-Groundworks Collaborative via Facebook
We wish to extend our deepest condolences to the entire Groundworks family and are sending love to all who need it. Our hearts are heavy with such a tremendous and senselessly tragic loss, but we are eternally grateful to the "helpers" amongst us who have allowed so many to heal when it is most needed by absorbing the workload. We hope to see many of you this Sunday afternoon at a Community Vigil for the Groundworks community on the Brattleboro Commons, starting at 2pm.
Paid Opportunity: Hair Specialists Wanted!
The Root Social Justice Center is set to host a BIPOC hair clinic in May and we are still searching for people to join our team of our hair specialists for this paid opportunity.
Please share and if interested complete the form below.
SUNDAY, APRIL 16th, 2023
Community Healing Vigil: Holding Space for the Groundworks Community
Sunday, April 16th, 2023 on the Brattleboro Town Common (intersection of Rt 30 and Rt 5 in Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 2pm.
With speakers Congresswoman Becca Balint, Rev. Lise Sparrow, Kheya Ganguly (VT Director of Trauma, Prevention, and Resiliency), Jenny Samuelson (Secretary, VT Agency of Human Services), John Potter (Brattleboro Town Manager), and Ian Goodenough (Town Selectboard Chair). Please come...and share about this opportunity to come together after the horrific tragedy at the Morningside Center of Groundworks.
"Success is not the absence of failure; it is the persistence through failure."
-Aisha Tyler (b.1970)
American actress, comedian, director, talk show host, and LGBTQIA2S+ advocate
Unfortunately, this intro will have to be quick as we are having significant issues with our emailing platform NationBuilder: namely, saving our work in real time. If there are any mistakes or typos in this week's email, please send us a note at [email protected] and we will attempt to fix it for next week's newsletter. Thank you for your patience while we ask the NationBuilder tech team to create us a repair ticket, yet again. Cross your fingers their "fix" works this time!
SUNDAY, APRIL 2nd, 2023
Milk with Dignity Organizing Tour
Sunday, April 2nd, 2023 at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 4pm.
Immigrant dairy workers are traveling across the northeast this spring to connect with supporters and take action for Milk with Dignity! Farmworker organization Migrant Justice is calling on grocery chain Hannaford supermarkets to source its store-brand milk from farms where workers' human rights are independently monitored and protected, and the long-term interests of farm owners are supported. Join us to learn more about the rampant abuses that workers face on dairy farms and the powerful organizing they are doing to improve conditions and protect their rights. During this organizing meeting, you will hear directly from farmworkers, learn about the Milk with Dignity Program, take collective action, and gain the tools you need to join this inspiring struggle for human rights.
-Lost River Racial Justice
"There is no justifiable reason why our electricity, heating and cooling and transportation needs aren't powered by 100 percent renewable energy."
-Secretary Deb Haaland
American politician serving as the 54th United States Secretary of the Interior. A member of the Democratic Party, she served as chair of the New Mexico Democratic Party from 2015 to 2017 and as the U.S. representative for New Mexico's 1st congressional district from 2019 to 2021. United States Secretary of the Interior since 2021.
We sincerely appreciate your kind words of support these last couple of weeks, dear WeCAN community, while we struggled with website and electricity issues that prohibited us from getting the Weekly Email Update out to you. Thank you for your patience --we are back, this week, and have more than a few new entries. Take a look at what's going on in Windham County and make a plan to get involved. There's no time like the present to use your unique talents to support justice groups in our area.
HAPPENING THIS WEEK:
MONDAY MARCH 27th, 2023-SUNDAY, APRIL 2nd, 2023
Air Fryer: Prep Cook Enjoy!
Monday, March 27th, 2023 at Brooks Memorial Library (224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301), in the Community Room. 5pm-7pm.
Register to reserve your space: [email protected]
A FREE vegan cooking class.
Join us for a fun and interactive Air Fryer Class! For this class, we will learn how to use an air fryer and what to use it for, while we prepare a vegan meal together! We will use the air fryer to prepare savory chickpeas to top a simple salad with homemade dressing and hearty root vegetables. Then we will round out the meal with "nice cream" for dessert!
