Week of 8.21.17

Welcome to the home of Social Lights. New online reports with photos appear each week on the website and in the monthly print editions for the Birmingham-Bloomfield area and the Rochester-Rochester Hills area at the start of each month. If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

MOCAD Interchange Art + Dinner

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit and Library Street Collective gallery owners JJ and Anthony Curis collaborated on a remarkable event that turned their home – the  Hawkins Ferry house – into a museum. Under the title “Unobstructed Views,” 39 pieces of art, all available for bids, had been installed throughout the modernist gem on the shore of Lake St. Clair. More than 200 guests ($175, $200 ticket) and their conversation invigorated both floors of the museum and the lakeside terrace. Guests included legendary sculptor Glen Michaels, who recalled creating many installations for the home’s architect Bill Kessler. Art collector Shirley Piku was another guest with specific memories.
This weeks social light photos…


oakland confidential

August 2017

HORSE RACES: Democratic aspirations of taking a majority hold on Congress after the 2018 General Election will hinge on the party’s ability to take two dozen congressional seats, which may include upsets in Michigan’s 8th and 11th Districts, according to recent rankings of 82 districts by The New York Times. The piece split the districts into eight groups to watch, based on competitiveness ...more»
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The Whistleblower Act

By Lisa Brody
News Editor
...continued from page 7

Jason Shinn concurred. "Many forms of retaliation stem beyond termination: threats or discrimination against you regarding your compensation; terms, conditions, location or privileges of employment."

An individual can also experience layoffs, blacklisting, demotion, the denial of overtime or of promotion, being disciplined, loss of benefits, failure to hire or rehire, being intimidated or harassed, the making of threats, reduction of pay or hours, and a reassignment that affects an employee's prospects for promotion.

The False Claim Act is but one of several fraud laws that assist whistleblowers, from the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, which protects employees, contractors and agents of publicly traded companies who report fraud by the company against its shareholders. Employees who are able to win under this statute may be able to be reinstated to their prior position, receive back pay and seniority level, special damages, and whistleblower attorney's fees.

Within various industries, there are specific laws and acts that tackle fraud and whistleblower suits pertaining to those fields, with all of the statutes focused on either public health or safety; the environment; employee rights; or the integrity of the public securities and financial markets. They include such statutes as Crop Insurance Fraud for farmer's and the agricultural industry; flood insurance; the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010 that was passed as part of the Dodd-Frank legislations, which protects whistleblowers for reporting violations on numerous federal laws governing consumer financial products and services, including mortgages, credit cards and loans. There is also the Consumer Product Safety Act of 2008, protecting whistleblowers for reporting on violations on safety standards for consumer products, and the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2010, for violations of food safety standards. The EPA has seven federal environmental laws protecting government and private employees reporting environmental violations, including the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, Solid Waste Disposal Act, and Toxic Substances Control Act, among others.

The newest, Brown said, enacted in December of 2015, is the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act. "It's modeled after the SEC program. Essentially, a whistleblower who brings safety concerns about a motor vehicle receives an award as well as receiving whistleblower protection," he said, noting the huge settlements in the last few years over major automotive safety issues, from Takata with air bags to General Motors with their key fobs.

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