Where, Then, Shall We Go?

marching

Amistad Catholic Worker – “The Only Solution is Love”

New Haven – June 11, 2014 – This morning, the Amistad Catholic Worker announced that, unless we receive some kind of an answer to our question to the Mayor, #wherethenshallwego, homeless and housed activists associated with our community plan to take over a city-owned property on July 24 for the purpose of offering hospitality and defending the rights of low income people to adequate housing. We call upon congregations, activists and people of conscience everywhere to prepare to “put their bodies and souls in motion” on 7/24 and to stand in solidarity with us in taking this action..Top of Form

It is still illegal to be homeless and without a shelter bed in the city of New Haven. On the one hand, there are not nearly enough shelter beds for the 1,400 people that Columbus House reported sought emergency housing from them this year. Moreover, during the summer months, with the closure of the Overflow Shelter and the reduction of the number of beds at Grand Avenue, homeless people are essentially legislated into sleeping outside. On the other hand, the city is not willing to allow these same people, that it has turned away, to camp on public land or take refuge together. They demonstrated this on May 16, when they evicted former overflow shelter residents from 211 Rosette Street, an unused public lot where they had set up camp. The only place where homeless people are allowed to live is on the New Haven side of the West River, which is subject to frequent flooding and mosquitos, is far from emergency services and where police still occasionally arrest people for sleeping outside.

For almost six months, our community has been demanding that the Mayor answer the question of where she would have homeless people go who do not have shelter beds. She has responded with token gestures (like extending the overflow shelter for a week to subdue protests of its closure) and broken promises (such as her unfulfilled pledge to increase the number of beds at Grand Avenue to 90 from its current 75). In a meeting after her eviction of low income community members from 211 Rosette Street, Mayor Harp’s chief of staff, Tomas Reyes openly admitted that, “You want us to provide an answer for the question, ‘where, then, shall we go’ and the bottom line is that we do not have an answer.”

Our community is not going to stop asking the question, however and until we get a decent answer, we are going to continue to engage in nonviolent direct action to defend the human rights of our community to safe-accessible housing. On July 24, we are planning to march from the Catholic Worker to an undisclosed piece of city property, which we will appropriate in order to extend hospitality to those whom the city has left without a roof over their heads. We invite people of faith and conscience, activists, allies and members of the public to join us in this action, and to support it with donations of food and camping supplies and by pledging to march with us on the 24th and/or to spend one or more nights defending the site that we choose from being dismantled.

 

We also call upon Mayor Harp and the entire municipal government to end this conflict by making real changes to public policy and by terminating their violent assault on homeless and low income people. There are many ways to do this, but we consider the following steps to be most essential and have already submitted them to Mayor Harp as our official demands:

IMMEDIATELY end practices that criminalize homeless people who have no shelter bed and seek refuge outdoors. Order police not to arrest or interfere with homeless people who choose to set up shelters for themselves on public land, in parks, or on the New Haven Green.

IN THE SHORT TERM restore all of the shelter beds that New Haven has lost since this winter, both through the closure of the Overflow Shelter and the reduction of the number of beds at Grand Avenue. Do this either by reopening the overflow shelter or by creating a new, publicly run facility.

IN THE LONG TERM create a city and neighborhood development plan that puts low income and affordable housing at the center of the “vision” for the city. This means guaranteeing the “1 for 1 replacement” of all low income housing that is redeveloped and passing “inclusive zoning” laws to ensure that all new housing in a given area will contain a particular percentage of low income housing.

None of these steps are difficult. None of them are new, since all of them have been modeled in other cities and some of them (like keeping the overflow open year-round) have even been previous public policy in New Haven.

We at the Amistad Catholic Worker are eager to begin working together with the Mayor and the entire municipal government in caring for everyone in New Haven who has been deprived of their human right to housing, but meeting the legitimate demands of our homeless brothers and sisters to immediate safety, supportive refuge and freedom from criminalization is an essential first step which the city can no longer ignore. Toward that end, we will not remain silent but will continue to take direct action. On July 24th, we will once again be claiming a piece of unused city-owned property for the refuge of those who have no place to go. We call upon the City of New Haven to either respect this action as the right of the people, or to take the immediate steps themselves to make it unnecessary.

