Rapid Response Team

SOLIDARITY LOWELL RAPID RESPONSE TEAM ACTION LIST FOR MAY 27, 2024

Lowell Emergency Housing Coalition Flyer for June 2nd meeting, 2024

Solidarity Lowell Events and Actions

Emergency Housing Coalition Meeting

Sunday, June 2, 2pm
WISH Hub, UMass Lowell, 150 Wilder St

Join us in this coalition effort from LLAMA, Merrimack Valley Project, Sacred Sun Project, and Solidarity Lowell.

Continuing the work of advocating for humane treatment of our unhoused neighbors and for affordable housing. If you have questions about the agenda or past meetings, please contact Felix Brown at felixfab62 @ gmail.com.

Mill City Messaging

Thursday, June 13, 6-8pm
Location: Lala Books, 189 Market St

Join us at our next postcarding event, hosted by our friends at Lala Books. Come join fellow activists, as we write postcards in support of progressive causes. Bring your own refreshments, favorite pen, and good conversation!

Note: If you are able, a suggested donation of $15 to go towards supplies is appreciated, but not mandatory.

For questions or to RSVP, please email amy@solidaritylowell.com so we can be sure to have enough materials on hand.

Next Solidarity Lowell Meeting

Sunday June 23 5:30-7pm
Format: Hybrid
Topic/speaker: TBD

Lowell Events & Actions

Next City Council Meeting

Tuesday, May 28 at 6:30pm, at City Hall and online.
Meetings are held biweekly during the summer Tuesdays at 6:30pm with public welcome. Occasionally meetings are canceled due to holiday weekends. Attend in person or by using remote participation as follows: Members of the public may view the meeting via LTC.Org (Online; Live Streaming; Or Municipal Cable Channel 6).

To speak, you must register by 4pm the day of the meeting. Those wishing to speak regarding a specific agenda item must register to speak in advance of the meeting by sending an email to the City Clerk indicating the agenda item and a phone number to call so that you may be issued a Zoom link to the meeting if you wish to speak remotely. Email Address is MGEARY@LOWELLMA.GOV. If you have no access to email you may contact the City Clerk at 978-674-4161.

See agenda for details:
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_05282024-3115?html=true

5. CITY COUNCIL – MOTIONS
Nothing of interest to us.

6. COMMUNICATIONS FROM CITY MANAGER

6.1.Motion Responses
A) Motion Response – Syringe Exchange
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/28045?fileID=56833

I) Motion Response – Commercial To Residential Conversion
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/28045?fileID=56841

How to contact your City Councilors
https://www.lowellma.gov/FormCenter/Contact-the-City-Council-5/City-Council-Contact-Form-45

Lowell Alliance’s Deep Canvassing Training

Thursday, May 30, evening

Lowell Alliance will be organizing canvassing around the topic of affordable housing. If you are committed to organizing/canvassing with them on affordable housing, please contact Nancy Coan (ncoan @ ywcaoflowell.org) or Liz Anusauskas (eanusauskas @ ywcaoflowell.org) to find out more and see if you might be a candidate for training. Space is limited; serious, committed candidates only please.

Hunger And Homeless Commission Monthly Meeting

Wednesday, June 5, 12-1:30pm
Virtual
Mark your calendar and watch for link

Meetings are open to the public.

Support for our unhoused neighbors

Ongoing opportunities to help various organizations that are assisting Lowell’s unhoused population may be found on our website at: https://solidaritylowell.com/resources/

Any new opportunities will be posted there as well.

Ongoing Opportunities From Activist Groups in Our Area

Swing Blue Alliance
https://swingbluealliance.org/calendar/

Turn Purple 2 Blue
https://turnpurple2blue.org/

Touchbase Tuesdays (weekly)
Tuesday, May 28, 1-2pm
Sponsor: Indivisible Acton Area
Virtual
RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/activist-afternoons/event/586133/

Join Indivisible Acton Area weekly for conversation about local, state, and national current events. Let’s get together to update/review/share/plan news and actions people can take to win in 2024. Some of the brainstorming ideas discussed here turn into take action activities for the Indivisible Acton Area.

Postcards for Democracy (weekly)
Thursday, May 30, 9-11am
Kimball Farm Country Store, 400 Littleton Road, Westford (upstairs)
Sponsor: Indivisible Westford
$15 per packet
https://turnpurple2blue.org/2024/02/25/postcards-for-democracy/

Join fellow activists every Thursday to write postcards over coffee and conversations.
Postcard campaigns for races for Senate & House, as well as some simple Get Out the Vote projects for Ohio and Arizona Native Americans.

Pen Power at KJ’s Caffe (weekly)
Saturday, June 1, 9:30-11am
KJs Caffe next to Trader Joe’s, Acton
$15 per packet of 25 postcards
RSVP: Linda@IndivisibleActon.org
https://turnpurple2blue.org/2024/03/25/pen-power-at-kjs-caffe/

Join fellow activists every Saturday to write postcards over coffee and conversations. Postcard campaigns for races for Senate & House, as well as some simple Get Out the Vote projects for Ohio and Arizona Native Americans.
Text for Democracy (weekly)
Monday, June 3, 12:30-1:30pm
Sponsor: Swing Blue Alliance
https://www.mobilize.us/indivisible-ma/event/619754/

Working in conjunction with Field Team 6, we will text unregistered likely Democrats in key swing states to help them register to vote. (If you’re unfamiliar with FT6, they have an amazing success rate for registering voters.) We will use a method developed by FT6 that is free and flexible. It’s called BYOP, which stands for Bring Your Own Phone, even though you will use your computer and not your phone. You will have to install some basic software, but it’s not hard, and once you have installed the prerequisites, it’s as easy as hitting one button.

