Excerpts of Letter from US Labor Against the War (USLAW) Nov. 19, 2015

by uslaboragainstwar.org

For the first time since World War II, at the close of a long night of terrorist attacks on Nov. 13, France found itself under mandatory curfew. Since the announcement that France would treat this as an “act of war,” over 150 counter-terrorism raids have taken place. A manhunt is raging, not to mention the bombing of the capital of ISIS in Syria.

The events that have transpired in France are a stark reminder of the violent and challenging world we live in. We mourn the loss of life of our brothers and sisters from acts of terrorism and condemn the violence that caused that loss of life.

We should be clear about where this problem of rapidly metastasizing terrorism comes from. Our problem has consistently been us – nations with power and influence. Instead of using diplomatic means to solve crises, we have turned to military strategies that have lead us farther and farther down the wrong path. Even our president has admitted that using the military to solve this problem seems futile. So killing and maiming many innocent civilians in pursuit of terrorists will likely make things worse, not better. Sadly, the very people we’ll be bombing in Syria and elsewhere hold the key to the solution. It will take the work of the citizens of this region to make their situations better. Anything else will lead to more displacement.

We should also remember that what happened in Paris on that Friday night happens with regularity in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Afghanistan. These countries experience similar tragedies yet don’t receive the goodwill bestowed upon the French. Most days they are ignored. While it doesn’t diminish the horror and sadness that we should all feel at what Parisians have experienced, it certainly makes you wonder where we draw the line when it comes to human suffering. Are Iraqis, Syrians, Yemenis, Afghans or Lebanese somehow less deserving? We should view a loss of life anywhere just as deserving of international solidarity and support. Anything less is hypocrisy.

[Full text of letter was printed for the Nov. 22 Sunday vigil leaflet and can be read at http://newhavensundayvigil.wordpress.com.]

Picket at Goodfellas for Wage Theft Leads to Arrest of Protest Leader

by Unidad Latina en Acción

On Nov. 20, 2015, New Haven Police arrested John Lugo, one of the leaders of Unidad Latina en Acción (ULA), during a workers’ rights protest outside Goodfellas Restaurant. “You have no right to be here,” said the police to ULA. (Video at http://www.facebook.com/ULANewHaven/videos)

Stand with us: We will not be silenced. We will not be intimidated.

We have been picketing Goodfellas for 6 months. We have been picketing businesses that steal wages from workers for 10 years, and we will not stop. Arrest the owner of Goodfellas, not the peaceful protesters. Wage theft is a crime. Protesting for our human rights is not a crime. The CT Department of Labor and US DOL have found Gerry Iannaccone, owner of Goodfellas, guilty of stealing from dozens of workers. Yet this crime goes unpunished.

New Haven gets a lot of credit for being a welcoming city for immigrants. Is New Haven a welcoming city when immigrants are criminalized for peaceful protest and wage theft goes unpunished? Unidad Latina en Acción is currently supporting workers in cases of wage theft and discrimination in Goodfellas, Gourmet Heaven, 116 Crown, Thai Taste, Fair Haven Clam & Oyster, El Buen Gusto, La Carreta, among other local businesses.

In a press conference in 2014, Chief Esserman stated that wage theft is a crime under Connecticut law and that the NHPD is willing to act to enforce that law. In spite of those good words, the NHPD is doing the opposite: punishing the victims of wage theft and their advocates. On Nov. 6, 2015, Esserman walked into Goodfellas to eat dinner while ULA was picketing the restaurant, ignoring our attempts to speak with him. On Nov. 20, after the NHPD arrested John Lugo, one of the officers entered the restaurant and came out with a bag of food for the police. NHPD, which side are you on?

This is not the first time that the NHPD has colluded with the owner of Goodfellas to intimidate workers. In 2011, ULA filed an internal affairs complaint against NHPD after a sergeant demanded that protesters show ID at a workers’ rights picket outside Goodfellas, and he threatened that the owner of Goodfellas would use the IDs to create a “blacklist” so that protesters would not be employed by other restaurants. [See: http://www.nhregister.com/general-news/20110122/complaint-filed-against-new-haven-cops-over-goodfellas-protest.]

Come to a Free Viewing of Roadmap to Apartheid

by Shelly Altman, Jewish Voice for Peace

roadmapmast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The New Haven Peace Council and Jewish Voice for Peace New Haven are presenting the film Roadmap to Apartheid. In this award-winning documentary, the directors take a detailed look at the apartheid analogy commonly used to describe the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Narrated by Alice Walker (author of The Color Purple), and directed by white South African Ana Nogueira and Jewish Israeli Eron Davidson, Roadmap to Apartheid is as much a historical document of the rise and fall of apartheid in South Africa as it is a film about why many Palestinians feel they are living in an apartheid system today, and why an increasing number of people around the world agree with them.

