Weekly E-mail Update 5-8-17

Weekly E-mail Update 5-8-17

“Unless we put medical freedom into the Constitution the time will come when medicine will organize itself into an undercover dictatorship. To restrict the art of healing to doctors and deny equal privileges to others will constitute the Bastille of medical science. All such laws are un-American and despotic.” 

― Benjamin Rush
Founding Father of the United States of America, Signer of the Declaration of Independence, and Physician

If you're anything like your Friendly WeCAN Admins, you found this week's Healthcare news troubling at best. For many of us feelings of anxiety can be magnified because we don't know what next steps we can take in the face of such lunacy. Never fear! WeCAN has a few suggestions for actions you can take to help save or improve health care in our country:

1) Call Your Representative
 You can find your Representative here: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/.
Don't know what to say? Try this: "Hello, I am a constituent of [your representative's name.] I am very worried about efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, which would lead to millions of Americans losing their health insurance or being denied coverage. This is a matter of life and death for millions of Americans, with and without preexisting conditions, and I urge the representative to oppose any repeal of the Affordable Care Act."
Note: If your Representative opposes repealing the ACA (yay!), consider choosing a nearby Right-leaning district and call their Representative's offices as a concerned neighbor. 

2) Talk about your ACA/Healthcare Experiences (If You're Comfortable)
Personal stories connect all of us and those connections can build a stronger, more resilient force for positive change. Keep talking, keep sharing, and (most importantly) keep listening. Public approval for the ACA is at an all time high (55%) and support for a Single-Payer System is growing steadily--we, as a nation, want our friends and neighbors to be insured regardless of preexisting conditions or income. That is a reassuring thought, indeed, that can be built on. 

3) Rally, March, and Protest
It's true: a show of support or of disagreement in large numbers can make an impact. Use resources like WeCAN, Our Revolution, and Facebook Groups to find out if local organizations are holding an event in your area. If you can't find a healthcare related Rally or March close to you consider spearheading one yourself! This Single-Payer Protest Tool-Kit is a great place to start and can be implemented as a Pro-Affordable Care Act resource as well. If you'd like to hold your event in Brattleboro, click here to request a permit for an open-air meeting. It's that easy! 

Do you have ideas on how to support Single-Payer Healthcare or the Affordable Care Act? We'd love to feature your suggestions in an upcoming weekly email! Please send your thoughts to [email protected]. We look forward to hearing from you.


Happening Today May 7th, 2017

Cross Class Dialogue Circle
Sunday, May 7th, May 21st, and June 4th, 2017 (participation all 3 days is required) at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 9am-3pm.
Childcare and transportation available, light refreshments provided, and wheelchair accessible. This event is fragrance free.
The dialogue circle is funded through a cost-sharing process. 
Cross-class dialogue circles are a powerful way for people across the class spectrum to come together to talk about their experiences with class, listen to each others’ stories and perspectives, better understand class as part of an economic system, and then to work together as change makers for economic justice. Sign-up today!



The Putney Huddle
Sunday, May 7th, 2017 at the Putney Public Library (55 Main St, Putney, VT 05346). 1:30pm-3:30pm. 


1:30pm-2:00pm The steering committee will share.  
2:00pm-2:30pm Faisal Gill, the chair for the Vermont Democratic party will speak and take questions. 
2:30pm-3:30pm Sister District leaders will hold an info and brainstorming session.

Please use our Facebook Event page to RSVP: 
https://www.facebook.com/events/1868928896683659/?ti=cl or email Laura at [email protected].


Care Bags for the Homeless
Sponsored by the Brattleboro Love Project
Sunday, May 7th at 3:30pm at the Putney Library (55 Main St, Putney, VT 05346)

Join us at 3:30 pm at the Putney Library with the Putney Huddle to assemble care bags for the homeless! List of needed supplies below, or contact us to donate!

We have decided to embark on another project, this time to help the homeless population in town. In partnership with the Putney Huddle, we will be assembling baggies filled with greatly needed food and toiletry items. Suggested items include: peanut butter cracker packages, mints, clementines, applesauce, granola bars, mini shampoos, body wash, sunblock, sanitary napkins, condoms, etc. Along with these items, we welcome handwritten cards, notes, or drawings to put inside the baggies as a symbol of love and support.

