Thumbs up to Fresno City Council President Esmeralda Soria for being named the first Latina to hold the office. She also holds the distinction of being the first woman to be elected from District One and just the second Latina to serve on the council. In her comments as she took office, she thanked her mother for teaching her the importance of serving others and to be resilient.
The message got through, multiple Soria sisters serve their communities in public service positions. We wish her success and respect during her term, especially during this time in history when women’s perspectives are so needed in government.
Thumbs up to advocates, volunteers and public officials who gathered along Blackstone Avenue Thursday to raise money for the fight against human trafficking. It was the second annual Stop Traffic to Stop Trafficking event.
By noon $8,000 was raised in addition to $10,000 from the Central Valley Community Foundation. The check from CVCF was part of the foundation’s pledge to match up to $17,000 in fundraising over the next six years. It came from the Gundelfinger Fund, named after a 19th century woman who worked to help children and women who were the victims of violence in Fresno.
Thumbs up to the women lawmakers who wore black to work on the state Senate and Assembly floor sessions in Sacramento on Monday, extending a protest from Sunday night’s Golden Globes ceremony that aimed to broaden the conversation about workplace sexual harassment.
Cristina Garcia, a Bell Gardens Democrat who chairs the Legislative Women’s Caucus, said the wardrobe choice was a way to show solidarity with their “sisters” in low-paying professions, such as farmworkers and maids, who are vulnerable to harassment and assault but have little recourse.
Lawmakers have also introduced multiple sexual misconduct-related bills this session, including proposals to prohibit confidentiality clauses in settlement agreements and provide “panic buttons” for hotel workers.
Thumbs up to Leslie Sheets Cunning, speaking of international culture, for bringing to the Valley’s Department of Motor Vehicles an Asian touch of class. After arriving at the DMV at 7 a.m., she got in line by putting on the groumd a pair of shoes she brought with her. She told the kid in front of her, “I’m standing in line like they do in Asia.” Then she went back to her car, where it was nice and comfortable.
At 7:55, she wrote on Facebook, the line was probably 100 folks and she claimed her place. “The kid says ‘Man! That was so smart!’ “ We like the way the group respected this new idea.
Perhaps this should become a Valley custom now that we all need to get a new “secure” license to fly. It’s called REAL ID and the DMV starts issuing them Jan. 22. You have some time, Oct. 2020 before its required by the Transportation Security Administration. Meanwhile, we will all practice “line lessons by Leslie.”
Thumbs up to The Fresno County Public Library for its annual event “The Big Read.” They swing open the doors and put Fresno County into one gigantic book club – and you don’t have to cook for anyone. This year’s book is “The Latehomecomer: A Hmong Family Memoir” by Kao Kalia Yang.
The big kickoff event is Saturday, Jan. 13 from 2-4 p.m. in the Woodward Park Library. Check out all the events at fresnolibrary.org.
Thumbs down to the Big Baller Brand for its sloppy business practices, according to the Better Business Bureau’s Fresno office.. The company is owned by LaVar and Tina Ball, parents of a trio of basketball players, including Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball.
Since April 2017, Big Baller Brand has received 32 complaints and 44 negative customer reviews. Of those complaints, 12 have gone unanswered, and five were initially answered but never resolved.
One unhappy customer from Visalia told the BBB of spending $250 on clothing for a child’s Christmas present and never getting a single item. “I have asked them in three different emails to please provide a status update and each time I get a response saying that they will check with the post office and then no one ever responds to me.” The customer says there isn’t even a phone number to contact the Chino Hills company.
“This kind of unresponsive customer service is not acceptable for any business, let alone one that trades on the celebrity status of its owners to publicize its products,” said Blair Looney, president and CEO of BBB Serving Central California & Inland Empire Counties, which handles complaints against the company.