The Amistad Catholic Worker is a community of faith dedicated to the daily practices of the Works of Mercy, voluntary poverty, personalism and prayer. Located in the Hill neighborhood of New Haven, Connecticut, our home is open as a house of hospitality offering sustenance and companionship We seek to be a safe haven and a public nonviolent witness in our neighborhood, and always try to blur the distinction between the people who are serving and those being served. Please contact Gregory Williams (203-440-6696 gregory.williams@yale.edu) or Mark Colville  (203-415-5896 amistadcw@yahoo.com) for more information or to get involved in this effort.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

This Week at Amistad

Scanned Image 103540002

MONDAY/LUNES 3/3/14, 6:00PM @corner of Elm and Broadway – Marking the Cost of War: A brief ecumenical prayer and stone laying ceremony to count the victims and cry out for peace/Marcando el Costo de la Guerra: Una breve oración ecuménica y una ceremonia de colocación de la piedra para contar las víctimas y clamar por la paz.

TUESDAY/MARTES 3/4/14, 12:00-1:00PM @Amistad – Shrove Tuesday pancake lunch/Almuerzo de panqueques para Martes de Carnaval

TUESDAY/MARTES 3/4/14, 9:00AM @New Haven Superior Courthouse, 121 Elm St. – Courthouse Rally for Justice at Gourmet Heaven. Check out recent press coverage of Gourmet Heaven on Univision and Yale Daily News. Also check out an opinion piece by Henry Fernandez calling on Yale properties to guarantee a $15 living wage, and the response from Mayor Toni Harp./Rally de Justicia en Gourmet Heaven.

WEDNESDAY/MIÉRCOLES 3/5/14, 12:15PM @New Haven Green – “Ashes to Go” at Chapel on the Green/Servicio de Miércoles de ceniza en Capilla en el Verde.

THURSDAY/JUEVES 3/6/14, 6:00PM – Canvassing for the People’s response to “Hill to Downtown;” contact us for more information/Escrutinio de la respuesta del pueblo a la “Colina a Downtown,” haz contacto con nosotros para recibir más información.

THURSDAY/JUEVES 3/6/14, 6:30PM @Hamden Middle School  2623 Dixwell Ave, Hamden – Hearing on United Illuminated’s tree trimming & removal plan, call us to get a ride/Audiencia sobre el plan de Estados Iluminado de la eliminción y poda de árboles, llámenos para obtener transporte. Click here for more information/haz clic aquí para leer más.

SATURDAY/SÁBADO 3/8/14, 10:00AM-5:00PM – Canvassing for the People’s response to “Hill to Downtown;” contact us for more information/Escrutinio de la respuesta del pueblo a la “Colina a Downtown,” haz contacto con nosotros para recibir más información.

SATURDAY & SUNDAY/SÁBADO & DOMINGO 3/8/14-3/9/14, 11:00AM-4:00PM @The Parachute Factory, Erector Square, 319 Peck St. Building 1 – Rainbow of Desire: Theater of the Oppressed training/Arco Iris del Deseo: Taller de Teatro del Oprimido.

 

MONDAY/LUNES 3/10/14, 5:30PM @Amistad – Mass/Misa.

Rainbow of Desire 2014

EVERY WEEK/TODAS LAS SEMANAS

M-F/L-V – Breakfast/desayuno 7:30-8:30AM, Lunch/almuerzo 12:00-1:00PM

W 9:00AM – AmEN (Amistad Emancipation Network) meeting to discuss the proposed amendments to the New Haven park ordinance, and their implications for those experiencing homelessness. Reunión para discutir las propuestas de enmienda a la ordenanza parque New Haven, y sus implicaciones para las personas sin hogar.

