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DC pilot program gives low-income moms $10‚800 to get by. One recipient splurged for the high-life: 'I wanted to have fun'
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DC pilot program gives low-income moms $10‚800 to get by. One recipient splurged for the high-life: 'I wanted to have fun'

Washington‚ D.C.‚ has been experimenting with a new way to be charitable with taxpayers' money. Strong Families‚ Strong Futures is a $1.5 million pilot program that forked over unconditional payments of $10‚800 to 132 low-income women who recently had or were expecting children in Wards 5‚ 7‚ and 8. Martha's Table‚ which facilitated the pilot in partnership with the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development‚ indicated at the outset‚ "We believe that there is no single roadmap to success and that each one of our neighbors should have agency over their own financial decision-making as they know best what their family needs." One beneficiary of the program may have put the organization's belief to the test. Canethia Miller‚ a 27-year-old mother of three‚ revealed to the Washington Post she burned through most of the money in hopes of getting a brief taste of the high life. Prior to the pilot program‚ Miller was living off welfare in a subsidized two-bedroom apartment in the historic Anacostia neighborhood with her newborn child and other two kids‚ ages 5 and 8. Despite missing the application deadline for the pilot program‚ Miller still managed to get on the waiting list. Like the other mothers ultimately enrolled in the program‚ Miller was asked whether she wanted 12 monthly payments of $900 or a lump sum payment of nearly $11‚000. Like 75% of the other recipients‚ Miller chose the latter. Miller temporarily put some of the strings-free taxpayer money aside for essential expenses. The remainder‚ however‚ did not last long. "I wanted to blow it‚" she told the Post. "I wanted to have fun." Despite admittedly struggling to make her welfare stretch every month to cover groceries for her family‚ Miller spent $180 of the Strong Families‚ Strong Future lump sum on her nails and hair‚ then took her three kids and their father on a $6‚000 trip to Miami. According to the Post‚ during her luxury vacation‚ Miller treated her family to a boat tour of "million-dollar homes and luxury yachts" and as well as to a dinner out at a Japanese steak and sushi restaurant. Following her own "roadmap to success‚" Miller also bought "new clothes‚ shoes‚ gadgets and toys." She boasted that every outfit her kids wore on the trip was new. "[My kids] got to experience something I would never have been able to do if I didn't have that money‚" said Miller. According to the Post‚ Miller later opened a savings account with the aim of keeping "at least $50 in it" and bought a used car. "A lot of communities in my area don’t know the financial gain of credit‚ saving for your kids; that's why we're broke‚ that's why we don't have nothing to pass down or no house to give down‚" continued the mother of three. "I'm trying to get to the level where I'm passing something down that really matters‚ so I can be set and my kids can be set‚ and they don't need to push so hard like I'm doing now." Another beneficiary of the taxpayer-funded lump sum indicated she splurged on herself. Saleemia Quigley‚ 41‚ told the Post‚ "I ain't going to lie. I went shopping‚ clothes — stuff I didn't need. It was like‚ 'I paid my rent‚ so I can go ahead and do this.'" Other mothers in the program apparently used the pilot money to pay down their debts and upgrade accommodations. When Democratic Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the direct cash transfer program in January 2022‚ she emphasized the point of Strong Families‚ Strong Futures was child care — "whether that care involves more diapers‚ more visits to doctors‚ more food on the table‚ shoes‚ games‚ books‚ adventures‚ all of those things." Like Blaze News? Bypass the censors‚ sign up for our newsletters‚ and get stories like this direct to your inbox. Sign up here!

San Francisco store escorts customers to deter shoplifting amid city’s crime epidemic
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San Francisco store escorts customers to deter shoplifting amid city’s crime epidemic

