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Environmental Service Center at Exposition Park opens on Saturday

Join Supervisor Ridley-Thomas for the opening of the Environmental Service Center at Exposition Park. See the new one-stop shop for environmental resources and programs in the Second Supervisorial District. Join the Community Scientist Program and learn about the environmental research opportunities available for community leaders, teachers, and students. Enjoy a crash course in hydroponic gardens, biodiversity and bioacoustics.

The Environmental Service Center is a “one-stop” location for constituents to get information and assistance with several County initiatives to save residents money, fight global warming and promote economic development and job growth.

Adjacent to the California Science Center, the Science Center Elementary School, the County Natural History Museum and the California African American Museum, the Environmental Service Center is optimally positioned for cooperative educational events.

Below are some of the important resources it provides:

Energy Upgrade California: Los Angeles County has partnered with Southern California Edison and the Southern California Gas Company to save homeowners money. The energy upgrade program encourages homeowners to lower their utility bills by implementing energy-saving upgrades to their houses. Home improvements that qualify for up to $6,000 in rebates and incentives include the installation of sealing, HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning), VAC upgrades, energy efficient windows and tank-less water heaters. The program emphasizes a “whole house” approach, rather than installing individual improvements, as the most efficient and effective way to save money on energy bills. For more information, visit www.energyupgradeca.org.

Green
Building Program: Developers can come to the center to learn how to efficiently comply with the County’s Green Building standards. Residents can find ways to save thousands of dollars through programs such as energy-saving home improvement subsidies from utility companies.

Public Transit:
In partnership with MTA, the center will serve as a location to purchase TAP cards, find vanpool information and get other transit-related assistance.

Drought Tolerant Landscaping and Low-Impact Development:
The center will provide educational programs and information on financial incentives for homeowners, businesses and developers on state-of-the-art water conservation techniques.

Administrative Offices East
700 Exposition Park Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90037

Download the flyer here.

To RSVP, please contact Omar at (213) 741-9292.

Link Bus provides transit to Willowbrook, Florence-Firestone, Lennox and Athens

This fall, the Department of Public Works, in coordination with the Second District, unveiled “The Link”. At 25 cents a ride, the link provides an affordable and efficient transit service to connect communities to key destinations in the Willowbrook, Florence-Firestone, Lennox and Athens communities. The shuttles link our light rail systems, specifically the green and blue lines, to key destinations including schools, parks, libraries, constituent service centers and other heavy traveled destinations, encouraging residents to get out of their cars, thereby creating an economic, efficient and environmentally friendly transportation alternative.

The Link shuttles buses were designed by Sussman-Prezja with a dynamic and bright pattern to attract attention around this new service.

For information about the Willowbrook route, click here.

For information about the Florence-Firestone route, click here.

For information about the Athens route, click here.

For information about the Lennox route, click here.

Supervisors act to examine and reform Sheriff’s Department

The Los Angeles Board of Supervisors today took strong action to bring greater oversight and accountability to the Sheriff’s Department, unanimously voting to establish a seven-member citizens’ commission to investigate allegations of abuse and corruption.

The commission would be tasked with reviewing the nature, depth and cause of inappropriate uses of force by deputies in the County jails and to return to the Board with recommendations for reforms.

The motion for a commission, sponsored jointly by Supervisors Zev Yaroslavsky and Mark Ridley-Thomas, charges the new commission with presenting its findings within 120 days of its first meeting.

In second unanimous vote, the Board also approved on a motion by Supervisor Gloria Molina, to implement existing recommendations by Special Counsel Merrick Bobb and the Office of Independent Review. The recommendations include but are not limited to: the installation of surveillance cameras at the Men’s Central Jail, the Inmate Reception center and the Twin Towers, elimination of steel-toed shoes, a revision of department policy to forbid striking inmates on the head and regular rotation of jail deputies between floors at the Men’s Central Jail and to other facilities at no less than six-month intervals.  The Board also approved an amendment by Supervisor Ridley-Thomas to require the Chief Executive Office, the Internal Services Department and County Counsel to work with the Sheriff to facilitate implementation of the existing recommendations.

