UPDATE ON CNY RESIST TRUMP RESISTANCE – CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION NEWSLETTER

January 11, 2017

JANUARY 10, 2017

NEWSLETTER OF THE CENTRAL NEW YORK CITIZENS IN ACTION, INC.
UTICA CHAPTER OF CITIZEN ACTION OF NEW YORK
(ESTABLISHED IN 1997)

Now celebrating 19 years of community organizing, the Central New York Citizens in Action invites YOU to be part of a movement for progressive change based on shared social values. We believe in educating, advocating, and legislating for the collective good. Join us!

You can view newsletter on:
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com
http://www.cnycia.org

 

 

ACTION ALERT: Tell Your Representative to #ProtectOurCare

Members of Congress are voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and make major cuts to Medicaid and Medicare. Please join the National Call-In Week and tell your Representative to oppose these cuts to health coverage and #ProtectOurCare.
Call (866) 426-2631

The U.S. Congress is back on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. this week and some U.S. Senators and Representatives are already talking about moving ahead with plans to roll back advances in healthcare coverage and gut the Affordable Care Act (ACA). To this we say: Not on our watch! This would put coverage at risk for nearly 30 million people. That’s not a typo. The healthcare of 30 million people is on the line.

Outrageous!

Can you make a call to NOW and tell them NOT to repeal the Affordable Care Act?
It’s time to turbocharge our efforts. Momentum is growing across the U.S. to stop the repeal of the ACA; and polls show an overwhelming majority of people disapprove of Republican lawmakers’ plan to repeal it without knowing how they might replace it.

The time to call is now. Many U.S. Senators are starting to realize the implications of this horrible direction and Repealing the ACA without a replacement plan is reckless and dangerous for America’s families and economy! The repeal of the ACA would be devastating to families and would have far-reaching negative financial implications for our communities and nation. Hard-working people across the U.S. have benefited greatly from this new law through improvements such as:
• All new insurance plans are required to cover preventive services at no cost—like check-ups, well-child visits, birth control, cancer screenings, and vaccines.
• People with pre-existing conditions like asthma, cancer, and diabetes can no longer be denied or charged more for coverage.
• People with chronic illnesses no longer face lifetime caps on their benefits that basically cuts off their coverage when they need it most.
• Medicaid has improved and now provides coverage to millions more, including hard-working parents.
A repeal of the ACA will also have a devastating effect on our economy, resulting in a $140 billion loss (yes, billion with a B) in federal funding for healthcare and a loss of 2.6 million jobs across all states in 2019.
Credit: momsrising.org

We are asking residents who live in the 22nd Congressional District to call Rep. Claudia Tenney Today – 866-426-2631 Toll free Or 202-225-3665 DC office.
Tell her – Please Don’t Take Away our Health Care- Do Not Repeal the Affordable Care Act – 25,000 people in Oneida County will lose their Health Care. Please do not raise the age for Medicare or turn it into a voucher program or cut Medicaid funding to our state. Please Keep your hands off our health care!

We are also asking constituents in CD 21 and CD 24 to make calls as well.

Please see below contact information for your representatives for CD 21, 22, and 24.

Representative Elise Stefanik
21st Congressional District
512 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
DC Phone: (202) 225-4611
DC Fax: (202) 226-0621
Email: https://stefanik.house.gov/contact/email

Representative John M. Katko
24th Congressional District
1123 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
DC Phone: (202) 225-3701
DC Fax: (202) 225-4042
Email: https://katko.house.gov/contact/email

Representative Claudia Tenney
512 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 202-225-3665
Fax: 202-225-1891
New Hartford Office
555 French Rd
New Hartford, NY 13413
https://tenney.house.gov/contact
https://twitter.com/RepTenney
https://www.facebook.com/RepClaudiaTenney/
Washington, DC Office
@claudiatenney
#NY22

PLEASE SUPPORT UTICA MAYOR AND
COUNCIL TO STOP ACA REPEAL

WHO: Mayor Rob Palmieri, members of the Utica City Council, community activists and healthcare workers
WHAT: a press conference
WHEN: Thursday January 12 at 3:30 PM
WHERE: Utica City Hall
WHY:Mayor Rob Palmieri and members of the Utica City Council are passing resolutions asking Congress to ensure that people do not lose their healthcare with the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. They will join together in a press conference on Thursday January 12th at 3:30 at Utica City Hall with healthcare workers and members of the community who will share their story on why people need to keep their health insurance. Please come to this important event.
Please bring signs but limit the messaging to preserving the Affordable Care Act.

LOCAL GROUPS TO OFFER TRAINING FOR FUTURE PROGRESSIVE CANDIDATES, CAMPAIGN VOLUNTEERS, AND GRASSROOTS ACTIVISTS

TRAINING ON JANUARY 12

Central New York Citizens in Action, the New York State Working Families Party, and the Oneida County Democratic Committee are teaming up to sponsor a series of candidate training workshops to recruit, train, and elect the next generation of progressive leaders. The first session of the Running to Win workshop will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, January 12 at the Central New York Labor Council, 287 Genesee Street, corner of Dakin Street, Utica. Parking is available in the rear. It is free and open to persons who share progressive values and are interested in running for office or assuming party positions.

“The WFP is seeking progressive champions willing to challenge the status quo and fight for a government that works for all of us, not just the wealthy and well-connected. If you are ready to join the fight, and are interested in running for office or helping out a friend, this is a workshop for you,” said Jesse Lenney, Working Families Party Upstate Political Director.

Bill Thickstun, Chair, Oneida County Democratic Committee, said: “We’re delighted to partner with Citizens in Action and the Working Families Party on this project. Donald Trump and the Republican Congress are launching an attack on all the great progressive achievements of the past 80 years–Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, civil rights, environmental conservation, progressive taxation, worker and consumer protections. We need every voice and every pair of hands to join in resisting their efforts.”

Running to Win is part of the WFP’s candidate farm team training program that arms progressives with the strategies, tools, and skills needed to win elections. Topics include fundraising, canvassing, budgeting, speeches, planning, and targeting voters; recruiting volunteers; field activities; message development; persuasion; and Election Day plans.

“These trainings will give grassroots activists in Central New York the tools they need to create positive change in their communities and create a bottom-up infrastructure of progressive leaders,” said John Furman, one of the leaders of the Oneida-Herkimer-Madison Working Families Party. “Our goal is to identify, train, and support grassroots activists in the skills and strategies to create a progressive future for our community and nation as well as help them manage successful campaigns or run for office themselves.”

For more information, please email uticaromewfp@gmail.com or call 315.725.0974.

WE NEED YOU TO HELP US FIGHT TRUMP AND PROMOTE A POSITIVE PROGRESSIVE AGENDA

Please consider becoming a volunteer on one of our committees of the Central New York Citizens in Action campaign for progressive social change:

• Steering Committee
• Communications (web site, email newsletter, write articles)
• Office (data base, letters, email)
• Community Outreach (speaking to groups, membership)
• Event Set-up (food, posters, sign making, music, theatre)
• Research (conduct research on issues)
• Fundraising (organizing events)
• Emergency Response (organizing people to attend rallies and events)
• Issue committees such as Health care & retirement security
Women’s Rights & Reproductive Rights, Vulnerable communities (refugees, LGBT, racial minorities). Income inequality, social safety net, education and labor rights, Environment, Education
Please contact us at 315-725-0974 or cnycitizenaction@gmail.com for more information.

PROTEST AGAINST THE TRUMP AGENDA ON INAUGURATION DAY IN WASHINGTON

Please join people from all over the nation who will be coming to Washington, D.C. on January 20, 2017 to participate in a massive demonstration along Pennsylvania Avenue on Inauguration Day.

Buses Leaving Central New York

Utica Bus

Utica buses are currently filled. To be placed on waiting list, please send an email to cnycitizenaction@gmail.com. We suggest that people should check out the buses from Oneonta and Syracuse which have seats available.

Oneonta Bus – stops in Binghamton –call Eileen Andrews: 607 226 7994
Information:
Women’s March on Washington Bus trip. Leaving: Oneonta 1am, Norwich 2AM Binghamton 3AM $80 / person. Payment check or Paypal. For more information and to reserve your seat 607 226 7994.

Syracuse Bus – We are departing Syracuse around 2:00 AM Friday and departing DC to return to Syracuse Saturday night.
Cost
$75 – $125 Sliding Scale (Paying more helps others participate)
Scholarships available for those who cannot afford the $75.
email bus@peacecouncil.net or call (315) 412-1485.
http://peacecouncil.net/civicrm/event/info?id=11&reset=1

SEEKING VOLUNTEERS TO STAGE UTICA COUNTER-INAUGURAL RALLY/TEACH IN

Designed to inaugurate hope and stand up to the Trump Administration, the Utica Counter-Inaugural Rally/Teach In will be held between 1 – 6 p.m. on Saturday, January 21 at the DeSales Center, Inc., 309 Genesee St. Utica. The event will consist of a rally and a march, workshops on organizing and issues, music, films, posters, speakers, potluck lunch, networking, and exhibits. We need help to organize this event. People can perform music, hold workshops, suggest films, make signs and posters, help to publicize the event, make speeches, act in skits, face painting for kids, and bring a dish to share. Please call 315.725.0974 or email cnycitizenaction@gmail.com to volunteer.

WORKING FAMILIES PARTY TO HOLD FUNDRAISER ON JANUARY 26

Senator Al Franken Senate Judiciary Committee
General Counsel Joshua Riley Featured Speaker

The New York State Working Families Party will host its fourth annual fundraiser on Thursday, January 26 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at The Stief, 618 Varick Street, Utica.

The keynote speaker will be Joshua Riley who has worked in Congress as a Staff Assistant to Congressman Maurice Hinchey, a legal advisor on Senator Ted Kennedy’s Labor and Pensions Committee Staff, and most recently as General Counsel to Senator Al Franken on the Senate Judiciary Committee. He will talk about the importance of protecting working families’ interests during the 115th Congress, where Republicans will control both chambers and the White House. Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi and Mayor Robert Palmieri of Utica will also speak.

Hosted by the Herkimer-Oneida-Madison Counties Working Families Party Chapter, the Winter Cocktail Party will celebrate 18 years of progressive victories on the local, state, and national levels. Tickets are $125 and two for $200 (WFP enrolled voters and regular monthly contributors can qualify for special pricing.) Tickets may be purchased by contacting John Furman (315-725-0974), Jesse Lenney (585-414-4274), uticaromewfp@gmail.com, online at https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/2017uticawfp or by sending a check made payable to “Working Families” to: Working Families, P.O. Box 20498, Rochester, NY 14602.

Special event sponsor opportunities include: Chair Level – $1,250 (8 tickets), Champion Level – $1,000 (7 tickets), Leader Level – $750 (6 tickets), Activist Level – $500 (4 tickets), Friend Level – $350 (3 tickets). More information on the event can be found at: https://www.facebook.com/events/1215696445162265/

Founded in New York in 1998 by a coalition of progressive unions, community organizations, and activists, the Working Families Party’s goal is to use electoral politics and issue campaigns to win concrete victories for working people. More information can be found at: http://workingfamilies.org/ .

With chapters in ten states and a supporter-base that spans the nation, the Working Families Party has won public policies that make a difference in the lives of working families, from paid sick days laws and minimum wage increases to reforms to criminal justice laws and policing practices to wins on student debt and environmental protection. The WFP’s progressive candidates’ Pipeline is recruiting, training and electing the next generation of progressive leaders.

NEWSLETTER ARTICLES ARE NEEDED

Please submit your articles, news items, and calendar listings to cnyprogaction@gmail.com.

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION is published by Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc., P.O. Box 411, Utica, NY 13503-0411 315-725-0974. http://www.cnycia.org
cnycitizenaction@gmail.com https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Central-New-York-Citizens-in-Action/265689434204
https://www.facebook.com/Central-New-York-Progressive-Action-659297800873928/?fref=ts

CENTRAL NEW YORK RESIDENTS ORGANIZE TO OPPOSE TRUMP AGENDA

January 6, 2017

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Utica Counter-Inaugural Rally, CNY Contingent to March on
Washington, Candidate Training Planned

A coalition of local, state, and national organizations announced today that they are launching the Campaign of Resistance against the Trump Agenda in Central New York. Among the groups are Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc., Citizen Action of New York, Public Citizen, Working Families Party, Central New York Solidarity Coalition, Cornhill Community for Change, and MoveOn.

Speakers at the news conference and rally today said that residents of Central New York will be hurt by proposed Trump policies.

✓ Many Central New York senior and disabled residents rely upon basic safety net programs which are expected to be slashed. Medicaid is likely to be turned into a block grant to states and cut deeply. Medicare is likely to be privatized and replaced with vouchers; Affordable Care Act will be repealed. SNAP/Food Stamps will be turned into block grants and funding will be sharply reduced.

✓ Rates of poverty and unemployment are higher in Upstate New York than other parts of the country. Tax and budget policies that favor the 1% at the expense of the rest of us will be put into effect, increasing inequality and condemning many to low wage jobs without benefits.

✓ Small businesses, farms, and working families are the engines for economic growth in our region. Huge giveaways to corporations will hurt small business and increase taxes for the middle class.

✓ The Trump infrastructure proposal will likely be a massive tax subsidy for private sector entities that will, for example, build a road and then own it/charge tolls on it. This will put a cost burden on struggling households and take away public control over infrastructure like water, energy, and transportation systems.

✓ The economic revival of Utica, where one in four residents is an immigrant, is threatened by Trump’s deportation proposals. Immigrants, including 700,000 “Dreamers” (young people who have temporary legal status under the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program) are threatened with deportation.

More than 40 people attended the news conference today. Representatives indicated that they are planning to hold the following actions to block Trump’s proposed policies:

1) Designed to inaugurate hope and stand up to the Trump Administration, the
Utica Counter-Inaugural Rally/Teach In will be held between 1 – 5 p.m. on Saturday, January 21 at the DeSales Center, Inc., 309 Genesee St. Utica. The event will consist of a rally, workshops on organizing and issues, music, films, speakers, potluck lunch, networking, and exhibits.

2) Central New York Citizens in Action and other groups are helping to organize buses from Clinton, Syracuse, and Binghamton to take residents to Washington, D.C. for Inauguration Day protests. Interested persons should call all 315-725-0974 or email cnycitizenaction@gmail.com.

3) A community meeting sponsored by Central New York Citizens in Action will be held between 6 – 8 p.m. on Monday, January 9 to plan future activities, organize committees, and recruit volunteers.

4) On January 12, the first of a series of workshops will be held to identify and train progressive candidates for local party and political office Local groups are seeking progressive champions willing to challenge the status quo and fight for a government that works for all of us, not just the wealthy and well-connected. The Running to Win series is part of the Working Families Party candidate farm team training program that arms progressives with the strategies, tools, and skills needed to win elections. Topics include fundraising, canvassing, budgeting, speeches, and planning.

