February 14, 2021
⭐ New or updated content | ☎️ Phone calls | ✉️ Email or letter writing
📋 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.
SURJB is raising money to cover our costs - from the Zoom account and closed captioning service to PPE and sign-making materials for protests! Our goal is $5,000, in order to meet a match from an anonymous SURJB member. This total of $10,000 will cover our core costs for the year ahead. Please donate if you are able!
For each dollar donated up to $5,000, an anonymous SURJ member will donate $1 to SURJ and $1 to a SURJ partner (City Life / Vida Urbana and Families for Justice as Healing). So your $1 becomes $3!
We encourage you to give in such a way that does not diminish your ability to give to BIPOC (Back, Indigenous, and People of Color) led organizations and work.
Every Wednesday 12 to 1 PM
Action hours are a weekly opportunity to take action together, digitally! Facilitators guide participants through calls, emails, petitions and more while offering context and support. We're going in strong to 2021!
Want to host your own Action Hours? Trainings take place on the last Weds of the month 1-1:30 PM (just stay logged in)!
Sunday, March 7, 1:30-3pm
Those of us who have attended past symposia led by Families for Justice as Healing know how moving and important these sessions are! March 7 is the next opportunity to hear directly from formerly incarcerated women and their loved ones about the important Black-led organizing happening in MA. This session will focus on opposing plans for a new $50M women's prison in Norfolk County (read more about it below). People in Norfolk County are especially encouraged to attend, but all are welcome! Register for the symposium here.
Calling all crafters! The National Council of Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls needs help creating a quilt to support clemency for incarcerated women, trans, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming people nationwide. Volunteers will be asked to embroider 4-5 names of incarcerated people on a patch to be included on a quilt. Pieces will need to be sent back to the National Council by mid-March. SURJ Boston is collecting names here, then the National Council will send you more details!
Wednesday, February 17, 8:30 am
Join the meeting of the MA Designer Selection Board in solidarity with members of Families for Justice as Healing opposing new prison construction in Massachusetts. Registration info is on the mass.gov site.
Check the MA week of action for more info on how supporters can amplify the demands on social media.
Wayland “X” Coleman, founding #DeeperThanWater organizer and tireless advocate for abolition and dignity for incarcerated people, will appear in court to begin the long process of overturning his wrongful conviction after 23 years.
Celebrate this important step by liking and commenting on Facebook!
The DOC has been trying to build a new women’s prison in Massachusetts. Families for Justice as Healing has blocked progress twice in the last year, but continues to work on ways to stop it permanently. Please read and share a Dig Boston article with quotes from Black directly-affected leaders! For additional reading, check out this Boston Globe op-ed.
Join the Boston Special Education Parent Advisory Committee (Boston SPEDPAC) Thursday, February 25th at 7 - 8:30 PM for their presentation. Click here for more details including Zoom info.
Guardians, teachers, and learners in the BPS system: Take this survey from the Boston Education Justice Alliance to help determine what resources each school in the Boston Public Schools has. This survey will help BEJA determine what the actual BPS budget should be.
Our partners, the Cape Verdean Association of Boston (CVAB), 12th Baptist Church of Roxbury (12BCR), and VietAID need YOUR help to serve our communities in this crushing pandemic. They have told us that our donations have been crucial to their ability to serve their clients - the food and essential supplies in particular...and $$ donations are a surprise that is very useful and appreciated.
The Cape Verdean Association of Boston is looking for:
We have porches set up for your donations in the following communities: Allston, Arlington, Belmont, Cambridge, Jamaica Plain, Roslindale, Roxbury, Somerville, and West Roxbury. (If you’re looking for a porch address, please let us know which one is closest to you when you email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
If you cannot donate essential supplies but you have extra funds, please consider donating money to these partners here:
Please email us with questions and and to let us know if you’re planning to donate goods and/or $ at email@example.com.
So far we’ve been in touch with over 100 pledgers and redistributed over $34,000 in stimulus funds! Our team continues working to match pledgers with individuals referred by our partner organizations Families for Justice As Healing, MA Coalition of Domestic Workers, Keep It 100, Neighbors United for a Better Eastie, and For The People. Our goal is to match 20 stimulus checks (or $12,000) to each partner org. We know folx in the community are giving time, materials and financial contributions to a variety of causes right now. If you received a stimulus check and are in a position where you are able to contribute all or part of it, pledge to redistribute it today! A member of our team will be there to support you at each step.
No fault evictions should never happen, especially during a pandemic. Mutual aid is standing with neighbors facing evictions — join us to stand in solidarity with neighbors across the city.
Victory! Frank Sharpe, a 71-year-old Dorchester resident & veteran, won 3 more months in his home on Friday. Stand in solidarity with him and other Massachusetts families being evicted this pandemic winter. Tell Governor Baker to stop non-emergency evictions and help Frank find affordable alternative housing. Sign the petition!
Show your support for crucial affordable housing projects in JP! Join a rally Saturday, Feb 20 at 1pm at 3368 Washington St. in JP. The Pine St. Inn’s new supportive housing project would provide 100% affordable housing for people experiencing homelesness. This project has been delayed due to a lawsuit from a nearby landowner. Come out to learn more about the project and show support! RSVP here or attend on Zoom.
📋 PETITION: TELL BIDEN & THE CDC TO STRENGTHEN THE MORATORIUM!
