Final Mapp Planning Meeting Scheduled, June 14th – Sprog: A Training for Changemakers

 

Email Alert from the Office of Rep. Angela R. Bryant, NC House District 7

Proudly Representing Halifax and Nash Counties until Jan. 2013; and

Nash and Franklin Counties – Jan 2013 – 2014

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TWO DIFFERENT ALERTS

1.  FOR NASH COUNTY RESIDENTS ONLY

clip_image001MAPP Team, we’re almost there! 

Our final planning meeting before we start implementing our Community Action Plan over the next few years will focus on:

 

Formulate Goals and Strategies & Organize for Action

When:  Thursday, June 14, 2012, 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Where:  The Beacon Center

500 Nash Medical Arts Mall, Rocky Mount

 

We will convene workgroups during the meeting to focus on each of the strategic issues we have identified (see below).  If the agency you represent would like input/representation on more than one strategic issue, you may want to invite additional representatives to sit in with different workgroups during this planning stage.  As we move forward over the next few years, workgroups will likely meet independently and you can participate in multiple workgroups during the implementation phase.

        How do we better engage the public in health education and health communication?

        How do we promote healthy lifestyles in different populations?   

        How can we expand and utilize existing community resources?

        How can we build pride in our community?

        How can we address perception issues around public safety and resources?

For more information contact: Amy Belflower  Thomas, MSPH, CPH, Coordinator of Health Services, Nash County Health Department at  (252) 459-1356.

 

 

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2.  SIERRA STUDENT COALITION

 

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Every summer for the last 20 years the Sierra Student Coalition has hosted grassroots organizing trainings by and for young burgeoning leaders in the environmental movement. We call our program Sprog: A Training for Changemakers and this summer we will be offering six week long experiences across the country:

· Pacific NorthwestJune 24- July 1 (Camp Fife (Goose Prairie, WA)

· Puerto Rico – July 3-10 (Parador Peniel (Adjuntas, PR) [*100% in Spanish*]

· Midwest – July 8-15 (Wayne State University (Detroit, MI)

· Rustbelt – July 14-22 (Prince William State Park (Triangle, VA)

· Southeast – July 22-29 (Camp Cottaquila (Jacksonville, AL)

· Southwest – August 5 – 12 (Foster Lodge (San Diego, CA)

Sprog has been responsible for inspiring and preparing thousands of young people to win campaigns and serve as leaders in the movement. Many of the program’s alumni reference Sprog as the formative experience that caused them to realize how possible it was to make real change in the world and commit their lives to advocating for the planet.

 

Your help in identifying the right candidates for Sprog is invaluable. If you know a young person (anywhere from high school aged to young adulthood) who is ready to hone their organizing chops and ramp up their involvement in the fight to protect the globe, please encourage them to learn more about Sprog and apply at: http://ssc.sierraclub.org.*

 

If you have any questions or would like to nominate exceptional leaders to apply and be followed up with by a current SSC volunteer leader, please email Tim Harlan-Marks, SSC Trainings & Leadership Development Director: tim@ssc.org

 

*Programs are filling up fast so interested applicants are encouraged to apply by June 15th for best chance of inclusion

 

 

See related:

Rep. Angela Bryant

Emergency Challenge to RJA Repeal Bill Issued by NC NAACP and Coalition Partners

 
NC NAACP Letterhead

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 12, 2012

 

For More Information:             Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, President, 919-394-8137

Mrs. Amina Turner, Executive Director, 919-682-4700

 

NC NAACP and Coalition Partners Issue Emergency Challenge to RJA Repeal Bill and Call on Membership Throughout the State to Flood Legislators With Calls and Emails

 

DURHAM – The NC House of Representatives will consider another attempt to repeal the Racial Justice Act later today. The NC NAACP is issuing five critical reasons to vote against the bill, which can be found below. They are also calling on all branches and HKonJ partners to flood legislators with calls and emails immediately today encouraging them to reject Senate Bill 416, with the five critical reasons for doing so.

