North Carolina

Syringe Exchange in Western North Carolina

North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition (NCHRC) is North Carolina’s only comprehensive harm reduction program. NCHRC engages in grassroots advocacy, resource development, coalition building and direct services for law enforcement and those made vulnerable by drug use, sex work, overdose, immigration status, gender, STIs, HIV and hepatitis.

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Issue Spotlight: Syringe Access in Western North Carolina

Written by NCHRC Staff Writer Tessie Castillo

Folwell's folly: A tale of two wives

When Republican Dale Folwell, Speaker Pro-Tem in a press conference on August 30th described the introduction of a state constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage he made a curious statement about the lineage of traditional marriage in North Carolina:

We all know about the time tested definition of marriage in North Carolina going back to 1655.

He was no doubt referring to the year that Nathaniel Batts, a fur trader and land speculator, became North Carolina’s first permanent European settler. Batts came from Virginia to establish residence in 1655 in a 20 foot square brick house with 2 rooms and a chimney on the Bertie peninsula between the Roanoke and Chowan rivers, noted in maps of the time as "Batts House".

International Overdose Awareness Day

North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition (NCHRC) to Organize Event for International Overdose Awareness Day (August 31) to Remember Lives Lost and to Educate About Solutions to Overdose Crisis

Accidental Overdose Deaths Have Quadrupled Since 1990 -- More than 26,000 Americans Die Every Year

North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition (NCHRC) will join the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) and dozens of organizations in the U.S. and abroad who are participating in International Overdose Awareness Day on August 31. The day honors and remembers those who have lost their lives to an overdose. The occasion is also an opportunity to educate policymakers and the public about the growing overdose crisis in the United States and abroad – and to offer concrete solutions that save lives.

While Rome burns

I am very troubled, even hurt, by what I see in America today. Intellectually I understand the falling and the raising of political fortunes as well as the gulf which separates so many Americans ideologically, socially, financially and politically. There are vast differences of opinion among us regarding how we can, or should go forward as a world power, a prosperous nation and a place where we can all be free to pursue happiness without unnecessary interference, or encumbrance by our government, or anyone else for that matter.

Our diverse views, each strongly held,have been with us ever since the founding of our nation and yet over the past ten years something has changed. The “We The People” part has changed. It has been weakened. Political forces, I believe, have finally succeeded in convincing much of America that, as a people, we exist in two separate and opposing camps which can never reconcile their differences. Something new has reached us ... something bad ... something not cognizant of how we became so great through the very diversity it opposes ... and it's tearing us apart.

More info about the 5 Dem collaborators voting with the R's to destroy public education in North Carolina

James has an article up about the 5 Dems voting with the Republican party and how they are being played for dopes. Just in case you are interested in who they are, how they have voted, the committees they serve on, etc, go here. Since I couldn't copy and paste a map of NC showing the House Districts, you'll have to go here. (I hope that works.)

In the meantime, here's a little info on each that may be helpful:

Your police state at work

North Carolina Republicans doing what they do best. No doubt they'll all be surprised when others follow Jim Neal's courageous lead and start to tear this god-forsaken place apart. Roses Rampage? Maxway Madness? Dollar Store Destruction? They have no idea what can happen when the oppressed rise up in civil disobedience.

Gov. Perdue and Community Broadband

There is a bill sitting on Gov. Perdue's desk today submitted by the Republican Legislature against Community Broadband. This has been written about by others on this blog. Today in the Huffington Post, Lawrence Lessig has posted an open letter to Gov. Perdue asking her to veto this bill.

Commercial broadband providers are not happy with this new competition, however. After spending millions in lobbying and campaign contributions in North Carolina, they convinced your legislature to override the will of local North Carolina communities, and ban these faster, cheaper broadband networks. Rather than compete with better service, and better prices, they secured a government-granted protection against competition. And now, unless you veto H. 129, that protection against competition will become law.

Early voting in Orange County

In fall 2010, more than 900,000 people voted prior to Election Day in North Carolina. Our state currently allows local counties to provide early voting sites for periods up to three weeks before Election Day. Here in Orange County, early voting is particularly popular. On the final days of early voting in 2010, the line at Morehead Planetarium snaked through the planetarium, down the stairs and across the quad as professors, residents and students lined up to vote.

NC Voices: Mental health disorder

One of the big shortcomings of living in Maryland for a year is that I don't get to hear what's on WUNC-FM. So I was really glad to get an email this week about an in-depth series by Rose Hoban on the sad state of mental health services in North Carolina. These reports should be required listening for every state policy maker. Please follow me below the fold for a quick look at the five part series.

Insurance Commissioner Goodwin Fines CIGNA HealthCare of North Carolina $600,000

As a consequence, company also issues refunds and credits of $638,000 to overcharged policyholders. Total impact: $1.3 MILLION.

Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced a settlement with CIGNA Healthcare of North Carolina, Inc. over violations discovered during a routine market conduct examination. The settlement resulted in a fine of $600,000 on top of the refund of $638,000 to policyholders (individuals and businesses). As required by state law, the monetary penalty component collected will be distributed to the state public school system.

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