Philly Green Party

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Philly Greens to Amazon: “Stay Away”10.17.17

Green Party to Amazon: Stay Away from Philly

http://www.gp.org/amazon_stay_away

PHILADELPHIA, PA – On October 19, cities across the country will submit their proposals to become the home of Amazon’s new $5 billion headquarters. The Green Party of Philadelphia (GPOP) City Committee condemns Mayor Jim Kenney’s decision to enter Philadelphia into this competition while ignoring the harsh reality of the poor and working class citizens of Philadelphia. Far from improving our city, an Amazon headquarters would only exacerbate the crises we already face.

Amazon, which made $136 billion in revenue in 2016, is demanding tax breaks from the city it selects as its new home. Philadelphia cannot afford any more corporate welfare. The city has already given Comcast a ten-year property tax abatement in addition to tens of millions of dollars for Comcast’s new Center City building. It seems Mayor Kenney, a willing participant in Amazon’s bribery, can somehow put money on the table for Amazon but can’t seem to do so for the people of Philadelphia.

Philadelphia is the poorest big city in the U.S. Over 400,000 Philadelphians live below the federal poverty line, including 37% of the city’s children. Childhood hunger has more than tripled in parts of Philadelphia since 2006. But instead of using city money to end this crippling poverty, Mayor Kenney has promised millions of dollars to a massive corporation that only pays an average of 13% in taxes. Lauren Hitt, the Mayor’s communications director, has even said the city could overhaul its tax system for Amazon, saying, “We do have business taxes, but that’s something that could be looked at in the scope of Amazon coming here.”

Amazon claims its new headquarters will create 50,000 jobs, but Amazon has long been waging war against workers. The company has vigorously and consistently fought against its employees’ attempts at unionization and treats its workers with deadly disregard. In 2011, Amazon stationed ambulances outside its Allentown warehouse, where a lack of air conditioning allowed temperatures to rise over 100 degrees and caused 15 employees to collapse. A 2015 report by the New York Times detailed Amazon’s vile corporate workplace practices, including placing a woman who had recently had a stillborn child on a “performance improvement plan.”

According to S&P, Amazon “has been a major indirect contributor to higher housing prices and rents.” In Amazon’s current home of Seattle, rents have skyrocketed by 57% since 2011 and housing prices have increased as much as 13% per year. Philadelphia is already dealing with a housing crisis, and an Amazon headquarters would put that crisis into overdrive. The median house price in Philadelphia has soared 33% in the last decade, while the city lost 20% of its low-cost rental units between 2000 and 2014. By refusing to house the homeless but promising millions to house a multi-billion-dollar corporation, Mayor Kenney reveals his morally bankrupt priorities that put profits before people.

The Green Party of Philadelphia encourages all city residents to call Mayor Kenney at 215-686-2181 on Thursday, October 19 and tell him they oppose bringing Amazon to Philadelphia.

Taj Magruder, a Member At-Large of the GPOP City Committee, said, “It’s time to put a stop to corporate welfare in Philadelphia. We refuse to sell our city to Amazon.” Chris Robinson, GPOP Membership Secretary, said, “I agree with Taj that we must ban Amazon from Philadelphia. The Green Party sees the economy as being a support for a harmonious community and a healthy environment. Contrary to the two corporate parties, the Green Party platform says that ‘the giant multinational corporation [like Amazon] is the world’s most potent force for environmental and social destruction.’ Mega-monopolies like Amazon will find no friends in a Green Philadelphia.”

The Green Party is an independent political party founded on the four pillars of grassroots democracy, nonviolence, ecological wisdom, and social justice. For information about the Green Party of Philadelphia, please email gpop@gpop.org. Follow us on Twitter at @GreenPartyofPHL and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GreenPartyOfPhiladelphia.
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Posted in Local and Regional News, Press Releaseswith No Comments →

Greens to Meet, 10/26, 7:00 pm10.12.17

Greens to Meet
Thursday, October 26

7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Shissler Recreation Center
1800 Blair Street
(near Girard Ave)
Fishtown, Philadelphia

This venue is wheelchair accessible.
More information from 215-843-4256 and gpop@gpop.org

Please join us to plan for the Green Party Election Day Presence at the Polls.
Let’s talk and decide what you can do!

We look forward to your participation.
This meeting is open to the public with no admission charge.
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Posted in General Meetings, Newswith No Comments →

Petition: Oppose SEPTA’s Plant in Nicetown10.03.17

The Green Party has actively opposed SEPTA’s fracked-gas power plants proposed for Nicetown and other neighborhoods in Philadelphia.

Please take a look at this Energy Justice Petition. It lists seven excellent reasons why most people reject SEPTA’s proposal. If you feel that this petition speaks for you, please sign it and then forward it to your friends and neighbors.