In addition, you will be able to send texts whenever it’s convenient for you, as long as it’s between 9AM and 9 PM in the location you are texting.

Other Events

People’s Action Deep Canvassing training

Introduction to Deep Canvassing: The Proven Method to Change Hearts and Minds
Tuesday, May 28, 6pm
Register: https://www.mobilize.us/mobilize/event/616697/

State Level Actions

Pass the Massachusetts Data Privacy Act

This week, we learned that the Location Shield Act provisions have been incorporated into an omnibus package called the Massachusetts Data Privacy Act (see https://www.aclum.org/en/press-releases/aclu-applauds-new-landmark-data-privacy-legislation for more information), which was passed favorably out of committee. Among other measures, the package would stop the sale of cellphone location data (which endangers people seeking abortion) as well as the use of sensitive, personal data for targeted advertising (such as that used by crisis pregnancy centers). Contact your legislators to pass the Massachusetts Data Privacy Act this session! You can do so at https://mobilize.aclum.org/a/pass-data-privacy-regulations
h/t Indivisible Mass Coalition

To Contact the Governor

Governor’s Office of Constituent Services (617) 725-4005
Call between 9am and 5pm and leave a message.

Or email the governor, using this form: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/email-the-governors-office#email-the-governor-using-this-form-

Our State Legislators’ Info

Activism tip: put your legislators in your phone. You’ll be able to easily find them to contact as needed.

Speaker Ronald Mariano Ronald.Mariano@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2500 | Rm 356
Senate President Karen Spilka Karen.Spilka@masenate.gov | 617-722-1500 | Rm 332
Rep. Rodney Elliott Rodney.Elliott@ma.house.gov | 617-722-2000 x7313 | Rm B1
Rep. Vanna Howard Vanna.Howard@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2060 | Rm 33
Local office: 25 Central Street, ground floor, Lowell
Rep. Rady Mom Rady.Mom@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2637 | Rm 544
Rep. Colleen Garry Colleen.Garry@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2380 | Rm 238
Senator Edward Kennedy edward.kennedy@masenate.gov | 617-722-1630 | Rm 109-E
Senator Michael Barrett Mike.Barrett@masenate.gov | 617-722-1572 | Rm 109-D
Senator Jamie Eldridge James.Eldridge@masenate.gov | 617-722-1120 | Rm 511-C
Senator Barry Finegold Barry.Finegold@masenate.gov | 617-722-1612 | Rm 511A
(… or find yours here: https://malegislature.gov/Search/FindMyLegislator)

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

Please join Solidarity Lowell in standing with our Cambodian neighbors

Many Cambodian Americans have been advocating for legislation to promote democracy and ensure human rights in Cambodia. The bills, H.R.4659 (co-sponsored by Rep. Lori Trahan) and S.2331 (sponsored by Senator Markey) , Cambodia Democracy, and Human Rights Act of 2023, “A bill to promote free and fair elections, democracy, political freedoms, and human rights in Cambodia, and for other purposes.” have been stalled in Congress.  The success of the bills will signal to the dictatorial Hun family that authoritarian control, brutal suppression of his people, and the abuse of human rights in the Kingdom of Cambodia will not be ignored by the United States.

Sign this petition urging Congress to pass the bills:
https://civicshout.com/p/urge-congress-to-pass-the-cambodia-democracy-act

Our Federal Legislators’ Info

Activism tip: put your legislators in your phone. You’ll be able to easily find them to contact as needed. Shy? Call after 5 and leave a message. They work for you and you have a right to tell them what you think!

Senator Elizabeth Warren
https://www.warren.senate.gov/contact/shareyouropinion
309 Hart Senate Office Building | Washington, DC 20510 | 202-224-4543
2400 JFK Federal Building | 15 New Sudbury Street | Boston, MA 02203 | 617-565-3170

Senator Edward Markey
https://www.markey.senate.gov/contact/share-your-opinion
255 Dirksen Senate Office Building | Washington, DC 20510 | 202-224-2742
975 JFK Federal Building | 15 New Sudbury St | Boston, MA 02203 | 617-565-8519

Representative Lori Trahan
https://trahan.house.gov/contact/write-your-rep.htm
2439 Rayburn HOB | Washington, DC 20515 | 202-225-3411
126 John Street | Lowell, MA 01852 | 978-459-0101

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

Posted by Marissa in Rapid Response Team

Lowell Transitional Living Center Needs Help Serving Meals

Action of the Week

~ If you do nothing else this week, this is the action that can make a difference. ~

Lowell Transitional Living Center Needs Help Serving Meals

The shelter is severely understaffed, as in no kitchen staff at all. Front desk staff are having to prepare meals. They have temporarily suspended serving lunch as a result.

They are still serving breakfast (7-8am) and dinner (5:30-6:30pm). They serve approximately 120 people at each meal.

ANY help would be appreciated, anything from preparing a meal and dropping it off for them to serve or coming there and preparing the meal, serving, and cleaning up. They will take partial quantities.

