In this moment
Hello fellow RUWMI activists!
Ayanna Pressley – Indivisible MA Conference 12/8/19
This Saturday was the Indivisible MA Conference. It was a day filled with inspiring speakers (see the photos below), informative workshops and empowering conversations. We gained some great information and action items to take us into 2020 and we strengthened RUWMI’s connection to other groups around the state. If you are interested in getting more involved in Indivisible or activism in general, this conference is a great place to start. Make a note on your calendar for next November; we’d love to have you join us!
- RUWMOneSmallThing – At the conference we gathered a bit of “insider information” about the house vote from Ezra Levin. He said that the House impeachment vote will likely be the week of 12/16, so that means our “Trump Is Not Above The Law” Impeachment Rally is likely only a week away. We need to have a huge showing as the goal is to make these events gain national news coverage. So, this week’s #RUWMOneSmallThing, one small thing you can do that will make a difference is to make sure you have signed up for the rally – this will ensure that you will be notified of the exact day/time and details of the rally once it is scheduled.
- Make Calls to Ensure a Fair and Open Impeachment Trial in the Senate – (h/t Indivisible). It’s absolutely essential that the Senate holds a fair and open impeachment trial that allows for the full array of evidence to be presented and considered — but Mitch McConnell is the one who gets to set the rules for the trial — and frankly, we don’t trust him to do it fairly. That’s why we’ve got to demand that Senators publicly support a fair and open impeachment trial. Use this form to sign up for a shift making calls to voters in key areas to connect them directly to their Senators to make this important ask. You can volunteer from anywhere, and we’ll follow up and make sure you have everything you need to contact voters once you sign up. In order to volunteer, folks will need access to a computer or tablet to log in to our remote phone-banking system as well as a phone to actually make the calls. RSVP for one or multiple shifts — any amount of time you can commit to calling makes a real difference in this critical fight to protect our democracy.
- Help register friends and family to vote – (h/t Indivisible) Indivisible makes registering to vote easy. Click this link and follow the steps to get registered or apply for an absentee ballot. Bookmark this handy page on your phone and ask friends and family at your holiday gatherings if they are registered or will be able to vote. Then just pull out your phone and have them do it right there!
- Stand Up for Reproductive Rights – (h/t Indivisible MA) Ohio’s legislation would not only threaten the lives of women across the state, but would set a dangerous precedent nationwide. Furthermore, low-income people have long borne the brunt of aggressive anti-abortion tactics. Since 1976, the Hyde Amendment has blocked federal Medicaid funding for abortion services. Use All* Above All’s toolkit to get familiar with important facts and find action items. In MA you can learn about and support the Roe Act.
- The Census is Coming: Learn about it with MIRA – (h/t MIRA) The 2020 Census is coming and there is much we need to know about it. MIRA has a great explainer here, which discusses what the census it, why it’s important and whether it’s safe for undocumented immigrants to participate in.
- Check out CREW! – (h/t Ezra Levin). Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) uses aggressive legal action, in-depth research, and bold communications to reduce the influence of money in politics and help foster a government that is ethical and accountable. We highlight abuses, change behavior, and lay the groundwork for new policies and approaches that encourage public officials to work for the benefit of the people, not powerful interests, in accordance with the principles of ethical government the founders set out in the Constitution. Their website is a wealth of information, check it out here. You can also sign up for updates from them.
Mark Your Calendars – Upcoming Events
- Holyoke – Get Out the Vote for WI Supreme Court – Tuesday, December 10, 6:00-7:30PM, Barnes and Noble Cafe in Holyoke, 7 Holyoke St, Holyoke. Please join us at the Holyoke Barnes and Noble Cafe to write short notes to traditionally underrepresented voters in WI in advance of a special election for a seat on the WI Supreme Court on April 7, 2020. We will encourage them to get out and vote! Please RSVP and join us as we push Red and Purple areas to Swing Left.
- Co-op Power Sustainability Summit and Annual Meeting – Saturday, December 14, 10:00AM-5:00PM, TechSpring, 1350 Main St, Fl 5th, Springfield. Keynote Speaker: Rev. Mariama White-Hammond, Boston climate activist, is a founding pastor at the New Roots AME Church in Dorchester, Massachusetts, where she preaches regularly about climate change. She will address the moral imperative of the Green New Deal and what it will take to bring about a just transition! She will be discussing how the moral crisis we face today challenges us to see the climate crisis as an opportunity not only to address cleaning up the environment, but to work through issues like poverty, racism and gender inequities together. View event details here.
- New Training Drivers Licenses for All Join the Street Team – Saturday, December 14, 10:30-11:00, Pioneer Valley Workers Center, 20 Hampton Ave Suite 200, Northampton. Looking for a way to help out with solidarity work at the Pioneer Valley Workers Center? We need you! Come to a 30-minute training on how you can be involved with passing legislation called The Work and Mobility Act, which would grant access to standard driver’s licenses to all qualified MA residents, regardless of immigration status. Register here.
