Pampers and Koala Kare to install 5,000 changing tables in men’s restrooms

Pampers and Koala Kare to install 5,000 changing tables in men’s restrooms

Pampers has decided to aide dads all over the U.S. who have found themselves unable to find a baby changing station in men’s restrooms.

Multiple dads have posted photos depicting their babies on the floor of men’s restrooms because there was no changing table. Several of the pictures have gone viral.

Pampers wants to create change. They have jump started the “Love the Change” campaign in collaboration with Koala Kare to provide 5,000 changing tables in public restrooms across the U.S. and Canada by 2021.

The changing tables will be placed in the restrooms where they are most needed, such as parks, recreation centers, community centers and libraries. Pampers said in a release that the tables will appear in cities such as Cincinnati, Dallas, Philadelphia and more.

Musician and singer John Legend has played a part in supporting this change. He has joined the combined efforts of many dads in sharing the unique ways they’ve had to find somewhere to change their child.

“I call this the piano solo,” Legend said as his baby was on a piano, as reported by ABC 7. Other dad’s created makeshift changing stations using the driver’s seat or the trunk.

The campaign was brought to light in part because of a Florida dad, Donte Palmer, who was at the center of the countless stories in 2018. One of his children took a photo of him squatting in a restaurant restroom in Jacksonville to change his child. The photo gathered support from folks from coast-to-coast, including celebrities such as Ashton Kutcher.

Kutcher initiated a Change.org petition a couple years ago to rally for changing tables in men’s bathrooms in retail stores.

“Fathers, we aren’t highlighted like we should be,” Palmer told WJXT at the time. “And I just want to bring that view and that light to us fathers, because we do matter and we do exist, and we are willing to do more than just provide and protect.”

Palmer and fathers in his same situation have begun a movement called Squat For Change.

Nine out of 10 dads have gone into a public restroom that had no changing table, according to Pampers.

Read the full story and watch videos on the subject here.

For more background and to see more photos related to this story, click here.

Donte Palmer

Donte Palmer changing his child.

 

Re-introduced bill strives to make adoption more feasible for families

Re-introduced bill strives to make adoption more feasible for families

A bi-partisan bill has been reincarnated by lawmakers that would make adoption more affordable for families throughout the country.

The bill would revive the refundable portion of the present adoption tax credit, Senator Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) announced in a press release on June 10.

“Over 100,000 children are waiting for adoption into a family who can give them the loving home they deserve,” Blunt said, as reported by Fox 12 Oregon. “I urge my colleagues to join me in this effort to make adoption a more viable option for parents who are eager to welcome a child into their home.”

Blunt combined his efforts with Senators Bob Casey (D-Pa.) and James Inhofe (R-Okla.) to compose the legislation, dubbed the Adoption Tax Credit Refundability Act of 2019.

“My family knows firsthand the joys and blessings adoption brings,” Inhofe said. “But adoption is not without its difficulties and, too often, can be a costly process. Making the adoption tax credit fully refundable will ease that financial burden so more families can choose to adopt and welcome children into their homes.”

Almost one-third of all adopted children reside with families that have an annual income at or below 200 percent of the poverty level, according to Blunt, who cited the Department of Health. He reasoned that several of these families’ income taxes are so low that they don’t benefit from the adoption tax credit in any form. It only assists them if it is refundable.

“It is a common misconception that only wealthy families adopt,” Casey added. “We must do all we can do to ensure that all children are afforded the opportunity to grow up in a permanent, loving home.”

Previous versions of the legislation were brought up in 2013, 2015 and 2017. The bill is supported by the Adoption Tax Credit Working Group Executive Committee, which includes 150 organizations.

Read Fox 12 Oregon’s article here.

James Inhofe worked together with Senators Roy Blunt and Bob Casey to re-introduce the adoption bill.

Four Oklahoma teenagers save elderly woman from fire

Four Oklahoma teenagers save elderly woman from fire

Ninety-year-old Catherine Ritchie from Sapulpa, Oklahoma, had been living in the same house for 58 years. That changed when her bed caught fire several weeks ago.

“I was getting ready for bed in the bathroom, and I turned around, and my bed, the head of my bed, was covered in flames,” Ritchie said, as reported by KTUL.

According to a blog post written by Ritchie’s daughter, Missy Nicholas Ritchie, her mother pushed the emergency call button she wears on her necklace and called 911.

“The smoke was so bad, I couldn’t see to get out of my room,” Ritchie said. “I felt along the wall, and I went into the closet instead of the door to get out of the room. I finally did get to the door.”

That was when four young heroes intervened.

“We were just sitting around looking for something to do,” said 17-year-old Wyatt Hall.

“We were actually fixing to leave … We were fixing to go to QT to get something to drink,” said 16-year-old Seth Byrd.

When the boys, ages 14 to 17, left the house they were in, they became aware of the smell.

“It smelled kind of like burning rubber. Then, we heard the house alarm go off,” said 16-year-old Dylan Wick.

The boys acted quickly.

“One started breaking the glass on the front door,” Ritchie’s daughter wrote in her blog. “One called 911. One went to the back door and began kicking it in. One went to the neighbors for an ax and help.”

Nick Byrd, 14, was able to get through the back door and quickly went inside. He found Ritchie in the hall. She was lost in the smoke.

