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Dear Neighbor, 

As always, thank you for taking the time to read this month's newsletter. As we continue the 2019-20 Legislative Session, I would like to hear what your legislative priorities are. Please reach out to me anytime with your ideas by calling (608) 266-0650 or emailing me at Rep.Brostoff@legis.wi.gov.

If you have a suggestion for next month's event calendar, featured neighbor, nonprofit, or business, please visit my submission page here.

Keep up-to-date with ongoing information and developments by following me on Twitter and Facebook and by visiting my website.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve.

In service,
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Jonathan Brostoff
State 
Representative
19th Assembly District

 

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Alzheimer's Awareness Month

November is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month! Since 1983, the month of November has been dedicated to teaching the country about what Alzheimer’s and how many people it affects, in addition to raising funds to help with the many struggles that those with affected by Alzheimer's contend. 

Alzheimer’s is a type of dementia that hinders multiple important aspects of everyday brain function, including memory and cognitive abilities. The condition of a person with Alzheimer’s also worsens over time, so in its early stages the disease might cause only mild memory loss, but later stages can progress into losing the ability to talk and one losing almost their entire memory. As such, Alzheimer’s also comes with a very emotional component for families, who must face the fact that their loved one may forget who they are, and all the memories they shared together. It is also wide-reaching: 5.8 million Americans have Alzheimer’s (which translates to 1 in 10 people over the age of 65) and it is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States.

Though there is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s, raising awareness and funds to fight it are very important and can still help those facing the disease in many ways. First and foremost, fundraising can help in the large-scale research effort to find a cure, and hopefully ultimately helping the millions of people facing Alzheimer’s and their families both now and in the future. Fundraising can also help improve current treatment options that can stave off the effects of the disease for an extended period of time. Additionally, raising awareness about Alzheimer’s increases the number of people who understand what having it really means, which in turn will raise the amount of funds for treatment and cure research.

In tandem with raising awareness and fundraising to ultimately find a cure, Alzheimer’s Awareness Month also is about celebrating the millions of caregivers who help those with the disease extensively every single day. These caregivers tend to people with Alzheimer’s in many very important ways, providing support and companionship, and helping with daily routines communication. Many times, a caregiver is someone very close to the person with Alzheimer’s, like a spouse, sibling, child, or other loved ones, which means caregivers are very frequently not just physically fatigued, but also emotionally fatigued. Thus November is also about celebrating caregivers’ incredible dedication to assisting their loved one with Alzheimer’s, as well as promoting emotional support to caregivers and effective caregiving techniques. If you or someone you know is about to become an Alzheimer’s caregiver, the Alzheimer's Association's official website, provides extensive resources on the role caregivers play at each stage of Alzheimer's, offers free online caregiving classes, and provides access to many online and in-person emotional support groups just for caregivers.

All of this information demonstrates exactly why the fight against Alzheimer’s is such an important fight, and there are a number of ways to get involved throughout the month of November. No level of involvement can be too big or too small: it could be simply donating to Alzheimer’s research during your purchase at a CVS store any time throughout the entire month, or it could mean becoming a volunteer advocate for expanding federal funds for Alzheimer’s cure research. Though many of the Alzheimer’s 5K runs and walks take place in late September and early October, you can already volunteer to become an organizer or sign up to be a participant for next year! This information, along with information covering every aspect of Alzheimer’s, can be found at the official website of the Alzheimer’s Association, linked here.

2020 Census

2020 is right around the corner, and with it, the 2020 Census will soon be upon us. The Census is vitally important to our state and our democracy - our decennial census is crucial in ensuring that all of our citizens, across the state, are accounted for and can have a voice in our political process. Furthermore, a full count during the Census is critically important to ensure that Milwaukee and Wisconsin receive their fair share of federal funding. Federal funds are distributed to local communities based on population size, and that data is taken directly from the Census Bureau. These federal dollars are key to ensuring that our communities have properly-funded infrastructure and critical public services including health care clinics, schools, roads, and emergency services. It is important that every voice is heard and every person is counted in our state, and especially here in Milwaukee. 

