Takin’ Care of Business

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Written by Theresa-Marie Wilson

Theresa-Maria Wilson has been a journalist covering the North Coast and South County area for over 20 years. She is also the founder of Cat Noir CC and is currently working on a novel.

April 7, 2022

Heart Castle Reservations Open

Folks looking to tour Hearst Castle can once again make reservations to visit the landmark that is expected to re-open on May 11.

The Castle closed to the public following a storm in late January 2021 resulting in damage to the road that connects the Hearst Castle Visito Center to Hearst Castle. 

California State Park staff and the Heart Corporation worked together to complete the project to fix 27 culverts along the 2.25-mile, upper one-way section of Hearst Castle Road. 

Make your reservation at hearstcastle.org or by calling 800-444-4445. Tickets will be available for purchase at the Visitor Center, but advance reservations are strongly recommended.

Hospitals Receive LGBTQ+ Recognition

French Hospital Medical Center and Marian Regional Medical Center were recently recognized as an LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality Leader and Top Performer in the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2022 Healthcare Equality Index (HEI). French attained the “Leader in LGBTQ+ Healthcare” status, receiving the maximum score in each reporting section. Marian is ranked as a “Top Performer” due to its adherence to the Ethical and Religious Directives. 

In the 2022 report, 496 facilities earned HRC’s “LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality Leader” designation, earning an overall score of 100. Another 251 facilities earned the “Top Performer” designation with scores between 80 and 95 points and at least partial credit in each section. With 82% of participating facilities scoring 80 points or more, health care facilities are demonstrating concretely that they are going beyond the basics when it comes to developing, adopting, and implementing policies and practices in LGBTQ+ care. French and Marian are among dozens of Dignity Health care sites recognized in the 2022 HEI.

The HEI is the nation’s foremost benchmarking survey of healthcare facilities on policies and practices dedicated to the equitable treatment and inclusion of their LGBTQ+ patients, visitors, and employees. 

The HEI evaluates and scores healthcare facilities on detailed criteria falling under four central pillars:
• Foundational Policies and Training in LGBTQ+ Patient-Centered Care;
• LGBTQ+ Patient Services and Support;
• Employee Benefits and Policies; and, 
• Patient and Community Engagement.

Carizo Plain Photo Contest

Ecologistics, Inc. is holding its first Carrizo Plain Photo Contest.  The contest is open to all photographers who love to photograph the Carrizo Plain.  Contestants may submit up to three photographs in three categories – flora, fauna and open. Entry fee is $5 and the deadline to submit is April 10, 2022.

Prizes of $100 first place, $50, second place and $25 third place will be awarded in each category. Winners will also receive a 12×18 digital print of their winning image and will be honored at a reception at the Costa Gallery in Los Osos at a date to be announced in May.   Judges for the contest are professional photographers Brittany App, Donald Quintana, and Michael Costa. 

The photo contest is sponsored by The Coastal Awakening and is being held in conjunction with the bi-annual Carrizo Colloquium, a celebration of the biodiversity of the Carrizo Plain.  The Colloquium takes place on Friday, May 6 at the Atascadero Library. 

For more information about the photo contest and to enter your photographs, go to https://bit.ly/3u1BnIk.

New Scam Warning

The Sesloc Federal Credit Union sent out an email warning customers about a new scam that everyone should be aware of.

“Recently there has been a rise in phishing and browser-based scams locally on the Central Coast,” the emall read. “Please beware of emails, text messages or browser ad pop-ups that appear to be from Microsoft, with headlines or subject lines such as “MS Security Defender” or “Windows Defender – Security Warning. 

“The alerts assert your PC or computer is infected or has been hacked. It is a fake warning sent by fraudsters designed to scare you into downloading malware or make you share sensitive personal information such as Online Banking passwords and accounts. The information could later be used in financial fraud or identity theft.”

If you receive a suspicious email, text message or browser pop-up ad: 

• DO NOT click on any links.
• DO NOT contact the company from a link or phone number provided in the message.
• DO delete the emails, texts and others like them.

Suspicious email, text or pop-up ads can be reported to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

Are you or a neighbor Taking Care of Business? Submit your awesome local efforts for publication here. Is your business supporting our community? Maybe you’re launching a new business, or you’re making updates to your current business model, or re-opening. Or perhaps you have a job opportunity, or have been doing some volunteer work, or are collaborating with another business or a non-profit. Or maybe you know someone who is. Fill out our online form at EsteroBayNews.com.

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