They would prefer hot meals, but at this point, they will accept anything. Some groups that serve at Community Table have found sandwiches and salad to be easier to put together with a smaller crew.

For more info or to schedule a turn, contact Director Isaiah Stevens (phone: 978-458-9888)

Solidarity Lowell Events and Actions

Emergency Housing Coalition Meeting

Sunday April 21, 6pm
UML Center For Women And Work, 150 Wilder Street, Lowell

Join us in this coalition effort from LLAMA, Merrimack Valley Project, Sacred Sun Project, and Solidarity Lowell.

Continuing the work of advocating for humane treatment of our unhoused neighbors and for affordable housing. If you have questions about the agenda or past meetings, please contact Felix Brown at felixfab62 @ gmail.com

Next Solidarity Lowell Meeting

Sunday April 28, 5:30-7pm 
Status: Hybrid OR Zoom to be determined closer to date
Topic/speaker: Coordinating Committee Elections and TBD

Unpacking Whiteness

Individuals committed to exploring their own racial biases are invited to participate in an Unpacking Whiteness Dialogue Group. The purpose of the group is to engage in supportive, structured dialogues with others to explore whiteness in contemporary society, especially to better understand the legacy and impact of white supremacy, white privilege, explicit and implicit bias, systemic racism, and microaggressions. There will be five sessions total.

Sign up at http://bit.ly/uw-signup

For more information, please contact Marissa Dupont: marissa@solidaritylowell.com

Support Needed for Asylum-Seeker

Lilian, an asylum-seeker from the Dominican Republic, finally moved into an apartment! She can use assistance with furnishing the place.

Donations and gift cards are appreciated. These can be given to Marissa Dupont, who will pass them along to Lillian. CashApp: $gollygee17   Venmo: @owlnerd

For checks, cash donations, or gift cards, email marissa@solidaritylowell.com to coordinate drop-off.

Thank you!!!

Lowell Events & Actions

Next City Council Meeting

Tuesday, April 9 at 6:30pm, at City Hall and online

Meetings are usually held weekly Tuesdays at 6:30pm with public welcome. Occasionally meetings are canceled due to holiday weekends. Attend in person or by using remote participation as follows: Members of the public may view the meeting via LTC.Org (Online; Live Streaming; Or Municipal Cable Channel 6).

To speak, you must register by 4pm the day of the meeting. Those wishing to speak regarding a specific agenda item must register to speak in advance of the meeting by sending an email to the City Clerk indicating the agenda item and a phone number to call so that you may be issued a Zoom link to the meeting if you wish to speak remotely. Email Address is MGEARY@LOWELLMA.GOV. If you have no access to email you may contact the City Clerk at 978-674-4161.

See agenda for details:
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_04092024-3058?html=true

5. CITY COUNCIL – MOTIONS

5.2. C. Robinson – Req. City Mgr. Have The Proper Department Provide An Update On Status Of Syringe Exchange Programs In The Community And What Regulatory Options Exist On The Local Level.

5.10 C. Jenness – Req. City Mgr. Have Proper Department Provide Presentation To The Council On Current Status Of ARPA Monies That Have Been Obligated, And The Plan For The Remainder Of Those Funds To Be Obligated By End Of Year.

5.14.C. Scott – Req. City Mgr. Provide A Report Detailing The Status Of Mitigation Efforts Listed In The 2015 And 2020 Municipal Vulnerability Reports And The Status Of The Planning For The 2025 Report.

6. COMMUNICATIONS FROM CITY MANAGER

6.1. Motion Responses

B) Motion Response – State and Federal Partners Grant Opportunities
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/27484?fileID=55883

C) Motion Response – (Improving) LTLC Services
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/27484?fileID=55884

D) Motion Response – Winter Protocol Beds
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/27484?fileID=55885

8. ORDINANCES FROM THE CITY MANAGER

8.1. Ordinance – New Ch. 51 – Code For Elected And Appointed Officials
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/27491?fileID=55888
An Ordinance Amending “Code of Ordinances, City of Lowell, Massachusetts,” by creating a new Chapter 51, entitled “Code of Conduct for Elected and Appointed Officials.”

11. PETITIONS

11.3. Misc. – Norma Von Fricken Request Permission To Address Council Regarding [Unsanitary] Homeless Conditions.
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/27471?fileID=55732

How to contact your City Councilor
https://www.lowellma.gov/FormCenter/Contact-the-City-Council-5/City-Council-Contact-Form-45

It’s easy via the Webform above. You can write to as many of the councilors as you’d like, all at once. You can include the City Manager. You can have a copy of what you send returned to you. And you can communicate anonymously if you wish.

Remember. They work for us. You have a right to bring your concerns about the City to them.

Cambodian Flag Raising Ceremony

Friday, April 12, 10am

Join CMAA, Lowell City Hall, Lowell Community Charter Public School, and Lowell Public Schools in recognition of the Cambodian community in Greater Lowell.

Live broadcast on CMAA Facebook.

Lowell Litter Krewe

LLK has recommenced their spring cleanups.
To connect with them: https://linktr.ee/lowelllitterkrewe
Sign up to volunteer, check out their schedule and more.