To prepare for the Census, Mayor Tom Barrett has launched the Greater Milwaukee Complete Count Committee, or CCC for short. The CCC is a coalition of local, state, and federal government leaders along with Milwaukee community leaders who are working to raise awareness about the importance of the 2020 census and are reaching out to often-undercounted populations such as: members of the LGBTQ+ community, people of color, undocumented immigrants, people without internet access, the homeless, and people with disabilities in order to ensure that these key, diverse, and underrepresented community members are properly included in the 2020 Census. More information about the CCC, including sign-up information, can be found on their website, here. Additionally, the city has launched a website called ‘Together We Count,’ which provides information regarding the Census, Milwaukee-area efforts related to the Census, and how to get involved or help. For more information, please visit their website, located here

In 2010, Wisconsin ranked #1 in mail-in response rate for the Census, and efforts like the CCC and Together We Count, along with our active participation, can make this happen again! Together, we can help ensure the health, safety, and happiness of all Milwaukeeans by striving together to make sure that every one of our citizens are properly counted. 

One of the most active ways by which you can aid in the effort towards a complete count is to get involved as a Census taker! The US Census Bureau has released some key information on how to apply to be a 2020 Census taker, found below. 

Be a Census Taker – Earn Extra Income, Help Our Community, Be a Part of History

What can you do to make a difference in our community? This year, the answer is easy. You can make a difference by participating in the 2020 Census. Apply now to be considered for part-time census taker positions in Spring 2020. The Census Bureau is recruiting to hire about 500,000 temporary workers to help conduct the 2020 Census.

It’s important for the Census to hire people in every community in order to have a complete and accurate census.

More job info and online job application:  2020Census.gov/jobs

For the Spanish version of job info and online application:  2020Census.gov/es/jobs

Timeline for Census Taker Jobs:

  • Apply NOW – Peak recruitment is now through early 2020
  • January 2020 – Selection process and background checks begin
  • March and April 2020 – Job training begins
  • May to July 2020 – Work in the field 

Who is eligible to work as a census taker?

The Census Bureau encourages everyone to apply:  2020Census.gov/ jobs. You must be age 18 by the time you start work in Spring 2020. Other job requirements are online.

Why work for the 2020 Census?  Top 5 Reasons:

  1. Benefit your community by helping ensure everyone is counted. 
  2. Earn extra income.  
  3. Receive paid training.  
  4. Work flexible hours (evenings, weekends).  
  5. Be a part of history. The United States has held a census of the population every 10 years since 1790, as mandated by the U.S. Constitution.

What do census takers do?  

Census takers count people in households that do not self-respond to the 2020 Census online, by phone or by mail.  In mid-March 2020, the first letter from the Census Bureau inviting people to respond to the 2020 Census will be mailed. Households will get additional mailings if they do not respond. By May 2020, households that do not respond online, by phone or by mail will be visited by a census taker.

Why is the 2020 Census important?  

Census data is used to determine congressional representation in the states and how billions of dollars in federal funds are distributed to states and local communities every year for critical public services and infrastructure, including health clinics, schools, roads and emergency services.

More info: 2020Census.gov

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National Native American Heritage Month

November is National Native American Heritage Month! Since its declaration back in 1990, November has been a month in which our country honors the history and culture of the Native American people. However the aim of the month is not just ceremonial recognition - it is about providing an important platform for Indigenous peoples to share their history and culture.

This month-long event was once just a hope for many Native Americans, such as Arthur C. Parker, who back in the 1910’s fought hard just to have a single day in which Native Americans could be nationally honored and recognized. Parker, known as Big Snowsnake in his Seneca Tribe, first persuaded the Congress of the American Indian Association in 1915 to adopt a day in which Indigenous People could be nationally recognized. Rev. Sherman Coolidge, a member of the Arapaho tribe and President of the Association, called upon the entire country to observe this day through a formal proclamation, which additionally included the first formal appeal in US history to recognize Native Americans as full citizens. This effort took place alongside that of Red Fox James, a member of the Blackfoot Tribe, who rode on horseback from state to state to garner support for a nationally-recognized day, receiving support from 24 state governments. Now, a century later, the efforts of these men along with many other Indigenous Americans, have helped shape the Native American Heritage Month we celebrate today.