W 6:00PM – evening prayer/oración de la tarde

Th/J – 9:00AM Bible study/estudio Bíblico; 9:30-11:00AM Give & Take/Dar y Recibir

<<F/V – 5:30PM @Gourmet Heaven, 15 Broadway – Boycott Gourmet Heaven/Las manifestaciones contra Gourmet Heaven>>SUSPENDED until further notice/SUSPENDIDO hasta nuevo aviso

Su/D – 2:00PM @Trinity Church, New Haven Green – Chapel on the Green, followed by lunch/Capilla en el Parque, seguido de un almuerzo

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

This Week at Amistad

THIS WEEK/ESTA SEMANA

We have all known the long loneliness and we have learned that the only solution is love and that love comes with community.” – Dorothy Day

<<THURSDAY/JUEVES 2/27/14, 6:00PM – Canvassing for the People’s response to “Hill to Downtown;” contact us for more information/Escrutinio de la respuesta del pueblo a la “Colina a Downtown,” haz contacto con nosotros para recibir más información.>> CANCELED/CANCELADO

SATURDAY/SÁBADO 3/1/14, 10:00AM-12:00PM @Neighborhood Housing Services, 333 Sherman Ave. – Gardening Workshop: Soils, Compost, and Mulching, hosted by the New Haven Land Trust/Jardinería Taller: Los suelos, compost y mantillo, organizada por el Fideicomiso de Tierras de New Haven. Click here for more information/haz clic aquí para leer más.

DOMINGO 2 DE MARZO A LAS 3:30PM @la Escuela de Fair Haven, 164 Grand Ave – Trilogía para Juan Rulfo. Una obra de teatro que no se pueden perder! Inspirada en los cuentos de Juan Rulfo. La obra será en español y es completamente gratis. Los asientos son limitados. Llamen y reserven sus asientos: 203-606-3484Haz clic aquí para leer más sobre el director, los actores y la obra de teatro.

EVERY WEEK/TODAS LAS SEMANAS

M-F/L-V – Breakfast/desayuno 7:30-8:30AM, Lunch/almuerzo 12:00-1:00PM

W 9:00AM – AmEN (Amistad Emancipation Network) meeting to discuss the proposed amendments to the New Haven park ordinance, and their implications for those experiencing homelessness. Reunión para discutir las propuestas de enmienda a la ordenanza parque New Haven, y sus implicaciones para las personas sin hogar.

W 6:00PM – evening prayer/oración de la tarde

Th/J – 9:00AM Bible study/estudio Bíblico; 9:30-11:00AM Give & Take/Dar y Recibir

<<F/V – 5:30PM @Gourmet Heaven, 15 Broadway – Boycott Gourmet Heaven/Las manifestaciones contra Gourmet Heaven>> SUSPENDED until further notice/SUSPENDIDO hasta nuevo aviso

Su/D – 2:00PM @Trinity Church, New Haven Green – Chapel on the Green, followed by lunch/Capilla en el Parque, seguido de un almuerzo

Leave a comment

Filed under Amistad events, resistance, Rosette Street Ramblings, ULA, Uncategorized

Updates from ULA

Photo courtesy of Cora Lewis, New Haven Independent

Photo courtesy of Cora Lewis, New Haven Independent

Gourmet Heaven owner arrested

After months of protest, the city is starting to move on the pressing issue of wage theft. Read all about it here:
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

More news from ULA:

Domingo 2 de marzo a las 3:30 pm en la Escuela de Fair Haven, 164 Grand Avenue
Una obra de teatro que no se pueden perder!
Inspirada en los cuentos de Juan Rulfo
Director: German Jaramillo
La obra será en español y es completamente gratis. Los asientos son limitados. Llamen y reserven sus asientos. 203-606-3484

Did you know that this year, when the Connecticut legislature raised the minimum wage, they also reduced the pay rate for waiters and waitresses, under pressure from restaurant lobbyists? Unidad Latina en Accion trekked to Hartford in thickly falling snow to testify before the legislature. Read more on the New Haven Speaks blog –>

Edgar Javier Marin returns to court Feb. 26

More than 900 people have signed the petition to stop Javier’s deportation. If you haven’t signed it, click here now!
Javier went to immigration court last week, and ICE refused to give him a bond. He is still detained, and returns to court tomorrow. Javier’s family and friends have been busy all week visiting the offices of Senator Blumenthal, Senator Murphy, Congresswoman DeLauro, and the Consul of Ecuador to seek their support. We want the Connecticut state’s attorney to reopen Javier’s criminal case so that he can clear his name, and we need the politicians to make that happen. La lucha sigue!

