Tuesday, December 29, 2020
Thursday, December 24, 2020
Will there be a chance to pass voting rights, civil rights, climate crisis, student debt, immigration reform, and more legislation during a Biden administration?
It depends on the Senate.
You can help two Democrats actually drain the swamp by joining with Fair Fight from the comfort of your own home.
Tuesday, December 15, 2020
Monday, December 07, 2020
Saturday, December 05, 2020
If you haven't yet seen this really informative and excellent film, here's your chance to view it with new material and a panel discussion!
From the La CROSSE Public Library:
We invite you to join us for an evening with the Enduring Families Project as they debut the next two videos in their project. Begun as a bus tour in 2018, this important and growing theatre project brings to life the stories of early African Americans who lived in La Crosse from its beginnings. The program will begin with a viewing of the two newly completed videos of the project, filmed using local historical homes as a back- drop to lend historic authenticity to the telling of the stories followed by a panel discussion with the project leads.
This event will be held via Zoom. You will be sent the meeting information the week of the event.
The Enduring Families Project (EFP) mission is to broaden the narrative by the positive portrayal of the contributions, struggles, and perseverance of early local Black historical figures providing a venue for the development of understanding and respect between people in our community and a springboard for community conversations.
The EFP performs live re-enactments of these local Black historical figures for schools, educators and community organizations. To ensure the legacy of this important history videos have been created and will be shared with the community. Importantly the videos along with additional historical research will be incorporated into the La Crosse Public School curriculum.
Register by emailing email@example.com or by calling Payge at 608-789-7145 to reserve your spot.
This program is in partnership between the La Crosse County Historical Society and the La Crosse Public Library.
Wednesday, December 02, 2020
On December 3rd, Citizens' Climate Lobby is asking us to call our U.S. Senators and Representative to ask them to cosponsor the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. That’s becauase a few days later, members of CCL chapters across WI and MN, along with hundreds of our fellow Citizens’ Climate Lobby volunteers, will lobby Congress for all of us, and our phone calls will help underscore that we want strong legislation.
Call Congress on December 3rd. Put the date in your calendar and use this website http://cclusa.org/call to get the script, phone numbers and to log your calls.
Monday, November 30, 2020
Cia Siab, Inc. supports removing SROs from the School District of La Crosse. BIPOC youth should be able to feel safe and be safe at school.
Support our demand to remove SROs from schools by sending a letter to the La Crosse Board of Education. Or, register to speak at the December 7th La Crosse Board of Education meeting at 6pm by calling 608-789-7659.
- and -
On 11/16/18 Dr. Engel, superintendent of La Crosse School District gave his recommendations/report to the La Crosse School Board concerning School Resource Officers.
6. Establish an SRO Oversight Committee
- and -
Letter to Editor (La Crosse Tribune, Sunday, November 29, 2020)
Recently, the Tribune opined that police should remain in our schools.
Asking if the school community is better off with police, they
concluded, “We haven't heard anything that says otherwise.”
Clearly, someone is not listening. Recent public programs have highlighted students, teachers, counselors, and parents telling us that police in schools cause stress, harm students' educational experiences and attainment, feed the school to prison pipeline, sometimes act inappropriately, apply different standards to white and non-white students, and require funds that could pay for more education professionals.
The Tribune said that police in schools have been a success. But the testimony, statistics, and research presented don't point to success.
This kind of non-listening keeps bad policies, inequality, and racism in place. Dismissing others' experiences because they don't fit with a preferred world view, closes off opportunities to improve how things work. Ignoring the facts because they may upset the way it's always been blocks change and inclusion.
The superintendent's recommendation to keep police in the schools after all the testimony, studies and data, was very disappointing and, to me, cowardly. People are telling us that this program causes stress, harm, and pain. Listen.
I hope the school board has the courage to listen to those whose lives are adversely affected by this unnecessary and harmful program. I hope they will remove police from our schools and use the money to hire teachers and counselors whose goal is to assure the best educational outcome for every student.
Tuesday, November 17, 2020
On Thursday, November 19, attend an ONLINE public hearing on redistricting reform being hosted by Governor Evers' People's Maps Commission. The hearing, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., will focus on the Third Congressional District. Visit this link to find how to register to testify. You may also submit written comments by using this form.