We hope this project will directly help our neighbors in need. Want to help out and join the project? Grab a freezer-sized plastic zip bag and fill with items! You can either keep them in your car for when you see someone in need, or you can donate items to us so we can continue to help our community. 



Climate Change Café: A Community of Concerned Citizens 
SOS: Secret of the Seasons
(The Original Global Climate Change Co-Opera)
co-sponsored by Post Oil Solutions and Green Up SIT 
Sunday, May 7th, 2017 at the Brooks Memorial Library  (224 Main St, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in the Main Room. 5:30pm. Free. Light refreshments available.

Based on songs written by SIT Professor John Ungerleider and Bill Conley, the SOS co-opera is a reflective, participatory musical journey that engages the audience with the external and internal challenges that global climate change is bringing to our lives. 
Audience dialogue between thought provoking songs is designed to move participants from Fear and Denial to Hope and Action in response to the threat of global warming.
The title song asks about the local impact of climate change:  “Will it still feel like my home, when the leaves don’t turn to red and gold, and the ice doesn’t cover the fishin’ hole?” 
More more information please call 802.869.2141 or email [email protected].



Weekly Update Monday May 8th, 2017-Sunday May 14th, 2017

Black Lives Matter VT Organizing Meeting
Monday, May 8th, 2017 at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 6pm-8pm.


A Study Group
sponsored by Brattleboro Solidarity
Tuesdays, May 9th, 16th, 23rd, and 30th, 2017 at Flat Iron Cafe (51 Square, Bellows Falls, VT, 05101). 5pm-7:30pm. Bread and soup will be served. We are asking people to commit to all of the dates listed. Readings will be sent ahead of time. Free and open to the public. 
The social construction of "race" as a way to divide people is as old as the founding of the United States. Today we are seeing an escalation of ICE raids, escalation of wars, police killings and white supremacist attacks on people of color that are directly related to the construction of whiteness. It is imperative  we continue to expand our knowledge of the history of race in this country in order to fight the supremacy in our society. Brattleboro Solidarity will be hosting a study group to expand our understanding of the  historical divisions along race and class lines in the U.S as a tool for economic exploitation.
Please sign-up by contacting [email protected] or calling 802-380-1463. Visit our Facebook Event and help spread the word. 


Women’s Action Team Meeting
Tuesday, May 9th, 2017 at the Winston Prouty School (209 Austine Drive, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) on the top floor of Holton Hall. 5pm.
Calling all flavors of women! What are you fired up about this month? Maybe you want to call Senator Sanders and let him know how important reproductive rights are to you [(802)-862-1505], or maybe you want to fundraise so all women have access to abortion, or support low-income moms by providing access to kids' clothing, or write legislation, or drop banners, or make films. We want to do that stuff, too! 
If you have ideas for actions, email us here at [email protected], so we can get them on the agenda.
Check out our Facebook event here.


Vermont Workers’ Center Organizing Committee
Tuesday, May 9th, 2017 at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). First Floor. 6pm-8pm. Doors open at 4:45pm. 
Organizing for healthcare justice and workers’ rights in Vermont. If you are concerned about what is happening with healthcare and how it will affect you and your family, join us in becoming part of the solution. 
For more information please email [email protected] or call 802-257-4336.


UE Local 274 Picket Line at Kennametal 
Thursday, May 11th, 2017 at Kennamental (34 Sanderson Street, Greenfield, MA). 2 p.m.

Stand with UE Local 274 to picket Kennametal. 
The company wants:
 *to implement a two-tier wage system where newer hires make less than senior employees. This incentivizes hiring new employees over keeping current staff.
 *to increase medical deductions by over $100 per week
 *to stop paying their $500 medical contribution
Stand up against corporate greed! Picket Kennametal!


Black Lives Matter VT Fundraiser & Membership Drive
Thursday, May 11th, 2017 at The Lounge (4 High St, Brattleboro, VT 05301.) 5pm-8pm.
Games, prizes, BLM T-shirts, posters, stickers, buttons and more for sale.


RAD Movement Politics Webinar Watch Party! 
Thursday, May 11th, 2017 at Oak Meadow School (132 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) on the 2nd Floor of the Brooks House, Upstairs from Duo. 6:15pm-7:30pm.  