5) Local actions will be planned for January 12 to oppose the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. is seeking local citizens to provide stories of how they and their families have been helped by the Affordable Care Act and other health insurance programs such as Medicaid and Medicare. Persons interested should complete a survey at http://www.cnycia.org.

6) Days of action to protest the Medicare privatization, weakening the EPA and the National Labor Relations Board, slashing the Dodd-Frank Law and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, expanding private for-profit charter schools, privatizing government functions and deporting immigrants are in the process of being planned for the next several months.

7) The Central New York Citizen in Action, along with its partners, will be conducting research to document the impact of proposed Trump policies on the lives of Central New York residents and to propose alternative policies that put people first. Reports showing the loss of funding and services will be provided to the public, media, and elected officials.

8) The groups are deploying a rapid response team of citizen volunteers to hold Upstate New York members of Congress accountable, monitor cabinet appointments, appropriations, and legislation, and act as a watchdog for the interests of working people. They will be mobilizing constituents to make newly-elected Representative Claudia Tenney (R-C-22) as well as Representatives John Katko (R-24) and Elise Stefanik (R-21) aware of how Trump policies will hurt Central New York.

Jonah Minkoff-Zern, Director, Public Citizen’s Democracy Is For People Campaign, said: “We believe in a nation that is of, for and by the people. But President-elect Trump has shown his administration will be the opposite – he has proposed to fill his Cabinet with corporate CEOs, billionaires and big donors. We will join coalitions like this one in Central New York that are forming throughout our nation to resist the Trump’s administration’s corporate agenda, which will put profits over the planet and its people.”

Paul Lomeo of Central New York Citizens in Action stated: “We are the vocal majority that will stand up to defend American values against the radical agenda of a reckless and vindictive President and an extremist Congress. We are the Resistance.  We accept the electoral laws that made a man chosen by a minority of voters President of the United States. However, we will fully exercise our Constitutional rights to protest his policies and educate voters on why we believe those policies are so wrong.  CNY Citizen Action will serve as the organizer of this broad coalition of people. We have many concerns about the damage that awaits us. We cannot stand by idly.  The time for mourning is over. Now, we resist and organize.”

Kari Procopio, local women’s rights advocate and member of Central New York Citizens in Action, called out lawmakers like Tenney to abandon partisan politics and support women, minorities, and the working class. “Tenney’s track record as our state representative proves she is out of touch with the real issues facing constituents,” said Procopio. “Our Campaign of Resistance doesn’t end with Trump. We will press Tenney to stand against his dangerous agenda and stand up for women’s health, equal pay for equal work, raising the minimum wage, and policies that would benefit working women and families.”

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. is a multi-issue grassroots advocacy organization affiliated with Citizen Action of New York. More information regarding the regional Campaign of Resistance against the Trump Agenda can be obtained through calling 315-725-0974, emailing cnycitizenaction@gmail.com, or at the following web sites:
http://www.cnycia.org
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Central-New-York-Citizens-in-Action/265689434204
https://www.facebook.com/Central-New-York-Progressive-Action-659297800873928/?fref=ts
Twitter: @CNYACT

MEETING TO ORGANIZE CAMPAIGN TO DECLARE UTICA/CNY A HATE-FREE ZONE

December 27, 2016

stop-hate

MEETING TO ORGANIZE CAMPAIGN TO DECLARE UTICA/CNY A HATE-FREE ZONE

Now more than ever, we need to stand up for diversity and tolerance. We need to stand together for those who are at the greatest risk of racism, sexism, bigotry, and violence under this new administration.

During the recent national election campaign, there were many racist, misogynistic, and bigoted remarks made, fueling a climate of fear and hatred. Many local residents, particularly people of Arabic decent, Muslim faith, Asian-American, African-American, women, immigrants, disabled, and LGTBQ are concerned about their safety, feel vulnerable and under attack.

The Central New York Citizens in Action Inc. is appalled at the growing acceptance of hate speech and hate behavior. Moreover, we condemn the decline of civility during the recent campaign and what it could mean for the democratic process.

no-human-is-illegalsdeswaan

Since the election, there has been a significant increase in hate crimes. The Southern Poverty Law Center reported “867 cases of hateful harassment or intimidation in the United States in the 10 days after the November 8 election.”

Our community is known internationally as a diverse and tolerant community that has welcomed refugees from many nations. One in every four residents of the City of Utica is an immigrant or refugee. Our region has also been historically a national leader in the peace, civil rights, labor, women’s, and abolitionist movements.

We need to send a loud and clear message that is not acceptable to engage in bigoted and hate speech or harassment in our community. It never has been, and it never will be.

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. is organizing a news conference in January to urge the Utica Common Council to support a resolution declaring Utica a hate-free zone. We need your help in supporting this resolution and enacting similar resolutions for other local governments. Another topic for discussion will be reinstituting the City of Utica Human Relations Commission. Please join us for a planning meeting at noon on Thursday, December 29 at the Tramontane Cafe, 1105 Lincoln Ave., Utica, NY 13502 (second floor) to talk about this important action to defend human rights in our community and the United States. Food will be available for purchase.

We are seeking organizations and individuals to endorse this resolution. A draft copy of the resolution will be presented at the meeting for discussion.

Please let us know you can attend or would like to get involved in this important action by contacting us at 315-725-0974 or cnycitizenaction@gmail.com. For more information, http://www.cnycia.org https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com https://www.facebook.com/Central-New-York-Progressive-Action-659297800873928/?fref=ts https://www.facebook.com/pages/Central-New-York-Citizens-in-Action/265689434204

Photo credit:  Sylvia de Swaan

Image credit:  flickr.com

 

 

#TakeTrumpOn: CNY Residents Speak Out Against Trump’s Climate Rollbacks, Urge Cuomo to Lead with State Budget

December 22, 2016

dsc_0533-copy-1Climate Denying President-Elect a Direct Threat to CNY

President-elect Donald Trump has announced an oil tycoon as the nation’s top diplomat, as well as climate deniers to lead federal agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Energy Department. Today, Utica, Syracuse, and Central New York residents rallied against Trump’s anti-climate agenda, and called on Governor Andrew Cuomo to take Trump on.

At a news conference today, local representatives of NYRenews, a coalition of over 100 labor, community, and enviro groups across the state, came together to urge the Governor to stand up to Trump and show true climate leadership by including the Climate and Community Protection Act (CCPA) provisions in his 2017 budget.

Few regions have felt the devastation of climate change more than Central New York, with severe weather patterns causing flooding and droughts, which endanger lives, undermine the economy, and expose the state’s aging infrastructure. Additionally, Utica, Syracuse, Rome, and surrounding communities have become the epicenter of a booming fossil fuel industry, as volatile oil cars pass homes, schools, playgrounds, and more, fouling the air we breathe and contributing to climate change, on their way to the global marketplace.

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The coalition is urging people to contact Governor Cuomo as soon as possible to ensure that his upcoming state budget includes the Climate and Community Protection Act. People can call his office at 518-474-8390, or sign onto NYRenews online petition at http://p2a.co/qa8jqIU.

Representatives pointed out that the enactment of CCPA will have direct benefits for Syracuse, Utica, and Central New York residents. Groups strongly support the green jobs piece of the legislation which will simultaneously help revive Upstate New York’s struggling economy and protect our environment. It will create workforce development opportunities for struggling communities, create new locally owned businesses, and develop living wage jobs. It attaches fair labor standards to all renewable energy jobs associated with projects receiving state funding. That means that jobs in the new energy economy won’t be low-wage jobs, but high-wage, family-supporting jobs.

Local advocates also said that the CCPA will help to tighten regulations on dangerous oil transport trains put Central New York and Mohawk Valley families at risk. New York State has quickly become one of the largest transportation hubs for crude oil in the country. Billions of gallons of volatile crude oil travel through upstate cities like Utica, Syracuse, Rome, and Albany on a daily basis. The CCPA establishes a “climate test” for all state energy decision-making, ensuring that every decision aligns with the goal of decarbonizing New York’s entire economy by 2050. In the future, polluting projects like the oil trains would have a very hard time getting past this test.

United University Professions Vice President Jamie Dangler, Ph.D., said: “Scientists have demonstrated that climate change is real. Donald Trump denies this, which makes it imperative for New York State to become a leader in fighting climate change and developing a new clean energy economy. We applaud the steps Governor Cuomo has already taken to move us forward and we stand ready, as a union that represents workers higher education, to stand with leaders in state government, other labor unions, and community groups around the state in support of the Climate and Community Protection Act.”

Dr. Ken Mazlen, Emeritus Professor of Sociology, SUNY Poly, said: “Global warming was identified in 1975. Fossil fuel funded denial has left us facing an absolutely urgent threat to humanity. Since there will no support at the Federal level, it is up to the States to take action. New York State is a natural leader for the nation.”

John Furman, President of the Central New York Citizen in Action, Inc. (local chapter of the Central New York Citizens in Action, said: “Climate change is here, it’s hurting our families and neighbors, and if New York doesn’t step up to the plate, things are about to get much worse for our region. Governor Cuomo cannot wait to see what Mr. Trump will do – we already know that he plans to renege on the Paris Climate Agreement, and to roll back clean air and clean water protections to benefit the fossil fuel industry. New York has the strongest climate action legislation in the country. It’s bipartisan, and its focus on green jobs in communities like Utica holds enormous potential for our environment and our economy. If Cuomo truly wants to be America’s anti-Trump, then he’s got to step up and get bolder on climate. Trump’s federal agenda on climate is a disaster and represents an emergency for all New Yorkers, especially the most vulnerable. It’s up to NY to lead in this moment of crisis. Governor Cuomo, it’s critical that you take Trump on and make New York the leader our country needs!”

The Climate and Community Protection Act
The Climate and Community Protection Act bill takes Governor Cuomo’s climate and clean energy commitments – including generating 50% of New York’s electricity from clean, renewables sources by 2030 – and places them into law. It also provides unprecedented investments for front line communities like those found throughout the region who are bearing the brunt of climate change already. And it grows the green economy while ensuring a Just Transition to protect workers as the shift is made away from fossil fuels towards energy sources such as wind and solar.

The bill has an unprecedented level of support from 100+ organizations which comprise the NYRenews coalition. It overwhelmingly passed the state Assembly in 2016, and has the support of a bipartisan majority of all state Senators.

 

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NYRenews

NYRenews is a broad coalition of more than 50 community-based organizations, environmental justice groups, labor unions, faith groups, business leaders, and other advocates. NY Renews’ goal is to minimize the way all New Yorkers feel the effects of climate change through a comprehensive statewide switch to 100% clean renewable energy by 2050.

Members include the Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc., New York Working Families Organization, Alliance for a Green Economy, Binghamton Regional Sustainability Coalition, Buffalo Coalition for Economic Justice, Catskill Mountainkeeper Citizen Action of NewYork, Communications Workers of America, Environmental Advocates of NY, NY State Nurses Association, NY State United Teachers, People’s Climate Movement NY, People of Albany United for Safe Energy – PAUSE, PUSH Buffalo, Rochester People’s Climate Coalition, Sierra Club, Syracuse United Neighbors, and Sustainable Tompkins.

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. is a multi-issue grassroots advocacy organization affiliated with Citizen Action of New York. For more information, please contact the Central New York Citizens in Action at 315-725-0974 or cnycitizenaction@gmail.com or visit http://nyrenews.org.

TEN WAYS TO DEFEAT TRUMPISM IN CNY

December 20, 2016

The Central New York Citizens in Action (the new chapter of Citizen Action of New York in Utica/Rome) is organizing local efforts to block Trump’s agenda. We are ready to fight back but need your help and support. Please consider supporting the following actions:

1. ATTEND THIS THURSDAY’S NEWS CONFERENCE TO URGE GOVERNOR CUOMO TO STAND UP TO TRUMP’S CLIMATE POLICES

 

nyrenews1

NOTE: The date for the news conference to oppose Trump’s climate policies and to urge Governor Cuomo to adopt progressive legislation to address climate change is Thursday, December 22 at 1:30 p.m. It will be held at the Utica Public Library, 303 Genesee St, Utica, NY 13501, Music Room, Second floor. Parking is in the rear of the public library. The Library is across the street from the Munson-Williams Proctor Institute. We need people to bring signs opposing Trump’s position on climate issues and urging the Governor Cuomo to support NY Renews. Please arrive at 1:15 p.m.

Trump’s election is an emergency for the climate. No doubt, you have seen the news about the people President-elect Donald Trump has nominated to critical positions throughout the federal government – climate deniers and oil tycoons taking over the Departments of State and Interior, and the Environmental Protection Agency. If Mr. Trump keeps his threats, New Yorkers are in trouble, and we need leaders on the state level, like Governor Cuomo to step up and take Trump on. If we’re going to see any progress over the next 4 years, the states are now going to have to take the lead. In the run up to the Governor’s State of the State address, the NY Renews coalition is going to be calling on Governor Cuomo to stand up to Trump and be a national leader on climate by passing the most ambitious climate justice policy in the country—the Climate and Community Protection Act—through his budget process.

As Cuomo seeks to position himself as a foil to Trump (and potentially re-stoke his Presidential ambitions), there may be a key opportunity to push him into truly bold action on climate. So NY Renews is organizing a series of press conferences across the state echoing this call to Gov. Cuomo. On Thursday, December 22nd, we’re going to be a press conference right here in Utica.

We need many people there to send a message that we are resisting Trump’s climate policies. We will be holding a press conference on Thursday, December 22nd at 1:30 PM urging Governor Cuomo to include the nation’s strongest climate and clean energy legislation in his 2017-18 State Budget proposal. Your attendance will help make this a great success. The news conference will be at the Utica Public Library, 303 Genesee St, Utica, NY 13501, Music Room, Second floor. Parking is in the rear of the Library. The Library is across the street from the Munson-Williams Proctor Institute.

We need people to bring signs opposing Trump’s position on climate issues and urging the Governor Cuomo to support NY Renews. Please arrive at 1:15 p.m. If you have any questions, please call us at 315-725-0974. We are asking organizations and individuals to attend this important news conference and endorse NY Renews.

2. JOIN IN THE FIGHT AGAINST ATTACK ON HUMAN SERVICE PROGRAMS

We are in the fight of our lives. The policies and programs that safeguard and secure livelihoods for the most vulnerable among us are about to be under siege by a hostile Congress and Administration. To counter this, to protect programs critical to human needs, we must stand united!

We Need Organizations Across the Nation to Sign an Important Letter
(Deadline: January 5, 2017)

Sign a letter to the new President and Congress. https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeQ-Tlgv4oypESNMr7ayVrwKQcDAT8-vyYUaO-dj7KMA54TJA/viewform?c=0&w=1 (We need thousands of local and state organizations from across the nation to add to our growing list of local, state, and national groups which are standing together against dismantling the services and protections people need and for proven investments to extend opportunity and economic security to all.

When so much is at stake, why does a letter matter? It says to the Senators needed to block the passage of destructive bills that groups in their states are among thousands nationwide ready to take a stand and take action. We will use and publicize the letter on Capitol Hill and in the press.

