Nursing home where 12 died after Hurricane Irma lays off all employees

Published: Saturday, October 07, 2017 @ 8:00 PM

Nursing Home Were 12 Patients Died after Hurricane Irma Laid off all Employees

The Florida nursing home where 12 patients died in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma has laid off all of its 245 employees.

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The layoffs include nurses, physical therapists and doctors at the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills.

Nursing home residents were subjected to overly hot conditions in the days after Hurricane Irma when a tree fell on a transformer powering the air conditioning system. Twelve patients died when they were not evacuated after the storm passed.

State officials later suspended their license and the facility closed permanently.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

North Carolina politician sparks controversy with tweet comparing Trump to Hitler

Published: Saturday, October 21, 2017 @ 12:45 PM

Charlotte councilwoman LaWana Mayfield posted a controversial tweet.
WSOCTV.com
Charlotte councilwoman LaWana Mayfield posted a controversial tweet.(WSOCTV.com)

A Charlotte city councilwoman is under scrutiny for a controversial tweet she posted comparing President Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler.

Councilwoman LaWana Mayfield posted the tweet Friday morning, which reads in part: “For All who read about Hitler you are Now Living how he reigned in #45."

WSOC spoke with members of the community for reactions to Mayfield’s statement.

"I don't think it's appropriate,” Charlotte resident Ulga Mazets said. 

Mazets is from eastern Europe and said her family was impacted by Hitler’s reign.

“My grandfather was in (a) concentration camp, so I feel it's a very harsh comparison,” she said.

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Others felt the comparison was inappropriate but said Mayfield had the right to make it.

“Everybody got their own opinion,” a Charlotte resident said.

Earlier this year, one of Mayfield’s fellow council members, Dimple Ajmera, landed in hot water when she said Trump supporters have no place leading Charlotte government.

[READ MORE: Councilwoman receives death threats following Trump comments]

Ironically, Mayfield just called for an investigation into a Charlotte Housing Authority worker who allegedly posted a tweet on Facebook applauding the death of Keith Lamont Scott, who was shot by police during an incident that sparked a nationwide debate.

University of North Carolina - Charlotte professor Anita Blanchard said these types of comments on social media are becoming more common.

She said leaders and those who use social media platforms should learn to be more media savvy.

“Finding a way to say something that’s not rude that still gets your point across,” she said.

Mayfield didn’t immediately respond to Channel 9’s calls about the tweet, but she tweeted again Friday afternoon saying, “I wish the media would question #45 about why we were in Niger.”

Mayfield is up for re-election. Her Republican opponent Daniel Herrera sent WSOC the following statement:

"I have heard of my opponent's divisive, and inflammatory tweet of political rhetoric comparing the President of the United States to Hitler, pure evil and everything President Trump and I stand to oppose. 

While LaWana Mayfield only wishes to divide our community by using the power of fear to distract from her failures. I stand to change and unite District Three. I will move us forward with policies that support safer streets that allow mail to be delivered and not canceled because of street violence. I have a real plan to promote affordable housing rather than subsidized soccer stadiums that only support the developers who own her vote. I will always represent my faith and never write a policy like her devastating bathroom bill, the one she spearheaded and forced upon our Queen City and which brought so much distrain to our community.

Shame on Mayfield for her continuation of divisive political tactics. Shame on her for disrespecting the over 400,000 Defenders of Freedom who fell beneath our flag to defeat Hitler." 

Mayfield's statement in response to the backlash:

"The Constitutional right of "Free Speech" is a precious and uniquely beloved gift among Americans. With this gift of free speech comes great responsibility. To some, I did not express that responsibly within the limited characters of my earlier tweet. I apologize for the brevity of my statement due to being limited to 140 characters. Many times, we cannot fully express intent or emotion through this limited platform."

"I do not want to diminish the heinous treatment and genocide that our Jewish brothers and sisters experienced at the hands of this dictator nor do I want to further create a dialogue that does not focus on the facts at hand."

"Today, we read about history as a story in a book and sometimes disassociate from the realities of lives impacted. Our communities must unite and realize that at this intersectionality of both conservative and liberal, white and people of color, gay or straight, young and seniors, these variances and diverse populations have strength when they unite in one voice."

"My anger and passion when tweeting was directed to those that continue to make excuses for a man who is leading our Nation in a divisive direction. His policies, the creation of the 'Birther movement,' executive orders and continual mistreatment of marginalized communities has quickly eroded the landscape of civility and civil discourse in our society. 