Consider your Thursday plans made!  Grab a drink at Duo to support Black Lives Matters and then head upstairs to the Oak Meadow School to learn about "Movement Politics" and how to get involved.
The movement that Bernie inspired across the country must continue to organize not only around issues, and not only in reaction to Trump's attacks. We must organize to build the necessary power to make our values reflected in our policies.
If we are serious about building power and affecting change we must have an electoral strategy, at all levels, building and training our members to run for office. 
Come join the Brattleboro Rights and Democracy (RAD) group to watch RAD's webinar on 'Movement Politics" together. This will be a first step to get more informed about how we can work together locally on movement politics and will be followed up with more local discussion and planning during our next RAD meeting on May 25th. 

Hope to see many of you there!

If you're unable to join us for the watch party, you can join in on the webinar from home as well. Just complete the registration form to receive a link and instructions on how to join on the day. You can participate from anywhere with an internet connection -- so register today!

REGISTER AT http://www.radvt.org/_5_11_movement_politics_webinar


6:15pm - Welcome
6:30pm-6:40pm - Laurel Wales (Deputy Director of Movement Politics with People’s Action)
“Bringing the movement into elections - How we build a transformative campaigns and build power for the 99% 
6:40pm-6:45pm - Phil Fiermonte (State Director, Office of Senator Bernie Sanders)
“The importance of running for office on a bold platform at all levels”
6:45pm-6:55pm - David Zuckerman (Lt. Governor of Vermont)
“How to run for office, and govern, like a community organizer”
6:55pm-7:00pm - Selene Colburn (Progressive Burlington City Councilor and State Representative)
“Running for local v. statewide office, the role of a 3rd party in pushing for change”
7:00pm-7:05pm - Kiah Morris VT State Representative (Democratic Bennington State Representative)
“Vermont’s progressive reputation v. the reality, the role of Democrats in pushing for change”
7:05pm-7:10pm - Debbie Ingram (Chittenden County Senator/Vermont Interfaith Action Director)
“Legislating and organizing for a moral economy”
7:10pm-7:13pm - Alison Nihart (RAD members/Mari Cordes’ campaign managers)
“Supporting a local progressive race as a volunteer campaign manager”
7:13pm-7:18pm - Isaac Grimm (Political Engagement Director with Rights & Democracy)
“Connecting our national movement to the local, upcoming trainings and key events”
7:18pm-7:30pm - Questions from participants



Teaming with Microbes Seminar
Monday, May 15th, 2017- May 16th, 2017 at Lake Morey Resort (1 Clubhouse Rd, Fairlee, VT, 05045).
Eventbrite Link: 

New Zealand Agro-ecologist Nicole Masters is on a teaching tour throughout the US and Canada this Spring and we are lucky to have her for two full days in Vermont.

Its all about your underground livestock!

Farmers, gardeners, environmental policy makers, and conservation folks: take your understanding to the next level, with this dynamic soil class, taught byNicole Masters from Integrity Soils and Didi Pershouse from the Soil Carbon Coalition. Learn practical tools and concepts to maximize nutrient cycling whilst lifting soil, plant and/or animal performance. Learn soil's important role in climate resilience and public health.

We will spend the first day overlooking the beautiful Lake Morey, (swimming anyone?) and the second day getting our hands in the soil in a variety of settings to see these principles in action.


Day 1: The Hidden Life of Soils
•Deepen your understanding of soil health and soil microbes
•The vital role of soil microbes in building farm and climate resilience
•What do microbe groups do in the soil?
•How can you feed the good guys?
•Learn how to make a lacto-bacillus serum for your farm

Day 2: Field Day
•Visual assessments for health in a variety of management settings
•Keys that biologically mediated water, carbon and nitrogen cycles are working optimally.
•Learn how to "read your weeds" and take actions to reduce pressure from weeds.
•How to track changes and share successes in soil health with an open-source map databasehttps://atlasbiowork.com/

Cost $225. A wonderful warm lunch buffet is included on the first day. Spaces are limited.

It is strongly recommended to come for both days, but you may sign up for just one. (Day one alone is $165, Day two is $75.)

You can save us some hefty ticket fees by reserving through the mail. Send an email to[email protected] to let us know you are coming and then send a check directly to Didi Pershouse, PO Box 277, Thetford Center, VT 05075, Please note that your space is not reserved until we receive payment.

Some scholarships may be available: Email [email protected] with a couple of sentences about your situation and how much you can afford to pay. We will let you know as funds become available.

We will have a few spaces available for sponsors/vendors to set up tables on Monday.