 

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Five Reasons Legislators Should Reject New Efforts to Repeal the Racial Justice Act

 

1) The Racial Justice Act was passed with the support of proponents and opponents of the death penalty. All agreed that racial bias has no place in the application of the ultimate punishment of death.

 

2) Support for the Racial Justice Act is not an endorsement of violence or a sign that anyone is "soft on crime." Criminal justice enforcement is only strengthened when the system confronts racial bias directly and attempts to rid it from its practices.

 

3) Two Superior Court judges in North Carolina examined the law and evidence. The first found the RJA constitutional.  And the second, the Cumberland County Superior Court, examined the comprehensive evidence presented to it by both sides for several months and found that race played a significant role in the death sentence of the first RJA petitioner, Marcus Robinson, and changed his death sentence to life in prison without parole. The Court found what virtually every researcher who has studied the death penalty process has shown: racism infects much of this system and its ultimate punishment–the death penalty.

 

4) We live in a state where seven men have been exonerated from death row, who would have been murdered by the state if the system had only worked faster. Five are black, one is Latino and one is white. ALL were charged with the murders of white victims.

 

5) All the evidence shows that the death penalty system is flawed with racial bias. It is bizarre and unthinkable that legislators are striving to maintain the status quo of racism in the application of the death penalty and steal a tool from the courts to address this abomination.

 

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Statement by Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II on Today’s Attempt to Repeal the RJA

 

Our current leadership engages in public policy rooted in regressive ideology that ignores both facts and truth. They deny what research says, what the courts have said, and what fundamental fairness and justice says. They push forward their race-baiting agenda anyway. Rather than face the racial disparity evident in application of the death penalty they instead spin the issue to suggest that to be for RJA as it stands is to be soft on crime and represents an unwillingness to punish criminals, even when they know this is both unfounded and untrue. Proponents and opponents of the death penalty have supported RJA in its current form. Family members of murdered victims have supported RJA in its current form.

 

For this to be happening in a southern General Assembly, where there is such a deep history and continuing reality of racialized arrests and convictions, is both deeply regressive and troubling. Attempts to rewrite the law and lessen its ability to uncover the truth about racially-biased convictions is a fundamental violation of the notion that justice must be blind and fair, not biased and unbalanced. Murder of any human being is a painful tragedy that tears a breach in the soul and spirit of our common humanity. As a pastor I’ve had to walk, pray and cry with families through the tragedy of a murder of a loved one. But I also learned from these same families that promoting a death penalty system that is flawed with racial and class bias is also tragic and does not soothe their pain or further the cause of justice.

 

Use this website to find your representatives and their contact information:

http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/representation/WhoRepresentsMe.html

 

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Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.  

 

 

 NAACP Logo

 

 
 
 
 

See related:

NC Racial Justice Act


Katrina Rich Named New Principal At The Edgecombe County Early College And See ECPS Resignations, Transfers/Assignment Changes, Dismissals, Reduction In Force, New Hires And Other

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Katrina Rich (front) has been named as the new principal at the Edgecombe County Early College.

See list of resignations, transfers/assignment changes, dismissals and other here.

See related:

Edgecombe County Public Schools

NAACP to honor local leaders at annual banquet – Rocky Mount Telegram

The Rocky Mount branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People announced Tuesday that several leaders and organizations will be honored this weekend at its 37th annual Freedom Fund Banquet. (More)

See related:

NAACP Rocky Mount NC

House approves overhaul of Racial Justice Act – 11 ABC

RALEIGH (WTVD) — State lawmakers tentatively approved an overhaul of the Racial Justice Act Tuesday.

The House will take a final vote Wednesday, but Tuesday’s vote passed  72-47, with a veto proof majority.