"Shouting down and intimidating someone from speaking their mind is not exactly a Vermont town meeting value, nor should it be an American town meeting value."
A reminder, from our own Senator Bernie Sanders, I-VT
Happy Town Meeting Day to one and all! This Tuesday, March 7th, 2023, is Vermont's official Town Meeting Day (though dates may vary across the state) and we encourage you to take part in this year's elections and discourse--there has never been a better time than the present to be present and get involved.
If you need more information, please go to any of the sites listed below, in the entry marked "Town Meeting Day". If you have the means, please consider offering rides to polling stations to friends and family, neighbors and coworkers. If you are in need of a ride, please ask your community for assistance! Facebook groups and Front Porch Forum are good places to start and you are always welcome to email us here at WeCAN at [email protected] for assistance.
Now, there's LOTS to get to this week--so grab your calendar and let's get planning. We'll see you at an event or meeting soon!
Reminders: Group leaders and organizational reps: please continue to send in your Spring events to [email protected]. We are happy to post your events through May right now. We are also actively taking suggestions for "1 Minute Actions" and "5 Minute Actions" that are meant to invoke movement and solidarity among our community members. Any group can submit an action, but it must be for the benefit of a large amount of people with relatively little effort and resources.
We would also like to remind our readers that the Editors of WeCAN do not necessarily agree or endorse the meetings or events that are posted in these weekly newsletters. We are an informational hub and try to be fair and balanced, while focusing on justice in Windham County and those who are marginalized within VT. If you have an issue with a group or post, please contact them directly. WeCAN will not respond to emails or comments that are meant to be divisive and inflammatory. Thank you.
Action Items from Lean Left Vermont
All Eyes on Wisconsin:
Contact Lean Left for more information and/or technical support
GOTV with Center for Common Ground/Reclaim Our Vote
We’re calling Black voters in Wisconsin with important election information about the April 4th Wisconsin Supreme Court election. There are several ways to call:
Join a National Guided Phone Bank every Tuesday 6 to 8 pm ET.
Sign up for a phone bank event hosted by an ROV partner.
Call on your own every day between 10 am and 8 pm.
Learn more and sign up to make calls HERE.
Voter Protection Calls
Help recruit poll observers for the state Supreme Court election in April. Poll observers are the eyes and ears at polling locations, and Wisconsin needs our help to recruit them so that voters can safely and easily cast their ballots this spring. These are some of the easiest and most rewarding calls you can make! All you need is your phone and a computer (laptop or desktop, not a tablet). Organizers offer training and provide the script at every phonebank on Zoom! You will receive a Zoom link in the confirmation email. Sign up HERE (NOTE: all times are Central time).
We are writing to Wisconsin voters with Reclaim Our Vote/Center for Common Ground. All the details of this drive—including how to sign up to receive addresses, messaging, and more— can be found here.
SUNDAY, MARCH 5th, 2023
Can We Trust the People When It Comes to Reproductive Rights?
presented by Meg Mott, Constitution Wrangler and UVM’s Brattleboro Area Osher Lifelong Learning Institute-OLLI
Sunday, March 5th, 2023
Sunday, March 12th, 2023
Sunday, March 19th, 2023 at Next State Arts Project (15 Kimball Hill, Putney, VT). 2pm-4pm.
Directions: Next Stage is located at 15 Kimball Hill Road* in the village center in Putney, VT, directly across the street from the Putney General Store; 15 minutes north of Brattleboro, just off Exit 4 of Interstate 91. From the exit, follow the signs for the village, proceeding north on Route 5 (Main Street) until you see the Putney General Store. You may park on Main Street, and there is ample free parking located just north of the Putney General Store in the Basketville/Putney Mountain Winery lot.**
*GPS USERS BEWARE: If you are using GPS to get to 15 Kimball Hill Rd., Putney, be aware that some units may erroneously direct you to another village. To avoid this, you may wish to use 133 Main Street, Putney, VT as your GPS destination. **Please refrain from parking in front of the Putney General Store or in The Gleanery Restaurant parking lot as these parking spaces are needed for their patrons.**
NEW REGISTRATION PROCESS! We can no longer take any payments at the door/onsite. All attendees/members must pre-register prior to the start of the program.