We need your signature on the petition no later than October 19. So please sign it today.
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Greens Mark Peace Day, Blast Military Budget09.30.17

Green Party Peace Action Committee marks Peace Day, blasts Trump’s U.N. speech and the U.S. Senate’s military budget hike

http://www.gp.org/peace_day

WASHNGTON, D.C. – The Green Party’s Peace Action Committee (GPAX) calls for the development of alternative solutions to violence on the International Day of Peace. GPAX, an official committee of the Green Party of the U.S., has chosen Sept. 21, the International Day of Peace (“Peace Day”), to announce its reorganization after a hiatus of several years.
“President Trump’s belligerent speech in front of the United Nations (U.N.) General Assembly, with his appalling assertion that the U.S. would ‘totally destroy’ North Korea, show how urgently we need a strong movement for peace. The Green Party exists to represent the movement in the political field by an alternative to the two war parties,” said Rich Whitney, GPAX co-chair and Illinois Green Party member. “Mr. Trump’s threats, which blatantly violate the U.N. Charter, are unfortunately consistent with invasions and attacks launched by the previous two administrations against Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya, and with U.S. aid for assaults by Saudi Arabia on Yemen and by Israel on Gaza,” said Mr. Whitney.

Greens said the U.S. Senate vote on Monday for a massive increase in the military budget to $700 billion, approved with bipartisan support, and Democrats’ enthusiasm for a new Cold War with Russia are further evidence that a revived peace movement is necessary.
Peace Day was founded in 1981 through a U.N. resolution. GPAX exists to facilitate the planning and achievement of peace and justice actions of the Green Party and to support and promote the party’s anti-war candidates and agenda. “We recognize that peace is not just the absence of violence, it’s a willingness to resolve conflict in a constructive manner and to develop alternatives to society’s current patterns of violence,” said Rita Jacobs, member of GPAX and the Green Party of Michigan.

The Green Party lists nonviolence among the Ten Key Values in its national platform. The platform calls for a number of measures to achieve peace, including the elimination of weapons of mass destruction, demilitarization in the Middle East, swift action against human rights violations, and adherence to international law and existing treaties.
“We believe that nations should prepare for peace, not violence. The achievement of peace can only be realized through practices that lead to economic justice, universal nuclear disarmament, sane defense spending, international cooperation, and human rights,” said Deanna Dee Taylor, GPAX co-chair and member of the Green Party of Utah.
GPAX furthers its mission and the Green Party platform through educational events and activities at the national and state levels.

MORE INFORMATION
Green Party of the United States, http://www.gp.org, 202-319-7191, @GreenPartyUS.
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“Harvey”: Climate Change Alarm Bell08.31.17

Hurricane Harvey Rings the Climate Change Alarm Bell

http://www.gp.org/hurricane_harvey

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Green Party leaders are calling Hurricane Harvey the latest alarm bell on global warming and said that President Trump and Congress must make solving the climate crisis the nation’s top priority.
Greens expressed sympathy and solidarity with people in Houston and other parts of Texas and Louisiana who are suffering the effects of the hurricane and have lost homes, belongings, and loved ones.

“Along with providing relief to those affected by Harvey, we need a reversal of the U.S. political establishment’s irresponsible direction on climate change. The only solution to the crisis is a Green solution,” said Wesson Gaige, co-chair of the Green Party of Texas.

Texas Greens are urging support and donations to several frontline relief organizations: [Please visit http://www.txgreens.org/news and http://www.colorlines.com/articles/how-donate-money-and-other-aid-communities-color-housto n.]

The Green Party listed talking points on Hurricane Harvey, climate change, and Green solutions:
• The severity of Hurricane Harvey and the devastation it wreaked in Houston must be recognized as an effect of climate change and an indication of similar and worse disasters to come. The planet’s climate functions as a system: there are no isolated storms, all weather is affected by global warming. The Trump Administration’s rejection of science is already having deadly consequences.
• Although rainfall from Harvey is unprecedented, 2017 is the city’s third year with severe flooding. The disaster in Houston is one of many floods around the world that have displaced tens of millions this summer, with more than 1,000 deaths in South Asia.
• Lowering the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere is urgently necessary, otherwise increasingly unstable weather and the rise of sea levels promise a future of Katrinas, Sandys, Harveys, mass population displacement, and global social breakdown in the coming decades. Working class communities, the poor, and people of color are facing the worst effects. The only solution is a rapid conversion from fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy.
• The Green Party has called for 100% renewable energy by 2030. To achieve this goal, Green candidates are promoting the Green New Deal, a plan to reorganize the U.S. economy, expand the public sphere, and create millions of new jobs in conservation and energy conversion.
• The Green Party has compared global warming to the global threat posed by the Axis powers at the beginning of World War II and has called for U.S. leadership in a worldwide alliance to end the crisis that includes peaceful cooperation with currently perceived enemies like Russia and Iran.
• ExxonMobil and other companies that knew about the reality of climate change placed oil refineries and other toxic sites in flood zones. In the wake of Harvey, their irresponsibility resulted in a toxic brew that is now spreading over hundreds of square miles and contaminating water tables. Two explosions and fume injuries were reported Thursday morning. The poor and people of color who live in affected areas are suffering the most harm. State and local governments in Texas have refused to undertake any preparation or enact regulation in the face of predictable emergencies.
• Only the Green Party is taking the climate crisis seriously. Greens said that a political field limited to two parties, both of which accept money and influence from the fossil-fuel industry, has become a threat to future generations.

