May 16, 2021
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Every Wednesday 12 to 1 PM (training every 4th Wednesday at 1pm)
SURJ Boston members will guide you through a set of actions curated from our BIPOC-led partners' priorities this week! Bring a friend :) Register here for action hours.
Thursday, May 27th, 6-7 PM
Join the Massachusetts Coalition of Domestic Workers for a panel discussion about the current landscape and future challenges for domestic workers. Register here.
Friday was National Day of Awareness of Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) and Red Dress Day to raise awareness of the high level of violence against Indigenous women. Please read and share their stories as they continue to be silenced.
Wednesday, May 19th, 6pm
The Black Response is a Cambridge community organization working against over policing, housing crisis, and homelessness in Cambridge. They have been working on a proposal for a non-police first-responder program in Cambridge called the Holistic Emergency Alternative Response Team (HEART). On Wednesday evening, join TBR to learn more about the proposal and how to show support! Join on zoom here.
May 21 5pm
The Lucy Parsons Center and Solidarity Against Hate - Boston are hosting a webinar with Devin Zane Shaw, author of "Philosophy of Antifascism. Visit the Facebook event for more information and to RSVP.
Sign up to receive communications directly from SURJ Boston groups around political education opportunities and ways to take action.
As we continue to fight against the proposed new women’s prison in Massachusetts, check the Building Up People Not Prison Week of Action to see how to support two super important Senate Budget Amendments. Amendment 367 pauses prison construction for a year - a complement to the 5-year prison moratorium bill - and amendment 669 supports staffing and funding for the independent ombudsman’s office. Email your senator this week and promote the ask on social media!
Justice 4 Housing is a grassroots organization committed to ending housing discrimination and homelessness for justice-involved individuals.
Watch for updates on asks from Shimmy’s legal team on Instagram @FFCof2020.
We need immediate legislative action to address the eviction crisis. Nearly 10,000 new eviction cases have been filed in Massachusetts since the moratorium ended in October, leaving people exposed to a second deadly wave of COVID 19 and overwhelmingly affecting communities of color. Boston residents are calling on legislators to pass the COVID 19 Housing Equity Bill (HD3030): Call your representatives now!
From UAINE: Send an automated email to your state rep and state senator asking them to co-sponsor five bills in the 2021-2022 MA Indigenous Legislative Agenda! and share! Learn about the MA legislative agenda.
The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the issues working families have been facing for decades— unpredictable work schedules, fluctuating paychecks, and underemployment. Most notably, this pandemic has hurt working women and mothers, who are being forced out of the workplace at alarming rates, especially Black and Latinx women and mothers. Call on your legislators to support the Fair Work Week Bill to give restaurant, retail, and hospitality workers more control over their schedules and lives.
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.
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.
Demand that Governor Baker and Education Commissioner Riley cancel the 2021 MCAS (students are taking the exams imminently, let’s make some noise!)
Tweet Boston mayor Kim Janey to demand fully funded, safe schools, and more. Tweet templates from the Boston Education Justice Alliance and SURJ Boston Public Ed AP are available here.
The Coalition for a Truly Affordable Boston is calling on the city to finally address Boston’s affordability crisis by strengthening Boston’s Inclusionary Housing Policy (IDP). Share these graphics explaining truly affordable standards on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. The graphics are also now available at this link in Spanish, Haitian Creole, Cape Verdean Creole, Vietnamese, and Chinese. Sign & share the petition!
Nepal is reporting one of the fastest COVID-19 viral reproduction rates in the world, with a positivity ratio of 45%.Currently, only 1% of the Nepali population is fully vaccinated. Approximately 1.7 million of those who received the first dose are at risk of defaulting on the second dose due to the vaccine stock out.Nepal's health infrastructure is stretched beyond its capacity and it's running out of oxygen. Nepal needs direct vaccine supplies NOW - sign the petition and call Senator Ed Markey to demand that the White House to send surplus COVID vaccines to Nepal as well as oxygen and other essential supplies.
The Coalition for a Truly Affordable Boston is calling on the city to finally address Boston’s affordability crisis by strengthening Boston’s Inclusionary Housing Policy (IDP).
ORGANIZATIONS: END HOUSING DISCRIMINATION AGAINST THOSE WITH RECORDS
Justice 4 Housing needs organizational support their new bills to end housing discrimination and homelessness for justice-involved individuals.
The UMass Boston Coalition Against Gentrification is demanding modifications to the Dorchester Bay City Proposal, including increasing the commitment to affordable housing, incorporating community facilities into the development plan, and other changes that would better meet the needs of impacted residents. Read the full list of demands and sign here!
Standardized testing has never been a measure of student learning, and in a pandemic teaching to this test will cause BIPOC, disabled, and poor students to fall even further behind. Allow parents to opt their students out of testing.
Support Indigenous People of Southeast Massachusetts and environmentalists to save the Pine Forests in Wareham, Carver and Plymouth.
The Boston Athletic Association (BAA) has decided to reschedule the Boston Marathon to October 11, 2021 - Indigenous Peoples Day. This day is meant to celebrate the Indigenous peoples of this land and their contributions past and present. The BAA has the chance to acknowledge the importance of keeping the spotlight on Indigenous Peoples Day rather than stealing the spotlight for the Marathon. Sign this petition today!