For questions, or to reserve a table as a sponsor/vendor, contact Didi at [email protected]and/or Taylor at [email protected]
For rooms at Lake Morey Resort call 800-423-1211, or email: [email protected]

About the Presenters:

Nicole Masters is an agro-ecologist, educator and systems thinker with over 18 years’ extensive practical and theoretical experience in regenerative/holistic farming practices. She has been communicating these methods throughout Australasia and North America since 2003; helping to inspire and guide farmers in innovative ways to produce food.

Nicole has a commitment to finding win-win solutions for the wellbeing of landscapes and landmanagers. She has a proven record in supporting producers in meeting their goals through a holistic approach to soil and pasture management. As a seasoned consultant, Nicole excels at identifying and solving challenges through proactive management. Her passion for fostering the growth of these farming practices calls upon her skills in facilitation, conflict resolution, an understanding of behavioural change and science communication.

Didi Pershouse is a cross-pollinator, helping to connect the dots between soil health and human health. She is the author of The Ecology of Care: Medicine, Agriculture, Money, and the Quiet Power of Human and Microbial Communities. As the founder of the Center for Sustainable Medicine, she developed a practice and theoretical framework for systems-based ecological medicine—restoring health to people as well as the social and ecological systems around them. 

After 22 years of clinical work with patients, she is now working with the Soil Carbon Coalition on a large-scale citizen-science program that engages schools, conservation districts, farmers, and the public in understanding the intersections between soil, water, public health, and climate resiliency. She teaches workshops and develops learning resources on whole systems landscape function—in particular how to measure, understand, and work with the carbon and water cycles that make life on this planet possible. Her work models strategies to build resilient networks of mutual listening, learning, self-care, and support as a way to drive environmental and social change.


Planned Parenthood Volunteer Training and Organizing 
Sunday, May 21st, 2017. Time and place TBD.

Become an official Planned Parenthood Volunteer and help organize efforts to:  
1.) Relocate and expand services of the Brattleboro clinic 
2.) Influence public policy regarding reproductive health care 
3.) Increase community & patient awareness of PP services

Training provided by Planned Parenthood of Northern New England. Contact Lisa Ford for more information at [email protected].


Community in Action 

sponsored by SEVCA (Southeastern Vermont Community Action)
Thursday, May 25th, 2017 at the Fraternal Order of Eagles (54 Chickering Dr, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 5pm-8pm. 



Rising with Roots: Courage, Conviction, and Community in this Beautiful, Teetering Time
a Joanna Macy inspired retreat
Friday, June 2nd, 2017 - Wednesday, June 7th, 2017 at Hallelujah Farm (98-42 Bradley Rd, Chesterfield, NH, 03443). Registration due by May 1st, 2017. Cost varies and is on a sliding scale: Please click here for more information or to register

Sign-ups now open for Joanna Macy-inspired retreat in June. Facilitated by Kirstin Edelglass and colleagues. Scholarships available for young adults (ages 18-30) who want to be part of the fourth Earth Leadership Cohort. That cohort will begin by participating in this multi-generational "Rising with Roots" retreat and then have additional trainings in facilitating the Work That Reconnects. For more information please visit http://interhelpnetwork.org/elcivprogamdescription-docx




350Brattleboro Regular Meetings
1st and 3rd Wednesdays (Leadership Team) in the Brattleboro Food Co-op Community Room (1 Canal Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 6pm-8pm.



BrattleMasters Meeting
Thursday, May 11th, 2017 at the Brattleboro Food Co-Op (2 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in the Community Room. 6pm.
Please use the Canal Street entrance.

BrattleMasters, the local Toastmasters club, will hold their next meeting on May 11th, 2017 and the Toastmaster of the evening will be Lee Tice. The theme of the meeting is "Responding to Change". The public is welcome and encouraged to attend, and is invited to participate in the extemporaneous speaking exercises. There will also be prepared speeches, evaluations, and reports by members.
Since 1924, Toastmasters International has helped people from diverse backgrounds become more confident speakers, communicators, and leaders. For information about the local Toastmasters club, please visit http://brattleboro.toastmastersclubs.org

Thank you, as always, for showing up this week and every week to events around the county. 

You are an inspiration to all of us and we couldn't do this without you:) 

Have beautiful week! 


Your Friendly WeCAN Admins,

Ann and Joanna