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Organizing Lessons from Civil Rights Leader Ella Baker
ella baker.jpgElla Baker, who was born in North Carolina in 1905, was politicized and radicalized by the poverty of the Great Depression. She participated in self-help programs throughout the 30s and developed an understanding and respect for the process by which people take control over their own lives while also protesting injustices.

[This is an excerpt from an essay written by Chris Crass on organizing lessons to be learned from the life long revolutionary organizing work of Ella Baker.]
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03 Mar 2008 | Filed under: Commentary / Education : Environment : Gender : GLBT/Queer : Globalization : Human Rights : International : Labor : Media : Organizing : Politics : Race : Social Welfare : Technology : War and Militarism
The 11th Annual Homeless Radio Marathon
PROTV_voices_of_the_homeless.jpgThe 11th Annual Homelessness Marathon, a 14-hour national radio dialogue on poverty and housing in the US, will take place Wednesday night to Thursday morning, February 20-21. Originating this year in Nashville, the Marathon is a live, outdoor, broadcasting event featuring homeless people, advocates for the homeless and call-ins from the public. A broadcast booth is set up outside, with open mics for people who are out on the street in Nashville that night. The Marathon does not raise money for charity. Its mission is to raise consciousness, by covering a broad range of topics, speaking with experts, taking calls from around the country, and above all, by putting homeless people on the air directly.

LISTEN LIVE: At WMBR 88.1FM or via streaming at www.wmbr.org
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19 Feb 2008 | Filed under: News / Education : Human Rights : Media : Race : Social Welfare
End UMass Amherst Primate Testing
jaaws6-1.jpgProfessor Melinda Novak (UMass Amherst Psychology Department Chair) is currently well into a 14-year research project investigating Self-Injurious Behavior (SIB) in primates. To do so, she is exposing primates to stressful environments which result in primates committing acts of self mutilation though biting and other such activity.
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08 Feb 2008 | Filed under: News / Education : Environment : Organizing : Politics : Social Welfare : Technology
Bank Pressured to Call Off House Eviction: Negotiations Planned
homesforpeople.jpgIn response to the new eviction order against Melonie Griffiths-Evans and her 3 children, City Life and the Bank Tenant Association again began to organize an “eviction blockade”, where the crowd would surround the building to stop the eviction. Last week a crowd of about 75 protesters caused the bank to back off from the planned eviction. Activists had hoped for negotiations and were disappointed when Melonie received another notice from the constable that a new eviction attempt would be made tomorrow, Friday, February 1.

As the new blockade organizing went on and press advisories were issued, city councilors Chuck Turner and Sam Yoon were also reaching out to Ocwen Financial Corporation, urging a solution. These combined efforts bore fruit when Ocwen decided to call off the eviction. Ocwen further agreed to set up some discussions with Melonie Griffiths-Evans involving a non-profit mortgage counseling group known as ESAC, based in Jamaica Plain.
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31 Jan 2008 | Filed under: News / Human Rights : Organizing : Social Welfare
WSF Global Day of Action: People Mobilize Locally and Globally for a Better World
wsf-797525.jpgBoston, Mass.—Hundreds of thousands around the world will join forces tomorrow, January 26, 2008, for a historical celebration of social movements and social justice as they take action locally on the Global Day of Action called forth during the World Social Forum (http://wsf2008.net/). People all over the world will hold talks, demonstrations, concerts, vigils, and many other creative ways of resistance to clamor “another world is possible.”

In the Greater Boston area, the Global Day of Action launched last weekend with a Winter Soldier event organized by Iraq Veterans Against the War and their supporters, followed today by an immigration rally organized by the Boston May Day Coalition, and a People’s Music Winter Gathering tonight that seeks “to promote progressive ideas and transform ourselves and our communities through music to bring about a better world.” Other activities include an event to challenge the Free Trade Agreement in Colombia, two demonstrations in support of Palestinians, and a talk about human rights in Haiti.
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25 Jan 2008 | Filed under: News / DNC : Education : Environment : Gender : GLBT/Queer : Globalization : Human Rights : International : Labor : Media : Organizing : Politics : Race : Social Welfare : Technology : War and Militarism
The Homeless Census 2007: Mayor and Crew Determined to Rile Boston’s Homeless
sparechange.jpgDecember 18th marked Boston’s 19th annual Homeless Census, a one-night count of people living on the streets or in shelter programs. To conduct the street count, over 300 volunteers gathered at City Hall at 9pm, then split into groups to cover Boston’s neighborhoods searching for the homeless. City officials – Mayor Menino, Jim Greene, Director of the Emergency Shelter Commission, representatives from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of Health Human Services, Catholic Charities, the United Way, Greater Boston Food Bank, and other Mayor’s office and police staff – and the press were the first group to lead off, covering Downtown Crossing.

[EDITOR's NOte: We reposted this article from Spare Change News, a great local community newspaper that struggles to get the true story of our city's homeless beyond mainstream media.]
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12 Jan 2008 | Filed under: News / Social Welfare
Bali: A Missed Opportunity
b.jpgThe gap between the urgent threat of global warming and the collective will to do something about it has never been greater. The recently concluded Conference on Climate Change in Bali was a grand opportunity to act. Instead, it was another missed opportunity. Unfortunately, the United States played a very negative role, standing in the way of consensus at every turn. And unfortunately, the rest of the world thought that seducing the US into a new agreement on climate action was top priority, resulting in a Bali Roadmap that was very sketchy.
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27 Dec 2007 | Filed under: News / Environment : Globalization : International : Politics : Social Welfare
MASSACHUSETTS WOMAN FACING JAIL TIME FOR ABORTION
On January 6, 2007 18-year-old Amber Abreu went to the hospital in Lawrence, Massachusetts after trying to terminate a pregnancy by taking a drug, misoprostol, which is an ulcer medication as well as a key component of the abortion pill RU-486. Amber was between 23 and 25 weeks pregnant. The result was a miscarriage. The doctors rushed the 1-1/4 pound expelled fetus to the Tufts-New England Medical Center in Boston, where it remained alive for four days. The police, meanwhile, went after Amber using an archaic law dating back to the 1840s to charge her with “procuring a miscarriage.” Cops dragged Abreu into court in shackles and then held her in the state’s maximum security prison at Framingham for three nights until friends and relatives could come up with $15,000 bail. The young woman, a recent immigrant from the Dominican Republic, faces up to seven years in jail on this outrageous charge.
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25 Dec 2007 | Filed under: Commentary / Human Rights : International : Labor : Media : Organizing : Politics : Race : Social Welfare
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