Verizon Contract note: Verizon Street Heat committee meets Thursday September 29, 9:30-11am, at IBEW Local 2324, 281 Cottage St, Springfield.
Leafleting at Verizon Wireless stores is normally Wednesdays, noon-2pm and 5-7pm, and Saturdays, noon-2pm. Other events in planning, including a flash mob.
It’s best to let us know in advance that you are coming to Vz-related events, as circumstances may lead to cancellations and we’ll let you know.
Info: 827-0301, email@example.com.
Watch for separate emails.
CAMPAIGN FOR OUR COMMUNITIES
10:30-11:45am, Central Labor Council, 640 Page Blvd, Springfield. The Massachusetts Campaign for Our Communities supports "An Act to Invest in Our Communities", a bill that would help support the kinds of programs that the people of Massachusetts value. The Springfield CfOC committee is working to get the Springfield City Council to adopt a resolution in support of the bill, building support for "An Act to Invest" among candidates who are running in the upcoming Springfield election, and asking Sen. Candaras to host a public hearing in Springfield this fall on "An Act to Invest." Info: Linda Stone, Massachusetts Senior Action Council, 413-543-2334, firstname.lastname@example.org.
We invite you to join the new list for Western Mass. supporters to organize for passage: To subscribe, send a blank email to email@example.com or go to http://lists.wmjwj.org/mailman/listinfo/cfoc.
Tuesday September 27
SAVE AMERICA'S POSTAL SERVICE: RALLIES ACROSS THE NATION
4-5:30pm, Rep. Neal’s office, 300 State St, Springfield, and Rep. Olver’s offices, 57 Suffolk St, Holyoke, and 78 Center Street, Pittsfield. Members of the Postal Service's four employee unions will join forces with community members at the district offices of members of the House of Representatives, to thank those members who have signed on as co-sponsors of H.R. 1351, and to encourage those who have not signed on as co-sponsors to do so. Click here to learn more. Click here to visit the official event website. Event locations: http://www.saveamericaspostalservice.org/map-list.html#Massachusetts.
Sign a petition to Congress for H.R. 1351 at http://www.change.org/petitions/dont-let-the-usps-be-destroyed.
The USPS lost $20 billion in the last five years and the Postmaster General wants to lay off 20% of the postal workforce, close 12% of the post offices, gut postal workers' health and pension benefits, and eliminating Saturday delivery. But 100% of the loss is due to an unnecessary 2006 Congressional mandate to pre-fund retiree health benefits 75 years in advance within 10 years. That’s prefunding benefits for workers who haven’t even been born yet!
H.R. 1351 (or an Executive Order of the President) would fix this fake financial crisis. But instead it’s being used in a blatant attempt to subvert and circumvent collective bargaining, as National Association of Letter Carriers President Fredric V. Rolando has explained. And since the United States Postal Service is the second-largest civilian employer in the United States, destroying the service will have a devastating effect on the already embattled economy. Info: NALC Branch 46 President Mike Harazmus, 737-0640 or 495-2575, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday September 27 (Fourth Tuesday)
HAMPSHIRE/FRANKLIN CENTRAL LABOR COUNCIL
5:30-7pm, Northampton Fire Station Community Room, 26 Carlon Drive at King St/Route 5, Northampton (587-1148). Community and labor activist guests are welcome, but RSVP to Pres. Fiore Grassetti, 877-725-0357, email@example.com.
Tuesday September 27 & Wednesday October 5
OBSERVATION OF BANNED BOOKS WEEK
6-7pm, Tuesday at Sixteen Acres and Wednesday at Pine Point Branch Libraries, Springfield. American Library Association's Banned Books Week is observed in libraries across the country every year during the last week of September. Volunteers for each evening will sit blindfolded for an hour (or maybe less) reading a book which is on ALA's list of challenged books. This installation will demonstrate that the freedom to read is a freedom libraries cherish and defend. Info, to volunteer: Doris Weiner Madsen, 413-263-6855 or 413-263-6858, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday September 28
KICK-OFF TALK FOR HCC SOCIALIST CLUB
11am-12:15pm, Donahue 258, Holyoke Community College, 303 Homestead Ave, Holyoke. Guest speaker Ashley Smith will present “A Case for Socialism." He is a Burlington VT activist and member of the International Socialist Organization and on the editorial board of the International Socialist Review. He is a member of the National Writers Union and has written for Znet, Dissident Voice, CounterPunch, and Socialist Worker.org. He helped form the Burlington Anti-War Coalition. He has participated in the World Social Forum in France, Greece, and Ecuador. He has toured in both Switzerland and Australia lecturing on US politics. Info: David Woodsome, email@example.com.
