World Fair Trade Day Celebration

Come join the Peace & Justice Center to celebrate Fair Trade around with world at Burlington’s first outdoor Farmer’s Market of 2016!

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Come support and celebrate Fair Trade with free ice cream, kids activities and games, bike-powered smoothies, Fair Trade chocolate and a special performance by Jeh Kulu!

What is Fair Trade you ask? Fair Trade is:

  • An alternative trading partnership based on the principles of economic and social justice including transparency and respect
  • A way for consumers to support better labor rights and environmental advocacy through everyday shopping
  • Better prices, working conditions, and wages for small producers
  • Empowering women and other marginalized workers

Come join us in City Hall Park on May 7th to learn (and taste) more!

Upcoming Book Discussion: The New Jim Crow at South Burlington High School

home_book_cvrThe New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander, examines institutional racism in the United States and how it relates to and has evolved from previous oppressive laws, such as slavery and Jim Crow policies. The New York Review of Books describes The New Jim Crow as a work that will “touch the public and educate social commentators, policymakers, and politicians about a glaring wrong that we have been living with that we also somehow don’t know how to face.”

In the upcoming discussion at South Burlington High School on May 10th and 17th, two facilitators will lead discussions on the historical roots of U.S. system of mass incarceration, the War on Drugs, and the continuing affects of racism and oppresion in contemporary struggles for civil rights and a just and equitable society.

In order to get the full benefit of this program, participants are asked to read the book in it’s entirety and attend both sessions.

This program is presented in partnership with the Student Diversity Union at South Burlington High School and PACT. RSVP online or call 863-2345 x6. This program is offered at no cost to participants! If you would like a FREE copy of the book call 652-7035.

Sign-up to have a #BlackLivesMatter Lawn Sign delivered to your lawn!!

BLM lawn sign imageClick here to fill out out a form for a Black Lives Matter sign to be delivered to your lawn for you. These signs will all be delivered once enough people have signed up and based on our delivery volunteer’s schedule. The hope is that around 100 signs will go up all at once and that this will be a meaningful visible statement to folks in the Burlington area community. If you live outside of the Burlington area you are welcome to still fill out the form and we will try our best to get a sign to you. Also anyone can come by the PJC anytime and pick up a sign. The idea is that having one day when around 100 signs go up all at once may give folks in this community a real visual reaction and prompt even more dialogue about racism and the need for racial justice in this community. Please sign-up and encourage others to as well. Thanks for all of your ongoing support.

Alexis Lathem Brings Jazz and Poetry to PJC

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The poet sits at the edge of a precipice, the water licks away the words as she writes . She shouts but there is no echo. She has lost the catalogue of extinctions.

– Alexis Lathem, The Book of the Sixth

Poet Alexis Lathem, guitarist Art Herttua, and percussionist Ray Carroll will present The Book of the Sixth and other works on Sunday April 24, at 4 pm at the Peace and Justice Store in Burlington. This moving multimedia performance is part poetry reading, part jazz concert, part slideshow, and part requiem for species and cultures extinct and in danger of extinction.

The text for Book of the Sixth is selected poems from Lathem’s poetry collection, Alphabet of Bones (Wind Ridge 2015). The poems will be performed voice-over Art Herttua’s lyric guitar playing and Ray Carroll’s percussion with drum brushes, cymbals, chimes, bells, ringing bowls, and other instruments.

The title poem, Alphabet of Bones, a prolonged elegy for a landscape deranged by a massive hydroelectric project in Quebec, stems from the poet’s participation in the Peace and Justice Center’s Hydro Quebec campaigns of the 1990s.

Vermont Poet Laureate Sydney Lea wrote of Alphabet of Bones: “Ever conscious of extinction and threats of extinction, Lathem nonetheless gives us hope by way of her lyric clarity, her stunning eye for detail, and her moral persuasiveness. Even in her quietly apocalyptic central poem, ‘Book of the Sixth,’ to my mind the volume’s tour de force– even – or perhaps or especially there, we think, ‘This is what human sensibility remains capable of at its finest!’”

Alexis Lathem is an environmental journalist and writing instructor at the Community College of Vermont, and is the author of two poetry chapbooks. Recipient of the Chelsea Award for Poetry, a Vermont Arts Council grant, and a Bread Loaf scholarship, her poems and essays have appeared in AWP chronicle, Beloit Poetry Journal, Chelsea Review, Saranac Review, Spoon River Review, and other journals. In her reporting on the struggles of indigenous peoples to defend their lands from development, she has paddled and trekked through taiga and rainforest.

The Herttua/Carroll jazz duo perform regularly at Radio Bean and Bagitos, and have performed at many other venues. A student of legendary jazz guitar teachers Harry Leahey and Bob Devoes, Herttua’s repertoire includes familiar jazz standards as well as original music, weaving melodies, rhythms and harmonies into an intimate lyrical voice. With Ray Carroll’s drum brush artistry, they present a colorful mosaic of sounds rooted in the classic jazz ballads and waltzes once perfected by past masters.

Penny Poll Results…

More than 250 people participated in this year’s Penny Poll. Thanks to the Will Miller Chapter of Green Mountain Veterans for Peace for tabling with us and to all who join in this activity! It was a beautiful day to talk about the national discretionary budget and what people think are meaningful ways that the National Discretionary Budget can reflect our priorities and values as a country.

2016 Penny Poll Results

 

Below are the numbers that are reported on by National Priorities Project.

discretionary_spending_pie,_2015_enacted