And, from the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign:
TAKE ACTION ON FAIR MAPS! BY NOV. 22!
The Wisconsin Supreme Court is taking public comments on a proposed rule that would pre-rig the process for the drawing of legislative and congressional district maps and would likely lead to another gerrymander in Wisconsin.
The proposed rule was submitted by the rightwing Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL), and it has the following flaws:
First, it would jump any legal challenge to redistricting immediately to the Wisconsin Supreme Court rather than let that challenge work its way through the courts in a normal fashion. The establishment of a record at the lower court level would enhance transparency and enable the citizens of Wisconsin to grasp the evidence in the case and the competing arguments as they wend their way through the courts.
Second, nonprofit public interest organizations and concerned citizens could get aced out of any hearing on redistricting maps before the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The WILL petition, in Section 5(b), requires only that the political parties be heard by the Court in any dispute over the maps. It does not allow room, explicitly at least, for groups like ours that have a longstanding interest in this issue to be heard. Redistricting is not simply a dispute between the parties.
Third, the proposed rule that WILL is advancing gives the Court the leeway to disregard the procedures and requirements laid out in the rule itself. So that’s no rule at all if it allows you to toss everything out the window and just do what you want. If you’re going to have a rule, it should be abided by, and it should be transparent, and it should be applied in a fair manner.
So I have a favor to ask: Please write the Wisconsin Supreme Court today and tell them that you oppose this rule and tell them why in your own words.
At the top of your letter, please note that you are writing concerning Rule Petition 20-03 relating to legal challenges to redistricting.
If you copy your letter into this form by Nov. 22 at 5:00pm via the Wis. Fair Maps Coalition, we’ll submit it for you.
Thanks for your help!
Matt Rothschild Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday, November 16, 2020
Sunday, November 15, 2020
Gov. Evers, Lt. Gov. Barnes to Host People's Budget Virtual Listening Sessions
MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers
and Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes today announced a series of People's Budget
virtual listening sessions as the state begins the 2021-2023 state
budget process. Gov. Evers and Lt. Gov. Barnes will host four virtual,
issue-based budget listening sessions to hear directly from families and
workers about the issues affecting Wisconsin. The first virtual
listening session will occur on Tues., Nov. 17, 2020 at 6 p.m. and will
focus on healthcare and public health in Wisconsin.
“Our first budget was crafted by and with the people of our state, and this budget will be no different,” said Gov. Evers. “The listening sessions for our 2019-21 budget were successful in helping us develop a budget that reflected the stories, experiences, and priorities of folks across our state. Although we won't be able to host these listening sessions in-person this time around, I look forward to visiting with Wisconsinites virtually and hearing their thoughts and feedback as we put together the People's Budget.”
A full schedule of these listening sessions is available below and on the governor's website here. All participants must register to attend on the governor's website here. Wisconsinites are also welcome to submit written comments on any topic at any time here. Members of the press are invited to attend and will receive RSVP information in advance of the listening sessions.
Budget Listening Session on Healthcare and Public Health
Register to attend here.
Budget Listening Session on Environment, Infrastructure, and the Economy
Budget Listening Session on Criminal Justice Reform
Tuesday, December 8, at 6 p.m.
Registration will be live one week before the listening session date.
Budget Listening Session on Our Schools and Education
Wednesday, December 16, at 6 p.m.
Registration will be live on week before the listening session date.
Saturday, November 14, 2020
Wednesday, November 11, 2020
From Greater La Crosse Area Diversity Council
The recent murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor brought forth national protests against long-standing police brutality and systemic racism that permeates our country.
In the La Crosse area, multiple protests have been organized by local Black youth who shared their perspectives of experiencing racism, bullying, and stereotyping in our community from a very young age.
This event will facilitate discussion and understanding on a film intended to amplify the voices of the La Crosse area black youth and their parents, to engage our community in necessary conversations about bias, racism, and privilege. We challenge our community to change the environment, policies and practices that disproportionately impact black youth and their families.