“This young boy was right there,” she said. “He picked me up, and I said, ‘I can walk,’ and he said, ‘We’re getting out of here.’”

“I just kind of heard her,” said Nick Byrd. “I went to the right of the house, and no one was there. I went to the left of the house, and I saw her in the hallway, so I just grabbed her and took her to Seth.”

Ritchie made it out safe along with the boys, and firefighters quenched the flames.

“They were just special, as young as they were,” Ritchie said of the boys.

Missy Nicholas Ritchie’s blog post was titled “An Open Letter of Thanks.”

“Thank you for your selfless acts of heroism and courage,” she wrote to the boys. “Thank you for not allowing this to be the tragic end to our mother’s amazing life.”

Catherine Ritchie has 42 grandchildren.

“Thank you for more than we know how to thank you for!” Missy Nicholas Ritchie wrote to the heroes. “We will forever be indebted to the time you bought for us and the example you set for us. God Bless each of you for being such a blessing to us.”

Find out more about this story here.

 

Parkrose High School coach tackles armed student

Parkrose High School coach tackles armed student

A former wide receiver for the Oregon Ducks has been pronounced a hero after tackling a potential shooter at Parkrose High School on May 17.

Keanon Lowe, who works as a football and track coach as well as a security guard at the school, confronted and overcame a student who took a concealed rifle to class. Lowe tackled the student before he was able to point or fire the weapon.

“When I signed up to be a Security Guard, Football and Track & Field Coach for Parkrose High School, I did so to guide and coach young people whose shoes I had once been in. I had no idea, that I would one day have to put my life on the line like I did yesterday for my students,” Lowe tweeted on Saturday, as reported by The Washington Post.

“I didn’t see any other choice but to act,” Lowe said in a tweet. “I’ve spent the last 24 hours being more appreciative of my family and realizing we have a serious problem.”

“I’m blessed to be alive and extremely happy that the students are safe. I’m not sure what’s next, I haven’t had the time to really think about it,” Lowe said. “But I am sure I want to be a part of the solution to school gun violence.”

Parkrose students told school officials about the classmate who demonstrated troubling behavior in the days prior to the event. The student hinted that he wanted to hurt himself and obtain firearms, according to The Oregonian.

Lowe searched for the troubled student in his government class, but did not find him, according to other classmates. With ten minutes remaining in the class, police said 18-year-old Angel Granados Dias showed up in a long coat and revealed that he had a rifle. Students and teachers escaped the classroom through a back door.

“A Portland Police School Resource Officer and other officers arrived and immediately entered the school and found the staff member detaining the subject in the hallway,” police said in a statement.

Lowe thanked the Portland Police for their help.

Lowe is in his second year working at Parkrose High School. He formerly worked as an offensive analyst for the San Francisco 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles. He also coached at Jesuit high in Portland, his alma mater.

Attending University of Oregon from 2010 to 2014, Lowe was a three-year starter at wide receiver. He caught 68 passes for 891 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Proclaimed the “team’s most inspirational player” as a redshirt senior, Lowe earned a reputation as a fan favorite. The fans admired him because of his unselfish blocking habits and triumphant celebrations of teammates’ accomplishments.

Parkrose football players said that Lowe had already made a big impact on the school despite his brief time there, according to The Oregonian.

After students were reunited with their parents, Lowe told police that he was tired and that he wanted to see his own loved ones. As reported by The Oregonian, two men stopped to shake Lowe’s hand while they were in the parking lot. One woman hugged him and said, “Thank you.”

“I’m just happy everyone was okay,” he told reporters. “I’m happy I was able to be there for the kids and for the community.”

Read more about this story here.

To read several Tweets directed to Lowe, click here.

Georgia governor signs bill protecting babies with a heartbeat

Georgia governor signs bill protecting babies with a heartbeat

One of the most protective abortion laws in the nation has been signed by Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia. The outcome of this law is the legal protection of babies after six weeks gestation, the stage when doctors can normally detect a heartbeat. There are a few exceptions, which include preventing death or major harm to the woman and in situations of rape or incest, after a police report has been filed.

Like three other states that have enacted similar laws, it is expected Georgia’s law will come up against an immediate legal challenge. Supporters hope that this law will begin a re-evaluation of Roe v. Wade by the United States Supreme Court. Roe v. Wade was the landmark 1973 decision that overrode state abortion laws and made abortion legal all nine months of pregnancy.

In a signing ceremony at the State Capitol, Kemp, a Republican, said that his administration is prepared for a court fight.

“Our job is to do what is right, not what is easy,” he said, as reported by The New York Times. “We are called to be strong and courageous, and we will not back down.”

This Georgia legislation is just one of the latest developments in a wide-ranging battle over abortion that has taken place this year. State legislators headed by Republicans in the Midwest and the South have taken the lead. Conservative lawmakers have seen the recent changes in the Supreme Court as an opportunity to get overturn Roe v. Wade.

“This is a historic day for Georgia,” Catherine Davis, a pro-life rights activist said, as reported by The New York Times. “This is a day that many of us who have been in the pro-life fight for years and years and years didn’t really think it would be possible, in light of the politics of the issue,” Davis said at Kemp’s signing ceremony.

Read more about this story here.