Environmental advocates hold clean air rally to call for accountability

Environmental advocates hold clean air rally to call for accountability

On the tepid first day of Spring, environmental advocates took to the city-county building stairs in Pittsburgh at Penn Environment’s second annual clean air rally to remind residents and elected officials alike that air quality often makes the city less than livable.

From its smoggy past to its unhealthy, air quality advisory-filled present, the Steel City has its share of air quality issues. Although over the past year the city and Allegheny County have seen progress, Zachary Barber, an organizer for PennEnvironment, reminded the modest crowd of thirty that Pittsburgh’s air quality is still among the worst in the nation. 
Wednesday, March 20, 2019/Author: Atiya Irvin-Mitchell
Categories: News and Views
Democratic leaders introduce protection for labor unions

Democratic leaders introduce protection for labor unions

Surrounded by labor union organizers, in Allegheny County Courthouse, Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) with Senators Lindsey Williams (D-Allegheny) and Vincent Hughes (D-Philadelphia) announced legislation intended to help workers unionize with greater ease on Thursday.

According to the legislation’s sponsors what’s being called the Workplace Freedom Act protects Pennsylvania workers by strengthening bargaining. 
Friday, March 15, 2019/Author: Atiya Irvin-Mitchell
Categories: Pittsburgh
Allegheny County Health Department amends enforcement order for U.S. Steel

Allegheny County Health Department amends enforcement order for U.S. Steel

After a Christmas Eve fire at U.S. Steel’s Clairton Coke Works tainted the air in the historic Monongahela Valley, in late February the Allegheny County Health Department ordered U.S Steel to reduce its coke oven gas and daily SO2 emissions across all facilities until repairs were complete. Tuesday, the department announced it was moving up the deadline for completion in the form of an amended enforcement order. 

In the turmoil that followed the fire, U.S. Steel originally proposed a plan slating 70 percent of repairs to be completed in mid-May. Under the new order, Jim Kelly, the county’s deputy director of environmental health, said the company and county have agreed that in the interest of safety, repairs will be completed by April 15.  

Wednesday, March 13, 2019/Author: Atiya Irvin-Mitchell
Categories: News and Views
Allegheny County Council considers banning conversion therapy on minors

Allegheny County Council considers banning conversion therapy on minors

In fifteen states and the District of Columbia, conversion therapy, the practice of removing homosexuality on the belief that it’s a mental illness, is banned. If Allegheny County Council President John DeFazio (D-Shaler) and County Councilman Paul Klein (D-Point Breeze) have their way, the county will join their ranks in the way of an ordinance banning its use on minors.

At the Tuesday night meeting Klein told attendees that the ordinance was a necessary step to protect children from a practice that was harmful, ineffective and further marginalized the LGBTQ community.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019/Author: Atiya Irvin-Mitchell
Categories: Pittsburgh
Erika Strassburger introduces update to municipal Pittsburgh waste and recycling code

Erika Strassburger introduces update to municipal Pittsburgh waste and recycling code

If Councilwoman Erika Strassburger (D-District 8) has her way, Pittsburgh’s municipal waste and recycling code will see an update of the rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords alike within the city. 

Previously within city code there were standards for how residents should dispose of waste and recycling. The legislation Strassburger introduced Tuesday will clarify those standards and add practices to make Pittsburgh a cleaner city.
Tuesday, March 5, 2019/Author: Atiya Irvin-Mitchell
Categories: News and Views
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