Local News Roundup

On July 29 in Northampton, there will be a march for universal health care. The march starts at 1 p.m. at Childs Park, which is bordered by North Elm and Prospect streets, and by Woodlawn Avenue. As of July 26, more than 65 people had RSVP'd at:

www.facebook.com/events/121333305132027

Photo: View from Goat Peak

This photo was taken on April 9 from the summit of Goat Peak in the Mount Tom Reservation in Holyoke. It shows the Connecticut River and, in the distance, some of the buildings at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. The warmest temperatures in months are expected in the Valley in the coming days. The Reservation's 2,000 acres are open to the public for hiking. A trail map is at:

www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-west/mount-tom-state-rese...

To enlarge the photo, click on it, then scroll down and click "see full size image." photo by Eesha Williams

Civil Disobedience Planned

Activists in Brattleboro are planning to use civil disobedience to protest TD Bank, which is funding the Dakota Access Pipeline to move oil, which causes climate change. The action is set for February 22 at 3:30 p.m. at the TD Bank at 215 Main Street in Brattleboro. The activists are asking people to come and support them, without risking arrest. The Brattleboro chapter of 350.org is promoting the event.

Environmental Victories

Here in the Valley, solar is replacing coal and nuclear, and bicyle paths and sidewalks are being built. In related news, six people from the Valley recently traveled to North Dakota, where they helped Native Americans who are fighting a proposed oil pipeline.

Dirty Dozen Brass Band Concert is September 10

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band will play at Gateway City Arts in Holyoke on Saturday, September 10 at 7 p.m. The venue has a dance floor. You can hear the band's music at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSUAk126cUc&list=PL0jJSYejQWTPvz5vz_emGy...

In the next few months, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band will perform in New York City, Chicago, and Hawaii.

Tickets for the Holyoke concert are $25 in advance. They are available at www.signaturesoundspresents.com.

photo by www.vancouverwinejazz.com

Workers Unite

With Labor Day right around the corner, the Valley Post spoke with a worker at a Springfield-based union for an update. Grocery workers are negotiating their first union contract at Wild Oats Market in Williamstown, Massachusetts, Matt Szulborski told the Valley Post in a telephone interview on August 12. He works for United Food and Commercial Workers union Local 1459. In February, the 42 workers at Wild Oats joined the union, which has a web site at www.ufcw1459.com.

Grocery Workers Rally

On March 24 at 4 p.m. in Holyoke, there will be a two-hour rally for justice. Workers at Stop & Shop throughout New England are asking the billion dollar company for fair wages and benefits. Stop & Shop workers in the Valley are union members. They have a web site at www.ufcw1459.com.

The rally will be at 28 Lincoln Street. The public is invited. Details are at:

www.facebook.com/events/817039288425399

Victory for Grassroots Movement to Raise Taxes on Millionaires

On January 1, the Massachusetts minimum wage went from $9 an hour to $10 an hour. About 280,000 people got a raise. This happened because thousands of people volunteered to gather signatures on petitions. That effort was coordinated by Raise Up Massachusetts. The same group last month submitted to the Massachusetts Secretary of State about 157,000 pen-on-paper signatures intended to raise taxes on people who make more than $1 million a year. About 13,000 people in Massachusetts made over $1 million in 2013, the most recent year for which data is available.

Labor Rallies Set

Unions in the Massachusetts cities of Springfield and Holyoke are asking the public to attend rallies for justice in Springfield and in the nearby towns of Amherst, Chicopee, Westfield, and West Springfield. On Labor Day, September 7, from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m., there will be a rally in Amherst for workers' rights. The public is welcome for all or part of that time. For more information, contact Jocelyn Silverlight by phone at (908) 601-6342 or by e-mail: jocelyn@uaw2322.org.

March Starts at Salsarengue, Includes Live Music

There will be a march in Holyoke April 27 to protest plans by governor Charlie Baker to take away control of the city's schools from people who live there. The march will start at 3 p.m. at Salsarengue Restaurant, 392 High Street.

Eduardo Melendez is a teacher at Holyoke public schools, a position he has held for 20 years. “In Puerto Rico, we do rallies with live music,” he told the Valley Post on April 24. “That's what we'll do on Monday. We will have a whole bunch of musicians.”