• Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Before President Trump signed an executive order Wednesday to reverse the administration's family separation policy, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) attacked several airlines that said they would not knowingly work with the federal government in cases of transporting children separated from their parents at the border.DHS Press Secretary Tyler Q. Houlton lashed out on Twitter, accusing the airlines of "buckling to a false media narrative."American Airlines acknowledged an existing contract with the federal government, but the airline said it does not know who the government flies nor their purpose for traveling."We have no knowledge that the federal government has used American to transport children who have been separated from their parents due to the recent immigration policy, but we would be extremely disappointed to learn that is the case," American Airlines said in a statement."We have therefore requested the federal government to immediately refrain from using American for the purpose of transporting children who have been separated from their families due to the current immigration policy. We have no desire to be associated with separating families, or worse, to profit from it."Southwest Airlines and United Airlines released similar responses. The carriers stated being unaware of any previous occurrences but asked the government to no longer use their flights to transport immigrant children."We have contacted federal officials to inform them that they should not transport immigrant children on United aircraft who have been separated from their parents," United CEO Oscar Munoz said.Frontier Airlines also said they would not knowingly engage in transporting separated children.Delta Airlines released a statement after the president signed the executive order.The Georgia-based airline said "recent reports of families being separated are disheartening and do not align with Delta’s core values," but it's pleased with the executive order.
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  • Joe Marcus/Twitter(NEW YORK) -- A group of passengers aboard a Southwest Airlines flight from New York's LaGuardia Airport to Dallas, Texas, is suing the airline over an emergency landing that followed a fatal engine explosion.Southwest flight 1380 landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 17 after an engine exploded about 20 minutes into the flight at an altitude of 32,500 feet, causing Jennifer Riordan to be nearly sucked out of the plane. She died after being pelted by metal fragments.Riordan’s family is not part of the lawsuit, which was filed in Manhattan State Supreme Court by nine of her fellow passengers on Tuesday. The plaintiffs claim they “were confronted with their greatest fear, the overwhelming horror of being trapped in a plane about to crash.”One plaintiff, Joe Arenas, is the husband of another passenger, Cindy Arenas, alleges in the lawsuit that he “suffered the loss of consortium of his wife, plaintiff Cindy Arenas, due to the devastating impact upon their marital relationship.”The lawsuit claims negligence and names the following defendents: Southwest, Boeing and three companies involved in the building of the plane's engine.“Southwest Airlines negligently failed in its duty to provide the highest degree of care for its passengers whose lives were at risk,” according to the lawsuit. “Southwest Airlines negligently failed to reasonably monitor, inspect, test service, maintain and repair the aircraft and engine.”Southwest told ABC News: “We do not comment on pending litigations.”
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- AMC Theatres introduced a new subscription-based program on Wednesday aimed at giving MoviePass some competition.AMC Stubs A-List, which rolls out June 26, will allow members to see three movies each week for a monthly fee of $19.95.Each subscription comes with a three-month commitment, and permits users to make advance reservations and see movies in all formats, including 3D and IMAX."We believe that our current and future loyal guests will be interested in this type of program, as AMC Stubs A-List rewards guests with something that no one else offers: the very best of AMC, including IMAX, Dolby Cinema and RealD 3D up to three times per week, for one simple, sustainable price," AMC Theatres CEO and president Adam Aron said in a statement obtained by CNN Money.The comment has been interpreted to be a dig at MoviePass, which was originally founded in 2011 and has been seen as a major disruptor for the movie business. Currently, it offers two plans: one that costs $9.95 per month and allows users to see a new 2D film every day, or a $7.95 per month version, for which users may see three 2D movies per month. According to the company, MoviePass is accepted at more than 91 percent of theaters nationwide, including AMC Theatres.However, there have been questions raised recently about the sustainability of MoviePass' business model. Variety reported that the company pays full price for tickets and then discounts them. In April, the company's majority owner, Helios and Matheson Analytics, acknowledged in a regulatory filing that there were doubts about MoviePass' ability to stay in business."MoviePass has incurred losses since its inception and has a present need for additional funding. These factors raise substantial doubt about the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern," the document reads."If we are unable to obtain sufficient amounts of additional capital, we may be required to reduce the scope of the Company’s planned growth or otherwise alter our business objectives and operations, which could harm our business, financial condition and operating results."The company wasted no time in taking its own jab at AMC Theatres on Wednesday. On its official Twitter page, MoviePass accuses AMC Theatres of "repeatedly" attempting to sabotage them while looking to turn a profit of its own."Heard AMC Theaters jumped on board the movie subscription train," the tweet reads. "Twice the price for 1/4 the theater network and 60% fewer movies. Thanks for making us look good AMC!" MoviePass added.