The Boston Athletic Association (BAA) has decided to schedule the Boston Marathon on October 11, 2021. October 11, 2021 is Indigenous Peoples Day and is meant to celebrate the Indigenous peoples of this land and their contributions (past and present). The BAA has the chance to acknowledge the importance of keeping the spotlight on Indigenous Peoples Day rather than steal the spotlight for the Marathon.
The Celebration of Grassroots Organizing is back for its 8th year! Last year, our community raised more than $5,000 for amazing BIPOC-led organizations making change in Boston. Let's raise even more in 2021! Support by sharing our fundraiser and check out this highlight video from Lobster Feeds past.
Support the work of the Massachusetts Coalition of Domestic Workers by donating to their 1st Annual Fundraiser! This fundraiser celebrates the legacy of Myriam Hernandez Jennings, their Director of Policy and Organizing, and will go towards the Leadership Development Program to provide transformative training for their leaders and will provide ten Visa T grants for their workers. Domestic workers care for the well-being of our community, they are the backbone of our society, however, they are some of the more vulnerable workers in our society. Domestic workers are majority women, mostly immigrants, and women of color. MCDW promotes change by empowering domestic workers and developing leaders who are able to speak up in their communities and generate positive change for themselves and others. As well, register here to join MCDW on Thursday May 27th from 6:00-7:00 PM for a panel discussion about the current landscape and future challenges for domestic workers.
In a huge victory for the community, Raymond Gaines finally was released after 47 years incarcerated! He has been wrongfully incarcerated since he was a teenager and now he needs our support for food, shelter, and medical care to address decades of untreated health conditions.
If you are able, pledge your check today! We have $94,000+ confirmed pledged, and have moved about $56,000 so far.
We are starting to get referrals in from our partners, and have reached out to most pledgers already. If you haven’t heard from us, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our partners do refer undocumented people to us, but we do not receive or keep information about a particular person's documentation status
We’re racing towards our initial goals for our five partner organizations: New Beginnings Re-Entry Services (GOAL MET!), Dorchester Not for Sale (GOAL MET!), Mass Coalition of Domestic Workers (getting close!), Neighbors United for a Better East Boston, and Keep It 100% for Egleston
None of this money passes through SURJB - we connect you directly
Your patience and generosity allow us to support people excluded from other COVID19 and economic relief efforts.
As the pandemic continues, our partners continue to value and NEED our donations. This week, we received donations from our from our Brighton and Cambridge porches - thank you to those of you who donated! We had no pick ups on Saturday, let’s aim for a bunch next week! Folks are counting on us!
We have porches in various communities for donation drop offs
so you don’t need to go to the partner locations. We cannot publish
porch addresses here for security reasons. Please email us to get the address for one drop-off site of your choice:
Allston, Belmont, Cambridge, Jamaica Plain, Medford, Roslindale, Somerville, and West Roxbury. Reminder: Our Roslindale porch has been combined with our West Roxbury porch.
If you would like to donate funds to our partners as well/instead, please click here:
Let us know if you’re planning to donate goods and/or if you donated $ (and how much for our records) at email@example.com. Thank you!
India is currently experiencing a massive COVID outbreak, exacerbated by colonizing nations constricting the vaccine supply.
The Black Response Cambridge works to defund the police and establish community-based solutions to harm and investment in community well-being. A generous donor is matching every contribution up to $35,000 - this will allow TBR to pay a full time, Black organizer.
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).
MassUndocuFund is fund to support undocumented immigrants during the COVID-19 crisis. Support our community members who did not receive stimulus checks or other forms of relief during this crisis!.
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! They are very close to their final goal!
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).
Each week, we offer a number of options for discussions on Zoom. Instead of posting here our meetings for this coming week, we invite you to see our upcoming meetings here instead: Knapsack’s Meetup page; please RSVP on Meetup if you can attend. More options are regularly added.
Join Knapsack Facebook discussions. This is an alternative to the Knapsack 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.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Boston’s neighborhoods of color have faced eviction rates twice as high as neighborhoods where most renters are white, a recent report by City Life Vida Urbana shows. The report also found that 70 percent of Boston’s eviction filings were in neighborhoods of color, despite rentals in this area making up only 47 percent of the city’s total rental housing. Read the full report here.
Join Muslim Justice League and Kavod to deepen relationships across and within their communities, learn about each other’s work, and reflect on how faith identities inform thier organizing. This event will share histories (and current realities) of Muslim-Jewish solidarity organizing and reflect on stories of finding political home within MJL and Kavod.
Read this article from School Yard News about efforts to cancel/opt out of the 2021 MCAS (be sure to check out the helpful hyperlinks in the article!)
Overt white supremacists organizing in New England still benefit from the lie that it couldn’t happen here in the progressive Northeast. The more you know what to watch out for, the less likely they will be able to rally and recruit for their cause unopposed. Share on your social media, text it to your friends, and make sure you’re aware of what’s happening in your area!
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.