Social Justice Calendar of Western Massachusetts

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CoJourn for Racial Justice

June 30, 2020 @ 8:00 am - September 12, 2020 @ 5:00 pm

Announcing a 12-week pilot version of CoJourn specifically in support of Racial Justice!
Kick-off Event Sunday, June 28th, 7:00 - 9:00 pm EST

Whether you are a long-time Racial Justice activist, or brand new to thinking about race and racism, it is clear that NOW IS THE TIME to boldly move forward, and take our work to the next level.

CoJourn for Racial Justice will help you clarify your role, identify next steps, and set up a structure for success to be an ongoing part of the solution in a sustained way.

Read more and Sign up HERE

The 12-week pilot program will include:

Video instructions and Guidebook on how to use the CoJourn framework for support and accountability in a compassionate, celebration-focused way

An opportunity to be matched with a CoJourn partner also interested in racial justice, or work with someone you choose

A CoJourn for Racial Justice Resource List including our favorite existing curated lists. This will include ideas for action, community-care, and education for folks from different racial identities, roles, and experiences with racial justice work
Monthly group meetings to check-in, get support, share successes and resources (meeting attendance is optional, and will be held on Zoom)
Group Kick-off session (Sunday June 28th, 7-9 pm)

On-call support from a diverse team of expert coaches along the way (coaches are all experienced social justice educators / change-makers and familiar with the CoJourn program)

CoJourn for Racial Justice Co-Collaborators and Coaches:
Angelica Castro, M.A., CPC, Social Justice Educator, Certified Professional Coach
Oscar Collins, M.Ed., Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Consultant
Jessie Cooley, M.Ed., Nonprofit Leadership, Social Justice Educator and Mediator
Latrina Denson, M.Ed., Social Justice Educator, Higher Education Administration
Karl Henricksen, CoJourn Co-Founder
Molly Keehn, Ed.D., CoJourn Co-Founder
Elise Manning, M.S.W., LICSW, Trauma-Focused Psychotherapist and Collaborative Artist
Jen Matos, Ed.D., Higher Education Faculty and Certified Professional Coach
Emily Pritchard, M.Ed., Educator with Social Justice Focus, Performing Artist
Tanya O. Williams, Ed.D. Social Justice Educator, Certified Professional Coach

Find out more »

6:00 pm

DPH Hearing on the Holyoke Medical Center Plans to Close the Birthing Center

July 28, 2020 @ 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

DPH Hearing Call-in Info:
Tuesday, July 28th 6PM
Dial-in Number: 888-390-5007
Access Code: 2022446
To stay involved, sign up at:
To submit written testimony for the DPH hearing, email to
(English Below)
En los últimos años, la administración del centro médico de Holyoke (Holyoke Medical Center, HMC) han eliminado servicios de parteras bilingües en su centro de parto. Estos servicios de parteras mostraron mejores resultados para madres y sus recién nacidos- incluyendo un decrecimiento en la mortalidad infantil- en los últimos 35 años. Ahora, los ejecutivos de HMC planean cerrar el centro natal completamente, eliminando un servicio esencial para familias expectantes en Holyoke y otras comunidades cercanas.
Por favor inscríbase si se le interesa conocer más sobre la coalition para acceso a servicios natales y para atender la audiencia virtual con el departamento de salud pública el 28 de julio a las 6 de la tarde. Juntos podemos hacer que nuestras voces sean escuchadas!

In the last several years, Holyoke Medical Center administrators eliminated bilingual midwifery care services at the hospital’s Birthing Center – midwifery care that dramatically improved outcomes for mothers and their newborns – including infant mortality – over the last 35 years. Now, HMC executives plan to shutter the Birthing Center altogether, eliminating a vital service to birthing families in Holyoke and surrounding communities.
Please sign up if you are interested in learning more about the Coalition for Birthing Care Access and to attend the Department of Public Health virtual hearing about this closure on July 28th at 6:00pm. Together we can make sure that our voices are heard!!