Republicans, led by President Trump, continue to deny that the crisis exists and are dismantling environmental regulations and agencies, including the EPA, even as the need for these agencies and for regulation has grown. Republicans are likely to use Hurricane Harvey to call for more drilling and refineries. The Green Party has condemned President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris agreement on climate change.

Democrats acknowledge the crisis but won’t take necessary action. The Obama Administration made sure that the Paris accords were not legally binding, and President Obama boasted of increased oil production. Hillary Clinton and her representatives kept carbon taxes, a ban on fracking, and other measures out of the 2016 Democratic Party platform.

Green Party leaders said that the “100 by ’50 Act” (Senate Bill 987) introduced by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) was “too little, too late” in light of warnings from scientists about the severity of the crisis.
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Remove Rizzo Statue08.19.17

Philly Greens Call for Removal of Frank Rizzo Statue

http://www.gp.org/frank_rizzo

PHILADELPHIA, PA – Earlier this month, white supremacists protested against the removal of a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee in Charlottesville, VA, where they killed Heather Heyer and injured dozens of others. These events highlight the urgent need to examine and eradicate racism in our culture and institutions. Therefore, the Green Party of Philadelphia (GPOP) City Committee calls for the removal of the statue of former Mayor Frank Rizzo that stands in front of the Municipal Services Building.

First and foremost, the Green Party salutes Philly REAL Justice, a Black-led coalition for racial, economic, and legal justice for communities of color, which has been organizing the effort to remove the Rizzo statue for quite some time. We offer Philly REAL Justice our admiration and our solidarity in the campaign to remove Rizzo’s statue.

Not all white supremacists wear white hoods or Confederate uniforms. Frank Rizzo, who served as Philadelphia’s police commissioner (1968-71) and mayor (1972-80), used his power to inflict terror and violence upon the African American community, as well as the LGBTQ community and others.

Among his many actions, he ordered police raids of the offices of SNCC, strip-searched members of the Black Panther Party in front of news cameras, and ordered police to attack a group of black students who were peacefully protesting for a black history curriculum. In 1980, the U.S. Department of Justice even sued Philadelphia for police conduct that included “physical abuse, unlawful use of deadly force and disciplinary procedures which condoned abuse.” In 1978, Rizzo explicitly urged people to “vote white” to change the City Charter so he could seek a third term as mayor. As long as his statue stands in front of the Municipal Services Building, the city gives its approval to Rizzo’s words and actions.

Rizzo’s legacy of racism and brutality remains alive and well in Philadelphia today. Between 2007 and 2013, police in Philadelphia killed people at a rate six times greater than in New York City; 81% of their victims were African American. Furthermore, 80% of stop-and-frisks, made without reasonable suspicion in Philadelphia, are made against people of color. These are injustices that Mayor James F. Kenney pledged he would end when he ran for mayor and must address even after the statue comes down. Removing the statue will not erase Rizzo’s legacy, but it will show that Philadelphia refuses to honor a man who made a career out of bigotry.

Members of the Green Party City Committee agree that the statue has no home on the steps of a city building. Chris Robinson, GPOP Membership Secretary, said, “I lived through the Rizzo Calamity and participated in the ‘STOP Rizzo’ movement to prevent him from changing the City Charter. Some now suggest moving his statue to a more appropriate place, and I believe that it would be appropriate to locate it in the courtyard of Eastern State Penitentiary.” Jarrett Anderson, GPOP Treasurer, said, “Rizzo’s statue should be moved to the bottom of the Schuylkill River.”

The Green Party is an independent political party founded on the four pillars of grassroots democracy, nonviolence, ecological wisdom, and social justice. For information about the Green Party of Philadelphia, please contact 215-843-4256 and gpop@gpop.org. Follow GPOP on Twitter at @GreenPartyofPHL and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GreenPartyOfPhiladelphia.
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Jules for Judge Campaign Secures Ballot Access08.18.17

Here’s Why to Vote for Jules

http://www.gp.org/jules_for_judge_ballot_access

The Campaign to Elect Jules Mermelstein to the Pennsylvania Superior Court is thrilled to announce that thanks to the efforts of volunteers across 44 counties, he will be on the ballot for the November 7, Pennsylvania General Election. More than 4,300 Pennsylvania voters submitted their signatures for the campaign to nominate Jules for Judge. On Friday, July 28, nearly double the signatures needed to place Jules Mermelstein on the ballot were submitted. None were challenged over the following days.

Mermelstein has worked as an attorney, and both as a high school and college government teacher. He spent more than two decades teaching Sunday school to teens and was elected five terms as a township official. Mermelstein has never had a single ethics complaint made against him. In fact, in two of Mermelstein’s bids for Upper Dublin Township Commissioner, he was endorsed by both major parties. Now, as a Green Party candidate, Mermelstein believes he will bring much-needed nonpartisan integrity to a judicial system that has been plagued by corruption.

