02-20-2020  12:41 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
The Skanner Black History Month
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Rep. Blumenauer Joined by Sens. Markey, Sanders, and Warren to Introduce Bill to Hold Big Oil Companies Accountable

"Amidst the growing climate emergency, closing this loophole is a small step we must take to hold Big Oil accountable and to protect our communities," said Blumenauer. 

Trump Appointees Weigh Plan to Build Pipeline in Oregon

If the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves the project, which lacks state permits, it would likely set up a court battle over state's rights

Oregon Lawmakers Ask U.S. Attorney to Investigate Whether Local Police Violated Black Man’s Civil Rights

U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer said this racial targeting of Michael Fesser "reflects the worst abuses of African-Americans in our nation’s modern history"

DA to Investigate West Linn Cops Handling of Wrongful Arrest

Former West Linn Police Chief Terry Timeus had his officers initiate an unwarranted, racially motivated surveillance and arrest of a Black Portland man as a favor to the chief’s fishing buddy

NEWS BRIEFS

DOJ to Investigate Wrongful Arrest of Black Man in Oregon

The decision comes a week after U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer urged a federal probe into...

Wednesday, February 19 Will Be Declared 'Rip City Day'

Ceremony at City Hall will honor the rich history of the organization ...

Seattle Pacific University Hosts Music Events

Seattle Pacific University invites the public to a series of free music events during the months of February and March ...

A Celebration of Portland’s Role in the Negro Leagues to be Held Thursday, Feb. 20

The community is invited for a celebration of Black History Month and the 100th anniversary of Negro League Baseball in America ...

Kresge Foundation Selects PCC To Participate in Its National Boost Initiative

The $495,000 grant awarded to PCC and Albina Head Start will help connect low-income residents and students to services and...

Fatal Portland light-rail stabbings case goes to jury

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The case of a man charged in the fatal stabbing of two men who authorities say confronted him during a racist rant on a Portland, Oregon, light-rail train went to the jury for deliberation Wednesday.Prosecutors said in closing arguments that Jeremy Christian is an...

Concordia University in Missouri to own Boise law school

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Concordia University in St. Paul, Minnesota has agreed to become the new “parent institution” for Concordia Law in Boise, law school officials announced Thursday. The law school has been looking for a new owner since its current parent parent institution,...

OPINION

Black America is Facing a Housing Crisis

As the cost of housing soars the homeless population jumps 12 percent, the number of people renting grows and homeownership falls ...

Trump Expands Muslim Ban to Target Africans

Under the new ban on countries, four out of five people who will be excluded are Africans ...

Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

German gunman calling for genocide kills 9 people

HANAU, Germany (AP) — A German who shot and killed nine people of foreign background in a rampage that began at a hookah bar frequented by immigrants had posted an online rant calling for the “complete extermination” of many “races or cultures in our midst,”...

Israel calls on Belgium to scrap parade over anti-Semitism

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel on Thursday called on Belgium to scrap this weekend's annual Carnival parade after last year's featured a float with anti-Semitic caricatures.The carnival in the industrial city of Aalst has its roots in the Middle Ages and often features satirical floats that take...

Syracuse University lifts suspensions of racism protesters

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — Syracuse University Chancellor Kent Syverud has lifted the suspensions of 30 student protesters to allow the university to "step back from the edge” and address reports of racist graffiti and other bias-related incidents on campus, he told the university's...

ENTERTAINMENT

Success of 'To All the Boys' puts stars on Hollywood's radar

NEW YORK (AP) — The 2018 release of the Netflix teen rom-com "To All the Boys I've Loved Before," changed the lives of its stars, Lana Condor and Noah Centineo, by putting them on Hollywood’s radar."People are taking me more seriously," said Condor, a 22-year-old Vietnamese American....

No conspiracy this time: Dan Brown writing children's book

NEW YORK (AP) — Dan Brown's next book will have a lighter, more musical touch. The “Da Vinci Code” author is working on a picture story, “Wild Symphony," scheduled to be published Sept. 1. Rodale Kids, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, announced the...

Review: A CGI canine yearns to be free in 'Call of the Wild'

Does the dog movie have any new tricks? Do we want it to?For the most part, we want our dog movies like our pooches: comforting, obedient and slightly slobbery. “The Call of the Wild,” the latest adaptation of Jack London’s 1903 novel, is all those things but adds a new twist....