Find out more »

7:00 pm

Honoring Cuba’s Achievements: Ending the Blockade/Saving Lives

July 28, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

A for Peace OnLine Meeting

Featuring Cheryl Labash, Dr. Emily Brown, Merri Ansara
Hosted/Moderated by Lee Schlenker, & Witness for Peace Solidarity Collective
and Dr. Gloria Caballero, UMass/Amherst, Spanish and Portuguese Studies, and presenter of the Tuesday, July 23, 7:00 webinar on “Race Relations in Revolutionary Cuba: A Personal Story,” cosponsored by

This fundraising event for Pastors for Peace combines a rescheduling of our previously postponed March PfP Caravan program, our annual July 26 Cuba Revolution Day Anniversary event, and the premiere announcement of the campaign for a Commonwealth of Massachusetts Resolution to End the Blockade and Save Lives in light of Cuba’s medical achievements in combating the Covid-19 Pandemic around the world.

For our friends and those interested in the Boston area, in Massachusetts, in Connecticut and Maine and throughout New England. Featuring:

Cheryl LaBash, IFCO/Pastors for Peace spokesperson and one of five co-chairs of the National Network on Cuba. Cheryl works in Michigan with Doctors4Detroit supporting the ELAM scholarship program, Detroit area students and graduates and in Washington DC with the International Committee’s annual Days of Action to end the blockade. She is a co-chair of and organizer in the Saving Lives campaign.
Emily Brown, MD, graduate of Escuela Latinoamericana de Medicina (ELAM) in Cuba and currently a second year resident in the UMass Medical School Family Medicine Program in Fitchburg. Emily was one of the presenters in Left Berlin’s May program on “Coronavirus and Internationalism: Solidarity á la Cuba.”

Merri Ansara, member of the first Venceremos Brigade to Cuba in 1969 and long-time Cuba activist, having worked there as a journalist, translator, urban planner and teacher. She was a founding member of and director and founder of Common Ground Education & Travel Services. Currently in Cuba, she is a leading organizer for a Massachusetts resolution to End the Blockade and Support the Saving Lives campaign.

Please register in advance for this meeting —

First time Zoomers welcome — help available.

Find out more »

Praise the Dead: The role of dead trees and fire in forest ecosystems

July 28, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Ecologist George Wuerthner, author of 38 books including Keeping the Wild: Against the Domestication of the Earth. Tuesday, July 28th from 7:00 to 9:00 Talk with Q&A via Zoom Learn about George Wuerthner's experience in the West Fires in our state done in the name of habitat restoration & fire suppression The Montague Plains, Muddy […]

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Nuclear Weapons – The Threat & What We Can Do

July 28, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Zoom in with Elaine Scarry and Dr. Ira Helfand as we discuss the threats and issues around nuclear weapons and what we can do to mitigate those threats. From No First Use to the billions being spent on modernization, there is plenty we can be advocating changes on. Register here.

Find out more »

Power to Heal – Medicare and the Civil Rights Movement

July 28, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Power to Heal – Medicare and the Civil Rights Movement, narrated by Danny Glover
Tuesday, July 28 at 7 p.m.
Check out the website for more details:

This is sponsored in partnership between the Social Justice Ministries Council of the UU Church in the town of Harvard, MA and the League of Women Voters, town of Harvard. The film is one hour. Producer and Project Creator: Dr. Barbara Berney will join our gathering after the showing for a Q&A session.

Zoom link for HUUC and MAPA members and friends:

Honestly, in the midst of a deadly world-wide pandemic and fierce protests for equality and equity, this movie is a must see. It is an unknown chapter of the civil rights movement and shows how using the carrot of Medicare dollars the federal government virtually ended the practice of segregating patients, doctors, medical staffs, blood supply and linens. Imagine that happening today!

“Of all the forms of inequity, injustice in healthcare
is the most shocking and inhumane.”
—Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr

This will not be recorded. If you have questions, please email
“Power To Heal is long overdue. It unearths another painful past – racial segregation and discrimination in healthcare during Jim Crow, resulting in Blacks being denied basic medical care. This is a must see. It’s riveting from start to finish.” Michele Goodwin, Director, Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy, Professor of Law, University of California – Irvine
“Many unsung heroes of health care and civil rights history appear on camera here for the first time, along with extensive archival footage on medical discrimination and the contentious passage of Medicare. The story it tells reminds us how far we have come, but also how far we have to go to end racial inequality in health care. The film should be of great interest to community groups that advocate for equal rights and health care for all, and will be a valuable teaching tool for university-level courses in civil rights and public health history.” Beatrix Hoffman, Professor of History, Northern Illinois University, Author, Health Care for Some: Rights and Rationing in the United States since 1930

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