SPOKANE CHAPTER 32 NEWSLETTER
Published Monthly except July and August
20 - 04 Advocates for Current and Former Federal Employees April 2020
PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE Scott Robinson
By now, you all have tuned your eyes and ears to various news media regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19). Like most of you, my email inbox has become inundated with messages from AVISTA to vacation rentals about their responses to this contagious disease. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) released its own guidance documents and updates to keep Feds informed of policies and protocol. NARFE will share this information on its social media and platforms. However, its headquarters’ office is presently closed from March 17 to 31, which affects sharing of information and webinars. Because most of our membership is older than 60 years, COVID-19 is more likely to impact us. Because I do not wish for our membership to cross-pollinate the virus amongst ourselves, I decided to cancel our Board meeting on March 23 and our Membership meeting on April 13. Our meetings may remain cancelled until Darcey’s can once again serve in-house diners. I encouraged our executive board to expand their sharing of information with our Chapter 32 newsletter and webpage. For the immediate future, we will keep the membership informed through these two sources. Armed with knowledge and dedicated experience, I believe active and retired Feds will rise above any and all confusions. Anyone with questions regarding this matter can either call or email me, email@example.com.
PROGRAM Louise Soles
Who would have ever thought the world could get so upside down! Seems I have a tendency to want to be reclusive and it takes some effort talking myself into getting out and about and being social. Now I find myself lamenting the loneliness caused by "social distancing" and self-isolation. Sheesh. I do miss all my friends, but we all know that "This too shall pass". God willing, it be over soon.
Our March speaker was Reverend Ian Robertson. He is working hard to educate the public and elected officials on homelessness. He is trying to find funding through Public/Private Partnerships by: 1) funding homeownership; 2) Using excess land; and 3) Changing attitudes so that folks in need take responsibility to improve their lives. He is seeing progress in Ferry and Stevens counties, Walla Walla and Tri Cities. These community leaders are starting to change how they address affordable housing for the low-income and homeless populations. And he holds hope for Spokane. Rev. Ian stated that most of Spokane’s resources are focused on covering case management costs and he would like to see those resources used to provide affordable housing options instead. People Need an incentive to change and most government programs do not provide that incentive. He is also depending on the faith community to step up and help solve the problem of lack of affordable housing. (Thanks to Arlene Patton for taking notes for me. I was fortunate enough to be in Las Vegas for the WCC Basketball Tournament - and got to see Gonzaga win the conference!)
As you know, we will not hold a April meeting. I had to call Joe Guarisco, retired illustrator and publisher for the USDA Forest Service, to cancel his presentation. He was certainly understanding. I am holding out hope that we will be meeting in May and June. Praying for the health of our country and the world. Take care. And God bless those Federal Employees who continue to work at their jobs and serve our country.
DATES FOR YOUR CALENDAR
Due to the present health situation all Meetings are cancelled.
VICE PRESIDENT REPORT Arlene Patton
Washington State Federation (WSF) update: The Washington State Federation conference, planned for May 19-21, 2020 in Lynnwood, WA, has been cancelled. The hotel returned the deposit fee to WSF. Members who submitted their registration fee, that fee will be returned. If you made hotel reservations, please call and cancel those reservations.
The WSF April 9th board meeting will be conducted by “GoToMeeting”. We used the system for a special meeting on March 20th and it worked just fine. Maybe this will replace the need to travel to Seattle for quarterly meeting.
LEGISLATION Roger Bosky
DOING THEIR JOBS
When will Federal employees gain the respect from their leaders and the public that they so rightly have earned?
Solutions to the COVID-19 pandemic will be led by government laboratories and Federal scientists. Employees in Federal offices and airports like the Social Security Administration, The TSA, and first responders continue to work on the front lines ensuring that the publics concerns are addressed during this crisis. Federal employees worked through the government shutdown without pay and not knowing if they would get paid. Federal employees risked their safety and jobs to speak the truth under political pressure and do their jobs in keeping with their constitutional duties. And some were rewarded with losing their jobs. They are civil servants, not bureaucrats.
What faces the Federal community now is the President’s FY2021 Budget proposal which calls for substantial cuts to the earned benefits of Federal employees and retirees. We deserve better treatment.
NOTICE: Washington State Federation has a new website. The address is www.narfewa.org.
MEMBERSHIP Sandy Cook
Recruitment tips for all members.
NARFE is a great organization and adds value to all Federal Employees life whether they are retired or still working. They might not know about it, though and this is where you come in.
1. Keep a membership application handy. (in your car, purse, wallet or even your back packet.) If you need some, you can pull them from the NARFE website.
2. Stress NARFE's value. The cost of membership is $40 dollars, but what they could lose is worth far more that. For most current and retired Federal Employees , their retirement and health care benefits are among the most valuable assets they possess.
3. Tell them about NARFE's achievements. White House FY21 proposed budget calls for billions in cuts from Feds taking aim at the earned benefits of federal employees and retirees. NARFE works diligently to protect Federal employee interests
3. Give them a old NARFE magazine, and show the question and answer section. It is one of our best-selling points.
4. Share why you personally find value in belonging.
5. Finally, don't forget to ask them to join us!
Please be safe during these tiring times.
Have a great April!
NARFE is really more than just a great magazine. Let them know!
Promote NARFE anytime you can. The more members we have the more power to protect our benefits and retirement!
NARFE = YOUR BEST BET FOR THE FUTURE!
NARFE-PAC MaryAnn Bosky
You can contribute to NARFE-PAC at our monthly meetings at Darcy’s or by completing the NARFE-PAC contribution form in the NARFE magazine. I will have pins for a $25 contribution at our meeting.
The more members we have the more power to protect our benefits/retirement. We are speaking to all members not just those retired.
SEMINAR & OUTREACH Kathy Brooks
With everything going on in the world, we have made the decision to postpone the Pre-Retirement Seminar until this Fall. If you are aware of anyone interested in attending, please let me know.
Spokane Chapter 32’s new website has launched. You can view it at www.narfespokane.org. Please take a look and share your thoughts.
SUNSHINE Susan Harvey
I have few words for our new daily life. Stay home, stay safe, stay well!
When our Chapter lost Lester Ames, we were told a memorial service would be held. His family had it set for late March; it has now been postponed until a date in the future.
Margie and Mike Dennis recently lost his sister. She had been ill a major part of her life. Wanda Faulkner’s partner, Wilma, has been hospitalized and then in rehab.
Chapter 32 sends birthday and anniversary wishes to all who celebrated in March and upcoming April celebrations.
REMINDER, spouses can be members OR can take over the membership of a deceased member. If you are interested in continuing this very valuable membership, please contact membership chair, Sandy Cook at 509-294-3296 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you become aware of good news, illnesses, surgeries, or a death of a member or family member, please contact me.
ALZHEIMER’S Pat Hegerberg
Very old rhesus monkeys exhibit similar patterns of brain pathology as human Alzheimer’s patients, researchers report in the journal Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.
Researchers at Yale, collaborating with those at Boston University and the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, examined brain samples from tissue banks of monkeys that had reached extreme age, and observed neurofibrillary tangles forming in the same types of neurons as seen in humans.
Researchers have been hampered in studying this more common, late-onset form of Alzheimer’s, a condition impossible to model in mice.
“This new information may provide novel therapeutic strategies to protect against early stages of degeneration, and thus decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s disease,” added senior author, Amy Arnsten, professor of neuroscience.
Primary funding for the research comes from the National Institutes of Health. Bill Hathaway: email@example.com
Spokane Washington Chapter 32
PO Box 4592
Spokane, WA 99220
National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association 32