Wednesday September 28 (Fourth Wednesday)
GREENWORK: THE WESTERN MASS GREEN ECONOMY WORKING GROUP
12:30-2pm, Brown Bag Lunch at Noon, Pioneer Valley AFL-CIO Hall, 640 Page Boulevard, Springfield (732-7970). GreenWork consists of advocates for a Green Economy which serves local communities; guarantees workers' rights to organize; and promotes community-owned sustainable projects. GreenWork is working to create a strong movement of labor and community organizers, realtors and entrepreneurs, educators and workforce development folks, environmental experts and ordinary people with asthma, etc., to create a “high road” green economy that supports workers’ rights and community benefits.
Note: 11am: The Greenwork Board of Directors will meet to ratify our Green Economy Principles, copy available from firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions, comments, or concerns about the Principles, we invite you to voice them in advance of the Board meeting by posting to the GreenWork list or sending them to Mary Vogel, email@example.com.
Subscribe to the GreenWork listserve at http://lists.gaiahost.coop/mailman/listinfo/greenwork or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday September 28 (Fourth Wednesday)
MASS SENIOR ACTION COUNCIL – WESTERN MASS
1-3:30pm, Hobby Club, 309 Chestnut St (enter off Franklin off Liberty; behind YMCA), Springfield (739-4874). Light refreshments, 50/50 raffle. MSAC was founded in 1981 to promote the rights, well being, and dignity of all people, particularly vulnerable senior citizens. Open to people of all ages. MSAC has a proud history of effective community organizing and legislative advocacy on health care, housing, transportation, and other issues.
On the agenda: HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT/HEALTHY AGING: What do clean air, water, and soil have to do with aging? Why should we be concerned about our environment as we get older? What does the recent tornado clean-up have to do with our health?
A Community Discussion with:
Chris Rogers, UMass School of Public Health
Patrick Sullivan, Director, Springfield Parks, Buildings & Recreation Management
Lynn Rose, City of Springfield, Air Quality Specialist
Mike Florio, WMass Coalition on Occupational Health & Safety
Nick Fyntrilakis, Chair, DevelopSpringfield
Thursday September 29
BUS RIDERS UNION ORGANIZING COMMITTEE
3:30-5pm at the Central Labor Council, 640 Page Blvd, Springfield (get directions here). Community and labor organizers are exploring mass transit issues and forming a PVTA bus riders union. Info: Richard Gardner, (413) 732-8041, email@example.com.
Thursday September 29
BEN HEWITT: MAKING SUPPER SAFE
7pm, Gamble Auditorium, Mount Holyoke College, Route 116, South Hadley. Ben Hewitt will read from and sign copies of Making Supper Safe: One Man’s Quest to Learn the Truth about Food Safety, his scientific exploration of food safety, the copious recalls, and how people are affected by contaminated foods. Most centrally, he looks at how the food production system in the United States can become safer for all involved. In addition to writing Ben runs a 40-acre farm with his family in Cabot VT. Info: Odyssey Bookshop, 534-7307 or 800-540-7307; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.odysseybks.com.
REVOLUTION 101: THE CASE FOR SOCIALISM
7-10pm, Campus Center room 905, UMass Amherst. International Socialist Organization has invited Ashley Smith (see 9/28,11am) to discuss the basic theory and origins behind one of history's most influential political philosophies, from the analytical perspective of Marx, what the goals of socialism are, and the societies socialists envision, to this year’s inspiring movements - Tunisia and Egypt to Greece and Spain to Madison, Wisconsin. Socialists believe capitalism is just one stage of human development and that another world is possible. Info: Ben Taylor, email@example.com.
Thursday September 29
WESTERN MASS STUDENT LABOR ACTION PROJECT (SLAP)
7:30pm, room TBA, Campus Center, UMass Amherst. Items for the agenda:
Responsible Employer Policy at Umass
Student Health Care at Umass
GROW and local organizing trainings
Supporting Verizon Workers
CIW Fair Food campaign at Stop & Shop and Trader Joe’s
Worker's rights campaigns on campus
Please send in suggestions and ideas - this is about the issues and campaigns you or your group are pursuing and/or want to work on. Info: Patrick Burke, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday September 30
TAKE BACK OUR CITIES! HISTORIC MARCH & RALLY
2pm, Boston Common Band Stand. 11am: Bus from Springfield Plaza, 1225 Liberty St. Big banks are destroying our communities! Big businesses are killing our jobs and our environment! We can't afford to sit on the sidelines while the banks make things worse! It’s time to take back our cities!