Though Native American Heritage Month has been proudly recognized by the federal government every November for nearly the last 30 years, the Trump Administration has taken steps that have downplayed the importance of the month, and therefore the importance of Indigenous peoples to the United States. Before the Administration proclaimed this November as Native American Heritage Month, President Trump decided to first proclaim a new national month for November called “National American History and Founders Month,” honoring the founders of the United States and showing a “dedication to promoting liberty and justice.” For  many Indigenous groups, proclaiming this in the same month as Native American Heritage Month feels like an effort to undermine it, as the Founders did not consider Native Americans as citizens and both accepted and aided the ongoing genocide of Indigenous peoples in the United States. Unsurprisingly, this attempt to undermine Indigenous People seems to fall right in line with President Trump’s past conduct on the subject; after all, this is a President who has made jokes about past massacres of Native Americans and continually refers to Senator Elizabeth Warren as “Pocahontas”. As your Representative, I reject these actions of the President in their entirety, and I will continue to honor, respect, and promote the rich history and culture of our Indigenous brothers and sisters on your behalf in the State Legislature. 

For more information, please be sure to check out the official website of Native American Heritage Month, linked here!


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National Home Care and Hospice Month

November is National Home Care and Hospice Month! This month-long celebration honors and gives thanks to the millions of selfless nurses, therapists, social workers, and home care aides who devote their careers and lives to ensuring that patients and families are supported in times of need while also highlighting their importance to our state and country. These dedicated workers provide remarkable care to patients and families across Wisconsin and the country at large. As of 2010, 12 million individuals receive care from 33,000 healthcare providers, including nurses, social workers, therapists, and home care aides in the US. Odds are, you may know someone in your life who has been, is currently, or will be cared for by these invaluable members of the healthcare system. 

Home care has become a growing alternative to institutional and hospital care in Wisconsin and across the country - as more Wisconsinites opt to receive care in the comfort of their own home, home care and hospice care providers have become even more important to our healthcare system. Additionally, in times of community and personal health care crisis, home care and hospice care workers repeatedly answer the call to serve and take care of our citizens. These professionals and volunteers provide and support the healthcare goals and health of our population.

Wherever you are this month, take a moment to recognize and show thanks for the sacrifices and effort that nurses, therapists, social workers, home care aides, and other home care and hospice care workers provide!

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Neighbor of the Month - Ken Leinbach

November’s neighbor of the month is Ken Leinbach! Ken is the founder and executive director of the Urban Ecology Center, an innovative environmental nonprofit organization that seeks to “connect people in cities to nature and each other.” Since 1991, when the Urban Ecology Center was founded by a group of neighbors working to clean up their park and educate local youth about nature and science, Ken has grown the Center from a single double-wide trailer into three incredible facilities that serve over 77,000 people each year! Outside of his work at the Urban Ecology Center, Ken is also an author and travels the country as a speaker and story-teller. Additionally, Ken makes sure to practice what he preaches - he strives to live an environmentally low-impact life, living in the community, not owning a car, and commuting by bike, unicycle, roller blades, and even sometimes by kayak along the Milwaukee River. Thank you Ken, for all that you have done and continue to do!

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Nonprofit of the Month - Alzheimer's Association WI Chapter

November’s non-profit of the month is the  Wisconsin Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association! The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading volunteer organization dedicated to Alzheimer’s care, support, and research, with a mission to eliminate Alzheimer’s through advancing research, provide support to Alzheimer’s and dementia patients and their caregivers, and reduce the overall risk of dementia by educating on the topic of brain health. The Alzheimer’s Association’s Wisconsin Chapter serves over 110,000 individuals living with Alzheimer’s or dementia and 194,000 caregivers across all 72 of Wisconsin’s counties, with offices in Chippewa Valley, Green Bay, Madison, Milwaukee, Rhinelander, and Wausau. To learn more about the Wisconsin Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, visit their website here!

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Business of the Month - RSVR

This month’s business of the month is RSVR in Bay View! RSVR is a new virtual reality venue, featuring state-of-of-the-art computers, ultra high-definition VR headsets, and a sleek and futuristic atmosphere. The space features three separate virtual reality stations, and can be rented out by multiple groups for either work or play - the innovative reconfigurable space can be set up to accommodate individual groups at each station, like an arcade, or can be made into an open-concept room to host business meetings or presentations. RSVR is now taking reservations on their website, and starting January 2 will host groups Thursday through Sunday - weekend rates are $60 per hour for groups of up to four, and weekday rates vary based on the size of the group and length of the reservation. To learn more or to book a reservation, check out RSVR’s website here!

Working for You

November has been a busy month getting out and about in the district and around Milwaukee! Here are photos from just a few of the many things I've been up to the past month!

