Churches step in with alternative to high-interest, small-dollar lending industry

With all of the problems with predatory loans (and noticing new pawn shops and 5-Minute Loan stores opening up in my city) it’s good to see how churches could get more involved in helping communities with loans. See below:

Churches step in with alternative to high-interest, small-dollar lending industry – The Washington Post.

Our Top Philanthropy Obsessions in 2015 – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence

As the New Year gets underway, we could conjure up a list of “top trends” in philanthropy for 2015 or make a bunch of predictions that we would probably regret twelve months from now, along with all the junk we ate over the holidays.

But we’re going to skip such exercises and instead offer up a quick tour of the obsessions, favorite causes, and pet peeves that we’ll be indulging this year. If you’re still wondering what the agenda is at Inside Philanthropy, you’ve clicked on the right post.

via Our Top Philanthropy Obsessions in 2015 – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Whitehouse Calls for Tax Fairness and an End to Tax Haven Abuse by Corporations

From the Whitehouse Press Office:

Congressman Doggett, Senator Whitehouse Introduce Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act

Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Representative Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee, and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Senate Budget Committee, introduced the Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act. The bill closes a number of offshore tax loopholes, eliminates many tax incentives for U.S. companies to move jobs and operations offshore, and modifies rules on corporate inversions for businesses dodging U.S. taxes.

“While most Americans contribute their fair share to our national security and vital public services, some large corporations still are not,” said Doggett. “They revel in single digit effective tax rates, and in some years, many pay their lobbyists more than they pay in federal taxes. Corporations that renounce their citizenship not only invert their business operations but pervert our tax laws. This bill is a step toward righting some of these inequities and ensuring that taxpaying small businesses are provided a more level playing field.”

“Big corporations shouldn’t be allowed to play games with the tax code and benefit from shipping jobs overseas,” Whitehouse said. “This bill would force corporations that are dodging their responsibilities to pay their fair share of taxes, and create an even playing field for American companies that already play by the rules.”

The Joint Committee on Taxation has estimated that provisions similar to those in this bill would raise at least $278 billion in revenue over ten years. More than two dozen of the largest profitable corporations paid no federal taxes at all over a recent five-year period. Among the many provisions of this bill are some recommendations contained in President Obama’s previous Budget Proposals. Find a full summary of the Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act House version here.

The bill is one of three “tax fairness” measures introduced by Whitehouse today, which he hopes will help shape the upcoming debate on tax reform.

How is the Rhode Island Foundation Coalition-Building for Health Care Reform? – Health Policy | Grants | Inside Philanthropy

The first female Governor of Rhode Island, Gina Raimondo, is going to have her work cut out for her with requests for all sorts of things — funding for everything under the sun, reform ideas from every political perspective, and, oh yes, health care — that little elephant in the room, costing us all a fortune, wreaking havoc on middle class and poor families, and making us look bad internationally for having the most bloated, ineffective system in the world.

Enter Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and the Rhode Island Foundation, stage left. They bring with them many years of sustained investment in improving health care. Whitehouse founded the Rhode Island Quality Institute during his time as Attorney General and is a leading voice in Washington for health care delivery system reform. The Rhode Island Foundation has been funding health care initiatives since early in its history, and continues to look for and fund innovative ways to improve health care access and delivery.

via How is the Rhode Island Foundation Coalition-Building for Health Care Reform? – Health Policy | Grants | Fundraising – Inside Philanthropy.

What Has Michael J. Hanley Been Doing for Fair and Sustainable Housing? – Housing – Inside Philanthropy

When it comes to the big names in housing and particularly sustainable housing for the underserved community, one man stands out from the crowd fairly quickly. Michael J. Hanley, President of the Hanley Foundation, has been working for more sustainable housing, and housing for those in need, for over 15 years.

via What Has Michael J. Hanley Been Doing for Fair and Sustainable Housing? – Housing – Inside Philanthropy.

“Evidence-based” Philanthropy Gone Wrong: The Myth of How Small Schools Failed – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy

Philanthropists these days often talk about being “evidence-based” or “effective.” They view philanthropy of old as misguided, as too often based on the donor’s whims rather than on evidence as to what works. Just as success in business or finance depends on a relentless focus on results, philanthropy should bring that same evidence-based approach to solving social problems.

via “Evidence-based” Philanthropy Gone Wrong: The Myth of How Small Schools Failed – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Ancient Egyptian technology may be our first line of defense from hospital infections

No matter where in the world you find yourself, hospitals are filled with bacteria and viruses and potential infections for patients. Constanza Correa and her colleagues believe they have found a simple, and very old, fix that could greatly reduce inpatients’ chances of infection—replacing bedrails with copper.

Ancient Egyptian technology may be our first line of defense from hospital infections.