Director- Yellow Brick Road, Inc.
My name is Tashyra Bernard and I have been a resident of the la crosse community for 21 years. Originally, I am a Madison, Wisconsin transplant. I am the third oldest of eight children and I moved here with my family during my junior year of high school. We have been calling this our home ever since.
I received my bachelor’s degree from Viterbo university, where I studied business and psychology. I have children that are currently attending the elementary schools and my oldest who is out of school now, has done all her schooling in the La Crosse area. We have shared generations of our experiences over the years and each of our stories are all too similar.
I am the Director and Co-founder of Yellow Brick Road; a group home for youth between the ages of 14 and 21. I got into this line of work because I am passionate about helping people and I wanted to be a part of the puzzle in guiding our youth.
As the years have gone by, I’ve realized that puzzle is much larger.
It’s necessary to consider all the connecting pieces if we’re ever going
to see the big picture. I’m an advocate for my family and many other
people in the La Crosse community.
It is my belief that courageous conversations need to be had in the schools, at work, in the church’s and all other places where there is an opportunity to connect and learn from one another. Most importantly, we all need to be proactive about being part of the conversation and then challenge our capacity to truly listen with the goal of understanding.
Greater La Crosse Area Diversity Council (GLADC)
Waking Up White Collaborative
Black Leaders Acquiring Collective Knowledge – B.L.A.C.K.
Cia Siab, Inc.
City of La Crosse Human Rights Commission
City of La Crosse Mayor’s Office
City of La Crosse Police Department
La Crosse Area Family Collaborative
La Crosse County Historical Society
University of Wisconsin La Crosse Police Department
Monday, November 09, 2020
Nominations Sought for the 2021
Martin Luther King, Jr. Leadership Award
Primary Contacts for questions and more information: Tracy Littlejohn/Vanessa Schmitz at email@example.com or Thomas Harris at 608.780.7153.
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Leadership Award was established in 2009. The purpose of this award is to recognize leadership in and commitment to building community, enhancing diversity, and working for justice. This award recognizes community members whose leadership include the following:
Efforts are directed toward creating tangible, permanent and/or systemic positive change in the Greater La Crosse Area
Efforts are focused on issues of social justice, equity, diversity and inclusion, unearned privilege (may include other justice issues that mirror Dr. King’s work, e.g., race-equity, anti-poverty, peace, nonviolence)
Efforts work to empower and impact next generation
Efforts include devoting personal energies beyond one’s “paid position”
Efforts to create positive change in areas outside of the Greater La Crosse Area
Any additional considerations or contributions
The nomination application and materials should address the above qualities in detail.
Friday, November 06, 2020
Why this is so important!
With the 2020 votes almost counted, we are at the cusp of the end of
the election season. Voters across Wisconsin and the country have spoken
and chosen our next president. Our neighbors and communities have
chosen a new vision for the future coming from the White House.
Tomorrow, Saturday, November 7th, join Citizen Action of Wisconsin, SEIU, Opportunity Wisconsin, Leaders Igniting Transformation and area progressives in Copeland Park at 1PM for a day of celebration as we refocus on the future and fight for the tomorrow Wisconsinites voted for. No one election; it is so important to remind all of us across Southwest Wisconsin to stay engaged, activated and focused!
From 1PM to 3PM the park will be filled with the sounds and voices of performers and speakers coming together - culminating in a socially distanced protest along Copeland Ave calling on all of us to keep working on issues such as racial justice, police reform, climate justice, healthcare for all, fair wages, immigration reform, and women’s rights.
RSVP for this event here to stay up to date on event details! Speakers for the event will include newly elected progressive leaders, local climate activists, student leaders and a several Wisconsin activism superstars! There will also be performers and refreshments on hand for everyone. Please share this event with your own network so we can build a great celebration!
Safety in the age of COVID is very front of mind tomorrow. Masks and hand sanitizer will be available for free, and social distancing will be a must for everyone attending.
We must do everything we can to stay in the fight for a better tomorrow. We hope you will be able to join us at this very special event!
Habitat for Humanity La Crosse Area and Thrivent are joining together to build La Crosse’s first Faith Build Home. Thrivent has generously donated $87,500 to help build a home for the Olson Family—a local family in need of decent and affordable housing.
