“CITIZEN LEGISLATIVE ADVOCACY IN MINORITY COMMUNITIES”* EUROPEAN FELLOWS PARTICIPATION IN DIRECT ACTION IN THE U.S.A. (March –May 2012)
DIRECT ACTION IN TOLEDO, OH (March 2012) Ognyan Isaev: “On March 31, our delegation took part on a special project in Toledo to help the community of the Polish Village in cleaning their neighborhood from abandoned houses and improve
the safety. We worked with United North and local neighborhood leaders to convince Toledo Councilman Steele and the City of Toledo to take down an old house on the corner of Baker street and stop further delay. Below you can see all delegation in the special project T-shirts in front of that abandoned house before it had been demolished.”
*/ Sponsored by the U.S. State Department Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Find us on Internet: Website - http://www.glc-teachdemocracy.org/ Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/GLC_Teach-Democracy/145023818929367 “GLC_Teach Democracy, Community organizing and exchange programs 2011-2013”
DIRECT ACTIONS IN CHICAGO, IL (April 2012)
“On April 17 the Chicago part of GLC Delegation participated in Chicago mobilization demonstration start-
ing at Federal Square, with marches onto four tax-dodging corporations, ending with a rally at the Board of Trade – to demand that the 1% of the
population should pay their fair share in taxes! Miglena Yordanova was in charge of the banner and she was leading the yellow march.
Chicago fellows also joined to the launch of Chicago Spring demonstrations. The direct action "Unlucky to
be Uninsured" where they also participated was against the RUSH University Medical Centre – new modern
building that costs to the U. S. citizens over 650 million $, but they do not contribute enough to taxes.
Another action, “Occupy Chicago” was a City-Wide Day of Action, where the Chicago fellows of GLC Delegation took part. Occupy Chicago brought together more than 2000
people from neighborhood organizations, labor & community coalitions, activist groups, minority teams and religious organizations to kick off Chicago Spring.
Over 25 actions, workshops, and events were organized during the day, uniting Chicago's communities and highlighting the connected struggles of the “99%” of the population.
Watch videos on the GLC_Teach Democracy Facebook: Chicago fellows participated in direct actions http://www.facebook.com/ajustharvest#!/pages/GLC_Teach-Democracy/145023818929367?sk=videos
“Citizen Legislative Advocacy in Minority Communities”
DIRECT ACTIONS IN CHICAGO, IL (April 2012) Veronica Strelcova:
“During the action “Give it Back” – Northside P.O.W.E.R. is demanding that Chase Bank returns 500 vacant, foreclosed properties in Rogers Park and surrounding communities for rental at reasonable rates. On the photo below Emil Metodiev is in a bank.”
“On the Press Conference “Chicago is not for sale” which started on April 16 with grassroots collaborative community group, we were urged the aldermen to vote "No" on the mayor's Infrastructure Trust Ordinance and have criticized the ordinance explaining that the measure could open a
revenue stream for big banks that fast decisions are made without a fair dialogue. Community groups’ fear was that the Infrastructure Trust will create a fast track for arrangements like the parking meter deal and that user fees will disproportionally impact low and middle income Chicagoans.”
POSTER SESSION IN RICHMOND, VA (April 2012) After 3-weeks internship in 9 organizations in 6 cities across the U.S. – Detroit, Youngstown, Chicago, Charlottesville, St. Louis and New York, the fellows reunited with the whole
group and their mentors & others in Richmond on April 25-th. Delegation took part in 4-day U.S.-Europe Community Organizing Forum along with leaders of the European Community
Organizing Network. A poster presentation highlighted the fellows experience, ideas that they plan to implement after return to their home country.
“The concept for Bulgarian people with disabilities, is to be integrated and to organize these people in new ways, by borrowing approaches, ideas and methods from the American (community organizing) to encourage people to be active, to realize that they are able to change things by themselves through their behavior and inner strength”
“The poster is about diversity: “We are different but it's okay” - our aim was to share our experiences gained during the last 3 weeks at our internship sites: how to engage different minorities in community organizing activities and make them empowered to raise their voices by their own.” Professional Fellows program in the U.S. (March 26 - May 5, 2012)
DIRECT ACTIONS IN NEW YORK, NY (May, 2012) Ana-Maria Suciu: “In New York we participated in the following direct actions: - 99% spring of action - we had three direct actions within these larger movement, namely we went to rich peoples' houses and asked them to pay their fair share.
- “Fair Elections New York - a coalition of organizations fighting for getting money out of politics. New York needs a raise (march and public hearing) - a coalition of organizations requesting the increase of minimum wage in New York state.
- Tax Day Action in NYC - 4000 people marched from Times Square to the main Post Office (unions, organizations, activists and regular people).
- The Tax Day action in New York City was focused on the 99% vs. 1% philosophy and increased awareness on the fact that while average people pay lots of taxes, the hedge funds and other multinational companies do not pay a fair share of taxes.”
Here is a film from Chicago: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dTU0yxsbtXY by Mate Varga, the Hungarian Country Director of the program, named it “Hungarian occupiers”