RAPID RESPONSE TEAM ACTION LIST FOR JULY 6, 2021

The RRT (Rapid Response Team) Action List compiles action items from the week and upcoming events into one place. If you would like to add anything to the weekly update, please send it to Dee Halzack at dee@solidaritylowell.com.

Solidarity Lowell Events and Actions

Next Solidarity Lowell General Meeting: Summer Barbecue and Fundraiser

Sunday, July 25, 5:30pm
205 10th Street, Lowell

Join us for the 4th Annual Solidarity Lowell Summer Barbecue and Fundraiser for Marius!

This is a potluck event. Please sign up on Meal Train: https://www.mealtrain.com/potlucks/62m10d

The Solidarity Lowell Coordinating Committee will supply burgers, hot dogs, veggie options, and buns.

This is also a fundraiser for Marius, the Togolese asylum-seeker we are supporting as part of the Merrimack Valley Interfaith Sanctuary Network. Marius has recently signed a lease on an apartment and though he is getting financial assistance from RAFT, he needs additional help from us for food and furniture, as well as continued legal aid. Anything you can contribute would be greatly appreciated! We will accept cash at the event or you can Venmo @owlnerd or CashApp $gollygee17

Many thanks to Win Flint for hosting!

Support for Asylum-Seeker Marius

Marius has retained an immigration lawyer, filed an application for asylum, and successfully moved his case to the Boston immigration courts from El Paso, but until he receives legal authorization to work, our network has committed to financially supporting him with $500/month. Please chip in towards the $500 we need to meet our commitment to him. Any amount will be gratefully accepted.

Donate here: http://www.merrimackvalleyproject.org/donate-1/ (please write “asylum” in the “special notes” part of the donation form)

 

State-level Events and Actions

SAVE DEMOCRACY: ACT NOW!

Rally with Concord Indivisible
Saturday, July 10, 10:00 a.m. 

Monument Square, Concord

Concord Indivisible, Indivisible Acton Area, and multiple partner organizations will rally in Concord Center July 10 to support the For the People Act and the freedom of all eligible citizens to vote. Democracy is in the crosshairs, as states across the nation brazenly pass laws that will keep many eligible citizens from voting — especially citizens of color. Recent Supreme Court decisions have only made federal election reform more urgent. If we do not protect every citizen’s freedom to vote, the democratic institutions we cherish will not stand, and there will be little hope of moving forward on racial justice and other key progressive issues.

The rally, part of Indivisible’s Deadline for Democracy project, will take place in Concord’s Monument Square. Key activists – including Deb Paul of Massachusetts Indivisible and ACLU Massachusetts Executive Director Carol Rose – will give updates on the fight to protect our vote. There will be opportunities to sign up to write postcards, make phone calls, text, and post on social media. Plan to bring signs and MAKE SOME NOISE!

Partner sponsors for this event include Solidarity Lowell, Swing Blue Alliance/Swing Left Greater Boston, Indivisible Acton Area, Reclaim Our Democracy, the Concord Democratic Town Committee, and the Lincoln Democratic Town Committee. An RSVP (https://tinyurl.com/raz33rhc) is encouraged to enhance planning. Please share information about the rally widely with others who may be interested. Democracy cannot wait!

Get involved in the Redistricting Process
Redistricting Hearing for MA CD3

Thursday, July 8, 6:00 – 11:00 PM 
https://malegislature.gov/Events/Hearings/Detail/3744

As we learned from Marissa Dupont in our last general meeting, the Special Joint Committee on Redistricting will hold a virtual hearing for residents of Congressional District 3, which includes Lowell, on Thursday July 8 at 6pm. Tanekwah Hinds (she/her/hers), Racial Justice Community Advocate, American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, also reminded us of this.

As Marissa explained during the meeting, district lines are redrawn every ten years, based on the Census. As Ms. Hinds explained, “How district lines are drawn influences who runs for public office and who is elected. Elected representatives make decisions on issues that are important to our lives. We [need to] advocat[e] for a transparent redistricting process that equitably represents BIPOC (Black, indigenous, people of color) communities, low-income people and immigrants in Massachusetts. 10 years ago, the community-based redistricting process created the first majority BIPOC Congressional District which Ayanna Pressley now represents. We can create more opportunities for people who reflect Massachusetts demographics to represent our needs.”

The state legislature is holding hearings to get input from community members on this process. The hearing for our district is on July 8 (see above). You can get involved and even testify.

Testify virtually and provide live testimony during the hearing. Use the Sign Up Form at https://tinyurl.com/pd8c8hmp.

To submit written testimony, use the Contact the Committee form on the Special Joint Committee on Redistricting website:  https://malegislature.gov/Redistricting/Contact.

Attend the hearing through the livestream on the Legislative Website https://malegislature.gov/Events/Hearings/Detail/3744.

