WILPF – June 2018

WILPF – June 2018


WILPF will meet Thursday, June 14, at 7 p.m. at the Fresno Center for Nonviolence (1584 N. Van Ness Ave.). This meeting is open to all members.


Listener-supported free speech radio for Central California

June 27, 3 p.m. (4th Wednesday of each month). Jean Hays does outstanding interviews on subjects involving WILPF interests and activities. Tune in to 88.1!


Meets monthly. Contact Jean Hays at skyhorse3593@sbcglobal.net for time and place.


Meets monthly. Contact Ann Carruthers at acarruthers@earthlink.net for time and place.


Meetings on selected Mondays at 7 p.m. Call Patty at 559-999-9709 for details.

Find us on Facebook!

WILPF Fresno

WILPF Fresno Earth Democracy

WILPF Fresno Library Committee

Fresno WILPF Cuba Solidarity Committee



Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival

Monday, May 14, began Forty Days of action with a mass mobilization in Washington, D.C., and in state capitols. Every Monday until June 23, across the country, there will be a wave of nonviolent civil disobedience by disenfranchised people, moral leaders and advocates.

Fifty years after the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign declared that silence was betrayal, we are coming together to break that silence and tell the truth about systemic racism, ecological devastation, the war economy and our distorted moral narrative.

If silence was betrayal in 1968, revival is necessary today.

We will follow the lead of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who, 50 years ago, said that to get the attention of legislators, people should “sit down if necessary in the middle of the street and say, ‘We are here; we are poor; we don’t have any money; you have made us this way…and we’ve come to stay until you do something about it.’”

Unlike the original Poor People’s Campaign, its revival is, by design, not focused on Washington, D.C. As co-organizer Rev. William J. Barber II (already famed for the Moral Mondays Movement in North Carolina) told the Los Angeles Times, a truly national movement is needed to reverse the many measures against poor people that have intensified in the past several years. Much of what happens to hurt poor people happens in the state capitols, not in Congress. So the new campaign is focused on state capitols, where organizing has already begun.

Rev. Barber, along with his co-chair, Rev. Liz Theoharis, got the ball rolling by leading a protest on Monday, May 14, at the U.S. Capitol. There were also protests at state capitols across the nation, including our own capitol in Sacramento.

The Poor People’s Campaign kicked off in Fresno on Monday, May 7, at Rev. Floyd Harris, Jr.’s church, New Light for Life Church of God. The meeting was led by Brother Kevin Carter and Ruth Ibarra, members of the Northern California Steering Committee of the Poor People’s Campaign. The keynote speaker was Luis J. Rodriguez, followed by several other faith leaders, community testimony and uplifting musical performances and poetry.

Fresno County and the Central Valley are home to some of the worst poverty, systemic racism and ecological devastation in California. As we build a unified fusion movement, we urge all of you to invite your friends, family, members of your churches, unions and community to protest at the State Capitol in Sacramento or here in Fresno.

The Fresno branch of WILPF will begin civil disobedience at the Federal Courthouse at Tulare and O streets on Monday, May 21, from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Refer to WILPF Fresno on Facebook or wilpfus.org for the weekly theme and actions in support of the 2018 Poor People’s Campaign.

Forward together to change the heart and soul of our democracy!

-Bev Fitzpatrick



Nawal Slemiah and Laila Hasan had the opportunity to travel from the West Bank city of Hebron, Palestine, to Boston, Mass., for a one-week speaking and selling tour. Nawal is the director and founder of the Women in Hebron Cooperative, and Laila is the shopkeeper for the WiH shop located in the old city souk of Hebron.

The initial invitation was received from Northeastern University’s Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter. SJP is an active student group on college campuses advocating solidarity with the Palestinian people and an end to the Occupation. The majority of the expenses were paid by Northeastern University; Fresno’s WILPF chapter generously donated to cover other unpaid expenses for Laila and Nawal.

We were able to secure additional speaking venues for Nawal and Laila during their time in Boston. These events were primarily through university SJP chapters.

The venues included Northeastern University, Tufts University, University of Massachusetts Boston, Harvard School of Law, Boston School of Fashion Design and the Boston chapter of WILPF. It was a successful tour. Attendees engaged in much dialogue with Nawal and Laila and were able to hear firsthand the stories of living under Occupation and especially the hardships for the women of Palestine.