From top to bottom: Attending the Department of Children and Families' Milwaukee Contract Listening Session, speaking at the Milwaukee School of Languages, visiting the wonderful activists at Black Leaders Organizing for Communities (BLOC), speaking to the National Association of Social Workers Wisconsin Chapter Student Ambassadors, visiting Beyond Vision with other members of the Legislative Milwaukee Delegation, and meeting with Mike Harder, MSW student and intern with Disability Rights Wisconsin!

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MADACC

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Meet Bash! Bash is a 5-month-old black and white male pittie mix looking for his forever home. His adoption fee is $250, and you can meet him today!

Humane Society

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Meet Izzy! Izzy is a 6 year, 1 month-old female Siamese mix. Izzy has a playful personality, and you can name your own adoption fee! 

 

 Community Events

Small Business Saturday in the Third Ward

Date: 11/30

Description: Shop local for the upcoming holidays! On Small Business Saturday (11/30), locally-owned small businesses in the Third Ward will be offering special deals and incentives to encourage shoppers to buy locally this year!

Costs: Free  

Location: Various stores throughout the Third Ward

 

Playgroup with Stories at East

Dates: 12/5, 10:00AM-11:30AM

Description: “A 20-minute story time for children and their parents or guardian is followed by open play time with a variety of age-appropriate, educational toys.  Story time includes plenty of fingerplays, songs or other participatory activities that help children learn important literacy skills. Every Thursday for children ages 2 and under with a parent or guardian.

Costs: Free 

Location: Milwaukee Public Library, East Branch 

              2320 N Cramer St 

              Milwaukee, WI 53211

 

The Milwaukee Hmong New Year

Date: 12/7-12/8, 11AM

Descriptions: Head down to the Wisconsin State Fair Park to celebrate the Hmong New Year! This premier ethnic festival will feature colorful costumes, traditional music, delicious food, and a Hmong marketplace!

Costs: Free Admission

Location: Wisconsin Expo Center

              8200 W. Greenfield Ave.

              West Allis, WI 53214

 

Breakfast & Lunch with Santa

Date: 12/7, 12/8, 12/14, 12/15, 12/21, 12/22, 9AM and 12PM

Description: Come to the Milwaukee County Zoo to enjoy a special breakfast or lunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus, featuring Racine Danish Kringle!

Costs: $22.95 for adults;  $17.95 for children ages 3 to 12;  and $5.95 for children ages 2 and under. Price includes Zoo admission and breakfast or lunch. Zoological Society membership is not valid. Parking is $12.

Location: Milwaukee County Zoo

              10001 W Bluemound Rd.

              Milwaukee, WI 53226

 

Slice of Ice at Red Arrow Park New Year’s Celebration

Date: 12/31-1/1, 11am-1am

Description: Celebrate the New Year on skates at Red Arrow Park! The rink will be open to skaters until 1am. 

Costs: $9 for adults, $7 for children 17 and under

Location: Red Arrow Park

              920 N. Water St.

             Milwaukee, WI 53202

 

New Year’s Eve Celebration at the Mitchell Park Domes 

Date: 12/31, 6PM

Description: Ring in the New Year at the Mitchell Park Domes’ annual family celebration! Enjoy music from the Garlic Mustard Pickers, magic from Rick Allen, fire dancing from Prismatic Flame, a light show, face painting and music from DJ Mike Sherwood ahead of a 9 p.m. balloon drop.

Costs: $10, Children 2 and under free

Location: Mitchell Park Domes

              524 S. Layton Blvd.

              Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53215

 

Free Admission Days

Milwaukee Art Museum

1st Thursday of each month

700 N. Art Museum Drive

Milwaukee Public Museum

1st Thursday of each month

800 W. Wells St.

Betty Brinn Children's Museum

3rd Thursday of each month 5:00 - 8:00 p.m.

929 E. Wisconsin St.

Milwaukee County Zoo

January 5, February 2, March 2, October 5, November 2, and December 7

Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s Day free with Milwaukee Co. ID

10001 W Bluemound Rd

Mitchell Park Domes

First Thursday of each month with proof of county residence.

524 S. Layton Blvd.

Creative Studios at the Marshall Building

Third Friday of each month.

5:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Click here for more information.

 


What's Up Wednesday
Brostoff in the News
Legislative Work
Happy Thanksgiving!