Dozens March for Tibet

On March 13 Tsultrem Kunsang, spokesman for the Regional Tibetan Association of Massachusetts, told the Valley Post that on March 10, more than 25 people marched from Amherst to Northampton. They were protesting China's policies in Tibet. More information is at:

https://www.democracynow.org/2020/9/24/headlines/china_accused_of_forcin...

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On March 14, Maeg Yosef of the union at Trader Joe's in Hadley, Massachusetts told the Valley Post, “We just wrapped another bargaining session in Hadley, with bargaining committee members from Minneapolis and Louisville joining us at the table for three days of negotiations. It was our most productive bargaining session yet.... While we continue to hold out hope that Trader Joe’s will bargain in good faith around the issues that matter most to crew members – wages, benefits, and safety – our employer’s actions this week fall short of those hopes.” More information is at: www.TraderJoesUnited.org.

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Sarah Voiland is an organic vegetable farmer at Red Fire farm in the Pioneer Valley. On March 16, she told the Valley Post she recently attended a climate march in Washington, DC. “We went down to DC because our farm has faced two seasons back to back of extreme weather, with the excessive rains of 2021 and the drought of 2022. It feels like climate change is here and, looking into the future, farms will need more assistance and creative problem-solving to keep the food coming. We very much believe in the soil building techniques of organic farming as part of the climate solution. We wanted to share that knowledge and set goals for US agriculture as a whole to pivot towards carbon sequestration efforts for fertility, which will help rebuild the organic matter in the very depleted soils of the Midwest. Our soils are part of our national infrastructure, a beautiful renewable resource if we treat them that way. Soil building is a win-win-win right now, to draw down carbon, to enrich our soils for the future, and to increase the nutrition in the food they produce each year.”

She said, “The collection of delegations of farmers from around the country was the most diverse group I have seen as a Northeast farmer. We don’t get that at farming conferences or meetings around here. It was awesome. The speaking list for the opening and the rally put BIPOC farmers first and frequent. I was so glad to be there to hear their stories. Farming is hard no matter who you are, but my partner and I are privileged in so many ways that have helped us get access to land, loans, grants, community connections and more that can pose barrier after barrier for others. I’m so grateful to all those BIPOC farmers for keeping farming and finding ways to move forward as we need that diversity and we need to clear the way.”

Sarah Voiland said, “We got to go with farmers from World Farmers in Massachusetts to our senate and house offices. Being with other farmers who have had the same kinds of losses and challenges, who care about how food is grown and what we can do for the planet, was invigorating. It was the kind of thing one needs in the late winter before launching into the full-on growing season. We put in a good push and effort for this upcoming Farm Bill. I hope that some of it can stick in this political environment. Soil should really be bipartisan.”

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