RAPID RESPONSE TEAM ACTION LIST FOR MAR 16, 2022

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

Sunday March 27 at 5:30pm, on Zoom.Next Solidarity Lowell General Meeting

Topic: TBD

SLCC Elections Coming Up

In April, we’ll be voting on Coordinating Committee members. Half of the seats are up for re-election/election each year.  Anyone interested who has questions is welcome to contact any of the Coordinating Committee members (Amy Baranoski, Caroline Snow, Chris Offerman, Dee Halzack, Joseph Boyle, Lisa Arnold, Win Flint) or email the Committee at contact@solidaritylowell.com.

To help you decide whether you’d like to run, here is what the by-laws say about the Coordinating Committee:

  • 3. Coordinating Committee members are invited to a two-year term or until they resign (either in person at a meeting or in the official Coordinating Committee Facebook Messenger conversation), or until they are voted out. At least ⅔ of the Coordinating Committee can agree to vote a Coordinating Committee member out. Terms will be staggered with 50% of the committee up for reelection in any given year. There are no term limits.
  • 4. Coordinating Committee Meetings:
    • 4.1 The Coordinating Committee will meet twice monthly. Decisions of the Coordinating Committee will be made by a vote of 50%+1 for motion to pass. A quorum of ⅔ of the Coordinating Committee must be present to hold a meeting.
    • 4.2 Action by Consent. Any action by the Coordinating Committee may be taken without a meeting if consent is given by ⅔ of the Coordinating Committee online (by email or in the official Coordinating Committee Facebook Messenger chat or Slack). Such consent shall be treated for all purposes as a vote at a meeting
  • 5. The responsibilities of the Coordinating Committee include:
    • 5.1. Record the minutes of the Coordinating Committee meetings and distribute them in a timely fashion to the Coordinating Committee members.
    • 5.2. Communicate on a regular basis with the SL membership through use of, and maintenance of, an email list and at monthly general meetings.
    • 5.3. Maintain an up-to-date list of chapter members including name, address, phone number and email address as well as date of membership and meetings attended.
    • 5.4. Prepare the agendas for the General Meetings, record the minutes of the meetings, and distribute the minutes to all members.
    • 5.5. Conduct any voting at General Meetings.
    • 5.6. Develop and maintain the appropriate social media avenues as needed.
    • 5.7. Recommend, implement, and evaluate program activities, including but not limited to public forums, debates, and legislative and electoral campaigns.
    • 5.8. Encourage SL members to join PM or SL committees needed to carry out the responsibilities and/or the program activities of the organization.
    • 5.9 Organize tabling and the promotion of the group at local events.
  • 6. The nominating and voting process for election of the Coordinating Committee is as follows:
    • 6.1. Members may make nominations from the floor at the April meeting. Individuals who are nominated must accept or decline the nomination, or, if not in attendance, otherwise have signified their response to such a nomination.
    • 6.2. The members will vote by secret ballot or online. The top vote-getters equaling the number of open seats will be elected.
    • 6.3 Persons nominated for the SLCC must not currently be in or running for Lowell city office.

Assistance urgently needed for our asylum-seeker

From: Merrimack Valley Interfaith Sanctuary Network (MVISN)

Asylum-Seeker Marius now has employment, but has had issues with his employer and is struggling to pay the rent. MVISN needs to extend assistance through March. Any amount will be gratefully accepted.

Donations via:
CashApp – $gollygee17
Venmo – @owlnerd
Please put “Marius” in the notes

For more information, email marissa@solidaritylowell.com

Other Events

Climate Action Now meeting: Fixing our Broken Democracy in MA

March 21, 7:00pm – 8:30 pm
Please register here. https://tinyurl.com/325dfz4n

You are invited to a special meeting of Climate Action Now, where Erin Leahy (from Act On Mass) will discuss ways to fix the broken democracy in the MA Legislature. She will discuss  organizing for change with a statewide coalition to change the culture of the legislature and elect candidates to fight for reform and truly represent our interests.

For details, see the “The MA Legislature: Democracy in Decline” study (https://tinyurl.com/yc7mhvvp) which exposes the extreme centralization of power and lack of transparency in the House, with slides here. https://tinyurl.com/5n8vdwfh

(h/t Climate Action Now, and Act on Mass; shared by Larry Pareles, CD2, Indivisible Mass, News-MAGIC team)

State House News Forum

Featuring Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Ron Mariano

Wednesday, March. 23, 11 am
RSVP for link: https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/3116463438107/WN_V721eH_NQc6oq4mQ8-c4CA

Beacon Hill has a full plate: Offshore wind, solar, and other climate change policies. Leftover ARPA funding and spending options. The FY 2023 budget. Tax cuts. Mental health care access. Prescription drug costs. Education priorities. The MBTA. Sports betting. Not only do legislative leaders hope to address these and several other major issues before the end of the session in late July, but important political activity will continue into the fall and the November elections.