Recently, Mermelstein was proud to appear at a candidate press conference for the Annual National Meeting of the Green Party of the United States, where he described his thoughts on injustices throughout Pennsylvania that have left voters seeking third party options. The issues he focused on include corruption in Pennsylvania courts and the constitutional right to have clean air and water.

“As a former criminal defense attorney,” Mermelstein told Green Party members from around the U.S., “I am fully aware of the racism inherent in that system. I actually argued a case once to a judge that the commonwealth hadn’t proven my client guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, and his response from the bench in open court was, ‘The fact that your client’s black makes it worse.’ I took that appeal actually to the court I’m running for and got an order for a new trial before a different judge.”

Mermelstein continued, “Pennsylvanians are lucky in that we have a constitutional right to a clean environment. Article 1, Section 27 of the Pennsylvania Constitution states that we’re entitled to clean air and pure water… Our state Supreme Court has repeatedly slapped down administrations — both Republican and Democrat — who have tried to cozy up to the fracking industry. This has not stopped that activity. We need judges throughout the system to recognize people’s right to a clean environment.”

The Jules for Judge Campaign has volunteers — Green and all others welcome — canvassing in towns across the state, and Mermelstein himself has been traveling tirelessly since his candidacy was announced. Be sure to check the campaign calendar to see when Mermelstein will be in your region and don’t forget to mark your calendars to vote November 7 and elect Jules Mermelstein as Superior Court Judge!

Follow Jules for Judge: https://www.facebook.com/Mermelstein4Judge and https://twitter.com/Jules4Judge.
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Greens Urge Prosecution of White Supremacists08.14.17

Green Party urges prosecution of white supremacist groups for domestic terrorism in the wake of racist violence in Charlottesville

http://www.gp.org/prosecute_white_supremacists

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Green Party of the United States is calling for vigorous prosecution of white supremacist groups responsible for the violence, injuries, and deaths that occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Saturday, August 12. Greens said that the violence inflicted on anti-racist counter-protesters, including a car driven into a crowd that killed one person and injured more than two dozen others, was a deliberate act of domestic terrorism.

The Green Party strongly condemns the white supremacists and their rally and violent actions and expressed solidarity with all those who participated in the counter-demonstrations. White supremacist and neo-Nazi organizations thrive on violence and threats of death and mayhem. They support a violent overthrow of the U.S. government and various forms of subjugation, expulsion, and extermination for all people of color, LGBTs, immigrants, Jews, Muslims, and anyone who doesn’t conform to their vision of a white gentile male-dominated society based on an extremist “blood and soil” ideology.

The violence on the University of Virginia campus was consistent with the openly expressed intention of white supremacist groups to provoke a “race war” and clearly fits the definition of terrorism.

President Trump responded by casting blame “on many sides,” as if peaceful anti-racist protesters were responsible for the attacks they suffered. The president’s reaction betrayed the influence of advisors like Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka, who have ties to fanatical far-right, neo-Nazi, anti-Muslim, and white supremacist organizations. Greens said that Mr. Trump’s loyalty to these staffers makes him unfit to occupy the White House. (On Monday, the president condemned “criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups” after widespread criticism of his initial response on Saturday.)

The Green Party counts nonviolence and respect for diversity among its Ten Key Values and has endorsed Black Lives Matter and its demand for racial justice. The party also recognizes and upholds the right of self-defense, in keeping with the Key Value of nonviolence. Greens support efforts to eradicate racism and other forms of discrimination, including removal of public monuments that glorify Confederate leaders and military personnel.
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Outreach Report05.28.17

Outreach Working Group
Green Party of Philadelphia
Report to the Membership, May 25, 2017

Written by Margie Neary. Presented by Taj Magruder.

1. Web updates
Can you ask Rachel to provide update on status of website improvements?

2. New banner
We need group to vote on whether or not to include the phone number on the banner. Personally, I agree with Georgie that we don’t need the phone number, but we’ll see what the group decides. Georgie will finalize the design accordingly (similar to old banner except with new logo) and work with Fast Signs to create the banner.

3. Opposing SEPTA fracked-gas power plant
Margie & Christian attended a few planning meetings with 350 Philly and helped advertise the rally outside of Bass’ office on social media and by canvassing in the local neighborhood. Several Greens turned out to support the event. Margie took pictures and video. Unclear what next steps are in this campaign, 350 is getting more engaged with local Nicetown groups to help plan the way forward.

4. Welcome Home Chelsea Manning
Perhaps ask Asantewaa to give a brief recap.

5. Summer Welcome Party
Saturday, July 8, 1-3pm, William Way. Can you bring flyers to hand out?
Jules Mermelstein will be the only speaker to allow ample time for Q&A. Newly registered Greens will be sent a mailed invitation. Other tasks will be coordinated by Margie & Christian and assigned to Outreach group members and others interested in helping.