Springfield No One Leaves will mobilize a brigade of buses from Western Mass. to join with thousands from the national organization Right to the City (RTTC). We need you to come and join us. Reserve your seat on the bus by email: email@example.com or call Candejah Pink, 413-342-1804 or 347-385-8049. Info: Springfield No One Leaves/Nadie Se Mude Campaign, 413-342-1804, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.springfieldnooneleaves.org.
Saturday October 1
THE WAR ON THE WORKING CLASS
St Francis College, 180 Remsen St, Brooklyn NY. Union for Radical Political Economics (URPE) conference aims to bring together people actively involved in resisting the multi-pronged attack which is currently taking place with radical political economists who can share their theoretical understanding of the issues. Latest program: www.urpe.org/conf/brooklyn/brookprog.html. Register: http://urpeatbrooklyn2011.eventbrite.com/.
Sunday October 2
PVP FOOD FUND FIESTA!
1-5pm, Blessed Sacrament Church, 27 Waverly St, Springfield. $10 at the door - does not include food. Your donation is tax-deductible. Support the Immigrant Food Fund, which provides monthly food bundles to over 200 individuals in the immigrant worker community, especially throughout the winter months where work is scarce. Enjoy authentic Mexican food, live music, raffles, games, and more! Info: Maria Cuerda, (413) 219-1713, email@example.com.
Sunday October 2
PROGRESSIVE MASSACHUSETTS KICK-OFF
2-6pm, Lasell College, Newton (near Mass Pike, Rt 128). Are you frustrated that progressive state legislation - like universal health care, fair taxation, and the bottle bill - never sees the light of day? Do you despair that your individual efforts, or even the efforts of your local activist group, don’t carry enough clout to have a statewide impact? Do you want to be part of a unified, statewide, grassroots movement that can make Massachusetts a model of progressive policy? Progressive Mass. is a new, statewide, diverse organization built from the ground up by organizers and activists like you, who believe that to create meaningful changes in public policy, progressives in every corner of the state must work together to hold elected officials accountable to progressive values. Progressive Mass. is open to anyone in Massachusetts who wants to see their progressive values turned into action, and will work closely with existing progressive organizations to ensure the success of our efforts. Progressive Mass. is looking to use your insights, talents, opinions, hard work, anger, frustration, hope, idealism, and determination to make Massachusetts stand up for the kind of progressive policies that can make us proud to be Massachusetts residents. Reserve your place at the meeting here. Info: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sunday October 2
NATIONAL PRIORITIES PROJECT ANNUAL FALL PARTY
5-8pm, The Log Cabin, Holyoke. Emcee: Bill Scher (Progressive Breakfast). Keynote Speaker: Ellen Miller (Sunlight Foundation), introduced by Randy Kehler (noted Peace Activist). Frances Crowe Awardees: The Raging Grannies. Info: Sara Lockard Silvia, 413-584-9556, email@example.com, www.nationalpriorities.org.
Monday October 3 (First Monday)
PDA WESTERN MASS CHAPTER
Tuesday October 4
MECEU LEGISLATIVE HEARING
9am, State House, Boston. The new Massachusetts Early Childhood Educators Union (MECEU) filed legislation last winter – H1671 – to allow early educators (including director/owners) the right to form a non-traditional union that will bargain collectively with the state over compensation, benefits, and professional development, work life elements that state regulations impact. Every MECEU activist and supporter is needed on deck for this important hearing, which will help determine whether early educators will have a collective voice in the decisions that affect their field.
· If you're sick and tired of being treated like a babysitter—
· If you think early educators deserve higher pay, better benefits, and more respect—
· If you think decisions about this field should be made with early educators and not to them—
Then take action by coming to the State House and telling our elected officials why early educators in Massachusetts need a non-traditional union! Click here to register for the Lobby Day and Legislative Hearing! MECEU is an historic collaboration of the American Federation of Teachers Massachusetts and the Massachusetts Teachers Association. Info: 877-99-MECEU, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday October 4
MARCH & RALLY FOR JOBS & WORKERS RIGHTS
3:30-6pm, meet at Marshall Street next to the Social Security Office and march to Main Street and gather at City Hall for a rally with music and speeches, North Adams. Called by the April 4th Coalition, Western Mass. Jobs with Justice’s newest member. Let’s make this a regional event! Info: Richard Dassatti, email@example.com. To carpool from Pioneer Valley: Jon Weissman, 413-827-0301, firstname.lastname@example.org.
FRANKLIN COUNTY WORKERS' RIGHTS COMMITTEE
7-8:30pm, Second Congregational Church, 16 Court Square, Greenfield. Organizing local solidarity for Franklin County workers and unions; nurses and other workers at Franklin Medical Center; Greenfield municipal employees; and statewide and national workers' rights campaigns.
Info, RSVP: 413-827-0301, email@example.com.
More events at AFSC Calendar.