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“I received a call saying that my daughter needed to get her hair done and she wears her natural and I was kind of taken aback by it,” said her dad, Eric Orr.

He says a school administrator called and said her style wasn’t in line with dress code policy.

“She literally felt, ‘Wow, what's wrong with my hair? The Caucasian girls are able to wear their natural hair straight. Why can't I wear my natural hair the way that it grows?’” said her mom, Secily Wilson.

They were referred to the handbook, where one line in particular stood out.

“It said 'dread-like' hair and so that could be ambiguous and it could give you latitude to target a certain person or a certain group so we felt we needed to address the issue,” Eric Orr explained.

So Nicole’s parents met with the school’s headmaster Monday. FOX 35 sat down with him too and asked why her hair was considered a problem in the first place. .

“My understanding in talking with the dean of students, I think it was more in line with that neat and organized look that we're going for. Not so much the issue of dread locks per se,” said Dr. Kasey Kesselring, Montverde’s headmaster.

But Kesselring says after looking at the hair policy, he agreed the line involving dread lock needed to go so no one is singled out.

“To know that we were able to help our daughter and all the other daughters or boys out there... we feel pretty good about it,” Wilson said.

Montverde is diverse private school near Clermont.

Maria booker

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A Louisiana sheriff said Friday that the fatal shooting of former NFL player Joe McKnight appears to have been a case of "road rage" and defended his decision to release from custody the man who admitted to the shooting.

McKnight, 28, was struck three times after he was shot by a man identified as Ronald Gasser, 54, who authorities have said remained at the scene following the shooting at around 2:43 p.m., officials said.

Gasser was released without charges overnight but the case is still under investigation, Jefferson County Sheriff Newell Normand said.

"Mr. Gasser isn't going anywhere," Normand said. "He has been completely cooperative with us in every request that we have made so that's not the issue." Gasser remained at the scene and admitted to the shooting, the sheriff's office said.

Investigators believe Gasser and McKnight were part of a road rage incident that stretched from the Greater New Orleans Bridge to Terrytown, a route that stretches approximately six miles, officials said. McKnight got out of the gray Audi Q7 he was driving and was at the passenger side of Gasser's vehicle when he was shot, the sheriff's office has said.

Gasser fired three shots from a .40-caliber handgun from the driver's seat of his blue Infinity and through the open passenger side window, the sheriff's office said.

Normand said three casings were found inside the vehicle, and disputed reports in some media outlets and on social media that the shooter fired at McKnight as he the former NFL player was on the ground.

"I would strongly suggest that you stop believing what you're reading, so let me put just a couple of things that I've been made aware of to rest. "Mr. Gasser did not stand over Mr. McKnight and fire shots into him. The three casings were located within the vehicle. Mr. Gasser was in his vehicle when he fired three shots."

He also said no video has been found and police have no witness account of an apology from McKnight to Gasser, contradicting what he said was false information making the rounds.

The coroner, Dr. Gerry Cvitanovich, said an autopsy shows that McKnight was struck three times — in the index finger of his left hand, in his right shoulder and in his right chest. "The wounds are not consistent with being shot from above while [McKnight was] on the ground," he said.

The sheriff was adamant that he had released Gasser so that the sheriff's department could collect more evidence and witness testimony — as they believe there are still more to be found.

The department had been criticized after it released Gasser late Thursday night without pressing charges. Normand said Louisiana has statutes "that provide defenses to certain crimes" but did not elaborate, and said arresting Gasser would have forced police to reveal parts of the investigation.

"External influences will not motivate this office one way or the other as to how we're going to conduct this investigation strategically," Normand said. The sheriff said as many as 40 members of law enforcement were working on the case.

Protesters had collected outside of the sheriff department's office. Normand also said he had received the protest organizers request that the office close a portion of the highway for their demonstration. He made it clear that he would not close any roadways. "It's not going to happen," he said.

"I will work with you to get your message across, but it's not going to be the detriment of the other citizens of Jefferson Parish," he said, explaining that he would not hesitate to arrest demonstrators who did not adhere to local and state laws.

He also dismissed any suggestions that his office was racist or not fully investigating the case. Normand pointed to a longstanding relationship that the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office has held with McKnight's family.

"I'll throw this out there, the gentleman who raised Joe McKnight Jr. used to work for this office," he said. "This office is close to his family."

According to the sheriff, McKnight's guardian was a deputy for the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office. NBC News has been unable to confirm this detail. 

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A popular African-American Disney actress is coming forward and claiming that she was racially profiled and beaten by police. The actress, Rae’Ven Kelly, appeared in A Time to Kill, Vampire Slayer and Hannah Montana. and she also played the young Tina Turner in the iconic film What’s Love Got To Do With It?