Since taking control of the General Assembly last year, Republicans have sought to void the 2009 law. (More)

See related:

NC Racial Justice Act

Video – Edgecombe County Public Schools Board Addresses Policy 5533 Drive A School Bus During June Monthly Meeting

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Click on picture to watch video.

The following applies to employees who works in Child Nutrition, Teacher Assistant and Custodian positions.

You must see the video to hear the discussion on this matter in order to get the full effect.

A staff person that was grandfathered out back in the 90’s due to a medical condition will have 1 year to get their bus license. The grandfather thing means nothing. There are 3 training sessions in place within the next school year.

A staff person that may have a medical condition and can not drive a bus will not be acceptable if they did not have the medical condition when they were first hired. So therefore if you have some kind of sickness that you didn’t have before you were hired you will have to get your license. There are 3 training sessions in place within the next school year.

Okay for staff members the key word in the policy is that a person who do not have their bus license may lose their job.

Board member Teresa D. Bryant chair of the policy committee presented the policy. Board chair Ann Kent said the first thing is for the school system to make sure the children get to school so therefore the schools need staff members who can have dual roles. Karen Dameron is the Central Office person whom will be carrying out this policy.

Roberson School will be closed. Del Burns Interim Superintendent stated that North Carolina Department of Public Instruction will approve the closing and the outsourcing of the Alternative School at their July monthly meeting. He said that however the ECPS do not have to get the approvable from the NCDPI to do what they need to do. Also see this discussion in the video.

Note: Board members were not sworn in tonight. They will actually be sworn in in July. The link to the board agenda was not working when I posted the article on Sunday.

See related:

The Edgecombe County Board of Education will meet Monday, June 11 at 6:30 p.m. in the Central Office Board rooms 

Edgecombe County Public Schools

Shellie Zimmerman Arrested: George Zimmerman’s Wife Charged With Perjury – HuffPost

Shellie Zimmerman, the wife of the Florida man charged with fatally shooting Trayvon Martin, was arrested and charged Tuesday afternoon with one count of perjury, according to law enforcement officials.

The charges stem from what prosecutors have described as a series of lies and distortions made by the couple during an earlier bond hearing in April, when George Zimmerman and his family claimed they were broke. By late Tuesday afternoon, Shellie Zimmerman posted bond, set at $1,000. (More)

See related:

George Zimmerman

Trayvon Martin

Feds OK Duke-Progress merger opposed by city – Rocky Mount Telegram

A federal agency has approved the $26 billion Duke-Progress Energy merger that was challenged by the city of Rocky Mount.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved of the merger with several conditions, including one requiring an independent party to monitor power sales agreements. (More)

See related:

Progress and Duke Energy Merger

Federal regulators approve Duke-Progress merger with minor conditions

John Dwight Jefferson Pinetops Fire Department And Former School Teacher Funeral Services To Be Held Wednesday June 13, 2012

John Dwight Jefferson of Pinetops NC expired on Saturday June 9, 2012 at the Pinetops Fire Station. He expired doing what he loved to do. How fitting it will be that his funeral services will be held at the Pinetops Fire Station.

I remember Mr. Jefferson from my school days and over the years seeing him as he worked with the Pinetops Rescue. I would see him quite often as he and other Rescue Squad workers park near my house regularly.

I was shocked when I learned of Mr. Jefferson expiring on late Saturday evening when my cousin told me about it.

Mr. Jefferson was a very nice person and will truly be missed.

Read Eccles. 3 and know, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”

See obituary here.

