Skipping the salutations this morning, Philly. It’s too hot for that. Stay cool out there. Today, we have a profile of Helen Gym, the uber-popular city councilperson who has enjoyed an unprecedented rise as a leading progressive figure in Philadelphia. The Phillies finally won last night, ending their losing streak at seven games. And, 10 Philadelphia police recruits resigned after admitting to cheating on an open-book test.
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Helen Gym has risen from rabble-rousing public school activist to the city’s most noted progressive force. How? Well, she credits the major movements she has been a part of since she was first elected to City Council in 2015 — taking on issues like scheduling for city restaurant and hotel workers, immigration and renter’s rights, and drinking water safety.
Some critics express that Gym just finds the movements already getting the most attention.
Regardless, her popularity can’t be disputed. In the 2019 Democratic primary for reelection, Gym didn’t just win. It was a historic performance. Her 108,604 votes won her 56 of the city’s 66 wards. She was the first Democratic at-large Council candidate since the 1980s to earn more than 100,000 votes in a primary.
What is known is that Philadelphia Energy Solutions’ cash balance has fallen over the past six months, according to quarterly reports. In simple terms: the owner may not have the money to finance the cost of replacing the equipment that was destroyed in last week’s fire.
The school is arguing that the closure would violate its academic agreement with Hahnemann to train medical students and residents there, and would also “greatly disrupt the health and medical community in Philadelphia.”
In April, Joel Freedman, who controls Hahnemann and its parent, warned that he might close the hospital because it was running out of cash. In the past year, layoffs have impacted staffs at both Hahnemann and St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children. In the suit, Drexel criticizes Freedman’s management style.
The suit also seeks millions of dollars Drexel says it is owed for services by its physicians at Hahnemann.
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“One day, we’ll realize that just because, by accident of birth, you are penniless and poverty-stricken, that doesn’t mean you are a throwaway. That you don’t still having meaning, or you don’t still need help.” — An 80-year-old reader said in a voicemail to columnist John Baer about Pennsylvania’s General Assistance cash grants.