Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, June 22, 2020

black_lives_matter.jpgProgressive Maryland continues its work to humanize the state response and demand that working families don’t get sacrificed to the needs of the ownership class—or to “justice” gone bad.

We are fighting for transformational change in policing, for decarceration, for better state government response to the needs of the state’s over 20 percent unemployed, and for relief for the many who can’t afford to meet rent or mortgage payments to the few. Plus complete details on our huge Justice Task Force launch call last Thursday, reports from our increasingly active chapters around the state, and our recent blog posts. And see late-breaking updates on preserving our victory in the Fight for $15 and our Health Care Task Force meeting Thursday, June 25. Read on in the Memo.



 

Progressive Maryland continues its work to humanize the state response and demand that working families don’t get sacrificed to the needs of the ownership class—or to “justice” gone bad.

We are fighting for transformational change in policing, for decarceration, for better state government response to the needs of the state’s over 20 percent unemployed, and for relief for the many who can’t afford to meet rent or mortgage payments to the few. Plus complete details on our huge Justice Task Force launch call last Thursday, reports from our increasingly active chapters around the state, and our recent blog posts. Read on in the Memo.

  

SOLIDARITY WITH THE MOVEMENT FOR BLACK LIVES

 “As a racial, social, economic and environmental justice organization, Progressive Maryland has a responsibility to our Black members and supporters to loudly speak out against anti-Blackness and affirm our support in the Movement for Black Lives,” said Progressive Maryland Executive Director Larry Stafford in a recentblack_lives_matter.jpg release. Read more about the principles that Progressive Maryland shares with the Movement for Black Lives in the full release here https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Kq4xfBnWKgVfKEF444lsPUYywFSSkRVpCgOJaaMusuE/

 

Our statewide call to launch our Justice Task Force last Thursday had over 400 participants who heard from Del. Gabe Acevero and M4BL’s Maurice Mitchell. And the participants chimed in, big-time. Read the post-event release and viewer feedback and view the whole live-stream, all here.

Our Health Care Task Force meets this Thursday, June 25 at 5:30. Please join us for a timely conversation about health and racial justice.   RSVP for the virtual meeting here.   

 

Housing Justice

Local city and county councils are acting on the need for renter aid and protection. In Salisbury, the City Council passed an ordinance drafted by Mayor Jake Day that bars rent increases during the COVID state of emergency and authorizes the Mayor to issue executive orders as are necessary to protect tenants from abuse.

In Anne Arundel County, a Renter’s Emergency Relief bill is being re-drafted and should be introduced soon. Stay tuned for updates.

Baltimore City, Howard, Anne Arundel, Montgomery and Prince Georges Counties have all enacted aid programs and/or limits on rent increases. Baltimore County has just launched a program that is a start to providing financial assistance to folks who are struggling to pay monthly and back rent. Check your county’s website or speak to your Council members to learn more about what your county or city is doing.                                      

We continue to push for more Federal action, especially in the U.S. Senate and particularly as it relates to extending health care coverage to everyone in our country who needs it, boosting economic and housing aid to individuals and states, and allocating the level of funding states will need to support a mail-in voting system for the general election.

We’ve also been monitoring the potential move, pitched by Gov. Hogan, from the Board of Public Works to freeze the minimum wage. This is not the time to freeze the wages of folks who spend their paychecks in the local economy and are relying on this increase to help power their family budgets. The next bump in the minimum wage (which is on its way to $15) should not be taken away from essential employees and workers who will help us re-open our economy in the coming weeks.  Please sign the petition:

 https://secure.everyaction.com/z_wCd8VTv0-esXy6U4dV5w2

 

coronavirus_image.jpgState COVID-19 Calls transition to Local and Task Force Calls

We appreciate the scores of folks who joined us for some important and moving statewide COVID response zoom calls in April and May. We will be back later in the summer with another statewide general membership call AND in the meantime our members can stay active in our organizing work by joining a local chapter or an issue task force. Please check the updates from our local organizers in this memo to learn more.  Our issue task forces will start meeting regularly, including this Thursday, June 18, when the Justice Task Force (see top entry) has an important call and next Thursday June 25 when our Health Care Task Force will convene. Read more about our statewide agenda calls in this recent blog post Statewide calls build menu of progressive issues to advance working families’ interests

                   

  • Sign up for our weekly memo. You can also submit a blog post for the memo by contacting Woody at woodlanham@gmail.com. We are very interested in collecting stories about the impact of COVID-19 on individuals, workers and families. Get our weekly updates here. 

 

  • Hear more about Progressive Maryland’s statewide organizing efforts related to the consequences of the pandemic. Email Patty Snee at patty@progressivemaryland.org.

PROGRESSIVE MARYLAND – OUR CHAPTERS AROUND THE STATE

Progressive Prince George’s 

Progressive Prince George's Chapter Meeting: Thursday, July 16 5:30 PM – the agenda is likely to include the Justice Task Force/Returning Citizens Project; AROS-education reform; and the work to reform term limits in the county. RSVP here https://secure.everyaction.com/mWXYqq_Uz061Fol3_Findw2

NOTE THAT THE DATE FOR THE PROGRESSIVE PRINCE GEORGE’S MEETING WAS INCORRECTLY LISTED IN LAST MONDAY’S MEMO.

