PetSmart Groomer Files Class-Action Lawsuit After Being Charged $5,000 for Training Program

BreAnn Scally quit her job at PetSmart in September of 2021. She had been bathing and grooming dogs at the retail chain’s Salinas, California, store for seven months, and she struggled to get by in such a pricey area on $15 per hour. She left in search of better pay and less stress.

But PetSmart wasn’t done with Scally. The following January, she was doing one of her regular credit checks through Experian when she saw her new debt: She owed $5,000 for the cost of her training through PetSmart’s “grooming academy,” as well as another $500 for the tools she’d received for the job. PetSmart was apparently seeking to collect because Scally had left less than a year into a 24-month minimum tenure listed in the contract she’d signed.

After years of working to clean up her credit, Scally says her score dropped from the high 600’s to the low 600’s, enough to complicate signing a new apartment lease. She didn’t know where she would find the money to pay the collection agency, IC System.

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Family with Transgender Child Sues Tennessee Department of Education Over ‘Discriminatory’ School Bathroom Policy

A transgender child and her parents sued the Tennessee Department of Education and the Williamson County Board of Education on Thursday over a law that prohibits transgender students and staff from using school bathrooms or locker rooms that match their gender identities.

The suit was filed in federal court in Nashville by a student identified only as D.H. The complaint states D.H. was assigned male at birth but identifies as female. D.H., who is now 8 years old, began living as a girl at the age of 6, according to the lawsuit.

The school initially agreed to support D.H.’s social transition but by January of this year, the “administration could not provide D.H. with the support she needed to complete her social transition,” according to the complaint. That’s because Tennessee law prevents her from using the girls bathroom at school.

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Beyonce Set to Change a Lyric From Her New Album After Discriminatory Accusations Against Disabled Individuals

Beyoncé will change a lyric in one of the songs on Renaissance in order to remove an offensive and ableist term. On the album’s 11th track, “Heated,” which features Beyoncé and Drake among its writers, is the word “spaz,” a term that disability activists have called an ableist slur.

Beyoncé’s publicist told NPR over email that the lyric will be changed. “The word, not used intentionally in a harmful way, will be replaced,” the publicist said.

This is not the first time an artist has been criticized for using the term.

In June, Lizzo changed a lyric in one of her songs after receiving the same criticism. She posted a statement on social media explaining her reasoning for changing the lyrics and apologized to the communities she offended.

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Cryptocurrency Company, Robinhood, Fined $30M for Consumer Protection Violations

Robinhood Crypto, the cryptocurrency trading unit of the popular investing app, was hit with a $30 million fine from the New York State Department of Financial Services for “significant” failures to comply with the state’s anti-money laundering, consumer protection and cybersecurity measures.

The department, which regulates financial services and products in the state, said in a press release Tuesday that Robinhood Crypto failed to adequately staff their bank secrecy act/anti-money laundering program, and that the program didn’t have enough resources to address the risks that consumers face using its services. The department also said the company’s cybersecurity program wasn’t in full compliance with state regulations.

On top of that, the Department of Financial Services said the company failed to offer “a distinct, dedicated phone number on its website” for receiving consumer complaints.

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Bakery Owner Accuses Local Village of Discrimination After Event Cancellation

The owner of a suburban bakery said village officials are discriminating against her business.

Saturday, Corinna Sac, owner of Uprising Bakery and Café in Lake in the Hills, posted a video on Facebook and said the business received a letter from the village and ordered it to stop hosting live events.

“I feel like this is discrimination and a conspiracy to interfere with my business,’ Sac said in the video.

The letter came days after the bakery was vandalized and forced to cancel what the bakery called a family-friendly drag show.

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UPS Drivers Demand Heat Safety While Enduring Record Temperatures

Matthew Moczygemba knew something was wrong when he lost his thirst. It was midafternoon on a 103-degree day in Fort Worth, Texas, and the UPS driver had been delivering packages for several hours. Soon he felt dizzy, then he pulled his truck over and vomited onto the curb.

“I stopped sweating and was starting to get cold,” said Moczygemba, 35, who has worked for UPS for five years. “It was a bad feeling.”

Moczygemba wound up at a hospital emergency room, where doctors diagnosed him with dehydration and heat exhaustion, and gave him several bags of IV fluid, according to medical records. 

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New Law in Massachusetts Targets Hairstyle Discrimination

As Gov. Charlie Baker signed a ban on school or athletic event discrimination based on hairstyles, Deanna Cook was taken back to the first time she got detention as a high school sophomore because her braids did not conform to her school’s policy.

“I was thinking about how hard this would be,” she said as her emotions got the better of her. “To be here today and to know that no one will go through that again, it means more than the world. It really does.”

Deanna and her sister Mya were standing behind Baker as he signed a new law (H 4554) that will prohibit schools and school athletic organizations from limiting student participation based on “a hairstyle that is historically associated with race,” and it would also define protective hairstyle to include braids, locks, twists, Bantu knots and hair coverings.

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Black Family in Philadelphia Sues Sesame Place Over Discrimination Allegations

A Baltimore family is suing a Sesame Street-themed amusement park for $25 million over claims of racial discrimination, alleging multiple costumed characters ignored a 5-year-old Black girl during a meet-and-greet event last month.

The lawsuit comes in the wake of a video, shared widely on social media, showing two other Black girls apparently being snubbed by a costumed employee during a parade at the park in Langhorne, outside Philadelphia. Sesame Place apologized in a statement and promised more training for its employees after the video went viral earlier this month.

The suit, which seeks class action status, was filed in a federal court in Philadelphia against SeaWorld Parks, the owner of the Sesame Place, for “pervasive and appalling race discrimination.”

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The State of New Hampshire Targets Pharmacy Chains in a New Opioid Lawsuit

The state of New Hampshire sued pharmacy chains Tuesday, becoming the latest government entity seeking to hold them accountable for fueling the nation’s deadly opioid epidemic.

The lawsuit filed by Attorney General John Formella calls CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens and their subsidiaries “the last link in the opioid supply chain and the critical gatekeeper between dangerous opioid narcotics in the public.” It accuses the companies of flouting their duty to protect public health and safety by failing to stop suspicious prescriptions and diverted drugs.

“As both drug distributors and the operators of chain pharmacy locations, these companies were in a unique position to more closely monitor the flow of these highly addictive drugs from their stores,” Formella said in a statement. “By bringing this lawsuit, we are attempting to hold them accountable for contributing to a crisis they helped create and that tragically led to the loss of life for thousands of people throughout New Hampshire.”

Read the source article at Associated Press News

HRA Pharma Seeks FDA Approval For an Over-the-Counter Birth Control

For the first time, a pharmaceutical company has asked for permission to sell a birth control pill over the counter in the U.S.

HRA Pharma’s application on Monday sets up a high-stakes decision for health regulators amid legal and political battles over women’s reproductive health. The company says the timing was unrelated to the Supreme Court’s recent decision overturning Roe v. Wade.

Hormone-based pills have long been the most common form of birth control in the U.S., used by millions of women since the 1960s. They have always required a prescription, generally so health professionals can screen for conditions that raise the risk of rare, but dangerous, blood clots.

Read the source article at Associated Press News