6. Happy Hour
June 23, Spruce Street Harbor Park, details will be sent in an email

7. Next OWG meeting: Sunday, June 25, Temple Univ Student Center
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GPOP Statement on Primary Election Results05.21.17

Green Party of Philadelphia’s Statement on Tuesday’s Election Results

http://www.gp.org/philly_greens_on_primary_results

With preliminary results of the 2017 Primary Election now in, and given the Democratic Party’s stranglehold on our city’s politics, it is clear that Larry Krasner will be Philadelphia’s next District Attorney. It is the Green Party of Philadelphia’s hope that Krasner will abandon the longstanding pattern of corruption established by our city’s elected officials, as most recently exemplified by our present District Attorney, Seth Williams.

The Green Party of Philadelphia (GPOP, WWW.gpop.org) calls upon Krasner, if elected District Attorney, to bring an end to a criminal justice system that criminalizes poverty and race while letting white-collar corporate crimes go unpunished. The Green Party recognizes that Krasner’s platform includes many reforms which are in line with our party’s key values, and we hope that he honors these pledges in office, specifically:

In a city that is 43% African American, the Green Party calls for a District Attorney who reflects the truth that “Black lives matter” not only in his rhetoric, but also in his actions.
In a city where (according to the ACLU of Pennsylvania) 25% of pedestrian stops by police are made without reasonable suspicion and 80% of those pedestrians are people of color, the Green Party calls for a District Attorney who will push for an end to stop-and-frisk and who will refuse to bring cases resulting from these illegal, racist practices.
Only a few weeks after Philadelphia police arrested 22 people in Frankford for marijuana, the Green Party calls for an end to the failed War on Drugs and for the legalization of drug possession.
Only days after Philadelphians raised nearly $58,000 for the “Mama’s Bail Out Day” campaign, the Green Party calls for the elimination of a cash bail system that is designed to keep low-income people behind bars.
Finally, the Green Party calls for a District Attorney who will never pursue the death penalty – a barbaric practice that brings neither closure nor healing, but only more pain and victims.

In addition to restoring the idea of “justice” to our criminal justice system, Philadelphia’s next District Attorney must guarantee voters’ right to fair elections. We witnessed an astonishing attack of this right in March’s special election in PA House District 197, which was rampant with election fraud and voter intimidation. We demand that the next District Attorney continues the investigation into the special election and takes concrete steps to ensure election integrity.

Finally, we must highlight the urgent need for electoral reform as demonstrated by this election.
Krasner won the primary with 38% of the vote, representing only 6% of the city’s registered voters. A system where a candidate can win office, despite only a minority of voters casting their ballots for him, is an insult to democracy. Therefore, the Green Party calls for Instant Runoff Voting (IRV), where voters rank candidates in their order of preference and a candidate only wins if they obtain majority support.
We must also acknowledge the legalized bribery that is our campaign finance system. Total spending in this election is expected to double what was spent in Philadelphia’s last competitive primary for District Attorney. Indeed, Krasner’s campaign was supported both by grassroots efforts and by a super PAC funded by George Soros; we hope that his actions as District Attorney will be influenced by the people of Philadelphia and not by an outside billionaire. Therefore, the Green Party calls for the full public financing of elections and for stricter limits on campaign spending and contributions.

The Green Party is an independent political party founded on the four pillars of grassroots democracy, nonviolence, ecological wisdom, and social justice. For information about the Green Party of Philadelphia, please call 215-843-4256 or email gpop@gpop.org. Follow us on Twitter and on Facebook.
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This news release also appeared online in Mass Central (Where the Masses Converge).
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Time to Join our Spring Campaign05.21.17

GPOP Election Operations Working (EOW) Group
Volume 2, #3
April 23, 2017

TIME TO JOIN OUR SPRING CAMPAIGN

Spring has sprung, and the Green Party has already held its Wildflower Walk in the Wissahickon. Now is the time to join our Spring Campaign, if you are not already on board.
The rest of Report #3 will bring you up to date on what has happened with our Spring Campaign since Report #2 was posted to you on March 22. It is not too late for you to join us in building the Green Party, but more on that below.

Task: Organize Campaign Workers
The first aspect of our Spring Campaign is the distribution of our new flyer, “Register Green, Vote Green,” in the neighborhood where Green Party Representatives live. So far, we have completed two divisions, mine in Germantown and Charles’ in Oxford Circle East. Please let me know what date is good for you (afternoons or weekends), and I will bring flyers and help you pass them out door-to-door.
The second important aspect of our Spring Campaign is for us to get Jules Mermelstein on the November ballot as the Green Party candidate for judge of PA’s Superior Court. I have already posted a calendar of petitioning locations for your use and to this date we are making progress. Right now we have 107 signatures, collected by the following Green Party Representatives: Charles, Chris, Margie and Christian (double digits); and Georgie, Hillary, Jarrett, Taj and Vivek (single digits).
Please let me know when you are ready to join us in collecting signatures. The number one best location will be at your own polling place during the Municipal Primary on May 16. Every voter leaving the polls that day is eligible to sign the Jules Mermelstein nomination paper. Please take 5/16 off from work, or spend as many hours as possible joining us at your polling place.