Help us build a home for the Olson Family by participating in our “Bid to Build” Online and LIVE Auctions. Every bid helps build a home for the Olson Family!
The BID TO BUILD AUCTION features dozens of fun and unique items to bid on:
Auction Details :
November 6 through November 12
Browse the Auction Items in detail that will be available in the Online Auction (check page frequently as new items will be added every few days), and Register to Bid so you are ready to start bidding on November 6.
Please help us get the the word out! Please share our Facebook event with your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and anyone else in your circle!
Tuesday, November 03, 2020
On the one hand, how can this even be a contest? Are that many of our fellow people so racist and greedy, so unconcerned about the environment and basic human rights, so in love with their stock market investments or their reverso-world christianity (did you know that "Pro Life" Wisconsin is one of the groups suing to stop COVID indoor capacity restrictions?) that they would actually vote for that guy? Along with the trump caravans, the trump police, the other trump police, the local trump police (who is going to run against this guy? Maybe THIS guy.), the trump COVID-coughers, the trump road-blockers and polling place-blockers, and more, just the thought that a pretty consistent forty percent of us are so awful and despicable, is very depressing.
James Carville (not a fan) says it'll be a "blowout." I hope he's right.
Whatever happens, on Wednesday, there's a Protect the Results rally. If you can be there - with mask - distanced from those not in your household - please do. .
Sunday, November 01, 2020
The Sierra Club’s John Muir (Wisconsin) Chapter is looking for the right person to be the Western Wisconsin Campaign Coordinator. This person will work with Chapter staff, partners, and volunteers to accomplish Beyond Coal and clean energy campaign goals, improve our communications and outreach, and enhance our Equity, Inclusion and Justice (EIJ) efforts. Activities include campaign implementation; communication; promoting equity, inclusion and justice; community outreach and volunteer support. This position is located in La Crosse. Please help us find the right person for this position. Having a Sierra Club staff member in La Crosse will increase our effectiveness in promoting clean energy in the Coulee Region. For more information, go to tiny.cc/laxscjob
Tuesday, October 27, 2020
Wednesday, October 21, 2020
Join us in this pressing educational program unveiling the perspectives of black youth and their parents in the La Crosse area.
Monday, October 12, 2020
Tuesday, October 06, 2020
Monday, October 05, 2020
On Tuesday, October 13, 2020, the League of Women Voters of Dane County (LWVDC) will present a Virtual Public Issues Forum titled, Check Your Ballot for Climate. Learn how voters are influenced by their global climate crisis concerns, how they evaluate candidates in relation to their environmental positions and what climate and environmental activists are doing locally to ‘get out the vote.’
will join Jennifer Giegerich, Government Affairs Director for Wisconsin
Conservation Voters and moderator and LWVDC member Carol Barford,
Director of the Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment
(SAGE) at UW-Madison in this constructive exploration of voting as it
relates to the climate crisis.
“Climate change is affecting every aspect of our lives," says Giegerich, "and voters have a great opportunity to learn about the policies that decision-makers will be considering at the local, state, and federal levels to address this critical issue.”
Check Your Ballot for Climate is designed to help voters concerned about climate issues, eco- anxiety and the upcoming election find answers. Virtual attendees will be encouraged to pose their own questions to our featured speakers during the event. The program begins at 7:00 p.m. and is free and open to the public.
Thursday, October 01, 2020
The Criminal Justice Management Council (CJMC), the City of La Crosse, and other organizational partners will be inviting the public and community members to provide feedback on the need for and formation of a citizen oversight board on local policing. You can also share feedback via email if you are unable to attend the virtual sessions: firstname.lastname@example.org .
+1 262-683-8845 Call in number
Conference ID: 983 558 824#
+1 262-683-8845 Call in number
Conference ID: 864 022 908#
Tuesday, September 29, 2020
I lurked on the September public hearing and to me, it was, in many ways, like deja vu all over again. Anyone who lived through the school mascot debates or the "Big Indian" discussions has heard this before.