“These two motions are complementary,” Supervisor Ridley-Thomas said. “They are not in conflict and nor are they contradictory. Supervisor Molina’s motion calls for important and necessary steps to be made immediately, but the commission has a broader charge.

“It will not only examine past practices, it will offer the Board a roadmap to use as we move forward with reforms,” the Supervisor said.

Tuesday’s action by the board comes after report released last week by the Sheriff’s Department Office of Independent Review found that a code of silence among deputies has shielded abusive jailers and that those who break that code are subject to harassment by colleagues. The report found that eight deputies failed to report mistreatment of an inmate that was recorded on video. In another case, a deputy who reported wrongdoing received threatening phone calls, the report said.

Exercise policy supports child obesity prevention

Dr. Toni (Antronnette) Yancey, Second District Commissioner, sponsored a motion during the October 13, 2011 First 5 LA Commission meeting to pass an activity break policy to address rising rates of overweight and obese children and families throughout Los Angeles County. Prolonged periods of sedentary behavior are emerging as a threat to health and well-being for children and families independent of achieving the recommended daily amounts of moderate to vigorous intensity physical activity of 30 minutes for adults and 60 minutes for children. Significant social and cultural environmental changes are needed to support individual and family efforts to make healthier choices.

First 5 LA Commissioners unanimously adopted the activity break policy motion in an effort to set an example for the businesses and agencies they work with and the children they serve. The new policy establishes 5-10 minutes physical activity breaks during Commission meetings, meetings lasting longer than one hour, conferences, events, and other convenings sponsored by First 5 LA. The policy also encourages adoption of similar policies by grantees and partner organizations to support the need for increased physical activity among children and families served by First 5 LA.

Dr. Toni Yancey is a leader in the effort to improve the nation’s health through chronic disease and obesity prevention and physical activity promotion through research, teaching and administrative roles. She currently serves on the Board of Partnership for a Healthier America, the non-profit guiding First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move Campaign. She is also co-chair of a statewide campaign Team California for Healthy Kids to promote healthy eating and physical activity in schools, after school programs, early childhood programs and communities.

Click on the following links below learn more about the new policy and join the fight against childhood obesity through exercise promotion:

First 5 LA Comission Motion (MS Word document)

Activity Break Videos:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_ysGgietXE
www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wp2aGliB1E

Instant Recess® Activity Break Toolkit:
http://corptoolkit.keenfootwear.com

Wristband distribution for the County’s largest free health clinic

More than 3,000 people wrapped around the Los Angeles Sports Arena to receive a CareNow green, gold, blue, or red wristband. The colored wristband corresponding with each of the four days of the clinic, is required to return to the sports arena to receive free medical, dental, and vision care during the four day clinic that will take place Thursday, October 20th through Sunday, October 23rd. The wristbands were originally scheduled to be handed out at 1:00 p.m. but due to the large crowds and warm temperatures, CareNow gave out wristbands two hours earlier.

People from as far as the valley to local downtown residents brought their family and friends down to the sports arena to guarantee their spot to receive free medical attention. Such was the case for Yvette Bailey, of downtown Los Angeles who brought her four children ages, two, six, 15, and 10 to the sports arena to receive their wristbands. “I am excited,” said Yvette. We arrived here at 10:00 a.m. there was not a long wait and the lines moved quickly.”

Yvette will return with her family on Sunday as a first time patient of the CareNow clinic.

Likewise, Gensis Cruz, age 19, from of Hollywood, arrived at 10:30 a.m. and will also be a first year CareNow patient on Thursday. She was informed from her school counselor of the clinic.

“This is a great opportunity for people. I don’t have anymore medical insurance. I need my wisdom teeth removed and I need glasses. I’m trying to work and I don’t have any money.”

Minutes from receiving her wristband, Gensis said,” This is very much appreciated.”

After receiving wristbands, future patients were notified to be on time, wear comfortable clothing and be prepared to wait due to the high demand of some services over others.

Click here for today’s LA Times Article

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