Next events
Great Connector Cleanup, Exit 3 to Gorham St
Saturday, April 13, 9am-12pm
Meet at Target

Lowell Parking Garage Art – Phase 2 – Call for Artists

Deadline: April 26

The City of Lowell, through the Office of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (CASE), invites artists to submit two-dimensional works of art to be considered for showing in City-owned parking garages in phase two of our Parking Garage Art Exhibit. You may submit existing works or works newly created for this project. Works will be reproduced by the City of Lowell on acrylic panels suitable for all weather conditions and will be affixed to the wall of City-owned parking garages. For more information, please contact Peter Crewe: pcrewe@lowellma.gov.

Submit your application online to the Office of Cultural Affairs and Special Events using the following link: https://form.jotform.com/240846135410146.

Project Timeline
Call for Artists OPEN: Friday, March 29
Info session via Zoom (optional): Tuesday, April 16
Call for Artists CLOSE: Friday, April 26, 1:59pm
Artists Notified by: Monday, May 6
Work Due to the City: Friday, May 10
Display Period: Up to one year (June 2024 – June 2025)

The information session will be held via Zoom on Tuesday, April 16, 2024 from 5:30pm-6:30pm. It is optional and will serve as a space where artists can ask questions.

More details: https://www.likelowell.com/parking-garage-art-2024

Hunger And Homelessness Commission Has An Opening

If you are a resident of Lowell or a non-resident affiliated with a Lowell organization or institution and believe in and support the special interests of the hungry and homeless and are willing to work on behalf of the City of Lowell on this issue, this may be for you.

The Commission meets once a month, usually on the first Wednesday, for 60-90 minutes. Meetings are open to the public.

For more information on the Commission opening: https://g.co/kgs/dBzTu77

Support for our unhoused neighbors

Ongoing opportunities to help various organizations that are assisting Lowell’s unhoused population may be found on our website at:https://solidaritylowell.com/resources/

Any NEW opportunities will be posted here as well.

Ongoing Opportunities From Activist Groups in Our Area

Touchbase Tuesdays (weekly)

Tuesday, April 9, 1-2pm
Tuesday, April 16, 1-2pm

Sponsor: Indivisible Acton Area
Virtual – RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/activist-afternoons/event/586133/ 

Join Indivisible Acton Area weekly for conversation about local, state, and national current events. Let’s get together to update/review/share/plan news and actions people can take to win in 2024. Some of the brainstorming ideas discussed here turn into take action activities for the Indivisible Acton Area.

Postcards for Democracy (weekly)

Thursday, April 18, 9-11am
Kimball Farm Country Store, 400 Littleton Road, Westford
Sponsor: Indivisible Westford
$15 per packet
https://turnpurple2blue.org/2024/02/25/postcards-for-democracy/

Join fellow activists every Thursday to write postcards over coffee and conversations.

Activist Afternoons (first and third Sundays)

Sunday, April 21, 4-6pm
St. James Church, 1991 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge
Sponsors: Progressive Mass, Swing Blue Alliance, 350Mass, and others
RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/activist-afternoons/event/595320/

Join fellow activists to make calls about key issues at the State House.

GAI Bi-Weekly Postcard Action Hour

Wednesday, April 24,  6-7:30pm
Panera, 58 Peters St, North Andover
Sponsor: Greater Andover Indivisible
RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/indivisiblegreaterandover/event/565734/

Leading up to the 2024 elections, we’ll be writing to voters in key swing states/districts with messages about must-win candidates, progressive issues, Democrats’ accomplishments and urging unregistered likely-Dems to register and vote!

Other Events

Community Briefing on the Future of Steward

Tuesday, April 9, 6pm
To register: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZMudu2vpjMjE9LHFu7Qz-gxwUbetULpBI3V#/registration

SEIU 1199 and the Mass Nurses Association will be hosting a community briefing on the future of Steward Health Care.

Raise the Age Info and Action Session

Thursday, April 11, 6:30pm
RSVP to PIY@mtwyouth.org for the link

The Raise the Age bills (H.1710/S..942) currently up on Beacon Hill would end the automatic processing of teens as adults by gradually shifting 18- to 20-year-olds into the juvenile justice system. The legislation is based on recent research that shows that youths’ brains are still developing and they make immature impulsive decisions they would not make if they were older. They should not pay for what really are youthful mistakes with adult-level sentences that assume the person who commits a crime is “old enough to know better.” The bill is one of the priority bills for Progressive Mass.

For more information, contact James Mackey at jmackey@mtwyouth.org

The Failed Experiment of Mass Incarceration

Wednesday, April 17, 3-4pm
RSVP:  https://brennan.swoogo.com/massincarceration/begin?ref=Insider032824

The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world, a dubious distinction with grave social consequences. Excessive Punishment: How the Justice System Creates Mass Incarceration, a new book edited by the Brennan Center’s Lauren-Brooke Eisen, explores the roots and social costs of mass incarceration, as well as reforms that would prioritize human dignity and restoration over retribution. Join the Center virtually for a live event moderated by Eisen to hear from several of the book’s contributors on why the U.S. criminal justice system is so punitive and what alternatives could rebalance it.

Raise the Age Rally

Thursday, April 18, 11:00am
On the State House steps

The youth organizers at More Than Words (Power Is Yours) are planning a rally to put grassroots, youth-led pressure to help push Raise the Age favorably out of the Judiciary Committee.