If you’ve already signed, thanks! Please share this notice with other organizations – your help makes a big difference!

The letter says, “America’s real greatness comes from its promise to extend opportunity and economic security to all.” It stands for protecting low-income and vulnerable people by rejecting cuts or structural limits on vital programs like Medicaid, SNAP, Medicare, Social Security and SSI. It champions tax credits for low-income people and calls for fair and adequate revenues so we can make the investments we need. It stands with immigrants and against “policies and language that demean and discriminate against race, gender, immigrant status, disability or religion.”

Please read it – we believe your organization will want to sign, and we need you, both to sign and to circulate to organizations in your networks. (For individuals, there’s a petition – we need every voice!) https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeQ-Tlgv4oypESNMr7ayVrwKQcDAT8-vyYUaO-dj7KMA54TJA/viewform?c=0&w=1(For letter text, click here. http://www.chn.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/SAVE-for-all-letter-11-17-16final.pdf To select the letter or petition to read and sign, click here.) https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeQ-Tlgv4oypESNMr7ayVrwKQcDAT8-vyYUaO-dj7KMA54TJA/viewform?c=0&w=1

The letter incorporates principles under the them Strengthening America’s Values and Economy (SAVE) for All. Thousands of organizations since 2011 have signed statements affirming these principles: that federal priorities must (1) protect and assist low-income and vulnerable people; (2) invest in broadly shared economic growth and jobs; (3) increase revenues from fair sources; and (4) seek savings from reducing waste in the Pentagon and elsewhere.

It’s never been more important to come together. The SAVE for All letter is a vehicle to do that – please get on board!

Organizations that should consider signing include (but are not limited to):

· Churches/Congregations/Synagogues/Mosques

· Local Community Organizations (PTA’s / Community Action Agencies)

· Service Provider Organizations (food banks, shelters, clinics, housing authorities, health centers, childcare providers, etc.)

· Local and State Advocacy Organizations (civil rights groups, children’s rights groups, etc)

· Local Chambers of Commerce, Businesses, Union Locals, and Charitable OrganizationsThe deadline for this sign-on letter is January 5th, 2017.

Questions? Email Joseph Battistelli (Jbattistelli@chn.org)

3. SUPPORT A RESOLUTION OF THE UTICA COMMON COUNCIL TO DECLARE OUR COMMUNITY A HATE FREE ZONE.

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. is planning to organize a news conference during the week of December 26 to urge the Utica Common Council to support a resolution declaring Utica a hate free zone. We need your help to obtain support of local organizations for the resolution. Please contact us at 315-725-0974 or cnycitienaction@gmail.com.

4. PARTICIPATE IN THE DON’T TAKE AWAY OUR HEALTH CARE SPEAK OUT ON JANUARY 12

Republicans plan to jam legislation through Congress to repeal Obamacare and deeply slash Medicare and Medicaid…before Trump is sworn in, handing him a bill to sign on his first day in office. This legislation would endanger health care for tens of millions of Americans. It must be stopped.

We are organizing a “Don’t Take Away Our Health Care” speak-out in Utica on January 12. More details are forthcoming. We are looking for local residents to give testimony of how cuts to their health care will hurt them.

5. ATTEND GRASSROOTS POLITICAL ORGANIZING TRAINING – BUILDING NEW LOCAL PROGRESSIVE LEADERSHIP

The long-term solution to fighting Trumpism is building a local progressive political infrastructure and electing people to office who share our values. We are organizing a series of workshops to help train progressives to run for political office and party committee positions. The first training will be held on January 12. We ae looking for speakers and mentors.

6. GO TO THE UTICA – RALLY TO PROTEST TRUMP INAUGURATION AND TEACH-IN ON JANUARY 21

7. TAKE THE BUS TO WASHINGTON D.C. TO PROTEST TRUMP’S INAUGURATION

8. VOLUNTEER FOR CNY CITIZEN ACTION COMMITTEE TO ORGANIZE LOCAL PROGRESSIVES
We are looking for people to serve on our board of directors and the following committees:

1. Communications – write letters to editor and content for our website, produce videos, and social media, publicize events
2. Political and leadership training – train and support local progressives to run for office
3. Community Outreach and Coalition Building – conduct grassroots organizing, making phone calls, door knocking, getting organizational support
4. Organizing rallies – finding space, making signs
5. Interpreters and translators to translate material into various languages to help us organize communities.

Please call or write us if you would like to volunteer a few hours a week. We are also looking for free office space.

9. BECOME A MEMBER OF CITIZEN ACTION OF NEW YORK TO BUILD A MOVEMENT FOR CHANGE. WE NEED 30 NEW MEMBERS TO FORM OUR CHAPTER. CLICK ON THIS LINK TO BECOME A MEMBER: http://citizenactionny.org/member

10. ASK YOUR FRIENDS, FAMILY, NEIGHBORS, AND CO-WORKERS TO JOIN OUR FIGHT FOR A PROGRESSIVE FUTURE!!

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT AND HAVE A SAFE AND HAPPY HOLIDAY!!

Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc.
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 411; Utica, NY 13503-0411
315-725-0974
cnycitizenaction@gmail.com
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Central-New-York-Citizens-in-Action/265689434204

https://www.facebook.com/Central-New-York-Progressive-Action-659297800873928/?fref=ts

Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. was developed from the Utica Citizens in Action, a multi-issue public interest association affiliated with Citizen Action of New York.  It was founded in 1997 to address critical social, economic and environmental issues facing residents of Oneida, Herkimer, and Madison Counties.  Members of our group worked to empower low and moderate income Central New York residents to participate in shaping the policies that affect their lives, such as economic justice, environment, housing, education, economic development, health care, public benefit programs, and consumer issues.   Our projects include research and policy development, public education on a wide range of public policy issues, development of educational materials, community outreach and grassroots organizing, coalition development, training, and lobbying.  Please join our email list by sending an email to cnycitizenaction@gmail.com with the subject heading – Join List.  We also invite you to become a member of our group and attend our meetings.

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION – DECEMBER 2, 2016

December 3, 2016


trump-protest

Credit:  The Atlantic

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION NEWSLETTER

DECEMBER 2, 2016

NEWSLETTER OF THE CENTRAL NEW YORK CITIZENS IN ACTION, INC.
(ESTABLISHED IN 1997)

Now celebrating 19 years of community organizing, the Central New York Citizens in Action invites YOU to be part of a movement for progressive change based on shared social values. We believe in educating, advocating, and legislating for the collective good. Join us!

You can view newsletter on:
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com

HEADLINES

MEETING TO RESIST TRUMP – MONDAY, DECEMBER 5

FUNDRAISER TO BENEFIT
STANDING ROCK SIOUX PLANNED FOR SATURDAY

SUPPORT LIVING WAGES FOR NONPROFIT WORKERS

ANNUAL PROGRESSIVE LEADERSHIP
AWARD GALA ON DECEMBER 13

YOUTH MENTORING PROGRAM SPONSORS
SECOND ANNUAL FREE HOLIDAY CONCERT

THE 10 CENSORED STORIES OF 2015-16

100 HEARTBEATS

trump-meeting-pic

MEETING TO RESIST TRUMP – MONDAY, DECEMBER 5

JOIN US ON TUESDAY NIGHT AS WE COME TOGETHER AND PLAN TO STAND UP TO TRUMP’S HATEFUL AGENDA.

UNITE AGAINST HATE & INEQUALITY
After the Election and Beyond
WHAT NOW!
Join Us Monday, December 5th
7:00 PM
Central New York Labor Council, 287 Genesee Street, Utica, NY 13501
Stand up to Hate
Stand up to Inequality
Stand Up to the Trump Agenda
TAKE THE PLEDGE OF RESISTANCE
Join us at this important organizing meeting

 

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. (Citizen Action – CNY Chapter) is holding a community meeting to organize local resistance to Trump policies. Our first meeting was a success! Our next meeting will be 7 p.m., Monday, December 5 at the Central New York Labor Council, 287 Genesee Street, Utica, NY 13501 (corner of Dakin Street, entrance and parking in rear of building on Dakin Street, down the street from the Utica Public Library).

Among our priorities will be 1) mobilizing support for preserving safety net programs like Medicaid, Affordable Care Act, Social Security, SNAP, and SSI, 2) fighting cuts to human service programs, 3) declaring Utica a hate free zone and a safe and accepting community; 4) organizing buses from Utica for the Women’s March on Washington on January. 21, 2017; 5) offering training in January for people to become involved in local politics; 6) expanding Citizen Action newsletter and website.

The terrifying reality of Donald Trump poised to take power on January 20th has shaken many people to the core. Somehow, he managed to run and win as a populist, which boggles the mind. But now, unsurprisingly, it’s becoming increasingly clear that Trump will face unprecedented conflicts of interest as president, given his vast international business holdings and ties to financial institutions. It’s hard to imagine the extent of the self-dealing and blatant corruption that will likely occur under his presidency. Add in his empty promises to “drain the swamp”, with his appointment of wealthy lobbyists and insiders to key positions, along with his vindictive nature and propensity for wildly offensive behavior, and the situation begins to look very dire. That’s all without even mentioning his bigoted statements and elevation of white nationalism.

However, as concerned citizens we must not be complacent. The only way to mitigate the consequences of his presidency is to organize and push back against his extremist policies and hateful rhetoric.

On December 5th likeminded members of our community will meet to discuss a range of actions that we can take to call out Trump’s extreme hypocrisy and blatant corruption. Together, with other community organizers across the country, we can make a difference.

We can be successful in stopping the dismantling of the many vital programs we all care deeply about, but only if we work together, and build a sustainable movement in our area to support Congressional champions like Senator Schumer, and hold members of Congress and the Trump administration accountable. We must oppose weakening of climate change goals, environmental and food safety standards, anti-monopoly laws, and consumer protections.

It is important that we work together to protect each other from hate crimes. The Southern Poverty Law Center has already documented over 700 acts of hate since Election Day.

There will be much to protest under a Trump administration. His selection of Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education means even more attacks on our public schools and privatization masked as ‘choice’. His immigration plan will significantly roll back immigrant rights and continue the tide of deportations. The appointment of Jeff Sessions as attorney general is good news for the Monsanto-Bayer merger and other moves toward monopolies. Attacks on unions and worker rights will put many families into poverty. Trump’s tax plan will create massive tax cuts for the wealthy, which will force austerity measures on the rest of us. Trump’s deregulation of the banking industry will trigger the conditions for another financial collapse. Stephen Bannon’s role in spreading racist and xenophobic outrages through Breitbart is chilling.

Here is what’s at stake for Central New Yorkers:

  • Big cuts to basic safety net programs – Medicaid is likely to be turned into a block grant to states and cut deeply;
  • Medicare will be privatized and replaced with vouchers; Affordable Care Act will be repealed; SNAP/Food Stamps will be turned into block grants and funding will sharply reduced.
  • Tax and budget policies that favor the 1% at the expense of the rest of us will be put into effect, increasing inequality and condemning many to low wage jobs without benefits.
  • “Huge” giveaways to corporations will hurt small business and increase taxes for the middle class.
  • The Trump infrastructure plan is starting to look like a massive tax subsidy for private sector entities that will, for example, build a road and then own it/charge tolls on it.
  • Immigrants, including 700,000 “Dreamers” (young people who have temporary legal status under the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program) are threatened with deportation.
  • There will be an early effort in January to pass a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act, with its replacement to be determined later. For appropriations bills (and much other legislation), 60 votes are needed in the Senate.

Democrats can block those bills, so they have leverage.

We must organize, not mourn! We can stop some of these policies, but only if we support each other, build a local progressive movement with our own media and infrastructure, run progressives for office, organize rallies and protests, lobby legislators, and hold members of Congress and the Trump administration accountable.

To join our movement, please contact Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. (Citizen Action- Utica),
P.O. Box 411; Utica, NY 13503-0411, 315-725-0974, cnycitizenaction@gmail.com, https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com, https://www.facebook.com/pages/Central-New-York-Citizens-in-Action/265689434204, https://www.facebook.com/Central-New-York-Progressive-Action-659297800873928/?fref=ts

la-lucha-sigue

FUNDRAISER TO BENEFIT
STANDING ROCK SIOUX PLANNED FOR SATURDAY

 

A fundraiser to benefit ongoing protests against the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline near Cannonball, North Dakota will take place beginning at 7 p.m. Saturday at the DEV, 41 Devereux St.

The protests, which started in April, are aimed at the prevention of oil pipeline construction through ancestral land of the indigenous Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. Taking the title of water protectors, those who have congregated do so to protect indigenous rights as well as the tribe’s access to clean water — which they fear will be compromised if the pipeline is completed.

The benefit also will recognize local activist Aaron Dorn, who upon bringing supplies to Standing Rock, was assaulted and arrested days later. While Dorn has been released, his personal items and property are being held by law enforcement. Proceeds from the fundraiser also will be used to help Dorn’s legal fund in his fight for justice.
Musical acts, set to start performing at 8 p.m., will continue throughout the evening.

A cover charge of $5 will be applied for the festivities which will include sets by Comfy, Fig Mints, Substanance and Thomas D.

This event is for adults ages 21 and older. For information about the event or to make a donation, call 315-794-8784. Credit: Utica Observer Dispatch

 

nonprofit-workers

SUPPORT LIVING WAGES FOR NONPROFIT WORKERS

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. is part of the Restore Opportunity Now (RON) campaign which is comprised of human services agencies across New York State. The campaign is holding a press conference next Thursday at 12 o’clock in Albany. We are hoping to bring as many colleagues as possible to the event. Sign on information is listed below.

In order to increase our bandwidth on issues of living wages for not for profits, we have to show the State’s leadership the kind of support we have statewide. There is no better way to show that then by joining us next Thursday. Please contact us if you would like to carpool.

Restore Opportunity Now is a statewide campaign, seeking systemic changes and key investments in the nonprofit human services sector.

We hope you will sign on today, and join us next week for our campaign launch/press conference in Albany:
Date: December 8, 2016 (Thursday)
Location: The LCA Room (130 LOB), Albany, NY 12224
Time: 12 PM
Please RSVP ASAP by clicking here.
Now more than ever, it is critical that New York State continue to be a progressive leader. This campaign will highlight the many issues experienced by nonprofits, and seek to work collaboratively with government to ensure:
• Appropriate, competitive compensation for our workforce, allowing for recruitment and retention of quality staff;
• Contracts that cover the real cost of providing services, permitting nonprofits to be innovative, efficient, and effective;
• Investments in core programs necessary to lift up communities.