Leave a comment

Filed under resistance, ULA, Uncategorized

Update on anti-drone actions in Syracuse

From www.peacecouncil.net:

Hancock 17 Drone War Crimes Resisters’ Verdict Is In
All found guilty of  disorderly conduct but acquitted of trespassing; Order of Protection extended 2 years; Judge decides to send a message

On Friday, February 7, Town of DeWitt Court Judge David Gideon found twelve of the Hancock Drone War Crimes Resisters guilty of disorderly conduct, but acquitted them of trespassing.They had gone to Hancock Air National Guard Base near Syracuse, NY, on Oct. 25, 2012, to bring a Citizens War Crimes Indictment to the base and symbolically block the gates. Their nonviolent action had called for an end to drone warfare.

Saying, “At some point this has to stop,” the judge gave the defendants the maximum sentence – 15 days in jail (starting immediately) and a $250 fine with a $125 court surcharge. He also imposed a two-year Order of Protection, prohibiting the defendants from going to the home, school, business or place of employment of Col. Earl A. Evans, Commander of Hancock’s mission support group. Considering that the defendants had never met or knew of him before their arrest, it is clear the intent is to keep people away from the base. Defendant Rae Kramer stated, “No person on the base was intimidated by us, that is clear. But the end result is to deprive me of my 1st Amendment Rights.”

In their sentencing statements, the defendants spoke from their hearts and minds. Some reaffirmed their legal duties as citizens to stop war crimes. Clare Grady said, “We went there to stop the war crimes. That was our intent.” James Ricks hoped the judge would “sentence us to community service to investigate the war crimes they are committing at the base.” Judy Bello said, “The people suffering are so significant. It requires a persistent response,” and argued that the international law argument is indeed valid. Mark Scibilia-Carver quoted the Pope saying “violence is a lie,” and “Faith and violence are incompatible.” Mark Colville challenged the Court, stating, “This court has been found guilty of stopping it’s ears to the laws that are in place to protect life. This court has been found guilty of stopping it’s ears to the voices of the victims of the drones.”

The defendants were prepared for whatever sentence the judge imposed. In the words of Ed Kinane, “Any penalty this court can impose on me is trivial compared to the death sentences imposed on the drone victims.”
.
Of the five defendants not sentenced, one, Elliott Adams, is to be sentenced later. Two others had their cases dismissed on technical grounds, and the remaining two had plead guilty earlier.

The defendants are part of the Upstate NY Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars, which seeks to educate the public and Hancock Air Base personnel about the war crimes perpetrated in Afghanistan with the MQ-9 Reaper Drone piloted from Hancock Air National Guard Base. See upstatedroneaction.org.

Video of the sentencing and sentencing statements will be available soon at www.peacecouncil.net.
————————————————–

Defendants who were sentenced:

  • Judy Bello, Rochester, NY
  • Daniel Burgevin, Trumansburg, NY
  • Mark Colville, New Haven, CT
  • Clare Grady, Ithaca, NY
  • Mary Anne Grady Flores, Ithaca, NY
  • Martha Hennessy, New York, NY
  • Brian Hynes, Bronx, NY
  • Ed Kinane, Syracuse, NY
  • Rae Kramer, Syracuse, NY
  • James Ricks, Ithaca, NY
  • Mark Scibilia-Carver, Trumansburg, NY
  • Patricia Weiland, Northampton, MA

Leave a comment

Filed under jail, resistance, Uncategorized

This week at Amistad

BREAKING NEWS: Proposed anti-homeless park ordinance withdrawn!!