The film will next be presented Saturday, Dec. 5, 2 p.m., at the New Haven Free Public Library, 133 Elm St. Help us bring the issue of Israeli apartheid to public attention. We are ready to bring this documentary and a speaker to community groups that want to learn more about this issue. You can see a trailer of the film at http://roadmaptoapartheid.org.

Reach JVP New Haven at:
web: http://www.jvpnh.org,
email: newhaven@jewishvoiceforpeace.org,
facebook: jvpnewhaven, twitter: @jvpnewhaven.

A Call to All Peace Activists! Oct. 12

by Alfred L. Marder, President, US Peace Council, amistad.nai@rcn.com

On Monday, Oct. 12, the coordinating committee of Peace and Planet held an International Conference in New York which coincided with the United Nations’ meeting to review the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Among other matters, we discussed our concerns about the present conflicts in Ukraine and Syria. There are 15 countries already involved in the fighting. Two nuclear weapon powers are facing each other. THE DANGER OF WORLD WAR 3 IS NOT UNREALISTIC!

We agreed that we would call for the following of the global peace movement:

  1. Aim for Dec. 10, United Nations Human Rights Day with the slogan PEACE IS A HUMAN RIGHT!
  2. Global actions on the local, regional and national level, leading up to Dec. 10.
    The US Peace Council convened several peace organizations immediately after the meeting to call for actions. We agreed that Nov. 11, the day World War 1 ended, should be a Day of Global Actions.

We are united on these demands:

  1. Immediate diplomatic negotiations to end the conflict in Syria involving all interested parties, especially the Syrian government.
  2. Removal of all NATO forces from the states bordering Russia. Dismantle NATO!
  3. Remove ALL foreign troops from Afghanistan.

There will be a vigil at 11 a.m. Nov. 11 on the New Haven Green, at the corner of Chapel and College streets. Nov. 11 is the day World War I ended. The overarching slogan will be STOP WORLD WAR 3.

Christian Community Action, Inc. Advocacy & Education Presents: People Empowering People (PEP) Training

Are you interested in empowering yourself and others? Do you enjoy working on community group projects? Are you interested in learning more about ways in which you can improve your community?

If your answer is yes! CCA’s Advocacy & Education Project will be offering a 10 session certified training class Mondays and Wednesdays 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Oct. 26-Dec. 2. Lunch will be provided. Location: 660 Winchester Ave.

Lower Level Community Room. Program participants will earn a UCONN PEP Certificate. For more information, contact Merryl Eaton, (203) 780-8335 or email: merryleaton@ccahelping.org.

People Against Injustice News: Sept. 24 Protest, Meeting with Sen. Winfield Oct. 5

by Jane Mills, PAI

People Against Injustice joined several other local justice groups in writing a letter to city leaders and state prosecutors protesting the August 17 arrest of a young man, “Mykel,” on Kensington St. in New Haven whose only crime appeared to be filming the police. He faced a misdemeanor charge of resisting or interfering with police. To sign-on to the letter go to Change.org and search using this phrase “Support the right to record police in New Haven.” A copy of his video is linked in the online petition. It is legal to record police in public in all 50 states.

A protest on his Sept. 24 court hearing date was held in front of the New Haven courthouse during which people showed their support, asking us questions or calling out from their cars. We handed out info cards and talked to reporters. At  10 a.m. a group of us attended Mykel’s court hearing. The charge against him was dropped.

We are lodging this as a victory but concerns remain about representations about the video made by the state to the judge during Mykel’s brief hearing and about the fate of his Facebook account, which was taken down by Facebook for “verification,” after he posted his video of the police. We will continue to look into both.

State Sen. Gary Holder Winfield will attend PAI’s next regular meeting on Oct. 5 to review possible legislation for the 2015-2016 legislative session. Newcomers are welcome. The meeting begins at 6 p.m. sharp on the lower level of the main branch of the New Haven Free Public Library, 133 Elm Street (at corner of Temple Street).

PAI has launched a Facebook page. Please visit our page, named “People Against Injustice – PAI” at this url: www.facebook.com/PeopleAgainstInjustice.

People Against Injustice is a New Haven-based, grassroots organization committed to reform of the criminal justice system. Since its founding in 1996, PAI has worked on dozens of justice-related issues, including over incarceration and the War on Drugs, prosecutor and police misconduct, and racial and economic disparities in the justice system. PAI engages in direct action as well as educational initiatives. Reach us at peopleagainstinjustice@riseup.net.

