7,000 Vermont Workers to Vote on Union

About 7,000 workers in Vermont will vote on whether to form a union. The so-called “homecare” workers take care of patients who are too sick or too elderly to take care of themselves. They work in the patients’ homes, rather than at nursing homes or other institutions. They are paid by the government. The workers will vote by mail between September 9 and 27.

Simba Concert Is August 10

Simba will perform a free, outdoor public concert in Putney, Vermont, near Brattleboro, on August 10. At a recent Simba concert, at least 100 people danced for hours. The band plays reggae and funk, among other kinds of music.

Valley Nuke Battle Is On

On December 12 in Brattleboro, protesters occupied a nuclear corporation’s board room. Meanwhile, activists seeking to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant are gearing up for a vote next month in the Vermont senate on whether the state’s top nuclear regulator – who many say has been too friendly to the industry – will get to keep his job.

Vermont Yankee is three miles from Massachusetts and a stone’s throw from New Hampshire.

Occupy Wall Street Rallies in Valley

Some 700 peaceful protesters were arrested in recent days in New York City. The Occupy Wall Street protesters’ web site says, “We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are suffering from environmental pollution. We are working long hours for little pay and no rights, if we're working at all. We are getting nothing while the other 1 percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.” The protesters' web site is:

www.OccupyWallSt.org

Review: Nationally Known Bands Played Near Brattleboro

Seven local bands, some of which tour nationally, played at a festival whose mission was to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant. The music festival was on September 17 in Newfane, Vermont. The bands were outstanding. Among the highlights were Simba and Pulse Prophets. Hundreds of people attended; many danced. The autumn weather was sunny and comfortable.

Here are the web sites of the bands that performed:

www.EamesBrothersBand.com

www.shokazoba.com

www.PulseProphets.com

www.MoAmbesa.com

www.ClaytonSabine.com

www.DeWaltMusic.com/simba.shtml

Photos: Autumn Colors

These photos were taken at a pond in the Madame Sherri Forest, a park in Chesterfield, New Hampshire, near Brattleboro and Keene. The photos were taken on September 18. More information about the park is at this town web site:

www.ChesterfieldOutdoors.com/plands/sherri.html

To enlarge a photo, click on it, then scroll down and click "See full-size image."

photos by Eesha Williams

2,000 at Rally Say 'Healthcare Is a Human Right'

In what could be a model for Massachusetts, New Hampshire and the nation, Vermont is poised to enact single-payer health care. On May 1, more than 2,000 people, including a large contingent from Brattleboro, marched on the Vermont statehouse.

The march was part of a movement that has earned the support of Vermont governor Peter Shumlin, and the state legislature. Shumlin lives in Putney, near Brattleboro. The insurance industry is working to kill the movement's momentum in the legislature.

Concert Review: Red Molly

Red Molly performed an excellent public concert in Putney, Vermont, near Brattleboro, on April 17. According to the Boston Globe, "Red Molly may be from New York, but their bluegrass and old-time gospel sounds and buoyant three-part harmonies are so down-home it's as if their notes are carried to you on the crisp air of the Ozarks."

Red Molly will play in North Carolina on April 29 and in California on June 23. The band performed in Putney with singer Chris O'Brien, who performed on Garrison Keillor's radio program, "A Prairie Home Companion."

In Amherst, Brattleboro: Protest War Taxes, Tax Evading Corporations

Taxes are due on April 18 this year. Activists in Amherst and Brattleboro plan to use the occasion to educate the public. About half the federal budget goes to war. The richest Americans and biggest corporations are able to avoid paying all or most of the money they owe the government.

Protesters will hand out a pie chart showing what the government does with the money that Americans pay in income taxes:

www.warresisters.org/sites/default/files/FY2012piechart-color.pdf

Vermont Nears Passage of Single-Payer Health Care; Rally May 1

In what could be a model for Massachusetts, New Hampshire and the nation, Vermont is poised to enact single-payer health care. A march and rally that will be held on May 1 in Montpelier is part of a mass movement that has earned the support of Vermont governor Peter Shumlin, and the state legislature. Shumlin lives in Putney, near Brattleboro. The insurance industry is working to kill the movement's momentum in the legislature.