I hope that you will also let me know in advance of events in your neighborhood. Then, Green Party Representatives can join you there to collect signatures. This process has worked well during the last two years, but it requires your active participation.

Task: Build an Infrastructure to Win Elections
Please consider joining the GPOP Outreach Working Group (OWG). These are the Greens who planned our Wildflower Walk in the Wissahickon, and who are planning our July Welcome Party for New Members and other exciting events. Their next Green Party Happy Hour will take place on April 28 at Bob & Barbara’s Lounge.
The May OWG meeting will take place at 2:00 pm on Sunday, 5/7, at the Gittis Student Center on Temple University’s campus. Please contact Outreach Co-chair Margie Neary for more information at 215-868-7290 and margie.neary-at-gmail.com.

Task: Recruit Green Party Candidates
Unfortunately, I have nothing new to report on this task. If you have made any progress, please send me the information.

Also, please let me know today: 1) when may I drop a clipboard with nominating papers at your house and 2) when would you like to flyer with me door-to-door in your neighborhood?

It is Good to be Green,
Chris Robinson, 215-843-4256
Membership Secretary
Green Party of Philadelphia

PS: Members of the GPOP EOW Group are called “Green Party Representatives.” According to a motion approved by the GPOP membership on September 30, 2015, the EOW Group has three tasks: “recruiting Green Party candidates who will campaign for office; organizing people to work on those campaigns; and building an infrastructure that will be able to win electoral campaigns.”
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GPOP Report to GPPA Quarterly Delegates Meeting04.23.17

Green Party of Philadelphia (GPOP) Quarterly Report to the Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA),
April 20, 2017

The Green Party of Philadelphia (GPOP) has been very active since the last Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA) Delegate Meeting on January 29, 2017, in Harrisburg, PA. At that meeting GPPA endorsed Cheri Honkala to run for PA State Representative in District 197. For more information about this campaign, please see http://www.cheri197.com/.

February 2017
February 2.
The GPOP City Committee (think, “steering committee”) approved and posted a News Release on GPOP’s endorsement of Cheri Honkala for PA State Representative.
February 4. The GPOP Outreach Working Group (OWG) held a Welcome Party for New Members. Forty-five people attended, and many volunteered to work on GPOP committees and on Cheri Honkala’s Campaign.
February 5. The GPOP OWG held its monthly meeting. Members analyzed the Welcome Party and began planning another one. They also planned the GPOP presence at Solidarity Forum on 2/11 and began work on a number of events to involve Green Party members.
February 6. The GPOP Electoral Operations Working (EOW) Group posted Report #1 of 2017, “Volunteer for Special Election on 3/21.”
February 22. The GPOP Membership Meeting was attended by 24 people. They elected a new seven-person GPOP City Committee which included four members who became Greens via the Stein/Baraka Campaign. The new GPOP leadership is much younger than last year’s City Committee. Please see, “Philly Greens Elect New Leaders.”

March 2017
March 5.
The GPOP OWG held its monthly meeting. Under discussion were a GPOP representation at the Solidarity Forum on 3/11, a Green Party Happy Hour, a Green Party Wildflower Walk in Wissahickon Park, another Welcome Party for New Members, and a Green Party Bowling Night.
March 21. GPOP members participated at the polls in the Special Election for PA Representative in District 197. The Green Party’s Cheri Honkala came in second with 12 percent of the votes.
March 22. The GPOP EOW Group posted Report #2, “Start of Our Spring Campaign.” The GPOP Spring Campaign has two projects: collection of nominating signatures for Jules Mermelstein and door-to-door distribution of the new “Register Green, Vote Green” flyer.
March 23. The GPOP Membership Meeting was attended by 15 people. Greens present endorsed the movement to stop SEPTA’s fracked-gas power plant in Nicetown. Greens also endorsed Jules Mermelstein for Judge of PA Superior Court. Eric Hamell and Olivia Faison were endorsed to run in November on the Green Party ballot for Inspector of Elections. GPOP members also elected a new slate of delegates to GPPA.
March 31. The GPOP OWG held a Green Party Happy Hour at W/N W/N in Spring Garden, Philadelphia. Thirteen people attended. Another Happy Hour is planned for April.

April 2017
April 2.
The GPOP OWG held its monthly meeting.

GPOP Members also attended:
The March 25 Rally Against the Drone Command Center in Horsham, PA. It was good to join other Greens there from Bucks and Lancaster Counties.
The March 25 Beef and Beer Fundraiser for the May Day USA March and Family Celebration, which will be held on 5/1 in Clark Park, West Philadelphia.
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Start of Our Spring Campaign04.19.17

GPOP Election Operations Working (EOW) Group
Volume 2, #2
March 22, 2017

Thank you for helping with Cheri Honkala’s Campaign for PA State Representative in District 197. All that we know of the outcome is that the Republican candidate (the only one on the ballot) received 7.4 percent of the vote (198). The other three write-in candidates (two Democrats and one Green) received 92.6 percent of the vote (2,483). We are now waiting for the write-in votes to be counted on 3/25, and then for any re-counts to be completed.
Please let me know which polling place (Ward?, Division?) you were assigned to, and I will let you know how the final vote turned out in your division.

