Bits 'n' Pieces

Port Shares Job Postings in New Weekly Email

Looking for a job? The Port of Long Beach is making it easier to find open positions at the Harbor Department with a weekly Job Posting email delivered to your inbox. To receive the weekly job postings, go to polb.com/subscribe, enter your email address and choose the Jobs/Careers category.

Jobs at the Harbor Department can also be found at polb.com/jobs, along with jobs in other City of Long Beach departments. The weekly email highlights only open Harbor positions. Applications for our jobs are taken within our online system.

“Attracting top candidates for Harbor Department jobs is vital to the success of the Port,” said Port CEO Mario Cordero. “We’re pleased to make it more convenient for potential applicants to find our positions.”

“The Harbor Department is a great place to work,” said Long Beach Harbor Commission President Bobby Olvera Jr. “We have good-paying jobs in dozens of fields – engineering, maintenance, administration – and we want to make our postings easily accessible to the community.”

The Port of Long Beach only offers jobs at the Harbor Department; this does not include jobs within terminals (including longshore workers) or with shipping or trucking companies. Information on where those jobs can be found, along with training and apprenticeship programs, is also available at polb.com/jobs.

Those signing up for the job postings email will receive a copy of the email immediately on sign-up and will then receive emails weekly on Sundays at 4 p.m. Pacific. Subscribers can opt out at any time.

The Port of Long Beach is a global leader in green port initiatives and top-notch customer service, moving cargo with reliability, speed and efficiency. As the premier U.S. gateway for trans-Pacific trade, the Port handles trade valued at $200 billion annually and supports 2.6 million jobs across the United States, including 575,000 in Southern California. In 2023, industry leaders named it “The Best West Coast Seaport in North America” for the fifth consecutive year. During the next 10 years, the Port is planning $2.2 billion in capital improvements aimed at enhancing capacity, competitiveness and sustainability.

Hospital in Partnership with The Toy Foundation

The Cherese Mari Laulhere Child Life Program at MemorialCare Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital Long Beach has been awarded a grant from The Toy Foundation to step up to the challenge of a nationwide crisis in children’s mental health. The grant will allow Child Life to create a pilot sensory intervention program to help children and teens in the emergency room who are experiencing sensory overstimulation.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, behavioral health concerns in children nationwide were growing, with 1 in 5 children experiencing mental health conditions every year, according to data from the Children’s Hospital Association. The pandemic exacerbated the issue, and Miller Children’s has seen a large increase in children with behavioral health concerns. The $18,862 grant from The Toy Foundation provides the Child Life Program with key resources to meet this growing need.

“We have seen a tremendous increase in children and teens in our emergency department who need sensory intervention to soothe them during a behavioral health emergency, or who are overwhelmed by the emergency department environment,” said Rita Goshert, director, Child Life, Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital. “This grant from The Toy Foundation will allow us to pilot a sensory program in the emergency department with the potential to expand it to other areas of the hospital.”

Children in emergency departments with mental/behavioral health concerns and/or with conditions like autism spectrum disorder, ADD, ADHD, Cerebral Palsy, anxiety, etc., may be more susceptible to being overstimulated. They often stay in the emergency department for long periods during their initial treatment and diagnosis, and the environment can be upsetting and overwhelming for any child, particularly ones with special sensory needs.

The Toy Foundation grant will allow Child Life to purchase special equipment designed to enable diversion and soothing for these young patients. Child Life will train emergency care teams to recognize when a child needs intervention using the resources purchased with grant funds, ensuring these interventions are available 24/7. A longer-term goal is to expand the program to other hospital departments.

“We are so thankful to The Toy Foundation for its generous gift that will allow us to meet a growing and urgent community need,” said Yair Katz, chief executive, Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital. “The service enabled by this grant reminds us of the crucial role that philanthropy plays in helping our hospital staff provide the extraordinary care they are renowned for.”

In 2023, Miller Children’s joined a nationwide collaborative effort that brings emergency department teams and pediatric mental health experts together to address the national mental health crisis among children. The initiative, called the Emergency Department Screening and Treatment Options for Pediatric Suicide Quality Improvement Collaborative (ED STOP Suicide QI Collaborative), was launched by the EMSC Innovation and Improvement Center in early 2023. Through this collaborative, Miller Children’s will share the sensory pilot program project with other hospitals to serve as a model for other programs.

City Settles Criminal Case of Housing Discrimination

Amber Family Partnership, an apartment rental company based in Rancho Palos Verdes, pleaded no contest in a criminal case stemming from discrimination against Section 8 tenants, the first case of its kind in Long Beach.

Under California law, landlords may not discriminate against tenants due to race, religion, disability, gender, or the receipt of assistance through a government program, such as the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program.

“We opened this case after a complaint about a landlord discriminating against a tenant who applied for a 1-bedroom apartment,” said City Prosecutor Doug Haubert. “An investigator confirmed the landlord would not consider persons with Section 8 housing vouchers, a clear violation of both state and local law.  We hope this case educates all landlords about the law and sends a message that housing discrimination is taken seriously.”

This was the first criminal case of housing discrimination filed in Long Beach. The case is the result of a unique Fair Housing Enforcement Pilot program, a partnership between the Long Beach City Prosecutor’s Office and the Long Beach Housing Authority, which might be the first pilot of its kind in California.

