October 27, 2004 |
Ken Smukler vividly remembers watching the 2000 presidential election play out. Hanging chads, voter intentions, challenges and lawsuits dominated the weeks after the voting, and Smukler decided then and there to search for a better way. The result - a nationwide voter hotline that can direct voters to polling locations and plug callers with problems directly to local election officials - already is up and running. The toll-free Voter Alert Line - 1-866-MYVOTE1 (1-866-698-6831)
October 15, 2004 |
They are wanted in Philadelphia in connection with crimes such as murder, rape, armed robbery, aggravated assault and burglary - and city police want them behind bars. To that end, detectives yesterday took their search for the 10 men public, releasing a most-wanted poster of those they have labeled the city's baddest criminals. The poster shows color photographs of the alleged perpetrators and lists the crimes they are supposed to have committed. The poster also gives the phone number for a tip line.
September 24, 2004 |
Progress is being made, albeit slowly, in the court-enforced plan to overhaul New Jersey's child-welfare system, Human Services Commissioner James Davy told legislators yesterday. "We're doing a little better," he said. "We have a long ways to go. " A key barometer - the number of children under the watch of the Division of Youth and Family Services - dropped in July and August, the first dip in two consecutive months in a year and half. But with 67,558 children, the load remains near the historic high of 68,613 in June.
August 8, 2004 |
Philadelphia's neighborhoods saw the unrelated deaths Monday of 3-year-old Niya Burrell and 7-year-old Ameria Walter. No vicious stranger pulled the trigger. Police say Niya's attacker was Brian Burrell, her vicious father who was charged in her death in West Philadelphia after admitting to beating his daughter. In Ameria's case, police say it was her mother, Andrie Nicks, and mom's vicious boyfriend, Randolph Iseley. Police say he punched the 7-year-old Kensington girl, as he often did, for not standing with her hands over her head, as he often ordered.
June 22, 2004
Time for another installment of Props and Chops, a periodic roundup of the good and the bad in recent news events. Props signify something worth applauding; chops equal boos. Props to heat-wary Philadelphia, which ranks among cities doing the most to prevent heat-related deaths, according to a new national study. City health department officials are teaming with the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging to staff a heat-wave hotline and send out everyone from nurses to neighbors to check on vulnerable residents, most often live-alone elderly without air conditioners or fans.
June 20, 2004 |
For three lethal weeks last summer, Europe roasted in a historic heat wave that took as many as 30,000 lives, half of them in France. Although the United States has never suffered a heat-related calamity of that magnitude, far more Americans succumb to the summer swelter than to any other weather mayhem. Since 1995, by the federal government's conservative estimate, heat has killed about 2,300 people - three times the tolls of either floods or blizzards, 13 times those of hurricanes, 11 times the deaths from extreme cold.
April 9, 2004 |
The Pennsylvania State Police have accepted one more recommendation from last year's scathing report on their handling of sexual misconduct, launching a 24-hour hotline for complaints against troopers. Callers making the toll-free call to 866-426-9164 will reach the police Internal Affairs Division. Anyone calling before or after its regular work hours - 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays - can leave a recorded message and will be contacted on the next working day. A report from State Inspector General Donald L. Patterson released in September criticized the state police for not treating complaints of sexual or other misconduct seriously.
March 21, 2004 |
Residents in the tri-county area now have access to a variety of social-service agencies by simply dialing 2-1-1. And agencies in Burlington, Camden and Gloucester Counties that already provided information and referral services have included the new system. Theresa Tobey, executive director for CONTACT of Burlington County, said it was only natural that the agency assume the responsibility of operating the new 211 service when it was implemented Feb. 11. Tobey said CONTACT has been an established information and referral service in the county for more than 20 years, handling a crisis-intervention hotline on a 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week basis.
January 11, 2004 |
Bone-chilling cold that brought the thermometer to near zero yesterday apparently killed a man found in a West Philadelphia house without heat. It also prompted the city and utilities to reach out to residents without heat through a crisis hotline. "This is a life-or-death situation," said Andrea Swan, spokeswoman for the Department of Licenses and Inspections. The city Health Department did not have the name or age of the man, who was pronounced dead at Mercy Hospital of Philadelphia about 4:45 a.m. The man, who suffered from chronic pulmonary disease, died of hypothermia, said Jeff Moran, a Health Department spokesman.
November 20, 2003 |
The big T-Day dinner is coming down to the wire when disaster strikes. Whom do you call? Here are numbers to clip. Some are accessible 24/7 to help with holiday meal planning, recipes, cooking problems, and food-safety questions. Butterball Turkey Talk-Line, 1-800-288-8372. Home economists will answer questions from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays through Nov. 26; 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. this Saturday and Sunday and Nov. 28; and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thanksgiving Day. Next month, the service operates from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays through Dec. 26 and on Dec. 20 and 21; and 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Christmas Eve and Christmas.