There was also an opportunity to view and purchase items from the Cooperative. WiH Embroidery Cooperative provides work and income to approximately 120 rural village women in the Hebron District of Palestine.

The suffering throughout Palestine is increasing including Gaza and the West Bank. The number of soldiers in the West Bank has been increasing daily as has settler violence. Hebron is a microcosm for all the atrocities of the Occupation. Approximately 500 settlers live within the old city of Hebron protected by more than 2,000 IOF soldiers.

Children and teachers are harassed daily at checkpoints on the way to school and schools are often teargassed. Child arrests are common¾without parents or lawyers present during the process. Peaceful protestors are met with lethal force throughout the West Bank and Gaza.

For additional information, visit www.womeninhebron.com or www.tullypartnerships.org.

-Maureen Walsh



In a series of protests beginning on Land Day, March 30, more than 100 Palestinians have been killed and many thousands wounded, most by rifle fire. On May 14, thousands of Palestinians throughout Gaza, the West Bank and inside the 1948 borders of Israel protested the official ceremony marking the moving of the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem¾another attack by the Trump regime on Palestinian rights. This is yet another massacre committed by Israeli occupiers.



March for Our Lives inspired Art for Our Lives, which occurred on May 12 with painting, talk and good food at Chris M. Sorensen Art Studio & Gallery. Fresno area students who organized recent school-safety walkouts gathered with artists and progressive community activists.

Bobby Brown, an art major at Fresno State, guided us to use materials and create ideas, while he drew an amazing vision of “Peace Among People.”

Yasmin Mendoza, March for Our Lives leader and a Clovis Community College student, who has spoken at town halls and rallies, painted a serene canvas of sea and sky.

Angel Valencia, a Roosevelt High School student painted a stark reality of an NRA gun.

Together, we shared art and questions with a new community including members of the Interfaith Alliance of Central California and WILPF.

Rev. Norman Broadbent painted, listened and conversed with new friends. Sorensen artist Michael Frank said, “What better way for people to come together—food, talk and art?”

Janet Capella painted a 4’×4’ spiral, a piece for everyone to add their words of peace, hope and community building.

Emotions poured into the artwork. Discussion ranged from campus safety to guns, media and community organizing. The work of peace and these art pieces create dialogue and strength to risk change, learn to cooperate and build ways for democracy and justice to shine in the light of day.

The art pieces will be shown at Sorensen Studio (2223 S. Van Ness Ave.), which is open for the first Thursday and second Saturday Arthops, then travel to schools, churches or public spaces. Art for Our Lives has aligned with March for Our Lives to create a new Fresno event.

Watch for our fall 2018 invite at Sorensen Studio. Bring your artistic talent and progressive spirit.



WILPF-supported Dakota EcoGarden had residents come and go this month. We will probably not have any vacancies by the end of May. But if you or someone you know needs transitional housing and can thrive in a self-governing community, contact Nancy Waidtlow at 559-224-1738 or nancywaidtlow@gmail.com. Lots of volunteers have helped in construction, gardening and maintenance this past month. More are, of course, needed at any time.

The Dakota EcoGarden operates under the 501(c)(3) of the Eco Village Project of Fresno, which is getting some new energy from new board members Roland Geiger and Peter McDonald. This is a project that will house more homeless people than the smaller EcoGarden. We are working on land acquisition and more specific plans on how to make the Eco Village Project a reality and how to run it effectively and efficiently.

-Nancy Waidtlow



Why Cuba?

Find out at the Pastors for Peace Caravan to Cuba event.

Friday, June 29, 6:30 p.m.

Wesley Methodist Church, 1343 E. Barstow Ave., Fresno, Fireside Room

Speaker: John Waller, coordinator of Pastors for Peace Caravan, is an expert on Cuba’s healthcare system.

Film: Dare to Dream is the story of the largest medical school in the world, the Latin American Medical School, in Havana, Cuba, through the eyes of U.S. students who received full scholarships with the commitment to return home and practice medicine in underserved communities in the United States for their whole careers.

Music by Generaciones. Potluck dinner. Free and wheelchair accessible.

Contact lenivreeves@gmail.com or visit Fresno WILPF Cuba Solidarity Committee on Facebook.


  • Community Alliance

    The Community Alliance is a monthly newspaper that has been published in Fresno, California, since 1996. The purpose of the newspaper is to help build a progressive movement for social and economic justice.

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