It is now time for us to begin the Spring Campaign, which has two aspects: publicize the Green Party and get Jules Mermelstein, Esq. on the November ballot for PA Superior Court Judge. There will be more about both of these below.
The rest of Report #2 will bring you up to date on what has happened since Report #1 was posted to you on February 6, and it will outline more of our Spring Campaign.

Task: Organize Campaign Workers
Just in time for our Spring Campaign, the GPOP Outreach Working Group has produced a new flyer, “Register Green, Vote Green,” for us to distribute in our neighborhoods. Please let me know what date is good for you (afternoons or weekends), and I will bring flyers and help you pass them out door-to-door.
The other important aspect of our Spring Campaign is for us to get the Green Party’s Jules Mermelstein on the November ballot. I will be in touch with you to get nominating papers to you. (Please let me know if you already have a legal-size clipboard, so I don’t purchase too many.)
In collecting signatures, the number one best location will be at your own polling place during the Municipal Primary on May 16. Every voter leaving the polls that day is eligible to sign the Green Party Nomination Paper. Please take this day off from work, or spend as many hours as possible volunteering at your polls.

We will also be collecting signatures at local events: block parties, concerts, political rallies, etc. I hope that you will let me know in advance of events in your neighborhood. Then, Green Party Representatives can join you there. This process has worked well during the last two years, but it requires your active participation.

Task: Build an Infrastructure to Win Elections
Please consider joining the GPOP Outreach Working Group. These are the Greens who planned our excellent Welcome Party for New Members back in February, and who represented the Green Party at the last two monthly Solidarity Forums. Their next event will be a Green Party Happy Hour on March 31 at W/N W/N.
The next meeting of our Outreach Working Group will take place at 2:00 pm on Sunday, 4/2, at the Gittis Student Center on Temple University’s campus. Please contact Outreach Co-chair Margie Neary for more information at 215-868-7290 and margie.neary-at-gmail.com.
We still need help with our website design, fundraising, and publication of a GPOP newsletter. If you are ready to take charge – or to help out – please let me know.

Task: Recruit Green Party Candidates
We are still looking for candidates for Philadelphia District Attorney and Philadelphia Comptroller. In addition, we would like to run some Green Party candidates for PA State Representative in 2018. Please let me know if you have a suggestion, and I will contact that person.

I hope that you will continue to be active along with our other 31 Representatives. Please let me know how you plan to fit into our vigorous organizing.

It is Good to be Green,
Chris Robinson, 215-843-4256
Membership Secretary
Green Party of Philadelphia

PS: Members of the GPOP EOW Group are called “Green Party Representatives.” According to a motion approved by the GPOP membership on September 30, 2015, the EOW Group has three tasks: “recruiting Green Party candidates who will campaign for office; organizing people to work on those campaigns; and building an infrastructure that will be able to win electoral campaigns.”
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Greens oppose SEPTA power plant, Endorse Mermelstein for Judge04.05.17

Green Party opposes SEPTA gas power plant, Endorses Jules Mermelstein for PA Superior Court Judge

http://www.gp.org/nicetown

At the March Membership Meeting of the Green Party of Philadelphia (GPOP), members voted to endorse the opposition campaign to the proposed SEPTA fracked-gas power plant in Nicetown. Despite the SEPTA board voting to approve the project, the Green Party voted to support the ongoing efforts to resist the building of the gas power plant.

Over 50 groups have signed on to support the resistance efforts including 350Philadelphia, Avenging the Ancestors Coalition, Brandywine Peace Community, Caucus of Working Educators, Food and Water Watch, Neighborhood Networks, Edward T. Steel Public School, Friends of Mifflin School, and many other community, environmental, faith and labor organizations.

Chris Robinson, GPOP membership secretary, said, “It is important to continue educating the public about the environmental dangers of the gas power plant and mobilizing those who are opposed.” Legislators who have voiced support for the opposition to the plant include State Representative Rosita Youngblood and Councilwoman Cindy Bass.

The Greens in attendance also voted unanimously to endorse Jules Mermelstein for PA Superior Court Judge. “I am delighted to receive the endorsement of the Green Party of Philadelphia,” Mermelstein responded. “In recent years we have seen the evidence of the misuse of the justice system by both parties in Pennsylvania. We have seen PA Supreme Court justices being forced to resign. We have seen Attorneys General of both parties end up in jail. We have seen a juvenile court judge selling our children to a private prison. And most recently we have seen the DA of Philadelphia indicted for corruption. The Green Party and I will be reaching out to work with other individuals and groups interested in bringing true justice to Pennsylvania, beginning with my election to the Superior Court in November.”

Mermelstein, a retired attorney and teacher, received the endorsement of the Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA) in January and will run as a Green Party candidate in the November 7 General Election.