 

gala-pic

ANNUAL PROGRESSIVE LEADERSHIP AWARD GALA ON DECEMBER 13
You’re Invited
Citizen Action of New York
Annual Progressive Leadership Award Gala
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
6:00 to 9:00 pm
1199SEIU Penthouse
330 W 42nd Street, 33rd Floor
New York, NY
We are organizing a delegation from the Utica/Syracuse area to attend. We can help you to be part of this important event. Please contact us at 315-725-0974 or cnycitizenaction@gmail.com if you would like join us for a fantastic evening of fun and social justice work!!
Click here to RSVP now!
Honoring these dedicated progressive leaders:
SHAUN KING
Senior Justice Writer
NY Daily News
KATE LINKER
Greater NYC for Change
LINDA SARSOUR
Executive Director
Arab American Association of NY
DENNIS TRAINOR
Vice President
CWA District One
Lifetime Champion Award
HON. JIM BRENNAN
NYS Assemblymember
Click here to RSVP now!

serena-young-photo

 

YOUTH MENTORING PROGRAM SPONSORS
SECOND ANNUAL FREE HOLIDAY CONCERT

CONCERT FEATURES NATIONAL RECORDING ARTIST SERENA YOUNG

Dare to be Different, a youth mentoring program based in Atlanta, will sponsor the Second Annual Family and Friends Concert at 5 p.m. on Saturday, December 17 at Believer’s Miracle Deliverance Ministries, 207 Eagle Street, Utica. It will feature national recording artist Serena Young, the Family and Friends Community Choir and other local and national performers, comedians, singers, and inspirational speakers. The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be available. People of all ages and faiths are welcome and are encouraged to bring canned goods which will be donated to the Utica Community Food Bank. Information regarding youth job training and educational programs, social development, leadership training will be offered at the event.

Dare to be Different plans to establish a program in Utica to help young people beat the odds by offering positive, empowering in-school, after-school and out-of-school programs, including character building, mentoring, peer-to-peer support, counseling, and tutoring.

A former resident of the Washington Courts public housing project, T. Michael Watson, founder of Dare to Be Different (D2BD), said: “The purpose of this concert is to bring cultural awareness and a sense of unity to the citizens of Utica by bridging the gap between all racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds. The concert will give hope to youth for a better life and show them that they have the support of adults and community groups to make their dreams come true. We want our youth to” Dare to be Different.”

Mr. Watson further stated: “Our mission is to transform the thought process of youth, encouraging them to make better decisions NOW that will positively affect their future. The possibilities are endless for how ”Dare To Be Different” can change families, communities, and cities by changing one person’s perception of self. I want to introduce this program to the Utica area, because I believe it is a key essential to the growth and development of the community that I grew up in.”

The concert will feature the following performers:

National recording artist Serena Young has been singing gospel since an early age. This Rochester native was a top 5 finalist in season 7 of BET Sundays Best. Serena’s deep Gospel roots and her impeccable voice have afforded Serena the opportunity to work with Shirley Caesar, Kirk Franklin and Donnie McClurkin. Her first album was “I Surrender All.” She will be releasing a new CD in 2017.

Comedian Cuzin Maine is an Albany NY native who has been performing comedy professionally for twelve years. He has shared the stage with comedic greats such as Dick Gregory, Rickey Smiley, and Aries Spears. He made a decision to perform clean comedy routines to prove to his family and himself that it is possible to make someone laugh without using profanity.

Other performers include: Cymil Hamilton – Master of Ceremonies; Cameron Curtis – Minister of Music; Marcelle Johnson – Music Director; Marissa Jones, Psalmist.

Information on the event can be found at the following links:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/dare-to-be-different-family-friends-holiday-concert-2016-tickets-29255350541?aff=eandprexshre&ref=eandprexshrehttps://www.eventbrite.com/e/dare-to-be-different-family-friends-holiday-concert-2016-tickets-29255350541?aff=eandprexshre&ref=eandprexshre

https://www.facebook.com/events/572948619561771/?ti=cl

Sponsors and supporters include Big Daddies and Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. For more information on how to become a sponsor and supporter, please contact T. Michael Watson (347) 409- 5353 Mr.MichaelWatsonsr@gmail.com or Natasha Pearson (315) 374-7993 natashasings124@gmail.com.

project-censored-2017

THE 10 CENSORED STORIES OF 2015-16
PROJECT CENSORED 2017
WHEN WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW CAN KILL YOU
By Paul Rosenberg, Senior Editor and Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor, Random Lengths News

Throughout its 40-year history, Project Censored has covered a lot of ground that the corporate mainstream media has missed. Begun by Carl Jensen, a sociology professor at California’s Sonoma State University shortly after Watergate in 1976, it’s become an endeavor involving dozens of faculty members and institutions working together to come up with an annual list of the Top 25 Censored Stories of the Year.

The Watergate burglary in June 1972 “sparked one of the biggest political cover-ups in modern history,” Jensen later recalled. “And the press was an unwitting, if willing participant in the cover-up.”

“Watergate taught us two important lessons about the press: First, the news media sometimes do fail to cover some important issues, and second, the news media sometimes indulge in self-censorship,” he said.

On the upside, it led to the creation of Project Censored.

As with the Watergate story, these aren’t censored in the overt heavy-handed manner of an authoritarian dictatorship, but in the often more effective manner reflecting our society—an oligarchy with highly centralized economic power pretending to be a “free marketplace of ideas.”

It may give people what they think they want in the moment, but it leaves them hungry for more, if not downright malnourished in the long run. The missing stories concern vital subjects central to the healthy functioning of our democracy. The problem is, we may not even realize what we’re missing, which is precisely why Project Censored is essential.

Another way to think about it is as censorship of what the people as a whole can hear, rather than what any one individual can say. Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights makes it very clear: freedom of opinion and expression includes the right “to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.”

This year, 221 students and 33 faculty members from 18 college and university campuses across the United States and Canada were involved. A panel of 28 judges comprised of media studies professors, professional journalists, and even a former commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission, also participated.

In addition to its central focus on the censored stories, there are plenty of other goodies in the annual report, including a chapter devoted to “Junk Food News,” a retrospective of the project as discussed in “Project Censored Turns 40,” and a chapter on “Media Democracy in Action.”

All these reflect the fact that news isn’t just created for individuals to consume, but for citizens to debate, discuss and then take action upon. The real Project Censored, in short, includes you, the reader.

Project Censored has always dealt with specific stories, but on anniversaries like this one, the larger patterns those stories fit within are impossible to ignore. Economic inequality, global warming, petro-politics, suppression of health science, government spying, corporate influence on government, are all familiar themes that appear again on this year’s list. But a bit more ought to be said by way of introduction to this year’s top censored story, before starting the list proper.

Jensen began the preface to Project Censored’s 20th anniversary edition with the story of how John F. Kennedy killed a detailed New York Times story blowing the whistle on the planned invasion of Cuba. A shrunken, muted version ran in its place. Afterwards, Kennedy told a Times editor, “If you had printed more about the operation, you could have saved us from a colossal mistake.” This years’ No. 1 censored story is a direct descendent of the story JFK wished he hadn’t managed to kill.

1. U.S. Military Forces Deployed in 70 Percent of World’s Nations

The covert exercise of U.S. military power is a recurrent subject of Project Censored stories. This year’s top censored story joins that long tradition. It deals with the massive expansion in the number of countries where the officially unnamed war on terror is now being waged by U.S. Special Operations Forces—147 of the world’s 195 recognized nations, an 80 percent increase since 2010. This includes a dramatic expansion in Africa.

The majority of the activity is in “training missions,” meaning that this expansion is promoting a coordinated worldwide intensification of conflict, unseen at home, but felt all around the globe. Writing for TomDispatch, The Nation and the Intercept, Nick Turse exposed different aspects of this story and its implications.

Turse’s story for the Intercept focused on the development of a single base, Chabelley Airfield, in the East African nation of Djibouti. It’s an “out-of-the-way outpost” transformed into “a key hub for its secret war…in Africa and the Middle East.”

In The Nation, Turse tackled the question of mission success. Project Censored noted that, “Turse [had] reported skepticism from a number of experts in response to this question, pointing out that “impacts are not the same as successes.”

In Vietnam, body counts were mistaken for signs of success.

“Today, tallying up the number of countries in which Special Operations forces are present repeats this error,” Vietnam veteran and author Andrew Bacevich told Turse.
Sources:
Turse, Nick, “A Secret War in 135 Countries,” Tomdispatch, 2015.
Turse, Nick, “The Stealth Expansion of a Secret U.S. Drone Base in Africa,” Intercept, 2015. .
Turse, Nick “American Special Operations Forces Have a Very Funny Definition of Success,” The Nation, October 26, 2015.

2. Crisis in Evidence-Based Medicine

The role of science in improving human health has been one of humanity’s greatest achievements, but the profit-oriented influence of the pharmaceutical industry has created a crisis situation. That research simply cannot be trusted. Burying truth for profit is a recurrent theme for Project Censored. The top 1981 story concerned fraudulent testing from a single lab responsible for one-third of the toxicity and cancer testing of chemicals in America. But this problem is much more profound.

“Something has gone fundamentally wrong” said Richard Horton, editor of the Lancet, commenting on a UK symposium on the reproducibility and reliability of biomedical research:

[M]uch of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness. . . The apparent endemicity of bad research behaviour is alarming.

Horton’s conclusion echoed Marcia Angell, a former editor of the New England Journal of Medicine, who went public in 2009.

A classic case was Study 329 in 2001, which reported that paroxetine (Paxil in the United States/Seroxat in the United Kingdom) was safe and effective for treating depressed children and adolescents, leading doctors to prescribe Paxil to more than 2 million U.S. children and adolescents by the end of 2002, before being called into question. The company responsible (now GlaxoSmithKline), agreed to pay $3 billion in 2012, the “largest healthcare fraud settlement in U.S. history,” according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Nonetheless, the study has not been retracted or corrected, and “none of the authors have been disciplined,” Project Censored points out. This, despite a major reanalysis which “‘starkly’ contradicted the original report’s claims.” The reanalysis was seen as the first major success of a new open data initiative known as Restoring Invisible and Abandoned Trials.

While Project Censored noted one Washington Post story on the reanalysis, there was only passing mention of the open data movement. “Otherwise, the corporate press ignored the reassessment of the paroxetine study,” and beyond that, “Richard Horton’s Lancet editorial received no coverage in the U.S. corporate press.”

Sources:
Lancet 385, No. 9976. 2015.
Cooper, Charlie, “Anti-Depressant was Given to Millions of Young People ‘After Trials Showed It was Dangerous,’” Independent. 2015.
Boseley, Sarah, “Seroxat Study Under-Reported Harmful Effects on Young People, Say Scientists,” Guardian. 2015. .

3. Rising Carbon Dioxide Levels May Permanently Disrupt Vital Ocean Bacteria

Global warming is a recurrent Project Censored subject. Systemic changes associated with global warming threaten human welfare and all life on earth through a multitude of different pathways. These remain largely hidden from public view. One potential pathway — directly dependent on carbon, not temperature — is through the catastrophic overproduction of Trichodesmium bacteria, which could devastate the entire marine food chain in some regions. It lives in nutrient-poor parts of the ocean, where it fixes atmospheric nitrogen into ammonium, an essential nutrient for other organisms—from algae to whales.

A five-year study by researchers at the University of Southern California and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution found that subjecting hundreds of generations of the bacteria to predicted carbon dioxide levels in the year 2100 caused them to evolve into “reproductive overdrive,” growing faster and producing 50 percent more nitrogen.
As a result, they could consume significant quantities of scarce nutrients, such as iron and phosphorus, depriving the ability of other organisms to survive. Or the Trichodesmium bacteria could drive themselves into extinction, depriving other organisms of the ammonium they need to survive.

“Most significantly, the researchers found that even when the bacteria was returned to lower, present-day levels of carbon dioxide. Trichodesmium remained ‘stuck in the fast lane,’” Project Censored noted, a finding that one researcher described as “unprecedented in evolutionary biology.”

Sources:
Perkins, Robert, “Climate Change Will Irreversibly Force Key Ocean Bacteria into Overdrive,” USC News, 2015. .
Howard, Emma, “Climate Change Will Alter Ocean Bacteria Crucial to Food Chain—Study,” Guardian. 2015.

4. Search Engine Algorithms and Electronic Voting Machines Could Swing 2016 Election

Social media has played an important role in recent social movements, from the Arab Spring to Black Lives Matter, but technology can potentially undermine democracy as well as empower it.
In particular, search engine algorithms and electronic voting machines provide opportunities for manipulation of voters and votes, which could profoundly affect the 2016 election.

Mark Frary, in Index on Censorship, describes the latest research by Robert Epstein and Ronald E. Robertson of the American Institute for Behavioral Research and Technology on what they call the Search Engine Manipulation Effect, or SEME.

Their study of more than 4,500 undecided voters in the United States and India showed that biased search rankings “could shift the voting preferences of undecided voters by 20 percent or more” and “could be masked so that people show no awareness of the manipulation.”
In an earlier article for Politico, Epstein wrote that the Search Engine Manipulation Effect “turns out to be one of the largest behavioral effects ever discovered . . . [W]e believe SEME is a serious threat to the democratic system of government.”

Because courts have ruled that their source code is proprietary, private companies that own electronic voting machines are essentially immune to transparent public oversight, as Harvey Wasserman and Bob Fitrakis documented.

In 2016, about 80 percent of the U.S. electorate will vote using outdated electronic voting machines that rely on proprietary software from private corporations, according to a September 2015 study by the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law.

The study identified “increased failures and crashes, which can lead to long lines and lost votes” as the “biggest risk” of outdated voting equipment, while noting that older machines also have “serious security and reliability flaws that are unacceptable today.”

“From a security perspective, old software is riskier, because new methods of attack are constantly being developed, and older software is likely to be vulnerable,” Jeremy Epstein of the National Science Foundation noted.

On Democracy Now! and elsewhere, Wasserman and Fitrakis have advocated universal, hand-counted paper ballots and automatic voter registration as part of their “Ohio Plan” to restore electoral integrity.

While there has been some corporate media coverage of Epstein and Robertson’s research, the transparency and reliability advantages of returning to paper ballots remain virtually unexplored and undiscussed.

Sources:
Epstein, Robert, “How Google Could Rig the 2016 Election,” Politico, 2015.
Frary, Mark, “Whose World are You Watching? The Secret Algorithms Controlling the News We See,” Index on Censorship 44, no. 4 (2015), 69–73.
Norden, Lawrence and Famighetti, Christopher, America’s Voting Machines at Risk, Brennan Center for Justice, New York University School of Law, 2015.
Goodman, Amy “Could the 2016 Election be Stolen with Help from Electronic Voting Machines?” Democracy Now! 2016.
Fitrakis, Bob and Wasserman, Harvey “Is the 2016 Election Already Being Stripped and Flipped?” Free Press, 2016.

5. Corporate Exploitation of Global Refugee Crisis Masked as Humanitarianism

The world is experiencing a global refugee crisis (60 million worldwide according to a June 2015 report, 11.5 million of them Syrian). This has been covered in the corporate media — though not nearly enough to generate an appropriate response. What hasn’t been covered is the increasingly well-organized exploitation of refugees, particularly those displaced in Syria.
An AlterNet article by Sarah Lazare—cited by Project Censored—warned of the World Bank’s private enterprise solution to the Syrian displacement crisis.