A San Francisco store recently enacted a new rule that requires shoppers to be escorted by an employee in order to deter shoplifting amid the city’s surging crime epidemic.Fredericksen Hardware and Paint‚ a longtime home improvement shop located in San Francisco’s Cow Hollow neighborhood‚ has adopted a new policy that it hopes will significantly reduce or eliminate retail theft.The store’s manager‚ Sam Black‚ told KRON that the location is battling “rampant shoplifting.” Black‚ who has worked at the store for 24 years‚ says the theft is worse than ever.“It’s pretty bad‚” he said‚ referring to the crime surge. “I mean‚ the dollar amounts are pretty significant‚ and with the tools and now we’re getting snatch-and-grabs when they take whole displays‚ so it’s getting kind of dangerous for the employees and the customers.”During certain hours of the day — two hours in the morning and two hours in the evening — the store will be blocked off‚ and customers must wait for a worker to escort them through the aisles. Shoppers will not be able to roam on their own during that time.A sign at the front of the shop read‚ “Attention Shoppers: Due to the rampant shoplifting‚ Fredericksen has introduced a One-On-One shopping experience.”“Wait here and a clerk will be right with you to help you with all your shopping needs‚” it continued. “We’re sorry for the inconvenience!”Staff believes that the new policy will separate customers from potential shoplifters. Black told the news outlet that the creative solution is worth trying to prevent additional loss.“We just want to make it uncomfortable for the thieves so they go somewhere else‚” Black stated.He noted that the store’s staff had already drilled down pots and pans to prevent thieves from stealing the items. The shop has also installed locking systems to curb shoplifting tools and other hardware.The escorting policy has been in place for three weeks‚ and Black plans to review the results after one month. How long the new rule will remain in place is still being determined. According to Black‚ San Francisco residents “aren’t happy.”“The regulars can’t believe it like we can’t believe it‚ but they’ve been really understanding‚” he added.City leaders and police have not been helpful in preventing the surge of retail thefts‚ Black remarked.San Francisco supervisor Catherine Stefani stated‚ “This situation is tragic and embarrassing for our city‚ and it’s all the more reason to get serious about solving our police staffing crisis. We need more police on our streets‚ and we need them now. That’s why I’ll hold a series of hearings in March to push our city agencies to fill the hundreds of vacancies at the Police Department as soon as possible––to stop the bleeding‚ reverse the damage‚ and finally protect our residents and small businesses.”Earlier this month‚ California Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom announced that he would send 120 California Highway Patrol officers to Oakland and East Bay “to crack down” on the “alarming and unacceptable” crime wave. The governor also sent progressive Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price additional attorneys “to increase the capacity to prosecute suspects involved in violent crimes‚ serious drug-related crimes‚ and property crimes — including retail theft and auto burglary‚” Blaze News previously reported.A number of businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area‚ including Denny’s‚ In-N-Out‚ Black Bear Diner‚ Subway‚ and Starbucks‚ recently decided to close their doors‚ citing rampant crime. Meanwhile‚ other businesses‚ including Clorox Company‚ Blue Shield of California‚ and Kaiser Permanente‚ have implemented additional safety measures to address the ongoing crime issues.According to San Francisco Police Department crime data‚ robberies increased 14.6% in 2023 compared to the previous year. Over that same period‚ motor vehicle theft increased by 6.1%‚ larceny-theft dropped by 11.6%‚ and burglary declined by 6.6%. Like Blaze News? Bypass the censors‚ sign up for our newsletters‚ and get stories like this direct to your inbox. Sign up here!

Sylvester Stallone moving from California to Florida‚ sends daughters to Navy SEAL boot camp in fear of New York City crime
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Sylvester Stallone moving from California to Florida‚ sends daughters to Navy SEAL boot camp in fear of New York City crime