According to Rae’Ven, Los Angeles police RACIALLY PROFILED her and tried to suggest that she “jumped the train” and didn’t pay her fare. Rae’Ven claims that she tried to video the incident for her protection, and the officer assaulted her.

She was arrested, and police tried to get her to “admit” that she was never mistreated. When she denied their request, she was charged with multiple crimes.

Here is her story:

 

I was recently severely brutalized, racially profiled and accosted in South Pasadena by LA County Sheriffs Dept. While I was being wrongfully accused of not paying my train fare, I presented my receipt respectfully to the officer (which was for not just 1 but, 2 fares with the time & date stamps) when he proceeded to threaten me with a ticket for not paying my fare, I began video taping the incident…the officer told me I could video tape all I wanted and it wouldn’t matter.

Little did I know that he was right…because later after they had slapped handcuffs on me (surrounding me with six officers), slammed my body into a metal bench, groped me during a search, and injured my shoulder and wrist placing me in the police car (laughing referring to me “girl” & saying “well, you know how these people are…yeah I have a black female here…these people”), while I was softly praying to God and crying asking them politely, “What did I do wrong, officer? I’ve paid my fare with a receipt and have been nothing but respectful, sir. I have been completely compliant, never used profanity or raised my voice, officer,”… as I begged for reason through tears of pain from my bruised wrists he grabbed my Gucci bag and cellphone with (my then fiance) Sean still on the phone as a audible witness to everything that had transpired…& took my cell as evidence because they knew I had footage of them attacking me!

Later on at the La Cresenta station I was cursed at, physically abused, denied feminine products as blood soiled my clothes, ridiculed, bruised and laughed at, and when I told them I wouldn’t sign off that I wasn’t harmed the main sheriff blackmailed me by saying that if I reported my injuries then they would be required to take me to the hospital. Once one of the officers at the station recognized me from “Hannah Montana” and “A Time to Kill” they began to call me Miss Kelly and said they would release me with no charges if I lied and said I wasn’t harmed. But, I only wanted to report the truth…so they booked me, giving me a record now

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SEATTLE -- A woman who was upset because there were no shopping carts available set fire to a Kent strip mall, prosecutors said in charging documents Thursday.

Linda Katherine Poplawski, 64, is charged with first-degree arson for Sunday's fire at the Dollar Tree Store at the corner of Pacific Highway S. and Kent-Des Moines Road.

Probable cause documents say Poplawski told employees she was going to burn the store down because there were no shopping carts. She allegedly went to part of the store where there were cards and party supplies. She then left the store, telling employees the store was on fire.

The Dollar Tree Store was evacuated, and the fire spread to neighboring businesses. Prosecutors say it took approximately 75 firefighters more than 24 hours to finally put the fire out. Nobody was injured.

Prosecutors say Poplawski stayed at the scene, taking photos and video of the fire as it burned. Police say she was carrying two lighters.

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In a shocking reveal, the Pepsi corporation admitted that its Aquafina bottled water is not purified water or spring water, but simply plain old tap water. The company will now be forced to change the labeling of the brand to reflect that it is just tap water.

Many informed customers choose bottled water because they are concerned about the quality of tap water, which is many times riddled with fluoride and pharmaceuticals. Sadly, we are now learning that in many cases, bottled water is actually not any better than tap water.

Over the years, an advocacy group called, “Corporate Accountability International” has been checking the contents of bottled water and pressuring companies to stop their false advertisement.

Aquafina is actually one of the top selling water brands in the world, and may see a slide in sales as a result of these new findings.

 PepsiCo representative Michelle Naughton said in a statement,

“If this helps clarify the fact that the water originates from public sources, then it’s a reasonable thing to do.”

The corporate accountability group is now looking to Coca-Cola’s Dasani bottled water for false advertisement. However, Dasani denies that their product is just tap water.

“We don’t believe that consumers are confused about the source of Dasani water. The label clearly states that it is purified water,” Coca-Cola spokeswoman Diana Garza Ciarlante said.

As reported last year, Major water supplier Niagra Bottling announced that one of their springs was contaminated by E-Coli, causing many leading bottled water companies to recall their products.

via WeAreChange.  Visit them for more great stories

In places like South Florida, where it rains often, rain water collection may provide better water, it seems than the tap or a bottle can provide.  Many fear how plastic sitting at 140 degrees in a hot truck for delivery might effect the quality of bottled water, thus it is often recommended to store water in glass containers.  Tap delivered water must travel through the unknown chasm of pipe-ways to reach our destination.  When compared to the rain option, it sounds dirty, doesn't it?  Rain is distilled natures way, and many health gurus are suggesting that distilled water cleanses are what most of us need!  There are always the consideration of minerals in the water, which happens as it passes through the earth.  This is why mountain spring water is considered more delicious and wholesome due to the natural minerals present.  Also to consider in drier climates is the fact that rain after a dry spell may first remove pollutants from the air before the water becomes "clean."  This is quite noticeable in Oklahoma where it might be a hot dry summer, and a thunderstorm comes through stirring up lots of dust.  A brief rain with large water droplets might leave your car looking like mud.  If it rains long enough to hold the dust down, the water is clean, clear, and drinkable.  