"I value the diversity of my community, work to be inclusive and give voice to those that are not at the table and bring equity to this city that I love.""While my words chosen have offended some, my intent was to bring attention to the continued crisis that we face each day while this president is leading us. My post angered some and I stay in a state of anger every day I watch the news and this like many posts was shared to shine a light on hypocrisy and the discourse rising in our nation."

Black Friday 2017: Some toy 'books,' holiday ads released

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 2:18 PM

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 28:  People walk past a shopfront on Oxford Street advertising 'Black Friday' discounts on November 28, 2014 in London, England.  Originating in the USA as a sales day that following the Thanksgiving holiday, 'Black Friday' is becoming an increasingly popular shopping day in the UK.  (Photo by Rob Stothard/Getty Images)
Rob Stothard/Getty Images
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 28: People walk past a shopfront on Oxford Street advertising 'Black Friday' discounts on November 28, 2014 in London, England. Originating in the USA as a sales day that following the Thanksgiving holiday, 'Black Friday' is becoming an increasingly popular shopping day in the UK. (Photo by Rob Stothard/Getty Images)(Rob Stothard/Getty Images)

As the Black Friday shopping day nears – Nov. 24, the day after Thanksgiving – more stores are releasing information about deals to come.
 

Toy"R"Us has announced that it will update its Price Match Guarantee for the upcoming holiday season, pledging to donate $1 to Toys for Tots for every price match purchase.
 

According to BlackFridayAds.net, Toys "R" Us and Babies "R" Us will also collect new, unwrapped toys for the U.S. Marine Corps program.

>>Black Friday 2017: Macy’s, Big Lots, GameStop to open on Thanksgiving

Dollar General is among several retailers that have released a “toy book,” or a book featuring advertisements for toys that will be on sale through the Christmas season.
 

Other retailers releasing toy ads and holiday shopping ads in advance of Black Friday are:

Blain’s Farm & Fleet

Hallmark

Harbor Freight Tools 

Kmart

Lego

Mill’s Fleet Farm

Nieman Marcus

Sam’s Club

True Value 

Stores To Open On Thanksgiving Day 2017

Body of child found on Texas beach

Published: Saturday, October 21, 2017 @ 3:16 PM

A couple walks along the Galveston, Texas, beach during low tide Friday, Oct. 3, 2008.
Pat Sullivan/ASSOCIATED PRESS
A couple walks along the Galveston, Texas, beach during low tide Friday, Oct. 3, 2008.(Pat Sullivan/ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Police are investigating after a young child's body was found on a Texas beach.

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Officers responded to a call Friday evening from an individual who said they found a body near the shoreline of a Galveston beach, according to the report posted on the Galveston Police Department's Facebook page. Police determined that the body was that of a white boy, approximately 3-5 years old. The child has not been identified and no missing persons reports match the child's description, KHOU reported.

Galveston police Capt. Joshua Schirard told KHOU that this is a very unusual case. Schirard said the U.S. Coast Guard and agencies in surrounding counties are assisting with the case.

Pizza shop owners remove bathroom signs after protests

Published: Saturday, October 21, 2017 @ 1:45 PM

A file image of a public restroom sign.
fcl1971/Freeimages
A file image of a public restroom sign.(fcl1971/Freeimages)

The owners of a Colorado pizza shop are reluctantly removing the controversial bathroom signs at their restaurant after receiving backlash.

The signs depict a man trying to lift up a woman's skirt, The Durango Herald reported. While the restroom signs have been up since HomeSlice Pizza opened four years ago, the complaints skyrocketed after images of the signs were shared on social media. Some found the signs to be in poor taste and making light of sexual harassment and sexual assault.

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Lynn Kitch and her husband own the restaurant. Kitch submitted a statement to the Herald, in which she said that she was removing the signs not because they are offensive, but because she didn't want her employees subjected to "adverse working conditions." Kitch said in the statement that she is a sexual assault survivor and would have welcomed a meaningful conversation about the signs, but instead, protesters were making harassing calls to the restaurant and cyberbullying the business by leaving bad reviews online.

Some HomeSlice Pizza customers supported the owners, saying the sign was meant to be humorous.

Kitch said at least one of the signs will be auctioned off and the proceeds will be donated to a local organization who supports sexual assault victims.