News Alert: NC NAACP and Coalition Partners Hand Deliver Letter to Legislative Leadership Challenging Anti-Public Education Voucher Plan

NC NAACP Letterhead

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 11, 2012

 

For More Information:             Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, President, 919-394-8137

Mrs. Amina Turner, Executive Director, 919-682-4700

For Media Assistance:             Rob Stephens, 336-577-9335

 

NC NAACP and Coalition Partners Hand Deliver Open Letter Against Regressive School Voucher Program to Leadership of the NC Legislature

 

DURHAM – Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, President of the North Carolina State Conference of the NAACP was joined today at the NC General Assembly by Dr. Tim Tyson, Duke University professor and Chair of the NC NAACP Education Committee, Atty. Gene Nichol, Director of the UNC Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity, Dr. Jarvis Hall, Director of the Institute for Civic Engagement and Social Change at NC Central University, Atty. Chris Hill, Director of the Education and Law Project at the NC Justice Center and other partners for a news conference on Monday afternoon to challenge the corporate-sponsored school voucher program. They hand-delivered the following Open Letter to Senator Berger’s and Representative Tillis’s office following the news conference.

 

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June 11, 2012

 

VIA HAND DELIVERY

 

Hon. Philip Berger, President Pro Tempore, N.C. Senate

Hon. Thom Tillis, Speaker, N.C. House    

 

Dear Mr. Tillis and Mr. Berger:

 

North Carolina has always been proud of its commitment to public schools.  In most southern states, business and political leaders took a short-range view, investing nickels into their segregated white schools, and pennies into the second class schools they reluctantly set up for children of color.  North Carolina, to its credit, took a longer view.  We invested heavily in public universities for white students through the 1950’s and created many fine white public school systems in the first half of the 20th century.  In 1954 the NAACP successfully convinced nine Supreme Court justices that barring Black students from White public schools and universities was wrong and unconstitutional. After some false starts in the 1960’s and l970’s, a new Black-White fusion political alliance began to tackle the problem of creating new educational institutions, based on the principles of high-quality, diverse, public schools.

 

This new alliance was based on a growing realization that our fundamental spiritual values, as well as proven best practices for educational and economic growth, were both based on helping all our children to be all they could be.  Several generations of North Carolinians have learned that all children are God’s children.  At our mothers’ knee, we learned to sing, "Red, Brown, Yellow, Black and White; All are precious in His sight."  This generous vision that is rooted in all great faiths has helped define North Carolina, and is at the core of its historical commitment to public schools.

          

It is within this moral/political/historical context that we examine  Rep. Paul Stam’s anti-public schools plan.  It was drafted by a national ultra-right outfit that e-mails its backward-ideas to ultra-right politicians on demand. The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) scheme has been sold to eight other state legislatures.  A recent New York Times front page story said this reverse Robin Hood plan is "twisted to benefit private schools at the expense of the neediest children."  It diverts taxes paid by hard-working citizens-Black, Brown and White–for public schools into a pipeline for wealthy corporations and private schools.

 

Mr. Stam wants to slip this anti-public schools law through the General Assembly with no committee review and no real public discussion.  He knows even a cursory examination of it would reveal the plan violates both the generous faith tradition of our state and our corresponding commitment to invest in all God’s children.

 

The Stam Plan is an assault on public education.  It’s a scheme to steal money from poor working families, whose main hope is for their kids to get a ticket up from the education provided by good public schools.  The Stam Plan would divert our taxes into the wallets of rich corporate backers, who are setting up private schools as fast as they can, unaccountable to elected school boards.

 

Last year, during a closed session with other right-wing extremists, Mr. Stam gave his comrades instructions on how to confuse North Carolinians.  It was reported he directed them to use euphemisms to describe the Stam Plan. "Don’t say ‘voucher.’   Say ‘tax credit,’" he said.  Using tips learned by national ultra-conservative propaganda tanks in other states, Mr. Stam told his friends that if he heard them using the word "voucher," he would wash their mouths out with soap.  Voters don’t like the word ‘vouchers,’ he said. "Vouchers’ don’t poll very well."

 

Voters are lulled to sleep by terms likes  ‘tax credit.’ By the time they wake up to the fact that ‘school vouchers’ and ‘school tax credits’ are the same thing, the ultra-right will be well on its way to its final goal–a private school system.  It has been reported that Speaker Tillis has said Mr. Stam’s secret goal is privatizing public schools.

