December 20, 2020
⭐ New or updated content | ☎️ Phone calls | 📋 Petition | 🍎 Education | ✊ In-person or remote action | 💵 Donations | 🚗 Driving
Please feel welcome to forward this email to others! Click on any green text to follow links for more info.
In this political moment, we are investing in the long haul work for racial justice with Community Change, Inc. CCI has supported anti racist movements in New England since 1968, and helps make SURJ Boston possible through mentorship, programming, and legal and administrative support. Donate here.
Our mutual aid partners (Cape Verdean Association of Boston, 12th Baptist Church of Roxbury, and VietAID) continue to remind us that critical supplies like food, masks, and sanitary products are in higher demand than ever.
Thank you yet again for stepping up and helping our partners provide essential goods and food to their communities! This Saturday alone, you helped fill a Toyota Corolla to capacity with your donations!
We’re asking folks to focus on the following items for 12th Baptist and CVAB:
For VietAID they are accepting the following donations:
SURJ Boston has drop off sites in Allston, Arlington, Belmont, Cambridge (new location till January), Jamaica Plain, Roslindale, Roxbury, Somerville, and West Roxbury.
Make a monetary donations to our partners instead so that they can continue their life saving work. The links to donate are hyperlinked below. Please shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you donate!
For updates on the process of reopening Boston Public Schools, read this piece in the Bay State Banner. The article discusses the lack of safety measures being put into place in schools.
Further, to better understand the historical inequity of the Boston Public Schools budget process, please read this excellent op-ed by Ruby Reyes, the director of the Boston Education Justice Alliance (BEJA).
BEJA member MassCOSH (Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health) created this very informative video, 4 Myths About Schools and COVID-19, to help parents across all school communities understand what health and safety protections are needed to keep students, educators, and school staff safe during this pandemic.
If you know families in the Boston Public Schools that could benefit from free meals, please spread the word about the Boston Public Schools (BPS) School Meals and Super Sites available across the city. Additionally, anyone can pick up these meals and drop them off for a BPS family, they just need to know how many children are in the family!
Please consider donating to the Unafraid Educators COVID-19 Relief Fund for students and families in Boston Public Schools who need financial support during this time. Also, please share the form with those who might need it.
Every Wednesday 12 to 1 PM
Want to host your own? Trainings the last Wed of the month 1-1:30 PM (just stay logged in)!
Overwhelmed by the number of actions you see each week? SURJB Active Members guide participants through calls, emails, petitions, fundraisers and more as we build the movement for racial justice! We provide more context on the calls to action and insight on how our actions help to advance the struggles we are working on.
United American Indians of New England (UAINE) have posted recordings of the National Day of Mourning livestream program as well as prerecorded content, including the list of speakers, on their website - check it out at UAINE.org.
✊SUPPORT & LEARN ABOUT INDIGENOUS RESISTANCE (VIA SURJ NATIONAL)
We appreciate and acknowledge that we live and are guests on Indigenous land. We want to be mindful and respectful of this, treating the land (and our environment in general) like any place we would be as a guest. To get informed about the land you live on: native-land.ca and usdac.us/nativeland. Learn more about land acknowledgments here.
The MA state legislature recently sent a budget proposal to Governor Baker that included some very, though not nearly adequate, important protections against evictions. Governor Baker responded with changes that would weaken those protections. Contact your legislators TODAY! They will decide over the next few days whether to accept the Governor's changes or keep the stronger protection measures.
We have an opportunity to pass the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA) as a part of the Economic Development Bill (H.4879). This act would give tenants of a building the right to be notified and make a first offer (or designate a third party, like a nonprofit, to do so) when the landlord plans on selling their building. This is a no-cost solution for the government that would keep more people from being displaced from their homes. The Boston Neighborhood Community Land Trust (BNCLT) has launched a holiday card writing campaign to pass TOPA. Send one to your legislators this December here.
Please continue to support our community members who lost their home to a house fire. Please share these powerful words from one of the residents and fellow organizers, Lori, and keep sharing and donating to the fundraiser. The community has rallied and we are getting closer to our goal of $100,000.
Please sign and share widely! We are only at 237 signatures out of a goal of 2000. The Coalition for a Truly Affordable Boston is calling on the city to change the Inclusionary Development Policy (IDP) to more accurately reflect the need for affordable housing in Boston. Sign the petition here.
With all eyes on the GA Senate runoff race, the SURJ Boston Election Defense Team is joining with national efforts to get out the vote in GA. See details of actions and fundraisers below!
Join phone banking and post card efforts to get voters to the polls for the GA Senate runoff through the following:
Donate here today to help SURJ mobilize white voters across Georgia to turn out to vote for Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, while building lasting infrastructure and laying the groundwork for racial and economic justice victories for years to come.
Law firms (one in Boston!) in key battleground states like Arizona and Pennsylvania are doing post-election litigation to challenge legitimate votes and counting processes. Over the past couple of days, their offices have been flooded with calls and emails from people like you, demanding that they discontinue their efforts to threaten a free and fair election. Click here to call local and national law firms today!
The incarcerated community in Massachusetts is facing scary rates of COVID with little access to basic hygiene resources. Black & Pink and Deeper than Water are organizing a fundraiser to continue health and safety purchases for incarcerated people, to provide funds that cover the costs of communicating with loved ones in the holiday season, and to prevent the evictions of released members struggling with employment and income. Please send what you can!
