A quick pitch before we get into updates on our work from the past two months. Our Winter fundraising drive ends this Wednesday, December 7. We’ve raised over $31,000 from 445 donors so far (that’s already more donors than we’ve ever had during a drive). Thank you if you’ve already contributed. If you haven’t donated yet, can you donate now to help us get to 500 donors?
Don’t Mourn, Organize!
The national picture, and the context for our local work, has shifted dramatically in the last month. While we need to maintain our long-term vision even in the face of short term adversity, we are preparing for shifts in our work that can both defend those most vulnerable in this moment and also strategically build power for long-term change. Stay tuned for more information in January.
Fighting For Educational Justice
Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson has been working closely with parents, students, and teachers who are fighting to close the PACE program in Poughkeepsie.
The PACE (“Poughkeepsie Academic and Career Excellence”) program represents the worst of educational apartheid: separating out “problem” students into a decrepit building, without enough teachers, without grade-appropriate books, and with a growing law enforcement presence leading to increasing arrests of students.
As parents, students, and teachers have spoken out, we have helped them form PASS: Parents and Advocates Supporting Students. PASS has been speaking out at school board meetings, doing political training, and developing a campaign to close PACE and fight for equal education for all. You can read more about the issues with PACE in the Poughkeepsie Journal:
Building the Energy Justice Movement
The New York State Energy Democracy Alliance
Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson is on the Steering Committee of the New York Democracy Alliance (EDA) — a growing coalition of 17 organizations working for energy justice in the state. We recently helped the EDA hire its first staff person, and in October we were part of the EDA’s end-of-the-year retreat to create its plan for 2017.
Climate Justice in the Bronx
On November 15 we joined our allies the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition (NWBCCC), which works with individual and institutional members to win concrete victories that improve material conditions for Bronx community members, for NWBCCC’s climate justice retreat for faith leaders. We shared the story of our fight against Central Hudson Gas & Electric with the present clergy and discussed how Con Edison is fraudulently taking advantage of consumers who fall behind on their bills in New York City.
The National Movement
At the end of October our organizer Spencer Resnick was part of a panel on utilities justice in Providence, Rhode Island. Other groups on the panel were the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization, the Right to the City Alliance, the Public Utility Law Project, the Rhode Island Center for Justice, and the George Wiley Center. The panel made connections between water and energy utility shutoffs and discussed the interconnection between organizing and legal advocacy.
Have a happy holiday season!