“Under the guise of humanitarian aid, the World Bank is enticing Western companies to launch ‘new investments’ in Jordan in order to profit from the labor of stranded Syrian refugees,” Lazare wrote. “In a country where migrant workers have faced forced servitude, torture and wage theft, there is reason to be concerned that this capital-intensive ‘solution’ to the mounting crisis of displacement will establish sweatshops that specifically target war refugees for hyper-exploitation.”

A World Bank press release touted “the creation of special economic zones or SEZs,” but Project Censored noted, “Myriam Francois, a journalist and research associate at SOAS, The School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London, told Lazare that the development of SEZs in Jordan ‘will change refugee camps from emergency and temporary responses to a crisis, to much more permanent settlements.’”

The SEZ proposals, Francois said, are “less about Syrian needs and more about keeping Syrian refugees out of Europe by creating (barely) sustainable conditions within the camps, which would then make claims to asylum much harder to recognize.’”

Another story, by Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report described a related agreement between Turkey and the European Union to keep millions of refugees from entering Europe as “a deal between devils,” adding that Turkey has “cashed in on the people it has helped make homeless.”

In addition to the $3.3 billion in EU money, Project Censored noted:
Turkey has also sought admission to the European Union, and, with this, the right for 75 million Turks to enter Europe without visa restrictions as a condition for controlling its refugee population.

Thus, according to Ford, Turkey has engaged in a “vast protections racket trap,” effectively agreeing to protect Europe from further incursions by “the formerly colonized peoples whose labor and lands have fattened Europe and its white settler states for half a millennium.”
“Europeans will never accept Turkey into the fold, because it is Muslim and not-quite-white,” Ford concluded.
Sources:
Lazare, Sarah, “World Bank Woos Western Corporations to Profit from Labor of Stranded Syrian Refugees,” AlterNet, 2016.
Ford, Glen, “Turkey and Europe: Human Trafficking on a Scale Not Seen Since the Atlantic Slave Trade,” Black Agenda Radio, Black Agenda Report, 2016.

6. More than 1.5 Million American Families Live on $2 Per Person Per Day

Even the working poor receive scant attention, but those living in deep poverty— less than $2 per day — are almost entirely absent.

Kathryn J. Edin and H. Luke Shaefer, sociologists and authors of the book $2.00/a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America state that in 2011 more than 1.5 million U.S. families—including 3 million children—lived in deep poverty at any given month.

Their depiction of what poverty looks like reads “like a Dickens novel,” Marcus Harrison Green wrote in YES! Magazine, Project Censored noted, while in the Atlantic, economist Jared Bernstein noted that their research highlights the problematic long-term consequences of President Bill Clinton’s 1996 welfare reform initiative, with its “insistence on work without regard to job availability.”

Project Censored notes that Edin and Shaefer proposed three policy changes to address extreme poverty in the United States:

First, policy must start by ‘expanding work opportunities for those at the very bottom of society.

Second, policy must address housing instability, which Shaefer described as both a cause and a consequence of extreme poverty. “Parents should be able to raise their children in a place of their own.”

Third, families must be insured against extreme poverty, even when parents are not able to work.

William Julius Wilson, a leading sociologist in the study of poverty, described their book as “an essential call to action,” in a New York Times book review, but this was a rare recognition in the corporate press.

Sources:
Green, Marcus Harrison, “1.5 Million American Families Live on $2 a Day—These Authors Spent Years Finding Out Why,” YES! Magazine. 2015.
Bernstein, Jared, “America’s Poorest are Getting Virtually No Assistance,” Atlantic. 2015.

7. No End in Sight for Fukushima Disaster

Five years after the Fukushima nuclear power plant was destroyed by an earthquake and tsunami in March 2011, the nuclear disaster continues to unfold, with the ongoing release of large quantities of radioactive waste water into the Pacific Ocean, in turn affecting ocean life through “biological magnification.”

Meanwhile the Japanese government has relaxed radiation limits in support of its efforts to return the refugee population — a move that younger people, prime working-age taxpayers, are resisting.

Project Censored cites a media analysis by sociologist Celine-Marie Pascale of American University. Pascale covering more than 2,100 articles, editorials and letters to the editor on Fukushima in the Washington Post, the New York Times, Politico, and the Huffington Post between March 11, 2011 and March 11, 2013, focused on two basic questions: “risk for whom?” and “from what?”

She found that just 6 percent of articles reported on risk to the general public, and most of those “significantly discounted those risks.” She concluded:
The largest and longest lasting nuclear disaster of our time was routinely and consistently reported as being of little consequence to people, food supplies, or environments…. In short, the media coverage was premised on misinformation, the minimization of public health risks, and the exacerbation of uncertainties.

In contrast, Dahr Jamail’s reporting for Truthout pointed out that the cooling process—still ongoing after five years—has produced “hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of tons” of highly radioactive water, much of which has been released into the Pacific Ocean. Such nuclear disasters “never end,” Arnold Gundersen, a former nuclear industry senior vice president told Jamail.

Project Censored also cited Linda Pentz Gunter, writing for the Ecologist about the Japanese government’s ongoing coverup.
“In order to proclaim the Fukushima area ‘safe,’ the government increased exposure limits to 20 times the international norm,” Gunter wrote, in order to force refugees to return home, despite medical or scientific evidence to the contrary.

Sources:
Jamail, Dahr, “Radioactive Water from Fukushima is Leaking into the Pacific,” Truthout, 2016.
Pentz Gunter, Linda, “No Bliss in This Ignorance: The Great Fukushima Nuclear Cover-Up,” Ecologist, 2016.
Pascale, Celine-Marie, “Vernacular Epistem- ologies of Risk: The Crisis in Fukushima,” Current Sociology, 2016.

8. Syria’s War Spurred by Contest for Gas Delivery to Europe, Not Muslim Sectarianism

The Syrian war and its resulting refugee crisis have repeatedly gained headlines over the past five years, but the origins of the conflict, control of oil and gas, are rarely considered — the politics of which have dominated the region since before World War II. The hidden influence of oil — from climate change to campaign finance and corporate lobbying to foreign policy — has been a recurrent subject of Project Censored stories.

Project Censored cites a single September 2015 story by Mnar Muhawesh for MintPress News, but that story cites others as well, notably an August 2013, story in the Guardian by Nafeez Ahmed.

“The 2011 uprisings, it would seem— triggered by a confluence of domestic energy shortages and climate-induced droughts which led to massive food price hikes—came at an opportune moment that was quickly exploited,” Ahmed wrote, as part of a broader strategy to undermine governments in the region, as well as manipulating social movements and armed factions for the purpose of maintaining control of oil and gas.

Muhawesh and Ahmed both point, in particular, to Assad’s choice between competing pipeline proposals. He refused to sign a proposed agreement for a pipeline from Qatar’s North field through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey in 2009, because it would have hurt his ally, Russia.

“The proposed pipeline would have bypassed Russia to reach European markets currently dominated by Russian gas giant Gazprom,” Project Censored notes. Instead, Assad pursued negotiations — finalized in 2012 — for a pipeline through Iraq from Iran’s South Pars field, which is contiguous with Qatar’s North field.

Muhawesh cites U.S. cables revealed by WikiLeaks as evidence that “foreign meddling in Syria began several years before the Syrian revolt erupted.” Ahmed came to the same conclusions by drawing on multiple sources, including a RAND Corp. document, “Unfolding the Future of the Long War,” which discussed long-term policy options (trajectories) dealing with the complex interplay of energy interests and ethno-religious-political manipulations.

There’s a whole deeper level of driving forces not being reported on behind the Syrian war and refugee crisis.

Source:
Muhawesh, Mnar, “Refugee Crisis & Syria War Fueled by Competing Gas Pipelines,” MintPress News, 2015. .

9. Big Pharma Political Lobbying Not Limited to Presidential Campaigns

The pharmaceutical industry (aka “Big Pharma”) already appeared in story No. 2, “Crisis in Evidence-Based Medicine,” due to the destructive influence of its financing on the practice of basic science in testing and developing new drugs. But that’s not the only destructive impact of their spending.

Although they spent $51 million in campaign donations in the 2012 presidential election, and nearly $32 million in the 2014 midterms, Mike Ludwig of Truthout reported they spent $7 lobbying for every dollar spent on the midterms.

“The $229 million spent by drug companies and their lobbying groups that year was down from a peak of $273 million in 2009, the year that Congress debated the Affordable Care Act,” Project Censored noted. Legislation influenced all the industry’s top concerns, “including policy on patents and trademarks, management of Medicare and Medicaid, and international trade.”
The last item includes pressuring other countries to suppress the manufacture of life-saving generic AIDS drugs in India, to cite just one example.

“Pharmaceutical lobbyists also consistently lobby to prevent Medicare from negotiating drug prices,” Project Censored also noted. Coverage of their spending is scant, and virtually never tied directly to the issues that Big Pharma itself is lobbying on.

Source:
Ludwig, Mike, “How Much of Big Pharma’s Massive Profits are Used to Influence Politicians?”Truthout, 2015.

10. The Internet Surveillance Act No One is Discussing

In July 2015, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell attempted to attach the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, or CISA, as an amendment to the annual National Defense Authorization Act. However, the Senate blocked this by a vote of 56-40, in part because, unlike an earlier version, it essentially enabled intelligence and law enforcement officials to engage in surveillance without warrants.

Yet, on Dec. 18, 2015, President Barack Obama signed CISA into law as part of a 2,000-page omnibus spending bill, amid media silence — with notable exceptions at Wired and the Guardian. The act authorized the creation of a system for corporate informants to provide customers’ data to the Department of Homeland Security, which, in turn, would share this information with other federal agencies—the National Security Agency, FBI, Internal Revenue Service and others — without privacy-protecting safeguards.

In one sense it followed a familiar — if distressing — pattern, as the Guardian reported, civil liberties experts had been “dismayed” when Congress used the omnibus spending bill to advance some of the legislation’s “most invasive” components, making a mockery of the democratic process. But this one was different, since censored stories usually do not stifle powerful voices, as Project Censoredobserved:
[Andy] Greenberg’s Wired article noted that tech firms—including Apple, Twitter, and Reddit—as well as 55 civil liberties groups had opposed the bill, and that, in July 2015, DHS itself warned that the bill would “sweep away privacy protections” while inundating the agency with data of “dubious” value.

In April 2016, Jason R. Edgecombe reported for TechCrunch on the glaring inadequacies of interim guidelines to deal with privacy and civil liberties concerns, while the corporate media silence continued. And in May, Violet Blue wrote for Engadget about candidates’ positions on cyber issues. Only Bernie Sanders and Rand Paul opposed CISA, but it never became the subject of any broader media discussion.
Sources:
Greenberg, Andy, “Congress Slips CISA into a Budget Bill That’s Sure to Pass,” Wired, 2015.
Thielman, Sam, “Congress Adds Contested Cybersecurity Measures to ‘Must-Pass’ Spending Bill,” The Guardian, 2015.
Edgecombe, Jason R. “Interim Guidelines to the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act,” TechCrunch, 2016.
Blue, Violet, “Where the Candidates Stand on Cyber Issues,” Engadget, 2016.

100 HEARTBEATS:
The Race to Save Earth’s Most Endangered Species

by Jeff Corwin ( 2009, Rodale)

Reviewed by Richard W. Weiskopf

This book is a must for those who want to learn more about the problems of survival that animals face all over the world. The title refers to critically endangered species and subspecies that have one hundred or fewer individuals in the world today. Jeff Corwin tells in a very personal way of his travels in many parts of the world and of his efforts in behalf of many endangered and disappearing species. He spells out the effects of shrinking and disappearing habitat, global warming, pollution, chemical toxins, human overpopulation, land development, illegal hunting, exploitation as well as oil exploration and development.

Corwin makes an interesting point that I hadn’t thought about: If the species at the top of the food chain is disappearing (such as polar bear, Bengal tiger) this affects all of the many species of the entire food chain — nature’s precarious balance is put out of order, i.e. some species may overpopulate or some may severely decrease.

Again, 100 HEARTBEATS is all the more readable because of the way the author personalizes his experiences. For example, how elated he feels upon returning two cub cheetahs to the wild after a long period of training to help them survive. Species with less than one hundred individuals today include the Javan rhino, Vancouver Is. marmot, Hawaiian crow, Saychelles sheath-tailed bat, and the most endangered feline in the world, the Iberian lynx.

Among others, he describes the struggles of the Bengal tiger, Florida panther, Iberian lynx, giant panda, orangutan. He tells of the prolonged training of an orangutan and the joy of setting him free in the wild. In Indonesia The orangutan is up against loss of habitat to the growing demand for palm oil as well as illegal logging.

Here are some facts that we may not want to know about the magnitude of the problem:
In 2008 the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) listed as critically endangered 3,246 of the 44,838 species assessed. Seventeen of the mammalian species have been reduced to populations of between 350 and 1,000. There are many, many, many thousands of species in our world. Scientists who categorize and track them report the extinction of many thousands each year. Some species exist only in a very small perhaps unique area.
One optimistic note: He mentions that American Bald Eagles have had an amazing recovery over the past thirty years largely due to the banning of DDT.

Corwin places the responsibility on all of us to do what we can to slow the relentless disappearance of our earth’s animals. It is inspiring to witness his devotion and dedication to saving the animals and by doing so helping to save our planet.

****

Richard Weiskopf is a member of People for Animal Rights, P.O. Box 15358, Syracuse, NY 13215-0358, (315)488-PURR (7877) between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m.
LDESTEFANO3@twcny.rr.com, peopleforanimalrightsofcny.org

NEWSLETTER ARTICLES ARE NEEDED

Please submit your articles, news items, and calendar listings to cnyprogaction@gmail.com.

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION is published by Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc., P.O. Box 411, Utica, NY 13503-0411 315-725-0974.
cnycitizenaction@gmail.com https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com
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DEMONSTRATION PLANNED FOR TUESDAY IN CLINTON TO OPPOSE TRUMP POLICIES

November 15, 2016

 

love-trumps-hate

 

Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc is asking our members and supporters to join the protest on Tuesday in Clinton to oppose the policies of the incoming Trump administration. Students from local colleges will be conducting a peaceful protest at the Village Green in Clinton on Tuesday, November 15, from 3 to 6 pm. It is vital that community residents attend this demonstration.

Trump’s economic agenda will be disaster for working families, the aged, children, and disabled. His policies will increase the ranks of the uninsured by ten of millions, eliminate crucial safety net programs for low- and moderate-income Americans, cripple the ability of unions to negotiate collective bargaining agreements for workers, and put in place a tax code that exacerbates inequality and leaves many families with children worse off. Trump’s immigration polices will undermine Utica’s economic recovery, which was due in large part to refugee families breathing new life into the City by refurbishing dilapidated housing stock and start productive small businesses. The time now is to act before it is too late and say NO to Trump’s policies. DON’T MOURN – ORGANIZE NOW!

