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How to Help Those Affected by Northern California Fire

UPDATED. As the fire finally begins to subside, the community rushes in to help.

On Sunday night, October 8th, the wind picked up and started spreading fire. It grew to become one of the worst fires in recorded California history, burning through forests, cities, and everything in between. More than 3,500 structures and 170,000 acres are gone.

Large portions of Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino, and Lake County were under mandatory evacuation and firefighters are only now getting control of the fire. This feels not unlike an apocalypse movie.

The surrounding communities immediately rushed in to help. Firefighters from across the West Coast came to aid, people are opened their homes to evacuees, phone companies offered free data in these counties, and shelters are practically overflowing with donated goods.


Watch Berkeley firefighters in action. They rock and this fire does not.


Give Northern California your love

New Sincerity is a movement of people from all backgrounds, identities, and socioeconomic statuses, who join together to create lasting, systemic change. We all call the shots.

If you’re not a local, you can always donate. A Bay Area credit union, in collaboration with Senator Mike McGuire, set up the North Bay Fire Relief Fund – every penny goes to help those affected by the fire. You know exactly where every dollar given to this fund is going – donate.

Give to the Undocufund, where 100% of the money raised will go towards ensuring that undocumented families displaced by the fire have access to the resources and support they need to rebuild their life. These folks are some of the most vulnerable in our community and we need to make sure they feel safe.


Northern affected people at California
Photo source unknown


If you’re local, volunteer. This document gives details on who needs help and supplies.

Offer up your spare room.  Chanslor Ranch in Bodega Bay offered shelter to over 200 people. These folks are a few of many Bay Area residents offering their homes to evacuees displaced by the tragedy.

This is the moment where we all step in and help until it becomes a habit. Our future depends on daily action and staying engaged with our communities, especially when they are in dire need. New Sincerity is built on the belief that we are capable of this.


Photo: Three Twins Twitter
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SF Supervisor Jane Kim Proposes Taxing Robots

A commonsense approach to a problem that's only going to get bigger.

In August, SF Supervisor Jane Kim launched a campaign called Jobs of the Future Fund, with intentions to find solutions for those who will inevitably lose jobs as automation increases.

“Proceeds from the tax would bankroll things like job retraining, free community college, or perhaps a universal basic income―countermeasures Kim thinks might make a robotic future more bearable for humans,” says Wired.

The campaign’s site states that this ‘automation revolution’ has the potential to eliminate more jobs than the Great Depression and Great Recession combined. As much as half of the jobs in the US will disappear “through the transition to robot, algorithms or other forms of automation.”


Uber is piloting self-driving cars. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)


Jobs of the Future is an organization and outreach program that asks for policy makers, labor leaders, businesses and civic organizations to start thinking about solutions to this problem.

The solution their touting: a statewide California tax on automated robots, just like our workers today are being taxed (inspiration taken from Bill Gates). If companies are required by law to pay taxes for the automation the money can be funneled into education and retraining for those whose jobs have become obsolete.

As Kim reminds us, this is all very new territory. The terms ‘job displacement’ and ‘automation’ are still actively being defined. If you’d like to get involved and voice your opinion as Californians start working towards ballot measures, do it here.

Donate to their Crowdfunding campaign here


Photo: TechCrunch

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