Biden extended the eviction moratorium, but evictions are still happening. Last night community members rallied at 15 Dana Ave to protest no fault evictions in Boston. To truly protect tens of millions families from eviction, we need something much stronger: a moratorium that lasts the full state of emergency, takes the burden off renters to apply, bans all types of evictions and all phases of the process. Read the full list of demands from the national Right to the City alliance and sign the petition.
The residents of 6 Humphrey’s Place in Dorchester have fought for 2 years to stay in their home since the landlord first attempted to flip the building for profit. They even negotiated a deal to prevent rent increases and improve conditions. Now, the building is up for sale again.
Thank you so much to all who have donated! 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 if you can.
Justin Dawes, a second year law student at New England Law, is calling for New England Law to better support its Black students. New England Law's biased nature means that students of color who are struggling under the demands of the pandemic are unfairly dismissed, while white supremacist Samson Racioppi continues his studies at NEL uninterrupted. Read his letter and sign in support here.
☎️ ✉️ ✊ DROP SHIMMY'S CHARGES! - COURT SUPPORT 2/24
Moses Harris disappeared during an encounter with the Lowell police on December 19 and the police are refusing to meet with the Harris-Wahpo family to discuss the case. The family and the larger community want answers about the disappearance of Moses Harris. Contact the legislators that serve Lowell MA and ask that an investigation be initiated regarding his disappearance.
One of our active members, lisa thompson, is working on a reparations project for a friend and comrade, karen marshall, a black organizer. she and lisa first met in Boston over 10 years ago and they have stayed connected and work on several projects
together, one included hosting trainings led by Rethink youth in Boston. karen is a national leader and much of her work is connected to youth organizing and the movement for black lives which is also very much connected to SURJ national.
Please consider donating to this gofundme (and read more about her there).
The colder days of winter are a perfect time to get educated and prepared for the months ahead. Blood Red Lines: How Nativism Fuels the Right, by Brendan O’Connor -- a look at the connections between the billionaire class, the far-right, and racist anti-immigrant policies and sentiments.
Get the full list at http://bit.ly/TopTenAntifascistBooks by Solidarity Against Hate - Boston and consider purchasing from our local shops: Frugal Bookstore or The Lucy Parsons Center!
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!
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 subsequently lost his job, support him here. Only $600 left to meet this goal!
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.
A federal court has decided not to halt the construction of Line 3—so it's critical that we keep up the fight to #StopLine3. Sign this petition NOW to tell Pres. Biden & U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Headquarters that they must take action to protect our lands, air and water.
The film ‘Necessity: Oil, Water, and Climate Resistance,’ featuring our MN Water Protectors is done and ready for viewing, as a fundraiser for water protectors camps Giniw and Camp Migizi! Choose a day to watch & donate any amount, before Feb. 21. An added bonus is an educational panel via Zoom on 2/15 PM CT! Facebook event here. Register for the film and panel here.
Take your first action with the Giniw Collective by clicking here. “It is my duty as an Anishinaabe woman that compels me to support people in taking direct action to stop the construction of Line 3...like when Water Protectors recently locked themselves inside a section of pipe, blockaded the entrances to construction sites, and locked themselves to trucks being used to carry Line 3 pipeline materials. It is from this sense of duty that I am asking you to join us in this campaign. Together, I know that we can do this... Your email will go directly to the inboxes of CEOs, executives and board members of the banks funding Line 3.” -Tara Zhaabowekwe Houska, Giniw Collective
We want to be mindful and respectful of this, treating and celebrating the land (and all of our natural environment) like any place we would be as a guest. To get more informed see native-land.ca and usdac.us/nativeland. Learn more from a panel discussion here.
Take action to support the Safe Communities Act! Call and email your legislator to urge them to cosponsor the bill. Passage of this bill remains an urgent public health and public safety priority to protect our communities and neighbors. Our state’s involvement in deportations preceded the Trump administration and is likely to continue without state action.
With a new stimulus relief check recently approved, undocumented immigrants, many of whom are essential workers, have once again been excluded. Cosecha MA is restarting their redistribution campaign for the Cosecha MA mutual aid fund. Support their mutual aid fund and stand in solidarity with our immigrant communities!
On Tuesday February 16th from 12:00-1:00 join Muslim Justice League’s executive director Fatema Ahmad to discuss the history and impacts of Countering Violent Extremism (CVE), a program which unjusty targets Muslims and political activists, and its future under the Biden/Harris administration. Fatema Ahmad (she/hers) is the Executive Director at Muslim Justice League, where she leads MJL's efforts to dismantle the criminalization and policing of marginalized communities under national security pretexts.
Support Muslim Justice League by becoming a member if your new years resolution is to do more racial justice work!
Donate and become a Dream Sustainer to support immigrant youth in protecting their community!
MassUndocuFund is fund to support undocumented immigrants during the COVID-19 crisis. Support our community members who will not receive stimulus checks or other forms of relief during this crisis!
The Work and Family Mobility Act would allow all folks in Massachusetts to apply for a driver’s license and/or ID card, regardless of immigration status. Use this link to email your state representative and senator about co-sponsoring the Work and Family Mobility Act and use this link to find your legislators’ phone numbers to call and ask them to co-sponsor.
Sunday, February 14, 12:30-2:30 PM ET
Join Black activists who will discuss their Faneuil Hall Race + Reconciliation Campaign which was created in 2018. Activists have been agitating for a public hearing to address deep structural racism that exists in Boston. For information, click here.
With questions, please contact Amelie Ratliff.
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 including you! Come join us and learn how helpful being in these discussions can be (for
yourself and society).
For THIS WEEK, join us in these upcoming Knapsack meetings (on Zoom):
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.