Semester Membership: Sign up as a member and attend the full 3-part series for $20! Individual lecture fee is $8 each.
To register, visit learn.uvm.edu/OLLI/brattleboro and click on the “REGISTER NOW” button and you will be brought to our online system where you can register using your credit card for the semester membership ($20) or for individual lecture(s) ($8 each).
Prefer to pay over the phone? Just call our UVMOLLI office at 802-656-5817 during regular business hours to register with your credit card.
QUESTIONS: For questions about the program or Brattleboro Area Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, please call Ruby McAdoo at 802-387-5593, or e-mail [email protected]
This 3-part course examines the history and strategy of securing reproductive rights in the United States. If the Courts can’t resolve the abortion issue, maybe the People can do a better job. With the Dobbs decision, the Supreme Court passed the baton back to the states. Surely, a democratic society can reach a better decision than one imposed by the Courts. But are we ready? This series considers the judicial history of reproductive rights, the best arguments on both sides, and the work we need to do to govern ourselves in a pluralist society.
Sunday, March 5, 2023: The Supreme Court’s role in reproductive freedom
The rulings in Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey may have delivered victories to the pro-choice movement but the decisions themselves galvanized the opposition. We’ll consider the pros and cons of using the federal courts to enact progressive legislation and what 50 years of judicial rule did to our democratic muscles.
Sunday, March 12, 2023: What are the People saying about abortion?
The Supreme Court tried to resolve the abortion debate using novel constitutional reasoning. On the streets, the political arguments were couched in terms like “freedom” and “murder.” In between those two realms, a lot of people were thinking hard about abortion policy. We’ll consider the best arguments on both sides from the perspectives of libertarians, progressives, and conservatives (Yes, that will include prolife progressive arguments and prochoice conservative arguments.)
Sunday, March 19, 2023: What Do We Need to Deliberate Well?
For this final presentation, we’ll consider two case studies. The first from Boston, circa 1990, when women on both sides of the abortion debate met to build trust after the assassinations at two abortion clinics. The second from Ireland where a predominantly Catholic country legalized abortion through citizen assemblies. We will consider what these two cases tell us about the capacities needed to co-exist vigorously.
Presenter Information: After twenty years of teaching political theory and constitutional law to undergraduates at Marlboro College, Meg Mott has taken her love of argument to the general public. Her award-winning series Debating Our Rights on the first ten amendments brings civil discussions on contentious issues to public libraries and colleges. Meg’s mission (found on www.megmott.com) states that “(a)ll of our most contentious politics eventually end up before the Supreme Court. Whether it is abortion, gun control, capital punishment, gay marriage, or the rights of corporations, the debate is eventually framed using explicit passages and implicit principles from the Constitution. My goal is to teach ordinary citizens how to think through the various constitutional issues in a specific controversy.”
Health & Safety: UVM sponsored non-credit functions/activities/offerings, whether held at UVM or at a non-UVM facility or location, are governed by the same health and safety policies. As such, UVM expects event participants, visitors and guests will be vaccinated. Masks are optional and welcomed. If the event is taking place at a non-UVM venue, consideration must be given to the requirements of the host site and the more stringent requirements will apply.
In case of inclement weather, please listen to 96.7 WTSA-FM or consult www.wtsa.net, or visit our Facebook page (Brattleboro Area Osher Lifelong Learning Institute-OLLI).
Community Conversation with Brattleboro State Representatives
Saturday, March 5th, 2023 at Brooks Memorial Library (224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 6pm-7:15pm.
Representatives Emilie Kornheiser, Mollie Burke, and Tristan Toleno, along with State Senators Wendy Harrison and Nader Hashim, discuss legislative opportunities and community priorities. All are welcome to come join the conversation.