Full disclosure… This is going to be a long e-newsletter for an even longer month. In March, we made big progress on both our utility affordability work and our immigration justice work. We took action on three levels — municipal, statewide, and federal. And we won an incredible award too. We hope you’ll read about all of it below!
Accepting the Frederick Douglass Award
We are so proud to be accepting the North Star Fund’s Frederick Douglass Award. This incredible foundation honors two grassroots groups whose organizing has led to “significant victories on the front lines of social justice” with this award at their Community Gala each year. And this year, we’ll be the first organization based in the Hudson Valley to be honored with it!
We hope you’ll consider joining us at their Community Gala on April 17th. You can learn more about the event and purchase tickets here.
Moving Municipal IDs forward
Cities across the country, from New York City to Los Angeles, are implementing Municipal IDs as a way to give an official form of identification to undocumented immigrants and other communities who have difficulty accessing driver’s licenses. Without a form of government-sanctioned identification, any interaction with the police can turn into jail time or deportation, picking your children up from school can be difficult, and especially in this political climate, everyday activities can become frightening.
We have been working to pass Municipal IDs in Middletown, Newburgh, Poughkeepsie, and Kingston as a way to protect undocumented immigrants from deportation and improve access to critical services.
On Tuesday, we will take an important step to move our Municipal ID campaign forward. The Middletown City Council is meeting to discuss Municipal IDs on Tuesday, April 3rd at 7pm, and we are working to get as many people there as possible to show how much support this ordinance has — and we want to see you there!
The Municipal ID campaign is also a way to build the people power we need to win driver’s licenses for all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status. It’s going to take a lot of time, and even more people, to win that statewide legislation. Winning Municipal IDs is a way of building up our capacity for this larger-scale change while also winning material improvements to people’s lives along the way.
On March 15th, we helped organize over 300 calls to New York Assemblyman Marcos Crespo, the lead sponsor on the bill, to thank him for his support and ask him how we can accelerate the process of getting a bill number. We look forward to keeping you up to date on this campaign!
Fighting for a #DreamActNow
We organized a rally to demand a #DreamActNow outside of Congressman John Faso’s Kingston office this month as part of a nationwide mobilization calling for protections for Dreamers without attached funding for a senseless border wall or out-of-control immigration enforcement. You can read more about the action here.
One week later, Callie Mackenzie Jayne of Rise Up Kingston, who helped organize the rally, was charged with trespassing for having stood alongside us.
Almost 100 of us showed up to her first hearing, and we more than packed the court — we spilled out of it — to send a message that we will not be silenced. Our members will not be forced back into the shadows. We will continue to fight for Dreamers and undocumented immigrants. We will continue to fight for Black and Brown communities targeted by the police. We will continue to fight until we are all free.
Come with us to Albany to fight for renewable and affordable energy!
In a time of record-shattering hurricanes, with our federal government bought and sold by the fossil fuel industry, states like New York must lead fight against climate change. But for all his talk, Governor Cuomo is taking too little action.
That’s why on April 23rd, Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson and New Yorkers from across the state are descending on Albany to tell Governor Cuomo to walk the talk on climate by stopping all fracking infrastructure, moving New York to 100% renewable energy, and making corporate polluters pay.
Join us on the bus to Albany! We’ll be leaving from Kingston, so RSVP here.