For insight on the road ahead, please join our State House News Forum featuring Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Ron Mariano on March 23 at 11 a.m. In a special virtual side-by-side discussion with the News Service’s Katie Lannan, they will offer their perspectives on important policy debates that will shape Beacon Hill activity for the next several months and yield legislative decisions that will impact the Commonwealth for years to come.

Commission on Clean Heat public meetings

The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) invites you to attend public meetings focused on the work of the Commission on Clean Heat and related policies for building decarbonization.  The meetings will be virtual and include a short presentation, followed by a period for public comment.  There will be two sessions on each date with the same presentation, one in the afternoon and one in the evening.

Public Meeting #2: Tuesday, March 24, 2022

OPTION 1: 12:30pm – 2:00pm
Join by computer: https://zoom.us/j/99690459766
Join by phone: 929-436-2866
Meeting ID: 996 9045 9766     Passcode: 030122

OPTION 2: 6:00pm – 7:30pm
Join by computer: https://zoom.us/j/93847362753
Join by phone: 929-436-2866
Meeting ID: 938 4736 2753   Passcode: 030122

Additional meeting to be held April 14.

Accommodations: Accessibility accommodations and language services will be provided free of charge to those who request them and subject to availability. Requests must be either submitted during registration or via email a minimum of two business days prior to the meeting. Services include documents in alternative formats, translated documents, assistive listening devices, and interpreters (including American Sign Language). For more information or to request reasonable accommodations and/or language services, please email GWSA@mass.gov.

Immigrants’ Day (virtually) at the State House

Tuesday, March 29, 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Virtual event
Register HERE. https://tinyurl.com/424cdtws

Please join Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition (MIRA) at the State House on March 29 to support immigrants’ rights and advocate for related budget items and legislation. For 26 years MIRA has brought together hundreds of immigrants and refugees to hear from public officials and advocate for their communities’ legislative and budget priorities.

The virtual event includes a speaking program with built-in digital advocacy opportunities, followed by regional “roundtables” with legislators co-hosted by MIRA member organizations. It will focus on the Safe Communities Act, the Work and Family Mobility Act, the Language Access and Inclusion Act, the COVID-19 Vaccine Equity Act, and several budget line-items.

45-minute speaking program with built-in digital advocacy opportunities, followed by 45-minute regional “roundtables” with legislators co-hosted by MIRA member organizations.

This year, we are privileged to announce that former Boston Mayor Kim Janey – the first Black woman to serve in that office – will be one of our keynote speakers. Our legislative hosts are Senator William N. Brownsberger, Senate President Pro Tempore, and Representative Ruth Balser, Second Division Chair. Featured speakers will include Gabriel Camacho, United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1445, and Dalida Rocha, Political Director, Service Employees International Union Local 615, among others. Our priorities include ensuring the equitable distribution and availability of the vital COVID-19 vaccines, which are desperately needed in the immigrant and BIPOC communities hardest-hit by the pandemic. We will also continue to also push forward on longstanding priorities like the Safe Communities Act.

State-Level Actions

Eight months away to Election Day! A good opportunity to plug EDR

Link: https://actionnetwork.org/letters/edr/

Late last month, the Massachusetts House of Representatives voted in favor of the VOTES Act, pledging their support to making permanent critical electoral reforms like mail-in and early in-person voting. However, the House chose to leave out the heart of the VOTES Act: Election Day Registration (EDR). Now, because the House and Senate versions of the VOTES Act differ, a small group of legislators are finalizing the bill in conference committee.

While this is a disappointing development, the fight for EDR is far from over. EDR has been proven to make elections more equitable and efficient in 20 states. By reducing voter registration barriers, EDR boosts voter turnout for all, especially BIPOC, low income, immigrant, and young voters. It also decreases administrative burdens of running elections by allowing election workers to update registration information on the spot.

As we continue to make our voice heard on EDR, we ask for your support by doing so too. Contact your state representative NOW and urge them to include EDR in the final version of the VOTES Act. By doing so, you’ll help make our democracy a more equitable and efficient one.

From Jonathan Cohn, Progressive Massachusetts, via News-MAGIC

 

Our State Legislators’ Info

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

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

National Actions

Our Federal Legislators’ Info

Senator Elizabeth Warren: 617-565-3170
309 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
https://www.warren.senate.gov/contact/shareyouropinion

Senator Edward Markey: 617-565-8519
255 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
https://www.markey.senate.gov/contact/share-your-opinion

Representative Lori Trahan: 978-459-0101 / 202-225-3411
https://trahan.house.gov/contact/write-your-rep.htm

Representative Seth Moulton: 978-531-1669 / 202-225-8020
https://moulton.house.gov/contact

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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/

February meeting notes: https://tinyurl.com/ywzh67s3

February meeting recording: https://youtu.be/1GvTa_J6LTg

See recordings of all past Solidarity Lowell meetings on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCohwMIkVdabQdDHsVTLIGsQ

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

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Solidarity Lowell is a chapter of Progressive Massachusetts. Click here to join: https://www.progressivemass.com/donate/

Posted by Caroline Snow