People say, "This public action paid for with public money is hurting me, my children, and my community. We have proof in the form of personal testimony and academic research. We want to change things because this use of our shared public resources is causing harm to many people. It is biased, unfair, and unjust."
And other people, often those who have had control of decisions for a long time, say, "This is how it's always been. We like it. It doesn't harm us. We don't want anything to change."
The students who spoke in September were brave and bold. They told their own stories and it probably wasn't easy. I don't know if they felt heard. Those who want to keep the police made things sound like our schools are so violent and out of control that they're one step below Attica. In my, albeit limited, visits to local high schools in the past few years, I've found things to be pretty much like, well, high school (except for the "you are now entering prison" experience visitors have when they arrive).
More people need to attend the public hearings and SPEAK UP. People who aren't students or teachers but who are members of the society that students and teachers and school policies shape need to SPEAK UP. We all need to be included in this discussion. Sign up and tell your story even if you are not a student, current parent, or teacher. We all are affected by the norms that are established by policies and expectations in our schools, the societies-in-training that adults set up to transition students from childhood to adulthood, from adult guidance to autonomy.
Why I oppose police in schools:
* They intimidate people and create a hostile learning environment for many students (and I imagine being a staff member in a constantly-policed space can be pretty stressful, too).
* Their presence doesn't seem to be fulfilling its promise.
* They are not needed as a full-time presence. If there's a problem requiring police, they can be called.
* They are not needed to do things that teachers and counselors already do and are trained to do. They are not needed to be in school buddies. If they want to be buddies and mentors, let them do that outside of school.
* They are not trained for the environment. If police want to be in schools, let them become licensed teachers or psychologists or counselors. High school students are going through a "pushing the envelope" stage of development with brains that are not fully connected. Understanding human development and how to guide students into adulthood is very important.
* They are expensive. We could hire more counselors and mediators, offer more personal mentoring, have smaller classes, and/or provide more learning opportunities with money saved.
* They are biased. We are all biased. Studies show that a community's bias affects how its police act. When rules are not equally enforced every time of every one, it makes the bias of the community and its enforcers the deciding factor in who is policed and who is not policed.
* They are the hammer that only sees nails. Several at the September hearing noted the "school to prison pipeline" which exists because minor infractions and normal teenage behavior suddenly become ticketable offenses requiring a court hearing and possible legal consequences. When my brother tried out his new wrist-rocket by seeing how far he could shoot a rock from our backyard and when that rock broke the window of our neighbor two houses away, my parents made my brother apologize and clean up the mess and pay for the broken window. He wasn't arrested and taken into custody and jailed and fined. We need to demonstrate how we solve disputes and problems without making our adversaries into criminals at every turn.
* Making students and school staff operate in a constantly-policed environment normalizes constant policing which should not be the norm. If we live in a free society, we should be laying the groundwork for young citizens to be free and autonomous, not subject to immediate enforcement (and unequal) enforcement of rules.
This is something that hasn't really been discussed in the forums I've heard. The adverse affects of over-policing in communities of color are well-documented. Laws and rules are not equally enforced. People in the unpoliced group may assume those who are over-policed must be making "bad choices" rather than realizing their privilege. How many in our community go faster than the speed limit on Losey Boulevard? How many are stopped and ticketed for it? It's easy for people who are never stopped and never expect to be stopped to assume those who are stopped must have done something really wrong. But we've all heard (or experienced) the stories of driving while black, walking while black, eating out while black, shopping while black, studying while black, etc. We need to remove over-policing from all our communities, not train students to accept it.
If we normalize unequal and biased enforcement of, often, arbitrary rules, we will be going in just the opposite direction in the effort to create a just society. If we normalize constant oversight of our every waking moment we will be heading into a nightmare.
The School District says,
"Community members interested in speaking at the forum should register by calling the superintendent’s office at 608.789.7659, or via email at email@example.com. Prospective speakers should register by 4:30 p.m. on October 12. Registered speakers will be given five minutes to speak during the forum.--"After the second public forum, the next steps in the SRO program review will include an analysis of local, state, and national data, a continued review of published literature on SRO programs, and gathering of local data through surveys and interviews."