 

If you care about North Carolina’s children, the right thing to do is restore last summer’s midnight budget cuts.  The right thing to do is to re-hire the thousands of teachers and teachers assistants who were terminated last year.  The midnight budget cuts not only made our pre-Kindergarten programs even more unconstitutional, they dumped North Carolina below Alabama,  Mississippi, and South Carolina in per pupil spending.

 

The Stam Plan will cause North Carolina to lose much-needed revenue from wealthy corporations.  They can divert the tax money they owe to the state to private nonprofits to finance private schools.  A large campaign contributor in Mr. Stam’s Wake County, Bob Luddy, operates a chain of private schools.  Instead of restoring our hard-pressed public schools, the Stam Plan would have all of us paying welfare for his rich patrons, giving tax breaks for rich corporations, and destroying the one place our children have a chance to reach for their dreams: our public schools.

 

People have the right to send their children to private schools or religious schools if they choose to do so.  But taxpayers have no obligation to pay for the private or religious schools.  Taxpayers have no responsibility to pay for children to be inculcated as Methodists, Muslims, or Catholics. These are private matters of conscience and faith.  Taxpayers also have no responsibility to pay for segregation by class or gender or race.  Not only is segregation immoral and unconstitutional, it also flies in the face of all scholarly research about school systems that work.  Re-segregated schools are a disaster all over the country.

 

The $4000 that the Stam Plan diverts to private school administrators will quickly decline in value.  It’s a cynical trick for low-income families; trying to get poor families to buy into a pipe dream that private school is better than free high-quality public schools. As parents demand high-quality education, the tuition and costs will rise even higher, eating up the $4,000 stipend Stam is dangling as bait now.  In the meantime, by siphoning out of the public schools $4,000 for each pupil who leaves public schools, it will impose a staggering cost. Middle and upper class families will be siphoned out of our schools, creating high-poverty, racially-isolated schools. Every educational researcher who speaks truth believes such schools are harder on teachers and they drive out the more involved-families whose presence brings influence and resources.

 

In summary, the Stam Plan damages our schools and our state.  A thorough public debate and discussion about the snares and pitfalls in the plan we welcome.  To pass it without proper public and committee review is wrong.  Our state’s reputation has been built on its commitment to good public schools and the economic progress they bring.

 

 

In the Spirit of Truth and Justice,

 

Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, President,

North Carolina State Conference of the NAACP

 

Dr. Timothy Tyson, Chair

NC NAACP Education Committee

Professor, Duke Divinity School

 

Atty. Irv Joyner, Chair

NC NAACP Legal Redress Committee

 

Atty. Al McSurely, Chair

NC NAACP Communications Committee

 

cc:

All Elected Officials in the People’s House;

HKonJ Partners;

NC NAACP Local Branches and State Executive Committee;  

Media

 

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Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.  

 

 

 NAACP Logo

 

 

See related:

NAACP NC

G.W. Carver alumni celebration scheduled – Daily Southerner

TARBORO — The 2012 G.W. Carver High School Eagles Celebration weekend begins at 4 p.m. Friday, June 29, with a Meet & Greet Hospitality at followed by the annual business meeting at the Comfort Inn in Rocky Mount. (More)

Ceremony and Reception Honoring Teachers of the Edgecombe County Rosenwald Schools – Daily Southerner

PRINCEVILLE — The Perry-Weston Institute and the Edgecombe County Board of Commissioners had a Ceremony and Reception honoring the teachers of Edgecombe County Rosenwald Schools, commemorating the Roberson School History, and a book signing by the authors of “The Education of a Generation: The Rosenwald Schools and other African-American Schools in Edgecombe County, A Preliminary History.” The ceremony, attended by more than 100 persons, was held May 26, 2012 at the Roberson Center for Educational Achievement. (More)

See related:

Perry-Weston Institute