"Talking About Race: Staying Curious, Moving Forward, and Being Part of the Solution" takes place Monday, 4/8 at 6:30 p.m. at the Sunderland Public Library.
This program is designed to encourage an open and thoughtful conversation on race, emphasizing how we can learn to appreciate and understand experiences and perspectives different from our own. At the center of the conversation will be the experiences of three local African-American residents.
“ADVERTISING ON THE EDGE”
April 10 Wed. 6:30 – 9:30 pm Resistance Films
Forbes Library Community room
This film explores the devastating personal and environmental fallout from advertising, commercial culture, and rampant American consumerism. The film tracks the emergence of the advertising industry in the early 20th century to the full-scale commercialization of the culture today, identifying the myth running throughout all of advertising: that corporate brands and consumer goods are the keys to human happiness and fulfillment. It is made by renowned media scholar Sut Jhally, whose Media Education Foundation is Northampton-based. The film shows how this powerful narrative-- backed by billions of dollars a year and clever manipulative minds-- has blinded us to the catastrophic costs of ever-accelerating rates of consumption.
Democratic Socialists of America's local chapter members will kick off the post film discussion.
Resistance films are shown at Forbes every 2d and 4th Wed. of the month.
New efforts toward full accessibility:
The community room is physically accessible. Sometimes we get films that have aural narration for those with vision loss and with subtitles for those with hearing loss. The library offers equipment to enhance hearing that is available at the desk.
Prospects for a Workers Co-operative Economy in Massachusetts
with State Rep. Paul Mark and Emily Kawano & Fred Rose, Wellspring Cooperative Corporation
Thursday, April 11, 7:00pm, at The Odyssey Bookshop
Worker-owned co-operatives have been part of the U.S. economy since the founding, but they’ve been easily eclipsed by an economy driven by corporate behemoths. Today they could be the alternative to corporate power and are attracting much interest again among community and labor organizers and more generally.
In Springfield, Wellspring Cooperative Corporation is creating a network of worker-owned companies that will provide on-the-job training, employment, and wealth creation opportunities for low income and unemployed residents.
In the Legislature, Rep. Paul Mark has introduced An Act to Create and Sustain Jobs Through Development of Employee-Owned Businesses and Cooperatives and other measures relative to job creation through employee ownership.
Mass. Second Berkshire Rep. Paul Mark and Wellspring Cooperative Corporation Co-Directors Emily Kawano and Fred Rose will help us answer the question: What are the prospects for growing the worker co-operative economy in Massachusetts?
Paul Mark began representing the 2nd Berkshire District in the Massachusetts House of Representatives on January 5, 2011. Paul’s district encompasses 16 communities in Berkshire and Franklin Counties, the largest geographical Representative district in the Commonwealth. The son of a Teamster who became a telephone worker after his warehouse closed, Paul also went into the telephone company, at the age of 20. He immediately joined the IBEW, the company eventually became Verizon, and he’s been on strike several times. While there, Paul earned a Master of Science degree at UMass Amherst and graduated from Suffolk Law and Northeastern University’s Law and Public Policy Doctoral.
Emily Kawano and Fred Rose are founders and Co-Directors of the Wellspring Cooperative Corporation in Springfield.
Wellspring is a community-based cooperative development organization with a mission to create a network of worker-owned companies in Springfield that will provide on-the-job training, employment, and wealth creation opportunities for low income and unemployed residents. Wellspring leverages the purchasing power of “anchor institutions” – such as government, colleges, and hospitals – that are anchored in the city, not playing the global capital game. So far, Wellspring’s co-ops are the Wellspring Upholstery Cooperative, an upholstery shop; the Old Window Workshop, a women-owned window restoration company; Wellspring Harvest, an innovative, hydroponic urban greenhouse producing year round, high quality produce; and Jumping Jack Hoops which sells handmade hula hoops and gives fitness and therapy workshops.
Emily is on the Board of the United States Solidarity Economy Network, which she helped start. An economist by training – she has a PhD in economics from UMass Amherst – she served as the Director of the Center for Popular Economics for nine years.