HAMILTON, COLGATE, AND UTICA COLLEGE STUDENTS JOIN NATIONAL PROTESTS ON NOVEMBER 15TH IN CLINTON, NEW YORK TO OPPOSE POLICIES OF TRUMP ADMINISTRATION

More than 500 students and community members expected at “Our Power” rally onthe Clinton Green in support of a nationwide protest at colleges and throughout thecountry to denounce discrimination, hate crimes and speech, deportation policies, anti-environmental policies, and the dismantling of affordable health care protections for our country’s most vulnerable individuals.

A consortium of college community members from Hamilton College, Colgate University and Utica College will gather in Clinton, New York at the Clinton Green on Tuesday, November 15, from 3 to 6 pm. Organizers anticipate that over 500 students and community members will participate in unity with 27 other colleges and universities engaging in peaceful protests against the policies of the incoming Trump Administration.

President elect Trump is a catalyst for the growing divide among many Americans. This rally’s purpose goes far beyond President elect Trump; it serves to give a voice to the people who are affected by these injustices in the United States. If we as an impassioned community do nothing, we will be encouraging this divisive and hateful behavior.

“For the last 18 months, we have seen and heard the unimaginable as the now President elect and his senior advisors have consistently made derogatory remarks that were xenophobic, misogynistic, and racist. He has incited his supporters to engage in violence directed at minorities, women, immigrants, or anyone who does not agree with his views. We expect better from our elected officials and certainly better from an incoming President,” said Areej Haroon, Hamilton College student organizer.

“Human rights, the environment, international relations, and human dignity are all at risk under a Trump Administration. The embracing of dictators and authoritarian governments as well as a cavalier approach to nuclear proliferation is shocking,” Haroon continued, adding “Because President elect Trump has failed to release his tax returns, we don’t know exactly to whom he owes nearly $1.6 billion (according to the NY Times) and the pressures they could exert upon President Trump.”

“If President-elect Trump does not cease his bigoted rhetoric or if he continues to fail to recognize the level of violence his ideas and actions inspire, we call upon all of America, citizen or not, black or white, straight or anywhere on the LGBTQ+ spectrum, to boycott all Donald, Melania and Ivanka Trump products, hotels, residences, golf courses and those organizations that support or fund his businesses,” said Terri Moise, another Hamilton student organizer.

“Alexander Hamilton (the namesake of our college, a person of color, an immigrant, a Founding Father who fought in the American Revolution, and one of the principal authors of the U.S. Constitution) fought against discrimination and his legacy inspires us as Hamilton College students to engage in the exercising of our rights of assembly and free speech in support of true democracy. Today we are exercising those rights as we fear the path upon which America is currently headed will lead to the normalization of bigotry and intolerance under the incoming administration,” concluded Moise.

To join the protest or learn more about the “Our Power” rally, contact Aleta Brown and Polly Bruce:
anbrown@hamilton.edu
585-490-2920
pbuce@hamilton.edu
203-914-6160

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION – 11.6.2016

November 6, 2016

i-am-voting-wfp

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION NEWSLETTER
NOVEMBER 6, 2016

NEWSLETTER OF THE CENTRAL NEW YORK CITIZENS IN ACTION, INC.
(ESTABLISHED IN 1997)

Now celebrating 19 years of community organizing, the Central New York Citizens in Action invites YOU to be part of a movement for progressive change based on shared social values. We believe in educating, advocating, and legislating for the collective good. Join us!

You can view newsletter on:
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com

HEADLINES

VOTE FOR KIM MYERS ON WFP ROW E TO ELECT
A NEW VOICE FOR CHANGE IN WASHINGTON

VOTE WFP THIS TUESDAY

TRUMP IS A DANGER TO DEMOCRACY
VOTE FOR HILLARY ON WFP LINE

IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED TO KEEP HEALTH INSURANCE

VETERAN’S DAY CELEBRATIONS AT
THE CNY VETERAN’S OUTREACH CENTER

ON POINT FOR COLLEGE UTICA CELEBRATION TO BE HELD NOVEMBER 10TH

 

meyers

VOTE FOR KIM MYERS ON WFP ROW E TO ELECT
A NEW VOICE FOR CHANGE IN WASHINGTON

Kim Myers is ready to fight for all of us in Central New York. She has dedicated her whole life to public service and stands for values of caring, comparison, and community. By electing Kim to Congress, we can send a powerful message of support for issues we care about like jobs, kids, renewable energy, public schools, and college access. She is the only candidate for Congress in our district who is opposed to cuts to and privatization of Social Security and Medicare. Kim will stand up to fear and hate mongering and advocate for the rights of women, workers, youth and people of color. We are close to getting her elected and need every vote to send a woman of compassion and common sense to Congress. Vote for her and our slate of progressive candidates on Working Families Party Row E to let those in Washington and Albany know that our opinions matter!! Your vote counts more when you vote Working Families Party! (Please check this link to view President Obama’s endorsement of Kim: https://www.facebook.com/KimMyersForCongress/videos/1782196495393623/ )

 

sanders-teachout voterowe

VOTE WFP THIS TUESDAY

The stakes in this election are high. The presidential and local congressional elections are expected to be very close. Every vote will count!
Voting on the Working Families line both counts for the candidate and sends a strong message to them about our values — one that can’t be ignored.
Will you join us and vote for Hillary Clinton and the entire Working Families Party ballot line on Election Day? Whether it’s funding for your kid’s school, getting big money out of politics, holding police accountable, or making sure the rich pay their fair share of taxes – all of these issues depend on having elected officials willing to respond to the people, not their CEO campaign donors.
When you vote on the Working Families Party ballot line, you join hundreds of thousands of voters across New York to demand that our elected leaders fight for a state and a nation that works for all of us, not just the wealthy and well-connected.
No matter which party you are registered in, anyone can vote on the Working Families Party line. Your vote counts the same for the candidates and also sends a powerful message to elected officials about the issues that you care most about.
Please support our whole slate of WFP Candidates:

Federal
Hillary Clinton – President
Senator Chuck Schumer
Kim Myers – Congress (CD 22)
Mike Derrick – Congress (CD 21)
Colleen Deacon (CD 24)

State
Anthony J. Brindisi – Assembly 119
Arlene Feldmeier – Assembly 101
Jermaine Bagnall-Graham -Senate 51
Oneida County
Michael A. Arcuri – County Court Judge

New York State Judge
New York State Supreme Court – Judge Ted Limpert

united-against-hate

TRUMP IS A DANGER TO DEMOCRACY
VOTE FOR HILLARY ON WFP LINE

We are urging our supporters to vote for Hilary Clinton on the WFP line to stop Trump form taking the presidency. Fareed Zakaria, host of CNN GPS, puts forth a strong case why Trump is a danger to American democracy and values:

“Trump has consistently expressed himself — in word and deed — in ways that can only be described as racist. In his earliest years as a developer, he was sued by the Justice Department for allegedly denying housing to qualified black people. In the case of the Central Park Five, Trump jumped into the public arena, taking out full¬page ads assailing the accused black teenagers and demanding that “when they kill, they should be executed for their crimes.” Most strikingly, he refused to back down when DNA evidence had clearly exonerated the five men, and New York City was forced to pay $41 million in damages for wrongfully imprisoning them for up to 13 years.

Trump seems to believe in ethnic stereotypes deeply. He boasts of his own bloodline and compares it to breeding racehorses. In a 1991 book, one of his associates described him as horrified to see African Americans in his accounting department at two of his hotels, quoting Trump as saying, “Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.” Trump acknowledged the veracity of these comments in a later Playboy interview, before walking it back in a 1999 NBC interview, calling it “nonsense.”

Trump has also always been a protectionist. In the 1980s, he was sure that the Japanese were about to take over the world and that the only solution was tariffs and trade wars. He doesn’t seem to have noticed that the future he predicted never happened. Undeterred, he has now focused his wrath on China, just as that economy has begun to slow down, and Mexico, a country so small that its effect on the U.S. economy is minimal. The common thread is that Trump is quick to tell Americans facing economic hardship that they should blame their problems on foreigners.

If there is one view that Trump has expressed consistently, openly and with relish, it is that women exist fundamentally as objects for men’s pleasure. He has said and done dozens of things over 30 years that confirm this demeaning view of women — in interviews with Howard Stern, during his ownership of the Miss Universe pageant, when describing working women, and when debating female candidates such as Carly Fiorina and Hillary Clinton. Trump once said in New York magazine about women, “You have to treat ’em like s¬¬¬.”

Finally, Trump has expressed impatience and contempt for many of the foundations of liberal democracy. He has repeatedly promised to change laws to make it easier to punish journalists who offend him. He has threatened people who contributed to his Republican opponents, implying that he would have the government look into their business affairs. He has proposed a number of policies that are illiberal, unconstitutional or even war crimes, such as banning all Muslims from entering the United States, and waterboarding suspected terrorists and killing their families. He has compared his ideas to the internment of U.S. citizens and noncitizens of Japanese descent during World War II, implying that he approved of that measure. And he has threatened to jail his opponent if elected.

These, then, are the core views of Donald Trump, expressed over decades, and confirmed by many of his actions: racism, sexism, protectionism, xenophobia and authoritarianism. His views on taxes and regulations are irrelevant. Your view of Hillary Clinton is irrelevant. Donald Trump is not a normal candidate. He is a danger to American democracy. And that is why I will vote against him on Tuesday.”
(Source Washington Post, November 3, 2016)

IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED TO KEEP HEALTH INSURANCE

Health insurance open enrollment for 2017 begins today – November 1, 2016. Everyone with health insurance that ends December 2016 must take action to secure health coverage for the coming year.*

ACR Health Director of Insurance Programs, Steve Wood, said many people are worried about increased costs. “Reports on the evening news tell a national story. It’s different in New York State. Our rates are up, but in the 2% to 15% range. And, as rates go up, so do the subsidies that help pay the cost of insurance. You need to call a Navigator to find out what you can expect in 2017.”
• Insurance rates for 2017 are up between 2% – 15% depending on the plan.
• The state’s Essential Plan – with no co-pay or one as low as $20 remains the same as last year.
• Medicaid, Child Health Plus, and the Essential Plan do not have a specific open enrollment.
• You can enroll at any time of the year.
• If you do not re-enroll you risk losing your insurance and face a hefty tax penalty for 2017.
• For tax year 2016, the penalty for being uninsured was 2.5% of your total household adjusted gross income, or $695 per adult and $347.50 per child, to a maximum of $2,085.
• For tax year 2017 and beyond, the percentage option will remain at 2.5%, but the flat fee will be adjusted for inflation. (We do not know what this is yet.)
• January 1, 2017: 2017 coverage starts for those who enroll or change plans by December 15.
• January 31, 2017: Last day to enroll in or change a 2017 health plan. After this date, you can enroll or change plans only if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period:
 Lose or change your job
 Change in income
 Change in the number of dependents in your family through birth, death, or adoption
 Divorce, legal separation, or annulment
 Death of the primary insurance holder in the family
 Pregnancy

*People who have an end date after open enrollment (January 31) do not need to take action. People can check their insurance cards to see when their end date is.

ACR Health Navigators, the most highly recommended and experienced professionals in health insurance enrollment in New York are located at ACR Health offices throughout our nine county service area.

Onondaga County – 475.2430
Steve Wood, Brian VanBenschoten, Emily Williams, Ethan Johnson, Heather Blum

Oswego County – 956.2467
– Ebony Coleman

Lewis County – 785.8222
Brandy Snyder

Oneida County – 793.0661
Sarah Sipley, Eric Radley, Ashley Brown

Madison County – 475.2430
Christiana Rood

Herkimer County – 793.0661
George Deveny

ACR Health has Navigators in all nine counties to assist consumers in enrolling in health insurance. Call 800.475.2430 or email navigator@acrhealth.org to make an appointment. ACR Health Navigators are available to help individuals and families select a health plan, including Qualified Health Plans, the Essential Plan, Medicaid, and Child Health plus through the NY State of Health Official Health Plan Marketplace. This service is free, local, and confidential.

VETERAN’S DAY CELEBRATIONS AT
THE CNY VETERAN’S OUTREACH CENTER

The Veterans Outreach Center will be hosting a 5k walk/run at Proctor Park on November 11, 2016. The 5k will begin at 9 a.m. for registration and end at 12 p.m. Please join us to “Run for Veteran’s”.
There will also be an open house at the Veterans Center from 9am-3pm, at our center located at 726 Washington Street, Utica, NY 13502. Please come and celebrate our veterans and tour our newly remodeled facility, showcasing the unveiling of the Chapel at 12 p.m., and a Vietnam Veteran Pinning Ceremony at 12:30 p.m.
On November 12,2016 the Veterans Center will be hosting a Gala Fundraiser at Valentino’s Banquet Hall located at 3899 Oneida St, New Hartford, NY 13413. The gala will begin at 6pm and dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. followed by a guest speaker. Tickets can be purchased at http://www.ticketriver.com/event/20911 For $50/individual and $80/couple. All funds raised will benefit local veterans and their families in need.

 

ON POINT FOR COLLEGE UTICA CELEBRATION TO BE HELD NOVEMBER 10TH

Over the past four years, On Point for College in Utica has helped 600 first-generation youth get to college, stay in college, and succeed. To celebrate this enormous achievement, the non-profit organization will be holding a celebratory dinner on Thursday, November 10, 2016 from 6:00-9:00 PM at Daniele’s Banquet Specialists, 8360 Seneca Turnpike in New Hartford.

On Point for College, Inc., founded in 1999, is dedicated to making higher education accessible to youth who have the desire and the will to continue their education, but who feel college is out of reach due to economic, academic and other barriers. It also links students to jobs. Since its inception, over 9,000 students have enrolled in On Point programs with over a thousand from the Utica area.

Tickets are priced at $50 per person and can be purchased by contacting On Point for College: 315-790-5588 or at http://www.onpointforcollege.org/celebration.

NEWSLETTER ARTICLES ARE NEEDED

Please submit your articles, news items, and calendar listings to cnycitizenaction@gmail.com.

CNYCIA STARTING CITIZEN ACTION OF NEW YORK CHAPTER

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. (CNYCIA) is forming a chapter of Citizen Action of New York to build upon the successful organizing work we have accomplished over the last two decades. The new chapter will enable us to bring new organizing resources and stronger progressive partnerships to Central Bew York. We are inviting to become a dues paying member of both CNYCIA and Citizen Action of New York.

Since 1997, the Central New York Citizens Action, Inc. has been a leader in progressive social change in the Utica, Rome, and the Herkimer area. We have successfully organized around progressive issues, helped to elect and support progressive candidates for public office who are committed to making a difference on these issues, and held elected officials accountable to progressive positions and values. Our success has been in large part due to our strong and effective relationship with Citizen Action of New York.

Citizen Action of New York is a grassroots membership organization taking on big issues that are at the center of transforming society – issues like:
• quality education and after-school programs for all our kids
• guaranteed quality, affordable health care
• public financing of election campaigns
• dismantling racism and promoting racial justice
• a more progressive tax system.

