Indigo Girls to Play Near the Valley

The Indigo Girls will perform in Northampton in March. Tickets sold out in January. Tickets are available for an 8 p.m. Indigo Girls concert on March 23 in Torrington, Connecticut. That's about an hour by car from Springfield, Massachusetts. The band will release a new album this year, probably in late summer.

Peace Action; 3,560 Acres Saved

On February 12 at 1 p.m. there will be a peace march and rally in Amherst. The event will start with a rally outside the main entrance to the Campus Center building at the University of Massachusetts.

Almost half of this year's entire federal budget of about $3 trillion is being spent on war. That’s according to:

www.WarResisters.org/FederalPieChart

With 4 percent of the world's population, the USA spends at much on the military as the rest of the world combined.

Two Marches Planned

A Springfield group is planning a march against police brutality. In about a decade, from 2006 to 2017, police brutality lawsuits cost taxpayers in Springfield some $3.9 million. On January 30, 2019, a jury ordered the city to pay another $250,000 to another victim of police brutality. “The march will be in May or early June,” Ellen Graves told the Valley Post in a phone interview on February 4. She works for Arise, a group that has organized well-attended marches in the city in recent years. The group has a web site at www.AriseSpringfield.org.

Greenfield to Boston Passenger Train Would Parallel Route 2

Local activists are praising a proposal by a state senator to create a passenger train line between Greenfield and Boston. “It would parallel Route 2,” Jared Freedman told the Valley Post in a phone interview on January 28. He is a spokesman for Senator Jo Comerford, who made the proposal.

Local News Round-up

About 130 tutors who are employed by the Keene public school system are planning a rally to demand justice. They may even go on strike, even though that is illegal. “We currently have 128 tutors with 14 positions still not filled for this school year,” Kathy Twombly told the Valley Post on January 19. She is a tutor in Keene and she is president of the tutors' union. Twombly's union is part of a bigger union that has a web site at www.nea.org.

She wrote a powerful essay explaining the tutors' demands. The full essay is at:

www.facebook.com/kathy.twombly.3/posts/10157120253007948

Photos: Northampton Women's March

These photos were taken on January 19. They show the Northampton Women's March. The most frequently seen signs opposed Trump's policies and supported peace, justice, and environmental protection. The event organizers have a web site at www.PioneerValleyWomensMarch.org. To enlarge a photo, click on it, then scroll down and click "see full size image." To zoom in more, click on the photo again. photos by Eesha Williams

Grocery Workers Win Big Raises

In Northampton, about 100 grocery store workers who are union members saw their minimum wage go up from $12.50 to $15 an hour on January 7. “I'm excited,” Brian Pamaylaon told the Valley Post in a phone interview on January 11. He has worked at the River Valley Co-op for two years. “This means I will be able to start saving to buy a house, or so I will have money in case of an emergency.”

Rally Set for January 12

On January 12 at 1 p.m., in Wendell, Massachusetts there will be a rally to stop proposed logging of a publicly-owned forest. Wendell borders Montague, which borders Greenfield. The rally will be outside 392 Montague Road.

Climate change caused by humans will create droughts and floods that will kill millions of people, unless people start using less gas for cars, oil for heating, and electricity generated from coal. That's according to the world's leading scientists.

350 Acres Saved

On December 28 a land trust announced it had saved 50 acres of land in Harrisville, New Hampshire. Harrisville is about two miles from Keene.  The land trust has a web site at www.HarrisCenter.org.

On December 18, a land trust that has a web site at www.MonadnockConservancy.org announced it had saved 300 acres of land in Dublin, New Hampshire. Dublin is also about two miles from Keene.

The USA is losing about 6,000 acres of open space every day.

Civil Disobedience Planned Near Greenfield

People seeking to stop logging of an 88 acre, publicly-owned forest of 110-year-old trees near Greenfield are asking the public to attend a training on how to use non-violent civil disobedience. "We strongly oppose logging the oak stand in Wendell State Forest," Michael Kellett told the Valley Post on December 15, 2018.