- RUWMI-Swing Left 2020 Monthly Action – Sunday, December 15, 10:00-11:30 AM, Panera Bread, 601 Memorial Drive, Suite G, Chicopee. Come join us for our December postcard/letter-writing event! It’s effective, it’s easy, and it’s fun. We’ll supply postcards/letters and all the information you will need (from Swing Left). You just bring yourself (and maybe a friend), good cheer, and a limber writing hand! We will have stamps to use but donations of stamps, or cash to cover stamps is always appreciated. Election Day 2020 seems a long way off, but now is when we need to begin making sure that Democratic voters show up at the polls! We will be meeting at Panera in Chicopee, so food and beverages will be available for purchase. Click here to view the Facebook event.
- Racial Justice & Immigration Committee meeting – Tuesday, December 17, 5:30-7:00PM, 1199 Seiu, 20 Maple St, Springfield. Join us for the next meeting of the WMALF Racial Justice & Immigration Committee! This committee is dedicated to helping build a more inclusive and diverse labor movement for ALL working people in Western Mass. All are welcome and pizza and drinks will be provided. Click here for more information.
- Film/Talk Back on Migrant Detention with Activist Josh Rubin – Tuesday, December 17, 7:00-10:00PM, Northampton Center for the Arts, 33 Hawley Street, Northampton. Josh Rubin, of Brooklyn, the subject of a new film, “Witness at Tornillo” by Carbon Trace Productions, will be present to talk about his work, 7 pm Tuesday, December 17. Admission by voluntary donation. Rubin lived in an RV for two months as a solitary witness in the desert, reporting daily on Facebook about the first the detention center for migrant teens in Tornillo, Texas, His posts went viral and sparked the national movement that shut down the camp of some 3,000 kids in Tornillo, Texas, then its replacement in Homestead, Florida. We are showing the film AND having Josh come and talk about his work. Please come hear him–and spread the word! View details here.
- 4th Annual Pioneer Valley Women’s March – Saturday, January 18, 12:00-3:00PM, Springfield! Women, gender-oppressed people and our allies are uniting across communities to stand in solidarity, fight for our rights and demand immediate action on the climate crisis – join us! The march will step off at 12pm from Northgate Center (1985 Main Street, Springfield), where we will march down Main Street to City Hall for a rally starting about 1pm. View event details here.
- Rally to Support Impeachment – Specific date TBD. Richard Neal’s Office, 300 State Street, Springfield. Join us for a celebration of our constitution and how Congress is using it to protect our country from further damage by Trump. Our Founders were no fools. They knew that something like this could happen one day … and here we are. We’ll gather in front of Neal’s office on the eve of the House vote. Our message: We support you in voting in favor of impeachment. We look forward to seeing you there! Sign up here
- To get the most up to date list of events, go to Rise Up Western Mass’s event calendar here. Also bookmark the National Resistance Calendar for additional events. Also, to be “in the know” about what Indivisible groups are doing across Massachusetts, sign up for the MA ACTION newsletter by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get Ready for Indivisible’s Presidential Scorecard
Indivisible’s presidential candidate scorecard will be released on Wednesday, December 11. They write:
“Alongside evaluating the candidates, we’ve also been talking to leaders across the Indivisible movement about whether or not to initiate an endorsement process. We made an important commitment to you: that groups will make the ultimate decision on whether we call for an endorsement vote, and we will never reach a national endorsement unilaterally. While some candidates scored better than others, our scorecard should not be seen as an endorsement of any candidate (unlike an endorsement, the scorecard is a living document and we’d like to see scores rise over time as we push candidates to adopt our priorities).
We have listened to your feedback on the cafés, through our surveys, in emails we’ve received, and in many conversations, and we’ve heard from those against an endorsement, those supportive of it, and those in between. We recognize that our network is not aligned on supporting an endorsement at this time, and we will not move forward on a vote unless we know that groups and leaders are ready to do so. We’re making the candidate scorecard the focus of our work in the coming weeks and do not plan to revisit the discussion on an endorsement vote until later in the new year.”
Indivisible also conducted live interviews with many of the candidates and asked them questions that were submitted and voted on by Indivisible leaders (check out the videos from those interviews if you haven’t yet!).
The More You Know
New Massachusetts Bills in the news
- Massachusetts Safe Communities Act Hearing (Update)
- The Roe Act: An Act to remove obstacles and expand abortion access
- Bill to strike the ‘R word’ from Bay State laws languishes in committee
- Why a lawmaker floated a bill to penalize use of a profane word (that rhymes with witch)
- Massachusetts becomes 21st state to ban hand-held cellphone use while driving
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