Green Party members Olivia Faison and Eric Hamell will run for Minority Inspector of Elections at their respective polling places in November. Galen Tyler, GPOP chair, said, “We are searching for others who would like to run for office on the Green Party ballot in 2017 and 2018.”

The Green Party is an independent political party founded on the four pillars of nonviolence, grassroots democracy, ecological wisdom and social justice. For information about the next Green Party meeting, please call 215-843-4256 or email gpop@gpop.org.
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This article also appeared on

This article also appeared on OpEdNews, , https://www.opednews.com/articles/Green-Party-opposes-SEPTA-by-Chris-Robinson-Clean-Energy _Clean-Energy_Election_Energy-170330-720.html">OpEdNews.
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Major Endorsements for Honkala in 19703.12.17

BREAKING NEWS: Philly candidate receives major endorsements

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

http://www.gp.org/honkala_receives_major_endorsements

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — Cheri Honkala, a well-known Kensington-based anti-poverty activist and candidate for Pennsylvania State Representative in District 197 has been endorsed by a national progressive political action organization, Our Revolution, and a local progressive group, Philadelphia Neighborhood Networks.
Our Revolution, the group kicked off by 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, announced its endorsement for Honkala on Tuesday. Andrea Putnam, former Bernie campaign director for Pennsylvania and current Honkala GOTV director, praised the announcement. “Our Revolution’s endorsement only amplifies Cheri’s lifetime commitment to fighting for the people, who are tired of politics-as-usual at both local and national levels.”

“Cheri Honkala is running a truly grassroots campaign this is of, by, and for the people of Pennsylvania’s 197th legislative district,” said Tim Canova, who garnered the support of progressives nationwide when he vied for the seat of then-Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz in a Florida congressional district. “Her campaign—with its message of human rights and justice for the 99 percent—presents an opportunity for a great progressive breakthrough,” Canova said. “Progress For All and Tim Canova are proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with Cheri at this historic moment.”

Honkala was also recommended by the PEOPLE Committee of one of the city’s largest labor unions representing public-service workers, A.F.S.C.M.E. District Council 47, for an official union endorsement by the full delegation. That endorsement came a day after Honkala met with members of A.F.S.C.M.E District 47 — the initials stand for the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees — to explain what makes her most qualified to represent one of Pennsylvania’s poorest legislative districts. Honkala says she is honored to have been recommended for a labor union endorsement. “The members of A.F.S.C.M.E District Council 47 know me well,” she said. “I have spent the better part of 30 years fighting alongside local labor unions because it is the right thing to do.”

Former Philadelphia health commissioner and past president of the American Public Health Association Walter Tsou supports Honkala, too.
“Cheri has been fighting for the little guy all her life,” Tsou said. “She is far and away the most progressive candidate in the 197th district and we need her in Harrisburg.”

Cheri Honkala, who has advocated for poor and homeless persons in and around the 197th district for the past 30 years, vowed to continue working with labor unions. “I am not beholden to corporations and political bosses–only to our poor and working class communities,” Honkala said. “If elected, I will continue to be in solidarity with labor unions on the picket line as well as supporting workers’ issues in the state house.”

Honkala’s deep relationships with unions is apparent. Jim Moran, Director Emeritus of Philaposh—an organization created by unions to advocate for the occupational health and safety of public-service workers in Philadelphia—gushed about Honkala. “It’s time to trade in the politics of party for the politics of performance,” Moran said. “Cheri Honkala has a 30-year track record of performing tremendously for labor rights, human rights and the rights of our communities to a better life. I’m proud to have known her, worked with her, and gone to jail with her in these struggles. This is no time to turn our backs on Cheri in the race for State Representative in the 197th District.”

What makes Honkala’s race even more exciting and relevant is she stepped up after two district legislators in a row — both of whom happened to be Democrats — resigned on federal corruption charges. “It’s time to end this legacy of corruption that practices the politics of fear. We need a new voice to advocate for our district in Harrisburg,” Honkala said.

Unfortunately, the powers that be have gotten in the way of Honkala’s path to victory. The Green Party of Pennsylvania campaign submitted paperwork on time to be on the ballot. They asked the state if they needed to submit anything else. The Department of State’s Board of Commissions, Elections, and Legislation said, “no.” The day after the deadline, they got an email saying they needed to submit one more document. They rushed it to Harrisburg that day. It didn’t help, and Honkala was not allowed onto the ballot. The state Supreme Court upheld Friday a lower court’s ruling in a split 4-3 decision that Honkala be kept off the ballot because of the state agency’s clerical error. Undeterred by the ruling, Honkala and her coalition of supporters are organizing a write-in campaign for the special election. In a low-turnout special election, Honkala needs just 1,500 votes to win this special election.

The Democrats’ first candidate was knocked off the ballot because he was not legally qualified to run in District 197 because he does not live in the district. Democrats attempt to place another candidate on the ballot was denied by a court ruling. Republican Lucinda Little will be the only candidate on the ballot.
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