Russia until further notice.”

Foreign and security policy
The G7’s commitment to pursue a common foreign and security policy is extremely important given the numerous political crises the world over. In March 2014 the G7 declared that a meaningful discussion was currently not possible with Russia in the context of the G8. Since then meetings have continued within the G7 process.

Sustainable economic growth and free trade
The G7 countries are key actors in international economic relations, and as such they carry great responsibility for creating reliable, sustainable and viable global economic conditions. Dynamic and sustainable growth in industrialised, newly industrialising and developing countries is easier to achieve if those countries are agreed on basic issues around economic development, cross-border trade and an effective, prudent financial market architecture.

That is why the G7 will continue to work towards establishing an enabling environment that is stable in the long term in order to promote dynamic, sustainable economic growth. Sound finances, open global markets and a well-functioning labour market have a key role to play in that. The G7 states will together continue to promote international trade.

For more:

G7 Germany Twitter
G7 Germany Facebook
G7 Germany Flickr
G7 Germany YouTube


President Obama’s Europe Intinerary

Saturday, June 6

President Obama travels to Munich, Germany for the G7 Summit

Sunday, June 7

President Obama arrives in Munich, Germany

President Obama travels to Krün, Germany

President Obama joins German Chancellor Merkel in meeting with the citizens of the town of Krün
Krün, Germany

President Obama participates in a walk with German Chancellor Angela Merkel
Krün, Germany

President Obama holds a bilateral meeting with German Chancellor Merkel
Krün, Germany

President Obama attends a G7 welcome ceremony
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in G7 sessions focusing on the global economy, growth and values
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in G7 sessions focusing on trade and standards
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in G7 family photo
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama and Prime Minister Cameron of the United Kingdom hold a bilateral meeting
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in attending a cultural performance for the leaders
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in a working dinner
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

Monday, June 8

President Obama meets with French President Hollande
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in G7 sessions focusing on energy and climate
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in G7 sessions focusing on terrorism
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama joins other leaders in a working lunch on development issues
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama and Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi  hold a bilateral meeting
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama holds a press conference
Schloss Elmau, Bavaria, Germany

President Obama departs Krün, Germany


May 2015 Leading Major Country PMI Comparisons

U.S. Manufacturing Still Number One

May 2015 Major Economy PMI Comparison 2

Manufacturing PMIs for May are out, and the United States, despite declining to lowest since January 2014 today, is still some way ahead of the rest of the world. This continues a trend that has been in place since the spring of last year.A reading above 50 points to an expansion in manufacturing. The United States is the only major economy that has not fallen below that point in the past three years. 
Bloomberg Source

May 2015 Major Economy PMI Comparison



Outsourcing Message from
Outsourcing Message from


Pres Obama @ Summit on Overcoming Poverty

PBO @ GU Poverty Summit


MAY 7, 2015 – PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA WILL PARTICIPATE in a unique Catholic-Evangelical Leadership Summit on Overcoming Poverty at Georgetown next week that addresses key questions related to the moral, human and economic costs of poverty in the United States.

The President will discuss the topic of poverty and opportunity May 12 with well-known Harvard public policy professor Robert Putnam and Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute.

“Georgetown University is privileged to host this unprecedented and timely summit of Catholic, evangelical and other religious leaders coming together to make overcoming poverty a clear moral imperative and urgent national priority,” says Georgetown President John J. DeGioia. “The university is particularly honored to welcome President Obama to join this unique dialogue with Robert Putnam and Arthur Brooks.”

Washington Post columnist and McCourt School of Public Policy adjunct professor E.J. Dionne Jr. will moderate the discussion, and the conversation will be webcast at


Sen. Tim Scott (R-South Carolina) will address the summit after the discussion.

The May 11-13 summit is organized by Georgetown’s Initiative on Catholic Social Thought and Public Life and the National Association of Evangelicals.

“As Pope Francis has placed a preference for the poor at the center of public life,” DeGioia adds, “we bring our resources as a Catholic and Jesuit university in the nation’s capital to engage in dialogue and scholarship that supports the betterment of humankind and the common good.”


More than 120 leaders from evangelical, Catholic and broader religious communities, as well as key policy makers, researchers and community organizers, have been invited to the summit.

“With this summit, Catholic and evangelical leaders hope to create a new sense of urgency, new allies and new ideas to help overcome the political paralysis and moral scandal of too much poverty and too little opportunity in our nation,” says John Carr, the Georgetown initiative’s director. “We are honored that President Obama has chosen to join us in addressing this urgent moral imperative.”

Carr says the summit is a “direct response” to Pope Francis’ “challenge to place the lives and dignity of the poor at the center of religious and public life.”

Key partners and participants for the summit include the Circle of Protection, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Bread for the World, World Vision, the Salvation Army, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Catholic Charities USA, Oxfam America, Sojourners, PICO National Network and the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

For more:


The White House would like to hear how the issues discussed at the summit are playing out in your community, and how you think we can continue expanding opportunity for more Americans

May 12, 2015
11:30 AM ET
President Obama joins leaders from faith groups, public and private organizations in a panel discussion at the
Catholic-Evangelical Leadership Summit on Overcoming Poverty
Georgetown University, Washington DC





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