PMD Montgomery

Frederick County Progressives

Take Action Anne Arundel County
Fair Elections Task Force Meeting on Thursday, June 25, 7 PM. Push for a small-donor local elections program to get big money out of our politics in Anne Arundel County. Sign up for this virtual meeting at this link https://secure.everyaction.com/IJo3F4VGBEO32fR_c_4C7A2  

Talbot Rising

Lower Shore Progressive Caucus

PMD Baltimore

The Baltimore City chapter of Progressive Maryland held its inaugural chapter meeting this past Thursday, and we had a great turnout for our first meeting. Over 20 community members and leaders came together to share their thoughts about and triumphs during the primary, as well the exciting work that our chapter has planned for the rest of the year. Rashi Turniansky, our point person for training, spent a few minutes talking about our upcoming skills training programs (tentatively named “Guerilla University”), and we also had a short explanation on the importance of vote-by-mail from Jake Carlo, our chapter’s phonebank captain.

The Baltimore City chapter will be holding its monthly chapter meetings every 2nd Thursday of the month; our next meeting will be on July 9th from 6-7:30 PM. – Malcolm Heflin

 


EVENTS FROM OUR ALLIES

Tuesday, June 23: Movie: “Cooked: Survival by Zip Code” Free, online via Zoom; RSVP here
Guest host: Tom Zaniello Part of DC Laborfest, arts about working people from the Metro DC Council, AFL-CIO  -- Judith Helfand's 2019 film -- which suggests there may be no difference between an epidemic and a catastrophe -- now looks eerily prescient. Documentary; 81 min; 2019

Wednesday JUNE 24 -- Building a Multi-Racial Movement: Challenges + Promises  6:30-8:30 PM
A diverse panel of racial justice activists will discuss the challenges and promises of cross-racial organizing and how they sustain themselves as activists. Panelists and other info at link above. Register here for this virtual event.

>>Baltimore progressives, Check in on the wide-ranging Baltimore Activist Alert calendar and tip sheet at http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/

Reading the Progressive Maryland BlogSpace: our recent blogs are shown below, but if you want a handy way to keep track – and never miss a blog post – you can sign up to get this Weekly Memo by email. Remember this is your blogspace and your participation is heartily invited. See something going on that you don’t like – or that you do like and hope to see more of? Send us your thoughts; submit to the moderator at woodlanham@gmail.com

We recently published these blog posts:

 

June 18, 2020 Tonight! Statewide call on the intersection of antiracism and social justice

In our statewide virtual town hall TONIGHT, we will share our strategy to achieve our goals of addressing the crisis of structural racism and policing and demanding justice for our Black communities in Maryland. 

If you have not done so already, click here to RSVP and join the conversation. from 5:30- 7 PM, virtually hosted by Progressive Maryland/Marylanders United.

 

June 17, 2020 Addressing the Crisis of Policing and Structural Racism in Maryland

Progressive Maryland this week issued a statement against police brutality in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter protests around the state, around the country, and now around the world.

They are supporting a set of principles by the Movement for Black Lives, tailored to address the issues of policing and systemic racism in Maryland.

 

June 15, 2020 Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, June 15, 2020

As the state begins its patchy and sometimes risky emergence from stay-home orders and business shutdowns, Progressive Maryland continues its work to humanize the state response and demand that working families don’t get sacrificed to the needs of the ownership class—or to “justice” gone bad.

We are fighting for transformational change in policing, for decarceration, for better state government response to the needs of the state’s over 20 percent unemployed, and for relief for the many who can’t afford to meet rent or mortgage payments to the few. Plus reports from our increasingly active chapters around the state, and our recent blog posts. Read on in the Memo. Note correction to Prince George's Chapter meeting; email Memo is in error.

 

June 11, 2020 Hogan's failure on unemployment payments blasted by workers, lawmakers

Gov. Larry Hogan is getting plenty of flak on the many areas where his administration has failed to meet the challenge of the COVID-19 virus in Maryland.

Both out-of-work Marylanders and their representatives in Congress are bringing the heat on Hogan’s lagging Labor Department and slow or no unemployment compensation payments.

Wednesday June 17 Maryland workers will unite in protest against the state's broken unemployment system.

 

June 10, 2020 We are angry. We have demands. Join us to make a better world

Ahmaud Arbery

Breonna Taylor

George Floyd

Nina Pop

Tony McDade 

We are angry. We are hurt. We are grieving. We are fighting. And we won’t stop saying their names. We are calling on everyone to join our critical fight for racial justice and Black lives.


>REMEMBER – these blog posts are frequently expressions of political opinion from our wide-ranging membership and circle of allies. They are not expressions of opinion by Progressive Maryland. Don’t be surprised if they sometimes vary in their political content. You might even disagree with them – a good reason to contribute a blog of your own. Send it to the moderator, Woody Woodruff, at woodlanham@gmail.com.

>>Keeping up with the blogs is easier with the index. The blogs published in the PM BlogSpace from June 2015 through December 2016 are all available with descriptions and links here. You can follow blogs for 2017-18 starting from here