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The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled against a lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against Catastrophe Management Solutions, effectively ruling that refusing to hire someone because of their dreadlocks is legal.

The lawsuit was filed by the EEOC on behalf of Chastity Jones, whose job offer was rescinded by Catastrophe Management Solutions, located in Mobile, Alabama. According to the case file, Jeannie Wilson, a human resources manager for CMS, commented on Jones' dreadlocks during a private hiring meeting to discuss scheduling conflicts, telling Jones, "they tend to get messy, although I'm not saying yours are, but you know what I'm talking about." Wilson told Jones that CMS would not bring Jones on board with dreadlocks, terminating the job offer.

In their suit, the EEOC claimed that this was a violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964's Title VII, arguing that dreadlocks are a "racial characteristic" that have been historically used to stereotype African-Americans as "not team players" and as unfit for the workplace. Therefore, claiming that dreadlocks do not fit a grooming policy is based on these stereotypes and inherently discriminatory, as dreadlocks are a hairstyle "physiologically and culturally associated" with African-Americans.

The court of appeals disagreed, ruling that CMS's "race-neutral grooming policy" was not discriminatory as hairstyles, while "culturally associated with race," are not "immutable physical characteristics." In essence, traits in a person's appearance that are tied to their culture but are otherwise changeable are not protected and can be used to deny job offers.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act has been routinely interpreted by the courts to only protect against "immutable characteristics" and not cultural practices. In Garcia v. Gloor, the courts ruled against the plaintiff, arguing that being fired for speaking Spanish at work despite their employers English-only policy did not violate Title VII.

Restrictions against dreadlocks have also been implemented in schools. This past July, Attica Scott, whose daughter is a student at Butler Traditional High School in Louisville, Kentucky, tweeted the dress code distributed by the school, which specifically prohibited "dreadlocks, cornrows, and twists."

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A black doctor has accused Delta Air Lines of discrimination after a flight attendant allegedly shooed her away from a passenger in need of medical attention and said "actual physicians" were needed.

Delta said in a statement Friday afternoon that the airline is investigating the incident.

Dr. Tamika Cross, an OBGYN resident at Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital in Houston, wrote in a Facebook post that she was on a flight from Detroit last week when someone two rows ahead her of starting screaming for help.

"I naturally jumped into Doctor mode as no one else was getting up," she wrote on Sunday in the account that has been shared more than 35,000 times.

But as she was about to stand, Cross said a flight attendant told everyone to stay calm — the man was just suffering from a night terror. Minutes later, the flight attendant yelled for a physician on board, Cross said.

Cross raised her hand to get the flight attendant's attention, but her help was rejected, she said.

"She said to me 'oh no sweetie put ur hand down, we are looking for actual physicians or nurses or some type of medical personnel, we don't have time to talk to you,'" Cross wrote. "I tried to inform her that I was a physician but I was continually cut off by condescending remarks."

As the overhead speaker called for physicians on board to alert the flight attendants, Cross said she pressed her button, staring at the flight attendant who had just cast her aside.

"She said 'oh wow you're an actual physician? I reply yes. She said 'let me see your credentials. What type of Doctor are you? Where do you work? Why were you in Detroit?'" Cross wrote.

She added: "Please remember this man is still in need of help and she is blocking my row from even standing up while Bombarding me with questions."

Finally, Cross said a "seasoned" white man approached and told the flight attendant he was a physician as well. Without asking for his credentials, the flight attendant immediately accepted his help, Cross said.

"Mind blown. Blood boiling," she wrote.

Delta said three medical professionals offered help on the flight, but only one provided credentials, "and that is the doctor who was asked to assist thecustomer onboard. In addition, paramedics met the flight to assist the customer further."

Later on, the flight attendant started asking Cross for input on how to help the unresponsive man, who was showing signs of improvement, Cross said. She added that the flight attendant had also apologized to her several times and offered her SkyMiles.

"I kindly refused," Cross wrote. "I don't want SkyMiles in exchange for blatant discrimination. Whether this was race, age, gender discrimination, it's not right. She will not get away with this....and I will still get my skymiles."

Delta said it is "in the process of conducting a full investigation" into the incident.

"We are troubled by any accusations of discrimination and take them very seriously. The experience Dr. Cross has described is not reflective of Delta's culture or of the values our employees live out every day," the company said in a statement.

Cross, meanwhile, told NBC News in a phone interview Thursday night she thinks the flight attendant could benefit from sensitivity training.

"Someone's life was on the line," she said, noting that the outcome could have been much worse. "Luckily the man was okay." 

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