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  • John Moore/Getty Images(NEW YORK) --  In a little over four days, a fundraising campaign on Facebook has topped $9 million to help reunite undocumented families split up by the U.S. government at the Mexico border.The fundraiser page, "Reunite an immigrant parent with their child," was launched on Saturday by three former Facebook employees. As of Wednesday morning, more than 223,000 people had donated to the fund, which was fetching more than $2.2 million in donations a day. Several people donated $260,000 each. "We are collectively revulsed at what's happening to immigrant families on our southern border," the fund's organizers wrote the campaign's Facebook page.The page was launched by Silicon Valley power trio Malorie Lucich, and Dave and Charlotte Willner, who were among the original employees at Facebook and now work at Pinterest, the popular image-collecting site. The Willners also work at Airbnb.The goal of the fund is to raise $5 million.The money will go to the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, or RAICES, and provide legal aid for undocumented immigrant parents arrested on suspicion of crossing the border illegally.Bond for the parents arrested at the border has been set at a minimum of $1,500. Unlike in the criminal justice system, bail bond companies either do not help people in immigration proceedings or impose strict requirements, according to RAICES.President Trump and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen defended the administration's controversial immigration policies on Monday.As part of the "zero-tolerance" policy, federal prosecutors have been ordered to file criminal charges against any adult caught crossing the border illegally, including those traveling with minors. The children are being placed in the custody of the Department of Health and Human Services, and adults are apprehended by law enforcement.
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  • David Howells/Corbis/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Kate Spade New York will donate $1 million to suicide prevention groups after its founder's death by suicide earlier this month.“Kate Spade was a true fashion icon who brought joy to the lives of women around the world, and inspired women to live life to the fullest. We are dedicated to carrying on her legacy,” Anna Bakst, CEO of Kate Spade New York, said in a statement.“The outpouring of love on social media and in our shops from customers of all ages has been overwhelming and moving," she added. "It is such a beautiful reflection of how much Kate was loved.”Spade was found dead in her New York City apartment on June 5 by a housekeeper, police sources told ABC News. A suicide note was left at the scene, but police officials declined to disclose its contents. The New York City medical examiner officially ruled it a suicide on June 7.She leaves behind her husband, Andy Spade, and their 13-year-old daughter.The creative mind, known for her fun and eclectic style, started her namesake company in 1993 and grew it to become a massive fashion empire before she sold the remaining stock she owned in it in 2006.The Kate Spade New York Foundation will start with a $250,000 donation to the Crisis Text Line, a nonprofit organization proving free crisis support. It will also match all public donations to the Crisis Text Line between June 20 and June 29, up to $100,000.Spade's death shocked many in the fashion community, as well as women around the world who wore her name on their handbags for years, and shed a blinding light on the indiscriminate nature of suicide and depression.Suicide rates for white females increased 60 percent between 1999 and 2014. Middle-aged women, between ages 45 and 64, had the highest suicide rate among women in both 2014 and 1999, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.Just days after Spade's death, suicide was thrust into the spotlight again when beloved chef and television personality Anthony Bourdain was found dead in his hotel room in France, and local authorities ruled it a suicide. Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A report published by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) has found that nearly 311,000 coastal homes -- worth $117.5 billion -- are at risk of chronic flooding due to sea level rise over the next 30 years.The advocacy group said rising sea levels are a result of climate change as fossil fuel emissions warm the climate and melt ice caps.UCS determined these numbers by using government data and information from the online real estate company Zillow. Three sea level rise scenarios were devised by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. After analysis, the group was able to predict that the states with the most homes at high risk for flooding include Florida, with nearly 1 million homes; New Jersey, with 250,000 homes; and New York, with 143,000 homes.UCS reported that damage from rising sea levels could have "staggering economic impacts." Homeowners may see property values decline, physical damage to property structures or have to pay more for insurance."With no obvious option for reversing that trend, some might choose to abandon their homes and allow banks to foreclose on their mortgages," the UCS website reads. "Banks holding these risky mortgages on devalued properties could then find their financial position adversely affected."The report indicated that the number of homes that will be affected does not include new homes, future developments or infrastructures such as airports, roads and buildings.ABC Affiliate WFTS-TV in Tampa Bay, Florida, spoke with coastal homeowner Kim Caswell, who said the tide has been rising each year for three decades."The flooding, particularly at the end of the street, used to happen once every month or two. And now, down there it's flooded almost every day," Caswell said.Just last week, NASA reported having found that ice losses from Antarctica had tripled since 2012 and that, as a result, global sea levels have increased by 0.12 inches."The risks of rising seas are profound," according to the UCS website. "Many of the challenges they bring are inevitable. And our time to act is running out. There is no simple solution, but we do still have opportunities to limit the harms."Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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