📋 Sign These Petitions to Protect Our People From Police and Prisons!
Donate and become a Dream Sustainer to support immigrant youth to protect their community!
Get your Copy of Stir the Pot! "Stir the Pot: a cookbook to feed the social uprising" is a collection of recipes from organizers, activists, and friends of the movement from across the state. We are offering the cookbook in as a PDF download and as a physical copy. The physical copy will be “perfect-bound” and all recipes will be printed in English and Spanish. The cover will be designed by a local art activist and printed at a Western MA union print shop. They will email out the download within the first week of December, and hope to mail the physical copies that week too. They suggest a donation of $5-$20 for a digital copy and $15-50 for a physical copy.
Protect Work Permits for Immigrants & Refugees:
On November 19th, the Trump administration proposed a new rule to ban work permits for people on Orders of Supervision (OSUP): those who have been ordered deported but are temporarily released from custody. This includes tens of thousands of Southeast Asian immigrants and refugees who have resettled to the US and rebuilt their lives after being displaced by the war in Southeast Asia.
You can stop Trump's ban on work permits and protects our friends, families, and community members by taking 10 minutes to submit a short comment online by December 21, 2020 to tell Trump that you oppose the ban. If you do not know what to write, use this digital toolkit for community members and orgs to use as a guide. You can also sign on as an organization using this template.
Bring Hieu Home:
Hieu Huynh, a 49 year old refugee from Vietnam, has been detained at Essex County Correctional Facility since May. Hieu has been separated from his family and ill, elderly father for a conviction from over thirty years ago that he’s already served time for. The on-going detention of Hieu and the 400 immigrants and refugees detained at Essex County poses a massive threat to their health and safety, as Covid-19 infection rates peak and continue to rise.
Sign and share the #BringHieuHome petition to demand that Hieu and the 400 immigrants and refugees at Essex County be freed so they can be #HomeForTheHolidays with their families and loved ones. Find a further toolkit here.
Support the BIJAN community during the holidays: This holiday season, BIJAN invites you to join or support their outreach efforts to people they’ve accompanied while they or their loved ones have been detained by ICE and/or fighting their deportations. As we end the year, BIJAN want to mail gift cards and holiday greetings to all we reach who are interested and out of detention, and to send commissary funds and letters of support to those who remain incarcerated. Sign up here to help them make this happen!
Abolish ICE and Free Them All: There are continuing efforts against the human rights abuses at the Bristol County HOC in Massachusetts. Email members of the Department of Public Health. Find sample email scripts and additional information here.
Policing, incarceration, and deportation are rooted in white supremacy and anti-blackness. Black immigrants make up about 7% of the total non-citizen population in the U.S., but they represent over 20% of immigrants facing deportation because of the criminal punishment system. Donate to the Black Immigrants Bail Fund (a fund co-run by the Haitian Bridge Alliance and African Bureau for Immigration and Social Affairs) to join them in the call to #abolishICE.
On 10/18, while demonstrating against Super Happy Fun America, a white supremacist organization, a Black activist was violently arrested by Boston Police Department. He was defending his fellow protesters from police harassment, and has since lost his job due to the ensuing court case. Please help him stay afloat while he fights his case and for liberation.
Join our Confronting White Supremacists Announcement List to hear from us about opportunities to learn more and take action against non-state white supremacists and fascists in New England.
️✊ SHARE: CONFRONTING WHITE SUPREMACY IN NEW ENGLAND WEBSITE
Local activists have released NewEnglandWhiteSupremacists.com to contribute to the goal of exposing, opposing, and defeating local white supremacist movements. This is a great resource to share from your personal or organization’s social media pages. Feel free to reshare this one from Solidarity Against Hate Boston!
Please sign and share this email petition to support the library staff at Boston Public Library branches who want to be able to provide the materials desired by their patrons. This is a matter of racial equity and justice, since the communities most impacted by the limits of the BPL plan are communities of color.
Second Sunday of the month, 12:30-2:30pm
Join SURJB for community building and a deep dive into a specific topic each month. Register here. An email with a Zoom Link will be sent to you.
Contact Amelie Ratliff with any questions.
We engage in a variety of group discussions to build community and awareness, and take action to disrupt the systems of racism in the U.S. and beyond. All are welcome.
Join us in Knapsack meetings (all on Zoom for now):
See all upcoming meetings on our Meetup page, and please RSVP here if you can attend. More options are regularly added.
Join the Facebook discussions. This is an alternative to the Meetup group; it is not required to join this FB group to join/attend the Meetup group. All are welcome in both.
Moving From Talk to Action: Find classes and sign up on the WPCR website.
SURJ Boston is a project of Community Change Inc (CCI), a Boston-based organization promoting racial justice and equity by challenging systemic racism and acting as a catalyst for
anti-racist learning and action.
In 1968, as a result of the Civil Rights Movement and in response to the Kerner Commission which named racism as "a white problem”, CCI was birthed. CCI promotes racial justice and equity by challenging systemic racism and acting as a catalyst for anti-racist learning and action. CCI accomplishes its mission through education, advocacy and working in solidarity with others to organize for change.
Commit to doing just one thing this week.
We can do this.