Family of child-abuse victim seeks support for ‘Teddy’s Law’

Family of child-abuse victim seeks support for ‘Teddy’s Law’

The Teddy Foltz-Tedesco Memorial Picnic, the first of what is expected to be an annual event, was held Aug. 11 at Harding Park in Hubbard. This event was hosted by Teddy’s father, family and friends.

Teddy Foltz-Tedesco died Jan. 26, 2013, at age 14 as a result of child abuse. His abuse and torture were ongoing. Authorities and agencies were notified several times by concerned citizens, but the investigations resulted in no direct action.

Teddy and his father, Shawn Tedesco, loved spending time at Harding Park. The roller sliding board in the playground was Teddy’s favorite. A park bench built by Teddy’s father, family and friends was placed near the slide.

A dedication ceremony took place at the picnic. Shawn gave a short and emotional dedication speech and thanked everyone for supporting his efforts. Prayers by their minister concluded the ceremony.

This picnic was also a fundraiser. Teddy’s father is on a mission to help strengthen the laws against child abuse in Ohio. He is fighting to pass “Teddy’s Law” to save other children from torture and severe abuse by making sure abusers receive stronger penalties.

State representatives have been contacted to help bring about this intense undertaking. Shawn has requested meetings with these representatives, but none is yet scheduled.

Teddy’s father, family and friends are still grieving but determined to bring justice for Teddy. Shawn will not give up until “Teddy’s Law” is a reality.

The turnout for the picnic was inspiring. Teddy’s family members and friends are very family-oriented; the love they hold for Teddy was evident. Shawn gave credit to his wife and thanked her for helping him survive these past months.

Margaret Van Dyke, Struthers

Medicare cuts hurt dialysis care

As a dialysis professional, I have oversight for some of the sickest patients in our community. That’s why I’m worried about budget cuts announced July 1.

The severe Medicare cuts could reduce dialysis services and force clinic closures at a time when kidney disease is escalating. It’s heartbreaking and unjust to make critically ill people accept reduced care to travel longer distances for lifesaving dialysis.

Kidney disease affects 1 in 7 Americans and is the eighth leading cause of U.S. death. As the disease progresses to kidney failure, individuals must seek transplantation (which is uncommon) or go for dialysis three times a week to stay alive.

There were 15,766 Ohio residents with kidney failure as of July 31, 2013, and there were 14,025 Ohio residents with kidney failure on Dec. 31, 2008. These numbers show a steady rise in chronic renal failure over the last five years.

Dialysis is a lifeline to survival, and Medicare covers the cost of dialysis, regardless of age. Ninety percent of our patients are Medicare beneficiaries. Dialysis providers know that fiscal challenges require doing more with less. We recently adopted cost-effective payment system changes, but new Medicare cuts could undermine this progress.

Congress must protect people with kidney failure. My chronically ill patients need access to life-saving dialysis care.

Gayle Mascarella, R.N., Boardman

City cleanup efforts restore pride

As I travel throughout our city, I am both impressed and proud of the efforts of all concerned citizens to beautify and protect our neighborhoods by maintaining surrounding lots, reporting suspicious activity in our areas, whether it be illegal dumping, abandoned vehicles or strangers in the area. All of these efforts help to bring pride to our communities.

I tip my hat to our city councilmen and women who, I’m sure, are bombarded with calls concerning these issues, yet somehow, slowly but surely, they do get them addressed.

I am especially grateful to the city street department and the crews responsible for the clean-up of Ella Street on the city’s East Side before the start of this school year.

Daniel Smith, Youngstown

America desperately needs wartime tax policy for growth

When a friend, now deceased, with his high school diploma, said that businesses should not be taxed, I shrugged my shoulders. But, that question has lurked in my mind all these 15 years. Now Donald Kaul, in his Aug. 19 Vindicator column, has articulated the same idea. It is hoped that this could become a rallying cry for the kind of taxation reform that could liberate us from the voluminous Internal Revenue Code.

Everyone should read this column. It has taken a long time, but it is a very worthwhile idea. However, there has to be more.

We are at war on many fronts: actual war in Afghanistan and the terrorism war on multiple fronts including Yemen, the Arabian Peninsula and elsewhere. But, the biggest war is the global economic war. As we caution the Greeks and the Italians to reduce their bloated public employee ranks and impose strict methods for economic reforms, we do nothing.

We are in an economic war, and our taxation is based on nothing that will assist in winning that war. The Republican mantra is reduce taxes and deregulate businesses. We saw the meltdown of our economy when the Glass-Steagall acts of 1933 and 1934 were repealed in 1999. What is needed is a wartime tax policy.

Tax on income over $200,000 was 94 percent in 1946. The equivalent of $200,000 today may be $2 million or $3 million. Those figures can be left to the mathematicians to calculate and the tax percentages from that period be imposed. Deficits could become a thing of the past. Democrats should take heed also.

The caveat here should be that there would be no increase in entitlement programs and no new programs be started. The income-tax increases should be used to reduce the national debt. This would put money in the hands of bankers who would then be willing to make more loans for new start-up businesses.

In essence, reduce debt, start businesses, and start a new economic recovery that would help all. Can the Congress be made to move? Not likely, but “We, the people, are to blame.” It is only the people who can motivate our representatives.

Leonard J. Sainato, Warren

Hire Stooges for Covelli planning

I received an email about no on-site parking for the Panerathon race at the Covelli Centre on Sunday [today] because of a 7:30 p.m. American Idol Live show. What does a 7:30 show have anything to do with parking? By 5 p.m., the Panerathon people will be gone. Parking down there was bad last year; I can’t even picture what it is going to look like this year. Who would set up a show on the same day? Nobody wants to come to downtown Youngstown now. I can see why; the “Three Stooges” could do a better job of planning things down there. The Panerathon is for a great cause.Youngstown, you blew this one big time.

Andy Pappagallo Sr,, Mineral Ridge

Government by, for corporations

It is sad but true: We no longer have government of the people, by the people, for the people. Instead, we now have government of the corporations, by the corporations and for the corporations.

This scenario is obviously being played out today in our area where the greed-driven oil and natural-gas inudstries are invading and taking over our land while government, at all levels, is welcoming them with open arms.

Why is this happening? Will Rogers many years ago said it well: “We have the best government money can buy.”

Bill Whitehouse, Youngstown