Check out the sections below for a testimony template https://tinyurl.com/a6t25bbf and talking points; Drawing Democracy Coalition’s instructions and suggested talking points https://tinyurl.com/s8fzvjd3.

Contact Tanekwah Hinds (thinds@aclum.org), the Racial Justice Community Advocate at the ACLU of MA, for questions on how to give testimony and redistricting advocacy.

For questions on the logistics of the hearing, contact committee staff with any questions at (617) 722-2014. Please be advised that the schedule and agenda are subject to change at the discretion of the Chairs.

Want to Help Get More Transparency in the State House?

Join ActOnMass’s The People’s House campaign

The People’s House Text Banking
Co-hosted with Sunrise Boston
Tuesday, July 6, 2021 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM
Join volunteers of the People’s House campaign to text voters and build the movement for State House reform.
Please note Training for newcomers is at 5:30. The text bank begins at 6:00.
Sign Up Now: https://secure.everyaction.com/_cwMPEy0BUOc8n2OkZtVJw2

– – – –
Please contact your state representative and state senator (email preferable at the moment)
(Find yours here: https://malegislature.gov/Search/FindMyLegislator)
(replace the “at” and extra spaces with “@”)

House Speaker Ronald Mariano: Ronald.Mariano at mahouse.gov 617-722-2500
Senate President: Karen E. Spilka: Karen.Spilka at masenate.gov 617-722-1500
Rep. Thomas Golden Thomas.Golden at mahouse.gov  617-722-2263
Rep. Vanna Howard Vanna.Howard at mahouse.gov  617-722-2800 x7302 / Google Voice: 978-272-9078
Rep. Rady Mom Rady.Mom at mahouse.gov 617-722-2460
Rep. Colleen Garry Colleen.Garry at mahouse.gov 617-722-2380
Rep. Tram Nguyen tram.nguyen at mahouse.gov 617-722-2425
Sen. Edward Kennedy edward.kennedy at masenate.gov 617-722-1630
Sen. Michael Barrett Mike.Barrett at masenate.gov 617-722-1572
Sen. Jamie Eldridge James.Eldridge at masenate.gov 617-722-1120
Sen. Barry Finegold Barry.Finegold at masenate.gov 617-722-1612

Massachusetts State House, 24 Beacon St, Boston, MA 02133

 

National Events and Actions

Activist Texting is Alive and Well!

Check out the new Texting Clearinghouse!
Political campaigns are getting active now with renewed interest in political activist texting. Texting is a powerful and impactful way to reach voters since people usually read their texts. Texting programs can reach huge numbers of people quickly and easily, and texting is fun too. We can text with people for one-on-one personal conversations, while keeping our own information private. Texting speeds communication, reaches many people, and gets results which can really make a difference.

To help novice and advanced texters alike, the IMC Texting Action Team compiled an updated listing of active progressive texting organizations with links to their campaigns.

Now that S.1: For the People Act is coming before the Senate, Common Cause and other organizations are texting to support this very important bill, and you can help. Please visit our texting clearinghouse where you can get help and start texting soon.
You will find lots of helpful information about activist texting by clicking HEREhttps://docs.google.com/document/d/1n4mDzMyqy9-ZfbQc40U6u1K75Tmn5-e98f05iEj1Tc8/edit
(h/t Indivisible Mass Coalition, Texting Action Team)

Urge businesses to support S.1, For the People Act Senate Version

In June, over 90 companies, including Patagonia and Ben & Jerry’s, signed a letter to Congress in support of the For the People Act. Please ask other businesses that you patronize or work for to join them by sharing this link: https://forthepeopleact.support/ that includes a copy of the letter and a form they can fill out to indicate their support.

Solidarity Lowell is a volunteer group of community members of Greater Lowell working toward social justice by defending the human rights, dignity, and equality of all persons against all forms of hate and discrimination.
 

Visit the Solidarity Lowell website: http://solidaritylowell.com

For more events not listed here, visit the full Events calendar: http://solidaritylowell.com/events/

To join our postcarding efforts to write to legislators on issues of interest , please fill out the following form: https://forms.gle/h2V7gJ1e2WbY9dKU9

For volunteer opportunities, visit our Volunteer page: http://solidaritylowell.com/volunteer-opportunities/

For positive news visit Solidarity Lowell Upbeat on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/326202548419687

View the notes from our June meeting: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1LzPJupD5TZmWn3saGi2iwkxIEVPbTwZP_NVAnqewkyI/edit?usp=sharing

Watch the video from our June meeting: https://youtu.be/Qx3YWeCtBNw
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 Solidarity Lowell is a chapter of Progressive Massachusetts. Click here to join: https://www.progressivemass.com/contribute

Posted by Caroline Snow