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Turkish soldiers killed in Syria amid threats of escalation

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Two Turkish soldiers were killed Thursday in an airstrike in northwestern Syria,...

New Mexico sues Google over collection of children's data

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's attorney general sued Google Thursday over allegations the tech...

NFL Saints backed by church in effort to keep emails secret

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — An attorney for New Orleans' Roman Catholic archdiocese Thursday strongly defended the...

Amid protests, Portugal lawmakers vote to allow euthanasia

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — Portugal’s parliament voted Thursday in favor of allowing euthanasia and...

Defense lawyers say they will seek French asylum for Assange

PARIS (AP) — Julian Assange's European defense team said Thursday it will try to seek asylum in France for...

Germany's immigrant community in Hanau reeling after attack

HANAU, Germany (AP) — In the German town of Hanau, a longtime immigrant destination with decades of...

McMenamins
By Brian Walker and Samira Said CNN

Russia's upper house of parliament has approved a controversial measure banning adoption of Russian children by U.S. families, Russian media reported Wednesday.

The legislation now goes to President Vladimir Putin to be signed into law, the semiofficial RIA-Novosti news agency said.

Russia is one of the top countries of origin for international adoptions in the United States. The legislation could affect hundreds of American families seeking to adopt Russian children.

The bill also bars any political activities by nongovernmental organizations receiving funding from the United States, if such activities could affect Russian interests, the news agency said.

The legislation also imposes sanctions against U.S. officials thought to have violated human rights.

The vote in the Federation Council, Russia's upper house, was unanimous, but the Foreign Ministry said it may seek to challenge the bill if it is signed by Putin as expected in coming days.

Lawmakers in the State Duma, Russia's lower house of parliament, adopted the bill last week.

The move by Russian politicians is widely seen as retaliation for a law that U.S. President Barack Obama signed on December 14. That bill, called the Magnitsky Act, imposes U.S. travel and financial restrictions on human rights abusers in Russia.

"The United States is concerned by measures in the bill passed in the Russian Duma today that, if it becomes law, would halt inter-country adoptions between the United States and Russia and would restrict the ability of Russian civil society organizations to work with American partners," U.S. State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell said last week.

The Magnitsky Act is named in honor of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who uncovered the largest tax fraud in the country's history in the form of rebates claimed by government officials who stole money from the state. Magnitsky died in 2009 after a year in a Moscow detention center, apparently beaten to death.

The Russian bill's implementation would nullify a recent agreement between the United States and Russia in which the countries agreed to additional safeguards to protect children and parties involved in inter-country adoptions.

"American families have welcomed more than 60,000 Russian children into American homes over the past 20 years," Ventrell said last week. "Just last month we implemented a bilateral adoptions agreement with Russia to improve safeguards for adopted children and their families. If Russian officials have concerns about the implementation of this agreement, we stand ready to work with them to improve it and remain committed to supporting inter-country adoptions between our two countries."

Only China has more adoptions to the United States than Russia.

Backers of the Russian bill said American adoptive parents have been abusive, citing 19 deaths of Russian children by their foster parents since the 1990s, according to local media.

In 2010, an American woman caused outrage after she sent her adopted son back to Russia alone on a one-way flight, saying the boy, then 7, had violent episodes that made her family fear for its safety.

Konstantin Dolgov, Russian Foreign Ministry's Special Representative for Human Rights, said on Twitter that Russia is "well aware of, and have pointed out more than once, the inadequate protection of adopted Russian children in the US." He also noted that the United States is one of three nations that has not signed the 1989 U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Anthony Lake, U.N. Children's Fund executive director, touted the importance of "inter-country adoption."

"While welcoming Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev's call for the improvement of the child welfare system, UNICEF urges that the current plight of the many Russian children in institutions receives priority attention," Lake said.

UNICEF asked that Russia let children's "best interests" guide the "design and development of all efforts to protect children."

"We encourage the government to establish a robust national social protection plan to help strengthen Russian families. Alternatives to the institutionalization of children are essential, including permanent foster care, domestic adoption and inter-country adoption," he said.

The United States has signed but not ratified the convention, which has sparked concerns from conservatives over its impact on U.S. sovereignty and parental rights.

Groups such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch had urged lawmakers to reject the bill.

"This bill hits back at Russia's most vulnerable children and could deprive them of the loving families they desperately need," Hugh Williamson, Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch, said last week.

John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International's Europe and Central Asia program director, has said, "this bill is frankly a childish response to the Magnitsky Act."

 

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