After living in California for decades‚ Sylvester Stallone has revealed that he is leaving the Golden State and moving to Florida. Stallone and his wife‚ Jennifer Flavin Stallone‚ made the announcement during the Season 2 premiere of "The Family Stallone" reality TV show that aired on Wednesday. “After long‚ hard consideration‚ your mother and I have decided it's time to move on and leave the state of California permanently‚ and we’re going to go to Florida‚” Sylvester announced.Stallone declared that it's already a "done deal." Jennifer‚ 55‚ explained to her daughters‚ “It’s an empty nest. I need to change it up.”The parents became empty nesters after Sophia and Sistine moved in together in New York City and Scarlet began attending the University of Miami."I don't feel like this is home anymore‚" Jennifer said."I raised all three of our daughters in California. Everything’s a memory to me‚ memories of them not being there anymore‚" Jennifer added. "So I needed a big change‚ and Sly went along with it." The "Rocky" actor noted that he has lived in California since 1973."We have a lot of roots in California‚ so it’s not an easy transition to Florida‚" said the iconic Hollywood actor. "But Jennifer really had her heart set on it. I gave in."Later in the episode‚ Stallone met up with his celebrity friends‚ Jon Lovitz and Henry Winkler‚ for what he called "my true farewell."Stallone‚ 77‚ and Jennifer have been married for more than 25 years and have three adult daughters — Sophia‚ Sistine‚ and Scarlet. Jennifer‚ 55‚ filed for divorce in August 2022‚ but the celebrity couple have since resolved their marital issues.Other Hollywood celebrities have recently moved out of California‚ including prolific podcaster Joe Rogan.Rogan said he left California to move to Texas to get "a little bit more freedom.""When you look at the traffic‚ when you look at the economic despair‚ when you look at the homelessness problem that's accelerated radically over the last six‚ seven‚ 10 years‚ I think there's too many people here‚" Rogan said of the Los Angeles area. "I think it's not tenable; I don't think that it's manageable‚" he continued. "And every mayor does a s**t job of doing it because I don't think anybody could do a great job of it. I think there's certain things you're gonna have to deal with when you have a population of whatever the f*** L.A. is‚ it's like 20-million-plus people."Actor Mark Wahlberg moved from California to Nevada to "give my kids a better life" and because it "made a lot more sense for us."Actor Scott Baio ditched California for Florida after living there for more than 45 years. "Between the homeless defecating on the sidewalk‚ doing drugs on the sidewalk in the middle of the day‚ illegal aliens all over the place‚ laws means nothing‚ crime is out of control‚ graffiti on everything‚ and all my tax dollars I don't know what they go for‚" Baio stated.Comedian Rob Schneider explained why he moved out of California‚ "I really feel like I don’t want the Democratic Party trying to run my life. And there’s not one aspect of your life that they don’t want to interfere with."Also in the episode‚ Stallone was concerned about his two daughters living in New York City because of the high crime rate. The actor took Sophia‚ 27‚ and Sistine‚ 25‚ to a self-defense training class taught by an ex-Navy SEAL. See on Instagram The Stallone sisters moved to New York City last year‚ which has caused the "Rambo" actor to stay awake all night worrying about the safety of his daughters."My daughters have moved to New York‚ which is kind of traumatic because I spent many‚ many years in New York‚" said Stallone — who lived on the streets in the early 1970s. "Everyday robbery‚ physical attacking. Cars were coming over curbs. People throwing acid on you. You had to keep your head on a swivel‚ and I never gotten over that."You can watch the entire episode of "The Family Stallone" below. The Family Stallone | Season 2 Premiere | Full Episode | Paramount+ www.youtube.com Like Blaze News? Bypass the censors‚ sign up for our newsletters‚ and get stories like this direct to your inbox. Sign up here!

Mom punches middle school teacher in class‚ breaks her facial bones‚ after sneaking into school with students: Authorities
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Mom punches middle school teacher in class‚ breaks her facial bones‚ after sneaking into school with students: Authorities