Progressive Mass Fundraising

If we want progressive policies and laws in the state, we need to elect progressive legislators.

That’s where Progressive Massachusetts comes in. They vet candidates for progressiveness and endorse when appropriate giving a boost to those campaigns. And they organize lobbying on important bills. (Watch for news about the next Lobby Day, May 16.)

It costs money to do that work. You can help with that, and help Solidarity Lowell too, by donating via the following link:   https://secure.actblue.com/donate/pmgala24?refcode=chapSL

Or you can buy a ticket to the fundraising Gala…

Progressive Mass Gala

Sunday, April 28, 7-8:30pm
Virtual – Tickets: https://secure.actblue.com/donate/pmgala24?refcode=chapSL

This annual fundraiser honors progressive leaders chosen by members. Featured speakers are Congressman Jim McGovern and Boston City Council President Ruthzee Louijeune. Honorees include: No Cost Calls Coalition, State House Employees Union, Worcester City Councilor Etel Hazhiaj, former Newton City Councilor Holly Ryan, and our own State Representative Vanna Howard!

State Level Actions

Tell Your Legislator: Raise the Minimum Wage

https://secure.everyaction.com/xOPatxQ4lU-bfENtFGha0Q2

Take Action for an Equitable Budget

A budget is more than just numbers: it’s a moral document. It shows what we, as a commonwealth, value and what society we wish to build together.

If you want a budget that reflects core progressive values, then write to your legislators in support of key investments in education and economic security.

This form makes it easy for you to email them, and lists some of the things it would be nice to see in the budget: https://secure.everyaction.com/2ddb6uiY8Eiea8Ztw3x9dQ2
h/t Jonathan Cohn, Progressive Mass 

Tell Legislators: Use Your Power for Prison Accountability

https://secure.everyaction.com/GLxBL9wXakKXxu6mK0_70Q2

To Contact the Governor

Governor’s Office of Constituent Services (617) 725-4005
Call between 9am and 5pm and leave a message.

Or email the governor, using this form: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/email-the-governors-office#email-the-governor-using-this-form-

Our State Legislators’ Info

Speaker Ronald Mariano Ronald.Mariano@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2500 | Rm 356
Senate President Karen Spilka Karen.Spilka@masenate.gov | 617-722-1500 | Rm 332
Rep. Rodney Elliott Rodney.Elliott@ma.house.gov | 617-722-2000 x7313 | Rm B1
Rep. Vanna Howard Vanna.Howard@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2060 | Rm 33
Local office: 25 Central Street, ground floor, Lowell
Rep. Rady Mom Rady.Mom@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2637 | Rm 544
Rep. Colleen Garry Colleen.Garry@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2380 | Rm 238
Senator Edward Kennedy edward.kennedy@masenate.gov | 617-722-1630 | Rm 109-E
Senator Michael Barrett Mike.Barrett@masenate.gov | 617-722-1572 | Rm 109-D
Senator Jamie Eldridge James.Eldridge@masenate.gov | 617-722-1120 | Rm 511-C
Senator Barry Finegold Barry.Finegold@masenate.gov | 617-722-1612 | Rm 511A
(… or find yours here: https://malegislature.gov/Search/FindMyLegislator)

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

National Actions

How to Contact the White House

https://www.whitehouse.gov/get-involved/write-or-call/
(Includes a link to send email.)

Our Federal Legislators’ Info

Senator Elizabeth Warren
https://www.warren.senate.gov/contact/shareyouropinion
309 Hart Senate Office Building | Washington, DC 20510 | 202-224-4543
2400 JFK Federal Building | 15 New Sudbury Street | Boston, MA 02203 | 617-565-3170

Senator Edward Markey
https://www.markey.senate.gov/contact/share-your-opinion
255 Dirksen Senate Office Building | Washington, DC 20510 | 202-224-2742
975 JFK Federal Building | 15 New Sudbury St | Boston, MA 02203 | 617-565-8519

Representative Lori Trahan
https://trahan.house.gov/contact/write-your-rep.htm
2439 Rayburn HOB | Washington, DC 20515 | 202-225-3411
126 John Street | Lowell, MA 01852 | 978-459-0101

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


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 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 at solidaritylowell.com

Link to minutes of March meeting
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1FhXowZwSF9z5vMn6btn9dZRp_fPOiysFqLi8bEDKTIQ/edit?usp=sharing

Link to recording of March meeting
https://youtu.be/T1rCkyp9rkU

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

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

Solidarity Lowell is a chapter of Progressive Massachusetts. Join at: https://www.progressivemass.com/donate/

Posted by Amy in Rapid Response Team

Take Action for an Equitable Budget

Action of the Week

~ If you do nothing else this week, this is the action that can make a difference. ~

Take Action for an Equitable Budget

A budget is more than just numbers: it’s a moral document. It shows what we, as a commonwealth, value and what society we wish to build together.

If you want a budget that reflects core progressive values, then write to your legislators in support of key investments in education and economic security.

This form makes it easy for you to email them, and lists some of the things it would be nice to see in the budget::https://secure.everyaction.com/2ddb6uiY8Eiea8Ztw3x9dQ2

h/t Jonathan Cohn, Progressive Mass

Solidarity Lowell Events and Actions

Emergency Housing Coalition Meeting

Sunday April 7, 6pm
UML Center For Women And Work, 150 Wilder Street, Lowell

Join us in this coalition effort from LLAMA, Merrimack Valley Project, Sacred Sun Project, and Solidarity Lowell.