Fred also lectures at the UMass Amherst Center for Public Policy and Administration. He studies public administration and public policy formulation, political science, and social movements. He was a co-founder and lead organizer of the Pioneer Valley Project, a faith-congregations-based community organizing project in Springfield.
Why are so many central Americans seeking asylum in the US?
Co-sponsored by Traprock Center.
Join Citizens Against Nuclear Bombers in Vermont (CANBVT), Safe and Green Campaign, and other concerned citizens in a discussion about the F-35 nuclear bombers soon to be based in Burlington. Dr. Ira Hefland of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) is our featured speaker. Come get informed on the bombers and what it means to have them based in our state on Monday, April 22nd 6:00pm Centre Congregational Church, 193 Main Street in Brattleboro. We will meet in the Parlor.
Learn more about Citizens Against Nuclear Bombers in VT, sign their petition, and take a look at their list of advisors: https://www.canbvt.org/
Encourage Congressman McGovern to Stand Against Intervention in Venezuela!
We will meet with the Congressman, who has taken a progressive position against US intervention and violence in Central America and Cuba, requesting him to support:
We need your support!
We will be presenting our petitions requesting the Congressman oppose illegal regime change efforts by the Trump Administration in Venezuela. We will ask that he oppose the sanctions which are causing hunger, death and emigration in Venezuela. We will request that he stand firmly against the US’ financial and political support of unelected right-wing politician to depose the elected socialist government of Nicolas Maduro. Finally we ask him to ensure Congressional leadership against military intervention that would lead to prolonged and murderous civil war with all its suffering.
Join us. Support the right of nations to govern without the bullying and violence of US intervention.
10 am Tuesday, April 23 at the Northampton office of
Congressman James McGovern, 94 Pleasant Street, Northampton.
Resistance Films April 24 Wed. 6:30 pm
Forbes Library Community room
“The People vs the Politicians” spotlights some of the local “people’s rebellions” across the country aimed at strengthening our democracy.
Made by Hedrick Smith, a Pulitzer Prizewinning journalist, author, and documentarian for Frontline and PBS, the featured states and causes include a people’s movement against voter North Carolina ID laws, which disproportionately impact people of color and people with lower incomes; Florida’s citizen-led efforts to address gerrymandering; and Connecticut’s now decade-old system of public financing for state elections that has led to more diverse candidates running and being elected and also less lobbyist influence in the legislative process. Also profiled is South Dakota’s citizen-sponsored ballot initiatives. The film has been purchased by MSNBC but not yet shown.
Members of Represent Us.Western Mass will kick off the post film discussion on what we can do here.
Pioneer Valley Interfaith Refugee Action Group invites you to attend a program:
Sunday, April 28th, 3:00 – 5:00 PM
Edwards Church, 297 Main Street, Northampton
"Refugee Journeys to the Pioneer Valley”
Maryan Omar: A Somali woman who, at the age of 11, came to the U.S. 15 years ago from camps in Kenya. Maryan lives in Springfield with her husband and three children and is a student at Bay Path University.
Yousuf Al Dulaimi: Along with his mother and younger brother, Yousuf fled Iraq in 2013, was a refugee in Turkey for 3 years, and was resettled in the Valley in 2017. Yousuf is now a student, a Personal Care Assistant and works at a catering business.
Asani Furaha: Resettled with her husband and young son one year ago, the family were refugees in Burundi, having fled their home in the Eastern Congo in 2002. Asani works at the Lathrop Home and is taking English and computer courses while studying for her CNA certification.
Keegan Pyle: As the Refugee Resettlement Coordinator for Catholic Charities, Keegan will give an overview of the refugee resettlement program in Northampton.
Free & open to the public, light refreshments will be served.
Co-sponsors: Edwards Church, Peace & Justice Team of First Churches, Haydenville Congregational Church, Social Justice Commission of ST Elizabeth Anne Seton and Our Lady of the Hills, Tikkun Olam Committee of Congregation B’Nai Israel
Valley Syrian Relief Committee, firstname.lastname@example.org