‘Speak Out for Justice’ Oct. 7 with Remi Kanazi and Bishop John Selders

by Stanley Heller, Middle East Crisis Committee

Come to the New Haven Library on Wednesday, Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. for “Speak Out for Justice.” Meet Remi Kanazi, Palestinian-American poet and activist, on the release of his new collection of poems: Before the Next Bomb Drops: Rising Up from Brooklyn to Palestine. He also wrote Poetic Injustice: Writings on Resistance and Palestine.

remi-kanaziKanazi writes and performs political poetry addressing topics such as human rights, Palestine, Iraq, and Islamophobia. Approaching his work from a humanist perspective, Kanazi says, “I’m not a nationalist, I’m not an ethno-centrist. This isn’t about me being a Palestinian or me being an Arab. It’s about a system of oppression and what’s being done to a people. So whether you’re talking about police brutality or the US-Mexico border or Afghanistan or the war in Iraq or the plight of Palestinians, what they’re going through and the injustice that’s being perpetrated against them is what matters. And that’s what we’re working against – systems of oppression.”

Our program also features Bishop John Selders, a leader of “Moral Mondays” who has led protests in Hartford against police brutality and who took part in the “All Roads Lead to Ferguson Tour” in July and August.

The Right Reverend Doctor John L. Selders, Jr. is an ordained minister serving in the United Church of Christ, the Organizing Pastor of Amistad United Church of Christ, Hartford, CT, Associate Chaplain at Trinity College, Hartford, CT and Executive Director of Zezzo House (an 18 unit housing project). John worked for 12 years as a Lecturer at Yale Divinity School in New Haven.

The program is sponsored by the Middle East Crisis Committee. MECC was founded in New Haven in 1982. Our TV program “The Struggle” www.TheStruggle.org has been broadcast on over 30 stations weekly since 2003. We’ve covered civil rights and black lives matter struggles over the years. Our latest is coverage of the Newark New Jersey protest: www.thestruggle.org/older_featured.htm
Executive Director: Stanley Heller, (203) 934-2761.

NO to Medically Assisted Suicide

by Joan Cavanagh, Second Thoughts Connecticut

“An Act Providing a Medical Option of Compassionate Aid in Dying for Terminally Ill Adults,” Proposed Bill No. 668, has been referred to the Judiciary Committee for the spring 2015 Connecticut state legislative session. It is being sponsored and promoted by some of our most progressive state legislators, including Gary Holder Winfield, Roland Lemar and Toni Walker.

It is imperative that we as their constituents and supporters on many other initiatives contact them immediately to demand that they withdraw their support for this legislation and work to defeat it.
Last month, Elaine Kolb clearly explained why the disability rights community is so opposed to this legislation. She described her painful fight for the necessary treatment and services to sustain her partner’s life as long as possible: “Patti Deak lived and died with dignity, with multiple disabilities, using a power wheelchair, hospital bed, Hoyer lift, hearing aids, and a ventilator… With cut-backs in so many essential services, the message behind assisted suicide is that death is cost-effective. For those of us in danger of being denied what we need to live, ‘Compassion and Choice’ feels more like ‘Contempt and Coercion’” (emphasis added).

I experienced such contempt and coercion while fighting for treatment for my elderly mother, Catherine (1922-2012), who suffered from vascular dementia and a severe heart condition. As her health care advocate, I was continually and repeatedly harassed, bullied and threatened by various health care professionals at Yale-New Haven Hospital to “let her die.” As a Medicare/Medicaid patient, she was costing them too much and her life was not valued. You can read the details of this experience at http://www.nhregister.com/opinion/20140304/forum-aid-in-dying-bill-neither-compassionate-nor-wise.
All this occurred in a state where medically assisted suicide is not yet legal. Whatever its language, such a bill cannot be tweaked or improved to be made safe or unthreatening to those of us who are physically, mentally and/or emotionally vulnerable. The potential for coercion and abuse, both by a health care system increasingly concerned with profit and, in some cases, by family and friends who are tired of the “burden” of care, is simply too great.

Joan Cavanagh is a member of Second Thoughts Connecticut and a long time peace and justice activist.

