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Florida Alliance for Retired Americans Newsletter – 8/10/20

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Celebrate the 85th Birthday of Social Security with FLARA

Plan to join us at noon on Friday Aug. 14th, via Zoom, to celebrate the 85th Birthday of Social Security. We only get this opportunity once a year, so make sure you join us!!! We encourage everyone to BYOC (cake, cupcake, cookie or cocktail). We will be having brief remarks from ARA Leadership and various Elected Officials, in addition to our usual cake cutting ceremony. A complete agenda of speakers will be sent out in advance of the event.


Gov. DeSantis Names Task Force Focused On Easing Nursing Home Visit Restrictions

Gov. Ron DeSantis Friday announced the formation of a new task force focused on the safe and limited reopening of long-term care facilities in Florida.

He says the panel will develop guidelines on how to safely allow family members to visit their loved ones in Florida’s long-term care facilities ,where visitation has been prohibited since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read More

How This Conservative Florida County Became A Surprise 2020 Battleground

Before COVID-19 and before the death of George Floyd, Monique Sampson said she thought Joe Biden and President Trump were “different wings on the same bird.”

The 23-year-old American history teacher with dangling earrings that proclaim, “A woman’s place is in the struggle,” had been hoping for a Bernie Sanders presidency. She still doesn’t like plenty of Biden’s policies — and she’s not thrilled he’s the presumptive Democratic nominee. But a summer of chaos has made her reassess her own politics.

“For a very long time I wasn’t going to vote for [Biden],” Sampson said. “And then COVID happened. And I was like, ‘You know what, he sucks,’ for lack of a better term. But he’s not criminal. His actions aren’t criminal in the sense that he wouldn’t view 150,000 deaths as progress.”

Sampson’s story is part of a larger shift underway in Florida’s Duval County — one that mirrors many of the headwinds facing Trump in large swaths of the country. In a county that for more than four decades has been a reliable Republican vote, Democrats are sensing new optimism ahead of the November elections, thanks to intense anti-Trump energy among Black voters like Sampson, young voters and college-educated professionals in the suburbs. Read More

FLARA Donation Drive

FLARA needs your support! Your generosity is what allows FLARA to continue offering quality events and political engagement. This year’s drive ties into our September State Meeting. *All donations of $30 or more will receive a FLARA face mask!!!.

There will be multiple picture opportunities to be photographed wearing your mask with our various speakers. Join in the fun and make a donation today! *While supplies last


Salmonella Outbreak In Florida, 42 Other States Linked To Onions

A salmonella outbreak caused by onions is expanding and has infected 640 people from 43 states, including Florida.

At least 85 of them have been hospitalized, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

“If you don’t know where your onions are from, don’t eat, serve, or sell them or any food prepared with them,” the CDC said Friday.

The Food and Drug Administration has warned consumers not to eat onions from Thomson International Inc. The advice applies to red, white, yellow, and sweet onions.

Some of the onions were sold at stores including Walmart, Kroger, Fred Meyer, Publix, Giant Eagle, Food Lion, and H-E-B, under a variety of brand names, the CDC said. Read More

Florida Alliance for Retired Americans Annual State Meeting and Awards Ceremony

September 16th and 17th, 2020

Honoring the 2020 Recipients of the

Tony Fransetta Outstanding Senior Advocate Award Dave Jacobsen and Richard Polangin

Presidents Lifetime Achievement Award Tony Kiwak and Felicia Bruce

J.W. Strickland Award for Dedication to Others Beverly Curphey

Program Sponsorships:

  • Outside Back Cover: $2000 (7.5” x 10”) SOLD
  • Inside Back Cover: $1000 (7.5” x 10”) SOLD
  • Inside Front Cover: $1000 (7.5” x 10”)
  • Platinum Page Ad: $750 (7.5” x 10”)
  • Gold Page Ad: $500 (7.5” x 10”)
  • Silver Page Ad: $400 (7.5” x 10”)
  • Silver Half Page Ad: $300 (7.5” x 5”)


Online Payments can be made at fundraising/2020-annual-state- meeting-sponsorships?source= direct_link&