Continuing the work of advocating for humane treatment of our unhoused neighbors and for affordable housing. If you have questions about the agenda or the past meeting, please contact Felix Brown at felixfab62 @ gmail.com

Next Solidarity Lowell Meeting

Sunday April 28, 5:30-7pm 
Status: Hybrid OR Zoom to be determined closer to date
Topic/speaker: Coordinating Committee Elections and TBD

Unpacking Whiteness

Individuals committed to exploring their own racial biases are invited to participate in an Unpacking Whiteness Dialogue Group. The purpose of the group is to engage in supportive, structured dialogues with others to explore whiteness in contemporary society, especially to better understand the legacy and impact of white supremacy, white privilege, explicit and implicit bias, systemic racism, and microaggressions. There will be five sessions total.

Sign up at http://bit.ly/uw-signup

For more information, please contact Marissa Dupont: marissa@solidaritylowell.com

Support Needed for Asylum-Seeker

Lilian, an asylum-seeker from the Dominican Republic, finally moved into an apartment! She can use assistance with furnishing the place.

Donations and gift cards are appreciated. These can be given to Marissa Dupont, who will pass them along to Lillian. CashApp: $gollygee17   Venmo: @owlnerd

For checks, cash donations, or gift cards, email marissa@solidaritylowell.com to coordinate drop-off.

Thank you!!!

Lowell Events & Actions

Next City Council Meeting

Tuesday, April 2 at 6:30pm, at City Hall and online

Meetings are usually held weekly Tuesdays at 6:30pm with public welcome. Occasionally meetings are canceled due to holiday weekends. Attend in person or by using remote participation as follows: Members of the public may view the meeting via LTC.Org (Online; Live Streaming; Or Municipal Cable Channel 6).

To speak, you must register by 4pm the day of the meeting. Those wishing to speak regarding a specific agenda item must register to speak in advance of the meeting by sending an email to the City Clerk indicating the agenda item and a phone number to call so that you may be issued a Zoom link to the meeting if you wish to speak remotely. Email Address is MGEARY@LOWELLMA.GOV. If you have no access to email you may contact the City Clerk at 978-674-4161.

See agenda for details:
https://www.lowellma.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_04022024-3044?html=true

4. CITY COUNCIL – MOTIONS

4.2. C. Leahy – Req. City Mgr. Work With The State Delegation To Expediate The Hurd Street Court House Project In Order To Create More Housing.

4.4. C. Scott – Req. City Mgr. Have The Appropriate Department Provide Quarterly Reporting To The Council Showing Progress Toward Meeting Master Plan Goals.

4.9.C. Robinson/C. Nuon – Req. City Mgr. Explore Conveying Interest To DCAMM In Regard To A Partnership To Put Out An RFP For The Redevelopment Of The Superior Court House.

How to contact your City Councilor
https://www.lowellma.gov/FormCenter/Contact-the-City-Council-5/City-Council-Contact-Form-45

It’s easy via the Webform above. You can write to as many of the councilors as you’d like, all at once. You can include the City Manager. You can have a copy of what you send returned to you. And you can communicate anonymously if you wish.

Remember. They work for us. You have a right to bring your concerns about the City to them.

Hunger And Homeless Commission Monthly Meeting

Wednesday, April 3, 12:00pm
https://lowellma.zoom.us/j/81272231435?pwd=S0dxZFNKMlFnYVpIU3ZkbnBybGRTUT09
Meeting ID: 812 7223 1435
Passcode: 064061

Meetings are open to the public.

THE MEETING’S AGENDA WILL INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING PRESENTATIONS/SPEAKERS:

  • Sothea Chiemrum, Executive Director at the Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association (CMAA) will be providing a presentation on CMAA Services, Programming and upcoming Initiatives/Events.
  • Daniela Johnson, Director of the Community Behavioral Health Center (CBHC) and Crisis/Acute Care Services and Supports at Vinfen will be providing a review of the CBHC’s first year of operation and its current status.
  • Deanna Lima, Substance Abuse Coordinator at the Lowell Health Department will be providing an overview of the City’s Division of Substance Abuse and Prevention’s Programming, Initiatives and Collaborations.

Hunger And Homelessness Commission Has An Opening

If you are a resident of Lowell or a non-resident affiliated with a Lowell organization or institution and believe in and support the special interests of the hungry and homeless and are willing to work on behalf of the City of Lowell on this issue, this may be for you.

The Commission meets once a month, usually on the first Wednesday, for 60-90 minutes. Meetings are open to the public.

For more information on the Commission opening: https://g.co/kgs/dBzTu77

Northern Middlesex Council Of Governments Wants Your Opinion on Area Housing

NMCOG wants to know your thoughts and ideas for a vision, goals, and research questions about homes in our region.

Your responses will help shape the housing strategy, and will help us plan ahead.

Deadline for submitting: Friday April 5.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/D3TPX5G

Cambodian Flag Raising Ceremony

Friday, April 12, 10am

Join CMAA, Lowell City Hall, Lowell Community Charter Public School, and Lowell Public Schools in recognition of the Cambodian community in Greater Lowell.

Live broadcast on CMAA Facebook.

