Please join us at the Climate Convergence for People, Planet and Peace over Profit, Sept. 19-21. Come to NYC or bring Convergence to your community by holding a solidarity event wherever you are.
Pushing back against a wave of legislative and judicial action seen as targeting the rights of women, the grassroots organization “We Are Woman” will lead a Constitutional Day Rally in Washington on Saturday, September 13th, launching the return of a demand for the ERA to fully enfranchise women into the United States Constitution. The organizers have included a special tribute to military women and are expecting thousands of supporters from across the nation to attend the rally scheduled from 9:30am-4pm on the west lawn of the Capitol. The rally comes just weeks ahead of the fall elections in which women are projected to be the key voting demographic.
Bringing Equitable Participation into Sustainable Development Decisions
Initiative for Equality is calling for more equitable participation in the discussions and decisions surrounding sustainable development. The United Nations is in the process of adopting new Sustainable Development Goals to supplant the Millennium Development Goals which expire in 2015. Initiative for Equality, or IfE, is a global network of civil society groups and individuals advocating for greater social, economic and political equality. IfE’s global Field Hearings project will be presented at the UN’s DPI NGO conference at UN HQ in New York this week.
On August 9 we will plan how to grow a unified struggle for social justice that codifies our movement demands and builds a Constitution with a foundation of human rights, social justice, solidarity, and ecological wisdom!
A People’s Movement Assembly is a gathering of people who come together to identify community issues, generate solutions, and commit to actions.
It can be argued that our economic troubles began long before the crisis of 2008. But let’s use that as a starting point anyway as we consider the causes of the family homelessness crisis that has arisen in in Washington, DC. I’d read about the failure of Bear Stearns and how it was purchased by JP Morgan Chase in the spring of 2008. Over the next seven months, I would read about other investment banks whose names I’d either never heard or that just didn’t mean anything to me previously – names such as Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch (whose bull-silhouette commercials were etched into my memory during childhood) and Morgan Stanley. But the depth of the crisis didn’t “hit home” for me until mid-October when I read an e-mail announcing a special meeting at DC’s City Hall to address immediate cuts to the Dept. of Human Services budget for FY 2009 with us being two weeks into that fiscal year.
On Thursday, May 22nd we demanded that the 19 workers from Kensington who painted St Ives Apartments in the northeast were paid their hard earned wages. They painted every room and closets on several units of a huge complex but when it came time to be paid for their work, they became victims of wage theft. Due to this, people were unable to pay their bills, keep their electric on, or even attend a friends funeral. In the end with everyone’s support we were able to win back the wages of all 19 workers! Thank you to all who supported us!
On March 18th 2014, the Lott family suddenly lost their home due to a house fire. After only receiving shelter from The American Red Cross for three days when they were supposed to receive 30 days, they now have no where to stay. Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign (PPEHRC) heard about their situation and is advocating for their right to housing. After spending over 3 hours at Appletree Family Center on Monday, March 24th, the family was told there was no shelter available and they were sent away. We even had to take three of the children out of school during an important PSSA standardized testing week because the office would not allow them to be processed without the children present. This is detrimental to their educational success and is interrupting crucial preparation time.
I was blessed to have the opportunity to join PPERHC for their Alternative Spring Break. In both the social justice and environmental movements today, I am constantly troubled by the disconnect between those affected by inequality and injustice and those who attempt to respond to it. PPERHC is a powerful example where this gap is closed. Poor people around the country are effected on a daily basis, directly or indirectly by the lack of responsibility that the government and large corporations take for the communities whose space they exploit. Not everyone feels able to stand up to these injustices. Many are able to put class war, drug war, resource war on the back burner-as if there are other more important issues, as if these issues will only effect us in the future.
Every Spring, PPEHRC hosts an Alternative Spring Break to engage students in economic justice and human rights issues. As an alternative spring break participant, students have the opportunity to learn about and participate in foreclosure defense, urban farming, food distributions, anti-homelessness activism, community organizing, and preparation for the third US Social Forum, to be hosted in Philadelphia.