If paying by check, please make payable to Florida Alliance for Retired Americans and mail to 1975 Sansbury’s Way, Ste. 115, West Palm Beach, FL 33411

For Questions Contact; Jordan Kanter 561-792-8799 or

Barriers to Voting by Mail in Minnesota Removed Thanks to Minnesota Alliance Lawsuit

The Minnesota Alliance for Retired Americans and Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon reached a settlement that will protect the civil rights and health of hundreds of thousands of older Minnesota voters in the November 2020 election. Ramsey County District Judge Sara Grewing approved the agreement Monday that allows voters to submit their mail-in or absentee ballots without a witness signature. Election officials will also count ballots that arrive within seven days of the election, as long as they are postmarked by Election Day.

The Minnesota Alliance and three of its members, supported by the National Redistricting Foundation, filed a lawsuit in May to protect the rights of older voters in the state during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This development is especially critical

for seniors, who are the most at risk during the COVID-19 pandemic and need to be able to vote by mail to protect their health,” said Alliance Executive Director Richard Fiesta.

“I am relieved and elated that the Secretary of State and the court have affirmed my constitutional right to vote without putting my health at risk,” added Teresa Maples of Red Wing, Minnesota, a plaintiff and member of the Minnesota Alliance.

In addition to Ms. Maples, the plaintiffs include Minnesota Alliance members Gary Severson of Chaska and Mary Samson of Newport.


Trump Betrays Seniors by Directing Social Security Cuts

President Trump tweeted on Thursday that he plans to sign an executive order to cut the payroll tax that funds Social Security and Executive Director Fiesta immediately issued a statement in response.

“After learning that Democratic and Republican Congressional Leaders would not go along with his harebrained scheme to cut Social Security’s dedicated funding source, President Trump lashed out and announced he would begin dismantling the system single-handedly,” said Fiesta.

He added that seniors pay for their housing, food and medicine with their Social Security, putting $1 trillion into our economy every year. Since older Americans have earned their benefits through a lifetime of work, their retirement security should not be put at risk “because President Trump is mad at Congress for not bending to his will.”

“Alliance members will fight this attempt to gut Social Security, and when voting starts in September we will remember who was willing to defend and protect our earned benefits,” he concluded.

Alliance Members Host More Medicare and Social Anniversary Events

Alliance members across the country continued to celebrate Medicare’s 55th and Social Security’s 85th anniversaries this week.

Over 200 seniors and activists participated in the California Alliance’s Celebration and Call to Action last Friday and other members have held banners at key intersections and organized “CARAvan parades.”

On Wednesday, Rep. Cynthia Axne joined the Iowa Alliance’s anniversary virtual event while Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson joined a Texas Alliance online celebration. Rep. Colin Allred sent a message for the Texas Alliance event by video, and Rep. Marc Veasey called in by phone.

The celebrations continued on Thursday. Sen. Chris Van Hollen (MD) joined the Maryland/DC Alliance online and Executive Director Fiesta spoke at the Washington State Alliance Virtual Convention and Anniversary Celebration.

“Alliance retirees aren’t letting a pandemic stop them from drawing attention to these critical earned benefit programs,” said Joseph Peters, Jr., Secretary-Treasurer of the Alliance.


Take Action: Postal Service Backlog Affecting Delivery of Critical Mail

So-called “cost-cutting measures” directed by President Trump’s new postmaster general are causing days-long backlogs of mail, putting the health of millions of Americans at risk.

Alliance members have reported delays in receiving their prescription drugs, something that did not happen before Postmaster General Louis DeJoy took office in June. The media has also interviewed veterans who are having the same problems.

Postal workers are alarmed by the changes to Post Office operations, which include shutting down sorting machines early and requiring letter carriers to leave mail behind to avoid extra trips — even for Priority or Overnight Mail.

“Directing hard-working postal employees that they cannot deliver the mail on time is outrageous and puts millions of Americans’ lives at risk,” said Robert Roach, Jr., President of the Alliance. “Congress needs to hold the Administration accountable and let postal workers do their jobs.”

Raise Your Voice: Sign Our Urgent Petition to Congress.