500 at Rally Say 'Close Vermont Yankee'

About 500 people attended a march and rally to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant February 21 in Brattleboro. Organizers asked people to contact their legislators in advance of a key vote in the Vermont senate on February 24. One anti-nuclear group is seeking donations so it can run a television commercial about the vote. Details are at www.vpirg.org

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This photo shows the February 21 march. Please click on the photo to enlarge it. photo by Eesha Williams

Photo: Springfield Janitors Fight for Justice

Janitors in Springfield and community supporters on February 18 visited management at the MassMutual Center to ask the company to recognize the janitors' union. Managers refused to meet with the workers, but accepted a letter. The company has not yet responded to the workers' request.

"We will continue the fight until we get justice," said Jesse Martin of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 615.

Photo: Keene Mountain

This photo, taken in Keene on February 15, shows Mount Monadnock. To enlarge the photo, please click on it. The mountain, including thousands of acres of land, was protected from development by the collective action of ordinary citizens. Hiking trails lead to the summit. From there, one can see all six states in New England. A trail map is at:

www.NHstateparks.org/uploads/MonadnockHikingTrailsWeb.pdf

Local Organic Farmers Celebrate

On February 13, the head of the USDA, U.S. senators Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy, and congressman Peter Welch all praised organic farmers in speeches at the annual conference of the Vermont chapter of the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA).

A Genre Soldiers On: Antonio Hart Quintet at Vermont Jazz Center

There was a brown door in a modest kitchen, scuffed by the onslaught of time, children and life's general maneuvers. It guarded a staircase leading down to a basement, spacious enough and made congenial, such that it was often strewn about with middle-aged men.

When closed, this door allowed a generous amount of space between it and the floor, and was not the most efficient muffler of sound. If one crouched by its bottom, the world it attempted to conceal came spilling forth like the secrets of some giddy deluge.

Photo: Brattleboro Farm

Following the current thaw, the weather is expected to get cold again on Friday. This photo was taken on January 27 on Old Ferry Road in Brattleboro. To enlarge it, please click on the photo, then scroll down and click "see full-size image."

At Capitol After 122 Miles, Marchers Say: Close Vermont Yankee

More than 150 people walked to the Vermont statehouse on January 13, completing a 122-mile march that began in Brattleboro on January 2. The protesters were calling on the state legislature to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power reactor. The reactor is owned by Entergy Corporation of Louisiana.

"We are tired of Entergy and their toxic waste," said a jubilant Chad Simmons of Brattleboro, one of the marchers.

Hundreds March in Greenfield for Library

Hundreds of people marched down Main Street to Greenfield town hall November 13 to protest a proposal by mayor William Martin to reduce the public library’s budget by $30,300 this month. The library recently reduced its hours in response to earlier budget cuts.

“I’m here to stand up for our library,” said marcher and Greenfield resident Ted Compton. “Having a library is civilized.”

150 at Rally Against Lay-Offs at Northampton Hospital

About 150 people turned out for a rally against lay-offs at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton on November 9. Hospital officials recently said they will soon lay off an unspecified number of workers, including nurses. The officials said the number of lay-offs could be around 10.

"The lay-offs are unnecessary," said Charlie Rasmussen of the Massachusetts Nurses Association, the union that represents 270 nurses at the hospital. “Cooley Dickinson has an $8.9 million surplus this year.”

Protesters Arrested at Vermont Yankee

Four women were arrested for non-violent civil disobedience at the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant Sept 28. Arrested for blocking the entrance to Vermont Yankee were Hattie Nestel of Athol, Mass.; Ellen Graves of West Springfield, Mass., and Frances Crowe and Paki Wieland, both from Northampton.

In recent years, dozens of people have been arrested for non-violent civil disobedience at Vermont Yankee and at the Brattleboro offices of Louisiana-based Entergy Corp., which owns the reactor.