Citizen Action of New York has eight chapters and affiliates in major cities across New York State. Each is a vibrant local organization with local leadership, paid professional organizing staff, a local agenda and an active, diverse membership. Each has developed a strategy, program and structure to meet the organizing and political challenges that most affect their region. At the same time, all share overall goals and a statewide program.

Please join our chapter of Citizen Action of New York so we can become an even more powerful force for democracy and economic fairness. Becoming a chapter will strengthen our ability to fight for community over greed, justice over racism, and people and planet over big corporations. For more information, contact 315-725-0974 or cnycitizenaction@gmail.com. Use this link to join: http://citizenactionny.org/member

 

Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc.
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 411; Utica, NY 13503-0411
315-725-0974
cnycitizenaction@gmail.com
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Central-New-York-Citizens-in-Action/265689434204

https://www.facebook.com/Central-New-York-Progressive-Action-659297800873928/?fref=ts

Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. was developed from the Utica Citizens in Action, a multi-issue public interest association affiliated with Citizen Action of New York.  It was founded in 1997 to address critical social, economic and environmental issues facing residents of Oneida, Herkimer, and Madison Counties.  Members of our group worked to empower low and moderate income Central New York residents to participate in shaping the policies that affect their lives, such as economic justice, environment, housing, education, economic development, health care, public benefit programs, and consumer issues.   Our projects include research and policy development, public education on a wide range of public policy issues, development of educational materials, community outreach and grassroots organizing, coalition development, training, and lobbying.  Please join our email list by sending an email to cnycitizenaction@gmail.com with the subject heading – Join List.  We also invite you to become a member of our group and attend our meetings.

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION – OCTOBER 27, 2016

October 28, 2016

NEWSLETTER OF THE CENTRAL NEW YORK CITIZENS IN ACTION, INC.
(ESTABLISHED IN 1997)

Now celebrating 19 years of community organizing, the Central New York Citizens in Action invites YOU to be part of a movement for progressive change based on shared social values. We believe in educating, advocating, and legislating for the collective good. Join us!

You can view newsletter on:
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com

HEADLINES

WHY VOTE WORKING FAMILIES?

HELP KIM MEYERS THIS WEEKEND TO TAKE BACK THE HOUSE

TELL SEN. SCHUMER: NO TAX CUT FOR HUGE CORPORATIONS!

COMMUNITY NEWS

 

WHY VOTE WORKING FAMILIES?

 

wfp

When you vote on Nov. 8, you should vote on row E, the Working Families Party line. Why? Voting for a candidate on the WFP row counts just as much as if you voted for these same candidates on the Democratic or other party row, but it also sends a message about progressive political values. It shows your support for the issues that the WFP fights for: living wage jobs, affordable housing, a fair economy, climate protection, universal health care, better public education, and other social and economic justice issues. Your vote counts more when you vote WFP. Unlike most other third parties, the WFP thinks that constantly “spoiling” elections — i.e. voting for third-party candidates with no chance of winning — is not a smart strategy.

The WFP is proud to support the following candidates: Federal: Hillary Clinton – President; Senator Chuck Schumer; Kim Myers – Congress (CD 22); Mike Derrick – Congress (CD 21); New York State: Anthony J. Brindisi – Assembly 119; Arlene Feldmeier – Assembly 101; Jermaine Bagnall-Graham -Senate 51; Oneida County: Michael A. Arcuri – County Court Judge; New York State Judge: New York State Supreme Court – Judge Ted Limpert.

Wining back control of the House of Representatives is a critical priority for the WFP. That’s why we are very excited about supporting Kim Myers for Congress. Kim’s number one priority in Congress will be to help grow the economy and create good-paying jobs across Upstate New York. That includes investing in our communities’ infrastructure needs, building on our regional strengths and resources, and aligning our education systems with the skills and training needed for the jobs of tomorrow. She will fight against plans to cut or privatize the programs our seniors rely on and support proposals that will bolster Social Security and Medicare. The local labor movement has endorsed her. She supports increasing the federal minimum wage. Kim is committed to providing excellent constituent services and will create an office in Utica to help residents access federal assistance. She said: “Serving the entire 22nd district is a top priority for me. That’s why I’m committed to maintaining a fully-staffed, full-time Congressional office in the city of Utica.”

 

kim_myers_headshot

HELP KIM MYERS THIS WEEKEND TO TAKE BACK THE HOUSE

The most recent polls by NBC, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Politics, The Washington Post and Reuters show voters prefer that Democrats take control of both the House and the Senate.

But it gets better. The latest from The New York Times indicates that Democrats could overcome enough gerrymandered districts to take the 30 seats needed to send Paul Ryan back to the minority.

Our 22nd Congressional District is crucial to winning back the House for progressives. Polls show that Kim Myers could win the District, but we need every vote.

With your help, we can change the direction of this country for a generation. The Working Families Party is urging progressive to support Kim Myers.

Please volunteer this weekend October 29 and 30 to help Kim Myers win this important congressional seat. We need folks to make phone calls and knock on doors. Staging locations will be United Food and Commercial Workers, Local One, 5911 Airport Road Oriskany, NY 13424 and the CNY Labor Agency, 287 Genesee St., Utica Utica, NY 13501.

Volunteers should meet at these locations for canvass and phonebank shifts. Canvass shifts are as follows: 9:30a-12:30p, 12:30-3:30p, 3:30-6:30p. Phonebank shifts are as follows: 9a-12p, 12-3p, 3-6p, 6-9p. Phonebankers should bring cell phones and laptops if they have them, and canvassers should bring cell phones and dress appropriately for the weather. If someone is willing to drive but not canvass door-to-door, they can still help transporting volunteers, as we will be in suburban and rural areas. Food and drink donations are always welcome. Please call 725-0974 or email uticaromewfp@gmail.com for details. Thank you for your help.

 

tell-schumer

TELL SEN. SCHUMER: NO TAX CUT FOR HUGE CORPORATIONS!

For years, major corporations have been hiding trillions of dollars in offshore tax havens to get out of paying their fair share of taxes here at home.

Now New York Senator Chuck Schumer, who’s set to become the US Senate Majority Leader after the November election, is floating a plan to permanently slash the corporate tax rate. If that plan happens, tax dodgers like Apple, General Electric and Verizon can bring their hidden profits back to the U.S. while paying just a small fraction of the what they actually owe.
The plan is an insult to working families who play by the rules – and pay their taxes – every day.

Please tell Sen. Schumer not to back another huge giveaway to profitable corporations! The corporate tax rate is already the lowest it’s ever been in U.S. history.

Here’s what the people backing a “tax holiday” for corporations won’t tell you: It’ll blow a huge hole in the federal budget, costing $100 billion over the next 10 years.

ixty years ago, corporations’ taxes made up one-third of federal revenues, but today, because of offshoring, they make up just one-tenth. And the rest of us have had to pay the difference while vital programs and infrastructure investments get cut.

Profitable corporations should pay what they owe, not get special breaks after dodging taxes for years.

Please tell Sen. Schumer not to blow a hole in the federal budget by cutting taxes for Apple, General Electric and Verizon!

Thanks for all that you do,

Senator Charles E. Schumer
322 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-6542
Fax: (202) 228-3027
TDD: (202) 224-0420
https://www.schumer.senate.gov/contact/email-chuck

 

COMMUNITY NEWS

COLD DAYS ARE HERE!

The Central New York Labor Council will begin its annual coat drive on October 3, 2016 and will collect new or gently used children’s items until November 30, 2016. Adult items will be accepted, but please stick to the winter items! Every year we collect and distribute hundreds of items and by doing that, we make the walk to school or work, just a little bit easier.

Items can be dropped off at 287 Genesee St. Utica, NY 13501 or arrangements can be made for pick up by calling Enesa at 315-735-6101 or email cnylaboragency@gmail.com. Thank you in advance!

 

JOB CORPS – U.S. Dept. of Labor Program
Free Career Training for 16-24 Year Olds

An Opportunity for a Better Life – Go for It
ORIENTATION & INTERVIEWS
WEDNESDAY NOV. 16th 10:00AM
WORKING SOLUTIONS
NYS Dept. of Labor, NYS Office Building
207 Genesee St., Room 103D, Utica, NY 13501
Note: You Must Have ID To Enter The Building
YOU MUST CALL
Admissions Counselor David Brown at (315) 478-5529
To see if you are eligible for the program and to find out what documents to bring
Students under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian
·Students must bring their documents to Orientation
·Application Interviews will follow Orientation

HEALTH AND WELLNESS DRIVE

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as Food Stamps, assists low-income families in purchasing many food items. However, those families cannot use SNAP/Food Stamps to purchase every day, non-food necessities. Legal Services of Central New York, which provides free legal services to low-income individuals and families, is asking you to donate the items listed below that are not covered by SNAP/Food Stamps, so that everyone in our community can enjoy a happy and healthy holiday season. From October 20, 2016 through November 15, 2016 Legal Services of Central New York will be collecting donations of the following items: Soap, Shampoo, Deodorant, Toothpaste/Toothbrushes, Toilet Paper, Feminine Hygiene Products. New/Sealed Items Only. Please No Mouthwash Please

Donations may be dropped off at the following locations:
Legal Services of Central NY, 268 Genesee Street, Utica, NY 13502
(M-F 9am-5pm)
Utica Public Library, 303 Genesee Street, Utica, NY 13501
(M-T 8:30am-8pm; W-F 8:30am-5:30pm; Sat 8:30am-5pm)
Tramontane Café, 1105 Lincoln Ave, Utica, New York 13502
(M 9am-5pm; T-TH 9am-10pm; F 9am-11pm; Sat-Sun 12pm-11pm)

Donations will be distributed by Rescue Mission of Utica and Utica Hope House
Rescue Mission of Utica: distributions beginning on November 21, 2016
Utica Hope House: distributions on the 3rd Thursday of every month

If you have any questions, please contact Legal Services of Central New York at (315) 793-7108

 

UNSPOKEN HUMAN RIGHTS FILM FESTIVAL 2016

The Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees invites the public to the sixth annual UNSPOKEN Human Rights Film Festival from Thursday, October 27th to Saturday, October 29th, 2016. Utica serves as a home to over 16,000 individuals who have experienced and fled human rights violations and persecution to start a new life in the United States. In fact, Utica has been deemed “The City that Loves Refugees” by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Such rich history of Utica provides an excellent home for UNSPOKEN.

This year, fifteen films submitted from around the world have been selected to be shown at the festival. The films will be shown on Friday, October 28th, and Saturday, October 29th at Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute and Mohawk Valley Community College in the Schafer Theater located in the Information Technology Building. These films discuss various human rights issues concerning many parts of the world including genocide, homelessness, access to healthcare, women’s rights, LGBT issues, and many others.

UNSPOKEN is more than films and will also include a Provider Training – Refugee Trauma: Culture & Care at the Radisson Hotel -Utica Centre on Thursday, October 27th from 8:00am-12:00pm. Tickets are $15 per participant. There will also be a Firefly Storytelling Session at the Tramontane Cafe from 7:30-9:30pm on Thursday, October 27th that provides the opportunity for community members and guest speakers to share their stories and experiences.

On Friday 28th, there will be a Festival Reception and Silent Auction that will be held at Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute- Fountain Elms. Tickets $30 per attendee. The UNSPOKEN Human Rights Film Festival was founded by Michael Patrei, Peter Vogelaar, and Rick Short in 2011 in order to bring light to culture and human rights issues from around the world to Utica. The film festival provides an opportunity to see these films locally in Utica. It aims to create a space where different voices are heard and to promote understanding of people’s different backgrounds and experiences.

The UNSPOKEN Human Rights Film Festival is produced by the Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees and brought to you in part by Bank of Utica and CNY Arts. Utica’s Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees is a non-profit organization, established in 1981, that provides services to refugees, immigrants, and Limited English Proficient (LEP) individuals. MVRCR’s goal is to help individuals and families achieve independence and self-sufficiency by providing services that allow us to build community with many cultures.

Schedule of Events Thursday, October 27th: 8 a.m.- 12 p.m. Provider Training- Refugee Trauma: Culture & Care at the Radisson Hotel Fee – $15. Registration and continental breakfast begin at 8:00 am Presentations will begin at 9:00 am Registration: http://tinyurl.com/Training-Registration-

UNSPOKEN 7:30 p.m. Firefly Storytelling Session at the Tramontane Cafe Friday, October 28th: Films at Munson-Williams Proctor Arts Institute Tickets: $6 MWPAI Members, $8 General Admission, $4 Students, Free for PrattMWP Students 10 a.m. I’ll Be Home, Voices from Kaw Thoo Lei 12 p.m. Gods behind Mountains 2 p.m. American Heart 4 p.m. The Black Zone, Limpiadores 5:30 p.m. Signs of Humanity 7:30 p.m. American Heart

Films at Mohawk Valley Community College – Schafer Theater Tickets: $5 General Admission, $2 MVCC Employees, Free for MVCC Students 1 p.m. Non Assistance, A Struggle for Home–The Crimean Tatars 4 p.m. Good Girls Don’t Tell, People Like Us, Refugee Kids: One Small School Takes on the World 7 p.m. The Pearl of Africa 5:30 p.m. Festival Reception & Silent Auction to be followed by a showing of “American Heart:

Fountain Elms at Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute Tickets $30 Registration http://tinyurl.com/Reception-Registration-UNSP Saturday, October 29th:

Films at Mohawk Valley Community College – Schafer Theater 1 p.m. Katarina Taikon: The Untold Story of a Freedom Fighter 4 p.m. Women Are the Answer 7 p.m. American Heart

For more information, including film descriptions, visit http://www.iamunspoken.com. For press inquires contact Shelly Callahan at 315-738-1083 or via email at shellyc@mvrcr.org.

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION NEWSLETTER – OCTOBER 23, 2016

October 24, 2016

NEWSLETTER OF THE CENTRAL NEW YORK CITIZENS IN ACTION, INC.
(ESTABLISHED IN 1997)

Now celebrating 19 years of community organizing, the Central New York Citizens in Action invites YOU to be part of a movement for progressive change based on shared social values. We believe in educating, advocating, and legislating for the collective good. Join us!
You can view newsletter on:
https://cnycitizenaction.wordpress.com

 

HEADLINES

WILL YOU FIGHT TO ELECT LOCAL PROGRESSIVE CANDIDATES?

CNYCIA STARTING CITIZEN ACTION OF NEW YORK CHAPTER

CNYCIA PARTICIPATES IN INTERNATIONAL SOCIAL ECONOMY CONFERENCE

OCTOBER IS CO-OP MONTH

PARENTS, EDUCATORS, STUDENTS RALLY IN ALBANY AFTER WALKING 150 MILES FROM NEW YORK CITY TO DEMAND EDUCATION FUNDING

COMMUNITY EVENTS

ARTS AND CULTURE

bernie-sanders-when-we-stand-together-we-win

WILL YOU FIGHT TO ELECT LOCAL PROGRESSIVE CANDIDATES?