Support for our unhoused neighbors

Ongoing opportunities to help various organizations that are assisting Lowell’s unhoused population may be found on our website at:https://solidaritylowell.com/resources/

Any NEW opportunities will be posted here as well.

Ongoing Opportunities From Activist Groups in Our Area

Touchbase Tuesdays (weekly)

Tuesday, April 2, 1-2pm
Sponsor: Indivisible Acton Area
Virtual – RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/activist-afternoons/event/586133/ 

Join Indivisible Acton Area weekly for conversation about local, state, and national current events. Let’s get together to update/review/share/plan news and actions people can take to win in 2024. Some of the brainstorming ideas discussed here turn into take action activities for the Indivisible Acton Area.

Activist Afternoons (first and third Sundays)

Sunday, April 7, 4-6pm
St. James Church, 1991 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge
Sponsors: Progressive Mass, Swing Blue Alliance, 350Mass, and others
RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/activist-afternoons/event/595320/

Join fellow activists to make calls about key issues at the State House.

GAI Bi-Weekly Postcard Action Hour

Wednesday, April 10,  6-7:30pm
Panera, 58 Peters St, North Andover
Sponsor: Greater Andover Indivisible
RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/indivisiblegreaterandover/event/565734/

Leading up to the 2024 elections, we’ll be writing to voters in key swing states/districts with messages about must-win candidates, progressive issues, Democrats’ accomplishments and urging unregistered likely-Dems to register and vote!

Postcards for Democracy (weekly)

Thursday, April 11, 10:30am-Noon
Kimball Farm Country Store, 400 Littleton Road, Westford
Sponsor: Indivisible Westford
$15 per packet
https://turnpurple2blue.org/2024/02/25/postcards-for-democracy/

Join fellow activists every Thursday to write postcards over coffee and conversations.

Greater Andover Indivisible Activist Afternoons (monthly)

Sunday, April 14,  3-4:30pm
33 Central St, Andover
Sponsor: Greater Andover Indivisible
RSVP: https://www.mobilize.us/indivisiblegreaterandover/event/603813/

Activities will vary each Activist Afternoon and will include writing postcards, making phone calls, and other actions as they become available. We will focus on voter registration, voter turnout and the promotion of progressive issues

Other Events

The Time for Change is Now

Saturday, April 6, 1-3pm
Central Square Church, 5 Magazine St, Cambridge
Sponsor: We Are Joint Venture

In Massachusetts, many are sentenced to life in prison based on the Joint Venture Theory. A person can be found guilty of a criminal offense even if they did not personally commit the crime, but instead, aided and abetted its commission as part of a ‘joint venture’ with other persons. During this educational panelist event, you will hear from people affected by the practice and from advocates for legislative change to remedy the injustice, which has a big impact on communities of color.

We Are Joint Venture is an organization founded by a group of men at MCI Norfolk serving life sentences due to the Joint Venture Theory. Using their shared experiences, they work to change the system and help provide second chances for other incarcerated men and women.

On Disinformation – How To Fight For Truth

Saturday, April 6, 1:30-3:30pm
UU Church of Haverhill, 16 Ashland St

Please join us for a talk by Lee McIntyre, the bestselling author of Post-Truth and How to Talk to a Science Denier, and the recent book ON DISINFORMATION, a powerful, pocket-sized citizen’s guide on how to fight back against the disinformation campaigns that are imperiling American democracy.

This free public event is sponsored by Greater Haverhill Indivisible.

For sign up and other event details please go to https://actionnetwork.org/events/on-disinformation-how-to-fight-for-truth

The Failed Experiment of Mass Incarceration

Wednesday, April 17, 3-4pm
RSVP:  https://brennan.swoogo.com/massincarceration/begin?ref=Insider032824

The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world, a dubious distinction with grave social consequences. Excessive Punishment: How the Justice System Creates Mass Incarceration, a new book edited by the Brennan Center’s Lauren-Brooke Eisen, explores the roots and social costs of mass incarceration, as well as reforms that would prioritize human dignity and restoration over retribution. Join the Center virtually for a live event moderated by Eisen to hear from several of the book’s contributors on why the U.S. criminal justice system is so punitive and what alternatives could rebalance it.

Progressive Mass Fundraising

If we want progressive policies and laws in the state, we need to elect progressive legislators.

That’s where Progressive Massachusetts comes in. They vet candidates for progressiveness and endorse when appropriate giving a boost to those campaigns. And they organize lobbying on important bills. (Watch for news about the next Lobby Day, May 16.)

It costs money to do that work. You can help with that, and help Solidarity Lowell too, by donating via the following link:   https://secure.actblue.com/donate/pmgala24?refcode=chapSL

Or you can buy a ticket to the fundraising Gala…

Progressive Mass Gala

Sunday, April 28, 7-8:30pm
Virtual – Tickets: https://secure.actblue.com/donate/pmgala24?refcode=chapSL

This annual fundraiser honors progressive leaders chosen by members. Featured speakers are Congressman Jim McGovern and Boston City Council President Ruthzee Louijeune. Honorees include No Cost Calls Coalition, State House Employees Union, Worcester City Councilor Etel Hazhiaj, former Newton City Councilor Holly Ryan, and our own State Representative Vanna Howard!