On January 28, Corporation Counsel Victor Bolden told the New Haven Register that he was considering seeking leave to withdraw the legislation. (Read more here.) On January 29, New Haven Alderwoman Jessica Holmes told us in a public meeting that any new legislation should come from a working group where homeless and low income people and those who work with them are represented.

This is a step in the right direction, but it is only the beginning! We have made it clear that any conversation about the New Haven Green needs to center the voices and needs of homeless and low-income people. The time is now to move that conversation forward and talk about the kind of inclusive, economically just community that we are really trying to build.

This Wednesday, join us for lunch on the Green as we model that community. We will raise our voices in song, bless and break bread together, and provide a space for people to speak out about their experiences. Together, we will begin to dream and practice the beloved community and true justice that our campaign against this ordinance has been trying to create.

>>>WEDNESDAY/MIÉRCOLES 2/5/14 12:00PM @New Haven Green<<<

Sing-In, Soup-Up and Speak-Out: Defending the New Haven Green and Building Power for the People – details here./Canta, almorza, y movilízate: Defendiendo el New Haven Green y construyendo poder para el pueblo – detalles aqui.

EVERY WEEK/TODAS LAS SEMANAS

M-F/L-V – Breakfast/desayuno 7:30-8:30AM, Lunch/almuerzo 12:00-1:00PM

W 9:00AM – AmEN (Amistad Emancipation Network) meeting to discuss the proposed amendments to the New Haven park ordinance, and their implications for those experiencing homelessness. Reunión para discutir las propuestas de enmienda a la ordenanza parque New Haven, y sus implicaciones para las personas sin hogar.

W 6:00PM – evening prayer/oración de la tarde

Th/J – 9:00AM Bible study/estudio Bíblico; 9:30-11:00AM Give & Take/Dar y Recibir

F/V – 5:30PM @Gourmet Heaven, 15 Broadway – Boycott Gourmet Heaven/Las manifestaciones contra Gourmet Heaven

Su/D – 2:00PM @Trinity Church, New Haven Green – Chapel on the Green, followed by lunch/Capilla en el Parque, seguido de un almuerzo

Leave a comment

Filed under Amistad events, Homelessness, resistance, Uncategorized

This week at Amistad

“The legal battle against segregation is won, but the community battle goes on.” – Dorothy Day

WEDNESDAY/MIÉRCOLES 1/29/14 12:00PM @Amistad Catholic Worker House – Lunch with Jessica Holmes, chair of the New Haven aldermanic legislation committee/Almuerzo con Jessica Holmes, presidente del comité de legislación de los concejales de New Haven.

SATURDAY/SÁBADO 2/1/2014 11AM-5PM @New Haven Public Library, Wilson Branch, 303 Washington Ave. – Screening of “The Hill,” a documentary about our neighborhood. Find more information here./Proyección de “The Hill”, un documental sobre nuestro barrio. Encuentre más información aquí.

EVERY WEEK/TODAS LAS SEMANAS

M-F/L-V – Breakfast/desayuno 7:30-8:30AM, Lunch/almuerzo 12:00-1:00PM

W 9:00AM – AmEN (Amistad Emancipation Network) meeting to discuss the proposed amendments to the New Haven park ordinance, and their implications for those experiencing homelessness. Reunión para discutir las propuestas de enmienda a la ordenanza parque New Haven, y sus implicaciones para las personas sin hogar.

W 6:00PM – evening prayer/oración de la tarde

Th/J – 9:00AM Bible study/estudio Bíblico; 9:30-11:00AM Give & Take/Dar y Recibir

F/V – 5:30PM @Gourmet Heaven, 15 Broadway – Boycott Gourmet Heaven/Las manifestaciones contra Gourmet Heaven

Su/D – 2:00PM @Trinity Church, New Haven Green – Chapel on the Green, followed by lunch/Capilla en el Parque, seguido de un almuerzo

Leave a comment

Filed under Amistad events, Homelessness, resistance, Rosette Street Ramblings, Uncategorized