As you know we are less than three weeks away from Election Day. Defeating Donald Trump in the presidential election is a top priority for progressives. It is also very important for progressives to do all we can to help win Democrat control of the House so we can enact legislation to help working families.

The Working Families Party is working hard to elect progressives throughout New York State. The race for the Congressional District 22 (Utica, Binghamton) is very tight. We have an opportunity to elect Kim Meyers to Congress so she can stand up for working families. Claudia Tenney, her Republican opponent, is a Tea Party Republican who would support polices favored by Donald Trump. Independent Martin Babinec is a free market conservative who does not care about working people. Both Tenney and Babinec have said they would caucus with House Republicans and support Paul Ryan for Speaker

Kim has been endorsed by progressive unions like CWA, UAW, and 1199 SEIU . She will protect labor rights and stop Republicans from privatizing Social Security and Medicare. Kim will help us continue the political revolution which Bernie Sanders started.

Can you join me to help Kim win? We are looking for canvassers and volunteers to support Kim and other Working Families Party candidates. We need folks to make calls, distribute flyers and posters, and walk the neighborhoods. You can make an important difference in these last days before the election.

Let’s be clear: Defeating Donald Trump is important, but it won’t enough if we cannot pass legislation in the House like raising the minimum wage, or refinancing student loans, or equal pay for equal work.

Thanks for doing your part. Here’s to having a lot to celebrate on Election Day!
Please contact us at 315-725-0974 or uticaromewfp@gmail.com.

kmcwomenshealth

CNYCIA STARTING CITIZEN ACTION OF NEW YORK CHAPTER

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. (CNYCIA) is forming a chapter of Citizen Action of New York to build upon the successful organizing work we have accomplished over the last two decades. The new chapter will enable us to bring new organizing resources and stronger progressive partnerships to Central Bew York. We are inviting to become a dues paying member of both CNYCIA and Citizen Action of New York.

Since 1997, the Central New York Citizens Action, Inc. has been a leader in progressive social change in the Utica, Rome, and the Herkimer area. We have successfully organized around progressive issues, helped to elect and support progressive candidates for public office who are committed to making a difference on these issues, and held elected officials accountable to progressive positions and values. Our success has been in large part due to our strong and effective relationship with Citizen Action of New York.

Citizen Action of New York is a grassroots membership organization taking on big issues that are at the center of transforming society – issues like:
• quality education and after-school programs for all our kids
• guaranteed quality, affordable health care
• public financing of election campaigns
• dismantling racism and promoting racial justice
• a more progressive tax system.

Citizen Action of New York has eight chapters and affiliates in major cities across New York State. Each is a vibrant local organization with local leadership, paid professional organizing staff, a local agenda and an active, diverse membership. Each has developed a strategy, program and structure to meet the organizing and political challenges that most affect their region. At the same time, all share overall goals and a statewide program.

Please join our chapter of Citizen Action of New York so we can become an even more powerful force for democracy and economic fairness. Becoming a chapter will strengthen our ability to fight for community over greed, justice over racism, and people and planet over big corporations. For more information, contact 315-725-0974 or cnycitizenaction@gmail.com. Use this link to join: http://citizenactionny.org/member

cany-news-conf

 

gsef

CNYCIA PARTICIPATES IN INTERNATIONAL SOCIAL ECONOMY CONFERENCE

The Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc. was proud to have participated in the Global Social Economy Forum to learn new ways to revitalize and make more democratic the Central New York economy. GSEF2016 which took place in Montreal from 6th to 9th of September reached its grand finale. Over 1,500 participants from 330 cities, 62 countries, over 200 government officials and 9 international organizations gathered in Montreal to promote the social and solidarity economy in a global scale. The central theme of GSEF2016 was ‘the collaboration between local governments and organizations of the social and solidarity economy (SSE)’ and selected 120 best social economy practices presented along with 11 working groups by different SSE themes. As the outcome of the GSEF2016, the Montreal Declaration; the promise of commitments of 1,500 participants across continents for the development of SSE was adopted. One of the main outcomes of the GSEF2016, the International Centre for Innovation and Knowledge Transfer on the Social and Solidarity Economy (C.I.T.I.E.S) officially launched with the commitments from local governments and SSE networks from the City of Seoul, Montreal, Mondragon, Bilbao and Barcelona. As a close partner institution of GSEF, C.I.T.I.E.S will assist GSEF to achieve its mission by providing various programmes to the GSEF members such as advisory services, study missions, exchange programmes and research projects. A full report of the plenary sessions, workshops and working group discussions will be published soon and will be available. The Central New York Citizens Action Inc. will be organizing a conference in Utica to show how the social, cooperative, and collaborative economy model can help to bring living wage jobs and alleviate poverty in our area.

coop-month

 

OCTOBER IS CO-OP MONTH

The Central New York Citizens in Action Inc. can help local groups organize consumer and worker co-ops. As part of our efforts, we are celebrating October as National Co-op Month. Consider these facts about co-ops:
• There are more than 40,000 cooperative businesses in the United States with 350 million members (many people belong to more than one co-op). These cooperatives generate $514 billion in revenue and more than $25 billion in wages, according to a study conducted by the University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives, with support from USDA Rural Development (http://reic.uwcc.wisc.edu/default.htm).
• Cooperatives represent a strong business model and greatly contribute to both the national and local economies.
• Studies show that consumers want to do business with companies that share their values, making today’s environment ideal for cooperatives and their commitment to the communities in which their members live and work.
• Co-ops don’t have to answer to outside shareholders; they care about meeting their members’ needs.
• Co-ops represent democracy in action, with control exercised by a board of directors elected from the ranks of members; the board hires and directs management and is ultimately responsible to the members;
• Cooperatives generate jobs in their communities, keep profits local and pay local taxes to help support community services. Cooperatives often take part in community improvement programs, ensuring that everyone has an opportunity to benefit from the cooperative experience.
Consumer, housing, and worker co-ops can help to revitalize Central New York, protect the environment, and democratize the economy. Please contact us for more information on starting a co-op.

education-walk

 

PARENTS, EDUCATORS, STUDENTS RALLY IN ALBANY AFTER WALKING 150 MILES FROM NEW YORK CITY TO DEMAND EDUCATION FUNDING
October Marks the 10-Year Anniversary of the CFE Trial, Yet New York State Still Owes Schools $3.9 billion Statewide
Twenty students, parents, educators, elected officials and advocates from across the state arrived in Albany on October 11 as the final stop of a 10-day, 150 mile walk from New York City, where they gathered for a rally outside the New York State Court of Appeals to demand Campaign for Fiscal Equity (CFE) funding. The “Ed Walk for CFE,” which has been endorsed by over one hundred organizations, commemorates the historic school funding case and brings together communities from all across the state to demand the New York legislature finally pay up. The Ed Walkers began their journey on October 2, walking through Manhattan and the Bronx, Yonkers, Ossining, Peekskill, Garrison, Cold Spring, Beacon, Poughkeepsie, Kingston, Saugerties, Catskill, Coxsackie, Ravena, and finally Schenectady for the last part of the walk to the steps of the Court of Appeals in Albany.
Tuesday morning, the Ed Walkers joined the Ed Riders, who have biked 350 miles from Buffalo, at 6:30 AM at Emmanuel Friedens Church in Schenectady to walk the final stretch of the journey to the Courthouse. The Ed Riders made stops in Rochester, Auburn, Syracuse, Rome, Utica, and Herkimer.

The Ed Walkers and Ed Riders gathered on the steps with dozens of other parents, teachers and advocates from communities along their route to demand the $3.9 billion that New York State owes students. The group then walked to the Capitol to deliver invoices to Governor Cuomo for the CFE funding from every school district in the state, demanding the Governor, Senate majority, and Independent Democratic Conference join the Assembly in support of CFE. In 2016, the Assembly put forth a multi-year proposal to fund Foundation Aid in full; the Senate majority proposed funding 20 percent, and the Governor approved just 6 percent.

“I walked because New York is violating the rights of children across the state, and more likely than not, those children are children that look like my own. Black and brown and low-income children across the state are suffering from inadequate educational funding. We’re walking because they matter, the communities we walk through and the children that come out all matter. This walk and our call to fully fund education is a necessity,” said Natasha Capers, a parent that walked the full 150 miles from New York City, and coordinator at the Coalition for Educational Justice.

“We have walked 150 miles not because we wanted to, but because we had to. For 10 days many of us left our children at home, to demand the kind of education that is their right by law. Governor Cuomo, the Senate Republican Majority and the Independent Democratic Conference have to decide now what their education legacy will be. A decade later we are still waiting for them to fulfill the promise of CFE. Black, brown and poor children have waited long enough for the billions owed. It’s time for them to choose our children over politics,” said Zakiyah Ansari, advocacy director of the Alliance for Quality Education, and parent that walked 150 miles from New York City.

“Our children can’t wait another year. The continued failure by the Governor and the Senate Majority maintains the system of racial and economic inequality that plagues our school system. It is unconstitutional and it is past time for New York State to deliver equity in education for our children,” said Robert Jackson, the lead plaintiff in the CFE lawsuit who walked 150 miles.

“We biked across all of New York State, 350 miles, so that we can show the Governor this isn’t just about one child, or one school,” said David Cates, one of the bikers who traveled from Buffalo, and a parent with Citizen Action. “We met parents, students and teachers in every town we passed through saying their students aren’t getting the education and opportunities they deserve. All these people have come to Albany because we believe all New York’s students have a right to those opportunities, no matter where they live.”

“The Alliance for Quality Education’s efforts are less about a walk to Albany and more about parents’ and students’ symbolic expression of the need to march toward providing all students in New York a fair and substantive opportunity to learn – a march and effort that the Schott Foundation for Public Education fully supports,” said Dr. John H. Jackson, President & CEO of the Schott Foundation for Public Education.

“Parents, families and educators across the state continue to be concerned about appropriate levels of support for our students. Despite recent school aid increases, New York students are still owed $3.9 billion under the Campaign for Fiscal Equity lawsuit and settlement,” said Kyle Belokopitsky, executive director of the New York State PTA. “There has never been a more important time for the full funding of our schools, as we work to make every child’s potential a reality. NYS PTA looks forward to working collaboratively with AQE and other educational groups to support every child. “

“Ten years after CFE ended, we are right back where we started: with tens of thousands of children in overcrowded classes of 30 or more; schools having to triage academic intervention services because they can’t afford to help all our children; and teachers and other staff being cut by the thousands. This is more than a ‘systemic failure’ as the CFE court called it then — it is a tragedy and an outrage. Our state leaders know what to do-they have known what to do for 10 years now. It is time to fully fund Foundation Aid and fulfill this state’s CFE promise to all of New York’s children,” said Attorney Wendy Lecker with the Education Law Center.

The Alliance for Quality Education is a coalition mobilizing communities across the state to keep New York true to its promise of ensuring a high quality public education to all students regardless of zip code. Combining its legislative and policy expertise with grassroots organizing, AQE advances proven-to-work strategies that lead to student success and ultimately create a powerful public demand for a high quality education. For more information, please visitaqeny.org.

COMMUNITY EVENTS

 

 

lead-free

PEEL BACK THE LAYERS OF LEAD EXPOSURE, A HAZARDOUS CHALLENGE TO OUR COMMUNITY’S FUTURE.

Join the Lead-Free MV Coalition for a FREE presentation on the definitive history of lead poisoning in our country, featuring David Rosner, PhD, & Gerald Markowitz, PhD, authors of “Lead Wars: The Politics of Science and the Fate of America’s Children.” It will be held Tuesday, October 25 at 4:30 PM – 6 PM at Watson Williams Elementary School, 107 Elmwood Pl, Utica, New York 13501.
Following the presentation, a panel of local lead experts will discuss the impact of lead poisoning in our communities. Visit leadfreemv.org for details and our eventbrite link to register.

DEBATE REMINDER – OCT. 25TH – ONEIDA COUNTY JUDGE
WHAT: Debate – Oneida County Court Judge Position
WHO: Candidates: Michael A. Arcuri (D) & Robert L. Bauer (R)
WHERE: American Legion Post 1376, corner Middle Settlement Rd. & Clinton St. (near Twin Orchards)
WHEN: TUESDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2016
TIME: 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. — FREE ADMISSION! Plenty of parking adjacent to the Legion. Fully accessible.
SPONSOR: League of Women Voters of the Utica/Rome Metro Area
PURPOSE: Your opportunity to meet the two candidates and to witness their responses to questions posed by two panelists and fellow audience members.

HOW CAN WE STOP THE TRUMP EFFECT?
Thursday, October 27 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Syracuse University Hall of Languages, University Pl, Syracuse, NY 13210
With Trump’s campaign swirling down the toilet, it seems all but certain that Hillary Clinton will win the election. But will that quell the “Trump Effect”? Clinton can be relied on to maintain the status quo, but will politics as usual weaken the far right or make it more nasty and bigoted? What will it take to build a fightback against the racism, Islamophobia, misogyny, and immigrant-bashing that Trump’s campaign has brought to the surface?

DAY OF THE DEAD FESTIVAL
Sunday, October 30 at 1 PM – 5 PM
4 Elements Studio
Broadway, Westminster Building, Utica, New York 13502
4 Elements Studio would like to invite everyone to join us for a special holiday, Dia de los Muertos/The Day of the Dead…

Our 3000 year old celebration starts on Sunday, October 30th from 1 to 5 at our studios across from Utica City Hall…Stop by to view our Festive Altar adorned with sugar skulls, marigold flowers, trinkets, gifts, artworks, and other offerings in honor of our visiting spirits… Stroll through our open studio for holiday gifts or your next piece of art for the home…Please feel free to bring a little token or memory of your loved one to add to our Altar.

 

naacp-dinner

FREEDOM FUND DINNER 2016
The Oneida County Chapter of the NAACP is hosting its annual Freedom Fund Dinner on November 6. The event is at the Radisson, in Utica from 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. The keynote speaker is Yusuf Abdul-Qadir, the Director of the CNY Chapter of the NY Civil Liberties Union.
Tickets are $50 per adult, $45 per youth. For more information or to reserve your seat, call Darlene Mack Brown at (315) 733-2069.

ARTS AND CULTURE

 

30-days

Musicians are fighting Trump!! “A playlist of songs that Donald Trump will hate.”
– The Washington Post

Check out 30 Days, 30 Songs, an online compilation album that features a new song by a new artist every day for the final thirty days leading up to the election. I love the band EL VY’s song – “Are These My Jets?” which shows how Trump views reality!
http://www.30days30songs.com/

Michael Moore, The filmmaker and activist, has announced a late-breaking October surprise in the form of Michael Moore in Trumpland, based on his own one-man play. The movie had its world premiere in New York City last Tuesday and will begin its theatrical run this week. We are trying to organize a showing in Utica or Rome.

NEWSLETTER ARTICLES ARE NEEDED
Please submit your articles, news items, and calendar listings to cnyprogaction@gmail.com.

CNY PROGRESSIVE ACTION is published by Central New York Citizens in Action, Inc., P.O. Box 411, Utica, NY 13503-0411 315-725-0974.
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