Last Call for 12.6.21 — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics

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A digest of the day's politics and policy while the bartender refreshes your drink

Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.

First Shot

Planned Parenthood of South, East and North Florida announced Monday that Lillian Tamayo will be stepping down as President and CEO in March.

“I have had no greater honor in my life than to lead our affiliate of Planned Parenthood in Florida these past 22 years. During that time, we have made huge strides, providing greater access to health services for more patients and defending reproductive rights for all Floridians,” she said in a Monday news release.

“I’m so proud of the progress we’ve made on behalf of our supporters and the tens of thousands of people Planned Parenthood health centers serve across Florida each year. The persistent threats to reproductive freedom in our state and country will require sustained grassroots activism, and I am comforted knowing that Planned Parenthood is in a great place to continue successfully advocating for its core mission and principles.”

During her tenure at PPSENFL, the organization has expanded to include more health centers, patients served, members, supporters, donors, and activists than at any other time in its history.

“As someone who has served in a leadership position with Planned Parenthood and fought for reproductive rights both inside and outside the halls of the Capitol, I can say unequivocally that every Floridian who cares about their freedom owes a debt of gratitude to Lillian Tamayo,” said Democratic Rep. Anna V. Eskamani, who served as Senior Director for Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida before her election in 2018.

“During her tenure with Planned Parenthood of South, East and North Florida, the organization has seen a more than fivefold increase in patients getting the care they need. When she took the helm, Planned Parenthood had four health centers in Florida and now there are 11. Under her stewardship as the first Latina CEO in the federation, Planned Parenthood has greatly expanded access to reproductive care for all Floridians and especially among marginalized communities and populations.”

PPSENFL is currently in the process of selecting Tamayo’s replacement.

“Floridians can rest assured that we will identify and secure the best candidate in the country to fill the very large shoes Lillian will leave behind when she departs,” said Alexis McGill Johnson, president & CEO of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

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The holidays are here, but not everyone is feeling the cheer.

For many, the season ushers in the “holiday blues” — a period marked by increased feelings of depression, loneliness, anxiety and sadness.

While there is no tried-and-true cure for the holiday blues, an association representing the seven managing entities that oversee the state’s behavioral health safety net system have some tips for people who are feeling down.

“Whether it’s from dealing with unrealistically high expectations to create a perfect holiday gathering, a lack of closeness with family or strained relationships, the holiday season can be a difficult time for countless Floridians,” said Natalie K. Kelly, CEO of the Florida Association of Managing Entities. “It’s especially important to take care of your mental well-being during the holidays and seek the help of a counselor if you need it.”

The Florida Association of Managing Entities said getting exercise is one of the best ways to combat the holiday blues. It also recommended limiting or abstaining from alcohol, which can amplify anxiety, sadness and depression.

The group urged Floridians to set realistic expectations of themselves and to seek help from a mental health counselor if the holiday blues become overwhelming. Those who need help connecting with mental health resources in their community can call 211.

Florida Association of Managing Entities members work with a network of over 300 behavioral health care providers who deliver services to over 300,000 of Florida’s most vulnerable residents, including children, expectant mothers, veterans and the chronically homeless.

Providers meet patients’ diverse needs with “wraparound services” that not only address mental health issues and substance abuse, but also assist with housing, transportation and employment. Community boards administer, manage, and ensure accountability of state and federal funds for behavioral health services.

Evening Reads

Rule to implement Florida law nixing employer vaccine mandates is underway” via Christine Jordan Sexton of Florida Politics

‘If I run, he won’t’: Donald Trump downplays Ron DeSantis’ 2024 hopes” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics

Pandemic stress weighs heavily on Gen Z: AP-NORC, MTV poll” via Collin Binkley and Hannah Fingerhut of The Associated Press

As COVID-19 persists, nurses are leaving staff jobs — and tripling their salaries as travelers” via Lenny Bernstein of The Washington Post

‘The city will help us.’ Miami Beach took cash, fast-tracked tower on Champlain’s edge” via Aaron Leibowitz, Ben Conarck, Sarah Blaskey and Nicholas Nehamas of the Miami Herald

Joe Biden’s pre-K plan might not be as ‘universal’ as he hopes” via Fabiola Cineas of Vox

What’s really behind global vaccine hesitancy” via Olga Khazan of The Atlantic

Anti-bullying page, including pro-LGBTQ links, removed from education department website” via Renzo Downey of Florida Politics

Companies linked to Russian ransomware hide in plain sight” via Andrew E. Kramer of The New York Times

Lauren Book files bill pushing further reforms for infant compensation program” via Ryan Nicol of Florida Politics

Broward elections supervisor: ‘Voters should decide elections, not the Postal Service’” via Anne Geggis of Florida Politics

There’s more to the Junior League flub on canceled mayoral ball” via Peter Schorsch of Florida Politics

Quote of the Day

“Vulnerable youth deserve better than a DeSantis administration intent on putting them in harm’s way in order to score cheap political points.” — Equality Florida Executive Director Nadine Smith, on DOE’s removal of an anti-bullying portal with pro-LGBTQ links.

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