As TriMet’s budget crisis situation develops, the organization at the heart of Portland’s public transit system continues its public outreach efforts. Through various town hall meetings and open houses, TriMet offers to share information regarding current proposals being drafted for a new system-wide plan to be implemented in September.
In one of the most turbulent political turnarounds in recent news, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the most well-funded breast cancer foundation in the country, announced its decision to cut funding to Planned Parenthoodfor breast cancer screenings on Jan. 31. Komen quickly retracted the decision and issued a public apology on Feb. 3. The about-face in policy came after a storm of public and political protest in defense of Planned Parenthood.
Portland is one of the most pedestrian/bike and public transit friendly cities in the country, a fact supported over the last few years by the city consistently ranking high in various top-10 lists (such as Biking Magazine and reports from the Department of Transportation). This makes transportation one of the most important issues in the race to replace outgoing Mayor Sam Adams.
In the post-Christmas and New Year holiday drought, Valentine’s Day can feel like a welcome, albeit comparatively underwhelming, festivity. Often branded as commercialized and thought of as sentimental cheese, Valentine’s Day can be hard to love. But hey, like it or not, it’s an excuse to go out.
On Wednesday, Jan. 18, any student searching through Wikipedia for a homework reference would have instead found a blank black page and the words: “Imagine a world without free knowledge.”
Wikipedia, along with hundreds of other websites, shut down in protest against the U.S. Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protection of Intellectual Property Act. Other high-traffic sites that participated in the protest included Reddit and WordPress. Facebook and Twitter declined to participate, but Google blacked out its homepage logo, urging internet users to sign petitions in solidarity with the protests for the 24-hour window that is now being dubbed “Internet Blackout Day.”
On Thursday, Jan. 12, TriMet General Manager Neil McFarlane hosted TriMet’s first town hall meeting via Twitter. Overall it had a low turnout with only 33 participants of TriMet’s 7,426 Twitter followers. However, according to Mary Fetsch, TriMet’s chief media relations officer, the Twitter town hall was a new avenue for getting public feedback.
Next week, the Northwest Coalition Against Trafficking film festival will come to PSU for the first time. The festival will showcase two films—The Day My God Died on Tuesday, Jan. 10, and Wonderland on Thursday, Jan. 12—both of which present different aspects of underage sex trafficking as it occurs both internationally and domestically. The screenings will be held at the Smith Memorial Student Union from 6 to 8 p.m. They are free for PSU students and will be followed by question and answer sessions with survivors of human trafficking.