A mother repeatedly punched a middle school teacher in a classroom — fracturing her facial bones in the process — after sneaking into the building with students last week‚ authorities said.What are the details?The parent got past Lincoln Middle School security on the morning of Feb. 16 because she's short‚ had a hood over her head‚ and appeared to be a student‚ Syracuse.com reported‚ citing Syracuse School Superintendent Anthony Davis.Police said Lynzina Sutton‚ 31‚ then located a female teacher she was looking for‚ the outlet reported.District Attorney William Fitzpatrick told Syracuse.com that Sutton punched the teacher in the face multiple times‚ fracturing her nasal bone and maxillary spine bones and giving her a concussion. The teacher has been released from a hospital‚ the outlet added. “These are injuries that you don’t often see in boxing matches‚ so they’re quite serious‚” Fitzpatrick added to Syracuse.com.Davis said Sutton slipped into the school when other students were arriving‚ and security figured she was a student due to her short stature — Fitzpatrick said Sutton is 4-foot-10-inches tall‚ the outlet noted.More from Syracuse.com:Sutton was with the student’s grandmother but the grandmother was stopped by security‚ Davis said. The security guard called after Sutton but she didn’t stop‚ said Amanda Hull‚ a spokesperson for the district. Sutton kept going‚ making it to the teacher’s classroom. The guard then radioed for help and the principal stepped in‚ Hull said. Sutton punched the teacher in the face in the classroom several times‚ Davis said. Students were in the doorway of the classroom when it happened and then came into the classroom‚ he said. The class had about 25-30 students‚ he said. The principal tried to de-escalate the situation but was unable to‚ the superintendent said. Sutton managed to run off and was arrested in the afternoon‚ Syracuse Police Chief Joe Cecile told the outlet. The school went into a “hold in place drill” during the incident‚ Davis added to Syracuse.com.Sutton punched the teacher over a report about her child‚ a student at the school‚ Fitzpatrick told the outlet‚ adding that the student had lied about her whereabouts during a school day. “This led to security being called and then she ... allegedly said‚ ... 'Well‚ my mother will take care of this‚’” Fitzpatrick added to Syracuse.com.Davis told the outlet that the attack against the teacher occurred the next morning and that it was one of the worst things he's ever seen as an educator.“She's going to have some long-term issues‚" Fitzpatrick told CNYCentral.com regarding the teacher. "I know her nasal passages were severely affected by it." He also hinted to CNYCentral why the attack took place: "You have a child disciplined‚ and the reaction from the parent is‚ 'I'm going to come to school and beat up the teacher.'"Sutton was charged with second-degree assault (injury to school official) and third-degree burglary‚ Syracuse.com said‚ adding that Fitzpatrick noted the DA's office is investigating potential charges against the student’s grandmother. Sutton was held in the Onondaga County Justice Center jail until she made bond‚ Fitzpatrick added to Syracuse.com; he also said both charges against Sutton carry a maximum of seven years in prison. Syracuse schools responds to teacher being attacked youtu.be Grandmother speaks outRoxanne Thompkins — Sutton's mother and the student's grandmother — spoke to CNYCentral as part of a separate story‚ saying‚ "I’m sorry the teacher got hurt."“That was never supposed to be that way‚” Thompkins told CNYCentral. “I apologize for that‚ and I hope she recovers. There’s always a better way to handle stuff‚ and we were going to talk at the school to have a conversation‚ with the school‚ like we have numerous times.”Thompkins added to CNYCentral that Sutton was angry about unresolved bullying her daughter was enduring in school: “She’s been slapped‚ she’s been kicked‚ they’ve broken her glasses three times‚ they’ve broken cell phones twice‚ and all we get [from the school] is‚ ‘Well‚ what is she doing?’ They made her out to be the problem.”Here's a clip of Thompkins speaking to the media about the situation: Syracuse mom blends in with students‚ bursts into daughter’s classroom and breaks teacher’s nose youtu.be Thompkins also told CNYCentral that she and Sutton went to the school with the intention of speaking to the principal.More from the outlet:Thompkins' version of the events has her and the school principal arriving at the classroom together. Her daughter was already in there. That's when authorities said the teacher was punched repeatedly in the face.Thompkins said she saw the principal try to intervene.Afterward‚ contrary to authorities' claims that Sutton fled‚ Thompkins said they were escorted out by security.“We did not flee‚” Thompkins added to CNYCentral. “Security grabbed her‚ and I said‚ 'C’mon‚ guys‚ let’s all just walk out.' I put my arms around everyone. She [Sutton] said‚ ‘I can’t breathe because they’re squeezing me’. I said‚ 'Okay‚ guys‚ baby steps‚ let’s go.' And they walked us out the front door.”Thompkins added to the outlet the school suspended her granddaughter for 60 days last year: “The whole Syracuse City School District should be held accountable. If your kid is being bullied‚ and you’re going up there‚ doing all the right things‚ asking all the right questions‚ and then all you’re ever hearing is‚ ‘She is the problem‚ she’s the problem.’ But her report card shows [some of] her teachers say she’s such a joy to have in class‚ at what point did she become so bad?” Like Blaze News? Bypass the censors‚ sign up for our newsletters‚ and get stories like this direct to your inbox. Sign up here!