Gathering Mourns Leelah Alcorn’s Suicide

by Maya Leonardo, Justice for Jane

New Haven activists joined thousands of others across the country to mourn Leelah Alcorn on January 10. In the wake of the transgender 17-year-old’s suicide, activists have mobilized across the country to stand for trans rights and an end to so-called ‘conversion therapy.’ While trans suicides are not uncommon, the visibility of Leelah’s was widespread, including a suicide note widely reposted.
New Haven has become a hotbed of trans activism, with the Justice for Jane campaign bringing together activists from all over Southern Connecticut. Jane is a 17-year-old trans girl being held in DCF custody at a men’s facility in Middletown. Just like Leelah was, she is being denied the right to express her gender.

Attendees at the vigil and rally made promises to Leelah to help fix society. One of the most poignant came from IV, a Justice for Jane organizer.

“I want to make a promise that I will keep fighting for our community, no matter how hard the struggle gets. Jane is 17 just like you, Leelah. I promise to fight to make sure she lives the life you deserved, and to fight for all young people who are being abused like you and Jane. We will keep the struggle alive for you, and we will tear down the system that took your life, keeps our community down and discourages us from living.”

No Jail Time for Drone Protestor! Read his statement to the judge here

[For previous coverage, visit http://par-newhaven.org/2014/12/05/new-havens-mark-colville-sentenced-for-protesting-at-drone-base-near-syracuse-ny-democracy-now/}

by Mark Colville, Amistad Catholic Worker

colville

My family and I are back home after some surprising developments at the sentencing hearing in the Syracuse court. I’m writing this by way of update for those who have expressed their care and concern for us but may not have heard the outcome or any of the details. Some links are posted below which provide a good explanation of the action for which I was brought to trial. Most of all, though, I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to all of you who have been walking with us in so many beautiful ways during this time. We could not possibly have felt more loved and supported, so thank you all.

We all were proceeding with the well-founded belief that I was facing a long jail sentence. The judge himself had made it clear before trial that he would sentence me to the maximum Read more

Drop All Charges Against Luis Anglero, Jr!

End Police Brutality from Hartford To Ferguson.

Demand justice on Wednesday, Dec. 10, 8 a.m. at the Hartford Courthouse, 101 Lafayette St.

Less than two weeks after the murder of Michael Brown by police in Ferguson MO., Hartford police officer Shawn Ware used a taser on Luis Anglero, Jr., in an unjustified use of force that was captured on video and shocked all who viewed it. Luis was injured from the resulting fall to the pavement, and was subsequently charged with “breach of Peace in the second degree” and “interfering with police.”  This was an attempt to turn the victim into the criminal.

On August 27, 2014, nearly 100 community members from Hartford and the surrounding towns rallied and marched to Hartford Police headquarters to present a People’s Manifesto with a list of demands. Chief among those demands were for an immediate dismissal of all charges against Luis Anglero, Jr., and for charges to be brought against Officer Shawn Ware. To date, neither of those demands has been met. Court proceedings have continued against Luis, with his next hearing now scheduled for Wednesday, December 10, 2014. We, the people will be there to demand that the charges be dropped. Join us! For information: Debracohen51@gmail.com or christopher.hutch@gmail.com.

Darren Wilson not charged in shooting death of Michael Brown

As we go to press, the decision has just been announced by the grand jury in Ferguson, Missouri. Police officer Darren Wilson will not be charged in the shooting death of Michael Brown, the unarmed, eighteen-year-old African-American who was shot and killed on August 9, 2014.

The St. Louis Grand Jury refused to indict Police Officer Darren Wilson. This decision is a failure of the justice system — but President Obama and US Attorney General Holder can make sure justice is served by taking action. The Department of Justice has the power to prosecute Officer Wilson under federal criminal charges. Raise your voice today to ensure our national leaders step in where Missouri’s politicians have failed, and secure justice for Mike Brown immediately.

A Ferguson Solidarity rally and march has been planned for Nov. 25 in downtown New Haven. Check next month’s PAR newsletter for an update.

In New Haven contact: newhavenrbnyc@aol.com or stopmassincarcerationct@gmail.com.

“My Name is Rachel Corrie” Nov. 1, New Haven

by Shelly Altman, Jewish Voice for Peace

On Nov. 1, 8 p.m. at Southern Connecticut State University, Charles Garner Auditorium, Engleman Hall (C112), join us for the one-night only performance of “My Name is Rachel Corrie,” a one-woman play about the American peace activist Rachel Corrie who was killed in Gaza in 2003 at the height of the Second Intifada while working with the International Solidarity Movement to prevent home demolitions. The play was a hit in London and New York. It is based entirely on Rachel’s own diary entries and emails from her mid-adolescence through her coming of age, to her untimely death.

Read more

1 2 3 4