State Level Actions

Ask Your Legislators To Urge Favorable Passage Out Of Committee Of H.2325

An Act related to rehabilitation, re-entry, and human rights for incarcerated persons (H.2325) includes a number of mandates that will reform treatment of incarcerated people. It will require more out of cell time, more access to programs and medical care, and end solitary confinement.

Didn’t they already end solitary confinement in 2018? In theory, yes. But many practices amounting to solitary confinement by another name continue. This bill specifically mandates practices that run counter to solitary confinement.

The bill must be reported out of committee (Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security) by Monday, April 8, or it will die in this legislative session and advocates will have to start all over again next year.

Contact details for legislators at the end of this section.

h/t Jonathan Cohn, Progressive Mass

Support Keeping Families Connected through Improved Access to Visits in MA Prisons, Jails, and ICE

https://secure.everyaction.com/tP7srcC3Uk2MBcRMJTm1cg2

Another bill due out of the same joint committee by April 8. The form will explain as well as make it easy for you to write legislators.

h/t Jonathan Cohn, Progressive Mass

Take Action for Safe Communities before the April 8th Deadline

Yes, the Safe Communities Act (S.1510 and H.2288) is still waiting for passage. The bill would end voluntary police and court involvement in deportations, and ensure that in Massachusetts, everyone can seek help, protection and medical care without fear of deportation.

Here’s how you can help:
The Massachusetts Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security has until April 8th to take action on the bill this session. Use our form to quickly send an email to committee members. They need to hear from you!
https://actionnetwork.org/letters/take-action-for-safe-communities-before-the-april-8th-deadline/

h/t Jonathan Cohn, Progressive Mass

To Contact the Governor

Governor’s Office of Constituent Services (617) 725-4005
Call between 9am and 5pm and leave a message.

Or email the governor, using this form: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/email-the-governors-office#email-the-governor-using-this-form-

Our State Legislators’ Info

Speaker Ronald Mariano Ronald.Mariano@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2500 | Rm 356
Senate President Karen Spilka Karen.Spilka@masenate.gov | 617-722-1500 | Rm 332
Rep. Rodney Elliott Rodney.Elliott@ma.house.gov | 617-722-2000 x7313 | Rm B1
Rep. Vanna Howard Vanna.Howard@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2060 | Rm 33
Local office: 25 Central Street, ground floor, Lowell
Rep. Rady Mom Rady.Mom@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2637 | Rm 544
Rep. Colleen Garry Colleen.Garry@mahouse.gov | 617-722-2380 | Rm 238
Senator Edward Kennedy edward.kennedy@masenate.gov | 617-722-1630 | Rm 109-E
Senator Michael Barrett Mike.Barrett@masenate.gov | 617-722-1572 | Rm 109-D
Senator Jamie Eldridge James.Eldridge@masenate.gov | 617-722-1120 | Rm 511-C
Senator Barry Finegold Barry.Finegold@masenate.gov | 617-722-1612 | Rm 511A
(… or find yours here: https://malegislature.gov/Search/FindMyLegislator)

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

National Actions

Child Tax Credit Day of Action: April 2

Join FRAC (Food Research and Action Center), the Coalition on Human Needs, Economic Security Project, MomsRising, and our array of partners for an April 2 day of action focused on getting the Child Tax Credit (CTC) improvements in the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act over the finish line in the Senate. An expanded and inclusive CTC is a transformational policy for addressing hunger among families with children. Under the House-passed bill, approximately 16 million out of the 19 million children currently left out of the full or any CTC will benefit, and an estimated 400,000 children will be lifted above the poverty line.

Build momentum in the lead-up to April 2, the day of, and beyond:

  • Use and share with your networks the FRAC Action Network to call on the Senate to take up and pass the bill.
  • Meet with Senate offices to push on the urgency and importance of CTC improvements to improve food security and lift families with children out of poverty.
  • Use the Child Tax Credit 2024 Resources and Social Media toolkit, including statements, fact sheets, tweets, shareable graphics, and more, from coalition partners.
  • Get vocal on social media.

How to Contact the White House

https://www.whitehouse.gov/get-involved/write-or-call/
(Includes a link to send email.)

Our Federal Legislators’ Info

Senator Elizabeth Warren
https://www.warren.senate.gov/contact/shareyouropinion
309 Hart Senate Office Building | Washington, DC 20510 | 202-224-4543
2400 JFK Federal Building | 15 New Sudbury Street | Boston, MA 02203 | 617-565-3170

Senator Edward Markey
https://www.markey.senate.gov/contact/share-your-opinion
255 Dirksen Senate Office Building | Washington, DC 20510 | 202-224-2742
975 JFK Federal Building | 15 New Sudbury St | Boston, MA 02203 | 617-565-8519

Representative Lori Trahan
https://trahan.house.gov/contact/write-your-rep.htm
2439 Rayburn HOB | Washington, DC 20515 | 202-225-3411
126 John Street | Lowell, MA 01852 | 978-459-0101

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


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 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 at solidaritylowell.com

Link to minutes of March meeting
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1FhXowZwSF9z5vMn6btn9dZRp_fPOiysFqLi8bEDKTIQ/edit?usp=sharing

Link to recording of March meeting
https://youtu.be/T1rCkyp9rkU

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

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

Solidarity Lowell is a chapter of Progressive Massachusetts. Join at: https://www.progressivemass.com/donate/

Posted by Amy in Rapid Response Team