In addition to handling complaints of discrimination by landlords, the Housing Authority and the City Prosecutor investigate complaints of fraud committed by tenants and others.  The pilot program also includes education on fair housing laws, as well as resources to assist both landlords and tenants to know their rights and responsibilities.  A website (https://fairhousinglb.com/) was also created to help landlords and tenants understand and abide by the law.

The City of Long Beach also provides assistance to landlords who consider renting to subsidized tenants.  For such landlords, the city offers monetary incentives to cover leasing bonuses, security deposits, utility deposits, application fees, and damage mitigation or repairs.

Amber Family Partnership, based in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, is a Limited Partnership registered with the California Secretary of State.  The company owns and manages residential apartment complexes in Long Beach, Torrance and San Clemente.

In addition to pleading “no contest” to the misdemeanor charge, the case settlement requires the company to comply with all housing laws, make a $1,500 donation to a housing foundation that protects tenants’ rights, and both the company’s chief officer and its rental manager must complete Fair Housing Certificate Training.

The tenant who brought the complaint forward no longer needs housing, but as a condition of the plea the tenant will be contacted first when a unit own by the defendant becomes available in the future.

The charge in this case carries a maximum punishment of $1,000 fine and six months in county jail.  However, the violation was mitigated by the defendant’s cooperation in the case and taking responsibility immediately, as well as the lack of any prior misconduct. 

Primal Alchemy Catering Wins Excellence Award

Chef Paul and Dana Buchanan, founders and owners of Long Beach-based Primal Alchemy Catering were honored recently at Catersource/Special Events, a national conference for event professionals.

The Achievement in Catering Excellence (ACE) Sustainability Award, a new annual recognition, was presented to the Buchanans on Feb. 15 at the 2024 annual conference in Austin, Texas.

“In awarding Chef Paul and Dana Buchanan’s Primal Alchemy with the first Sustainability in Catering ACE award, we recognize a true partner in making our world a better place for future generations,” said Kathleen Stoehr, Informa Connect Director of Community Strategy.

Founded in 2001, Primal Alchemy Catering was established by the Buchanans to provide seasonal locally sourced food utilizing sustainable practices. In 2016, Primal Alchemy became an official California Certified Green Business, the first in Long Beach to attain this status. Ongoing commitment to environmentally friendly practices has also distinguished the Buchanans nationally in the event industry.

“We are especially honored to receive this award in its inaugural year,” said Chef Paul Buchanan. “As pioneers in sustainability for 23 years, we are pleased to have industry endorsement of this core value of our mission.”

In addition to applying ‘green’ concepts to all aspects of their catering business, Chef Paul and Dana Buchanan are active in community outreach, educating children as well as adults about the importance of sustainable practices.

Electric Bicycle Lending Library Program Launched

The City of Long Beach is launching the application period for its Electric Bicycle (E-Bike) Lending Library program, a new initiative that will allow residents to borrow E-bikes for up to three months at no cost. The program will provide education on E-bike technology, encourage E-bike ridership, and promote an active zero-emission mode of travel. In alignment with the City’s focus on equity, the program will allocate 24 of the E-bikes to residents who are enrolled in a qualifying federal or state assistance program and the remaining E-bikes will be available for all Long Beach residents. 

“Our new Electric Bicycle Lending Library is a bold step toward a more sustainable and equitable transportation system in Long Beach,’’ said Mayor Rex Richardson. “By providing our residents with the chance to experience the benefits of E-bikes firsthand, we’re not only promoting eco-friendly mobility but also fostering a sense of community and shared responsibility.’’

Through the Invitation to Bid (ITB) process, the City has selected and partnered with Propel Bikes to provide 35 E-bikes, including standard, cargo and tricycle models, as well as equipment such as helmets and bike locks for program participants. Propel Bikes will be an important partner in building the City’s multi-modal capacity through training, tools and technical assistance. 

Residents will be able to check out E-bikes from the E-Bike Lending Library via an application and selection process. Now through April 18, 2024, applications can be submitted online or via paper copies available in person at any Long Beach Public Library location. Applications are available in English, Spanish, Khmer and Tagalog. Applicants who meet eligibility requirements will be selected at random to participate in the first round of the program. Selected participants will be notified in May, and operator training and E-bike pick up will be scheduled soon thereafter. The applicant list will be used for additional lending rounds until the list is exhausted. For questions, please visit the program website or contact the team at GoActiveLB@longbeach.gov.

In alignment with the City’s 2030 strategic vision, Long Beach seeks to achieve a balanced, multi-modal transportation network that enhances connectivity, retains our community character, encourages active lifestyles, and enhances environmental sustainability by reducing gasoline consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. An equitable transportation system uses multiple modes of travel including walking, biking, use of motor vehicles, public transportation, and regional transportation access through rail and air transportation. All these modes of transportation are supported in Long Beach.

“This is an exciting new initiative that will provide residents with access to a new transportation option. Long Beach is well-known for being a bike-friendly community, and we are committed to further developing a multi-modal transportation network that improves connectivity, preserves our community’s unique character, and promotes active lifestyles,” said Public Works Director Eric Lopez.

The E-Bike Lending Library is made possible with funding from the Long Beach Recovery Act, a plan to fund economic and public health initiatives for Long Beach residents, workers, and businesses critically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Additional information about the Long Beach Recovery Act is available at longbeach.gov/recovery. The program also aligns with Goal 4 of Long Beach’s Racial and Reconciliation Initiative to improve health and wellness in the City by eliminating social and economic disparities where health outcomes are significantly below city averages.

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