Strike Vote is 34 -- 1

In Brattleboro, 37 school bus drivers and “monitors” voted to go on strike December 1 if they don't win a fair union contract by that date. The November 8 vote was 34 – 1 with two workers not voting, Curtis Clough told the Valley Post. He's president of Teamsters Local 597. Clough said he will put the Valley Post in touch with two of the workers to interview. Those interviews will be published in a future article.

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160 Rally

About 160 people attended an abortion rights rally in Northampton on October 8. One of the speakers at the rally was state senator Jo Comerford. On October 11, she told the Valley Post, “It was one of the most inspiring rallies I've ever attended. I'm still energized.”

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Reggae Singer from Jamaica to Play Near Brattleboro

When N.L. Dennis was singing in a recording studio with Toots and the Maytals, Bob Marley stopped by to listen. Marley praised Dennis's delivery. Today, Dennis lives in his native Jamaica and joins hundreds of Jamaicans who come to Vermont every summer in search of better paying work. Most of them work on vegetable farms and at apple orchards. Dennis works as a reggae musician. He will perform a public concert on July 15, 2022 at Kampfires in Dummerston, Vermont. Dummerston borders Brattleboro.

Wins for Nature, Justice; 500 March, Rally

In Brattleboro on June 24 about 150 people attended an abortion rights rally, Eileen Sullivan told the Valley Post. She works for Planned Parenthood. In Northampton on the same day about the same number of people attended a rally for the same cause, organizer Debby Pastrich-Klemer told the Valley Post. Two groups helped her: Valley Women’s March and Indivisible Northampton. “150 people is great for a last-minute event,” Pastrich-Klemer said. The protests were in response to a supreme court decision issued hours earlier. Now it's up to Biden and congress to over-rule the court.

Farm Worker Rally

In Brattleboro on May 1, dairy farm workers – most of whom are undocumented immigrants from Mexico – held a rally with their supporters. The rally was outside the Hannaford supermarket. About 20 people were at the rally. The workers have a web site at www.MigrantJustice.net. 

Workers Win

On April 22 a spokesperson for the union for Northampton public school teachers told the Valley Post that about 80 members of the union attended a rally outside Northampton city hall. The goal was fair wages for workers known as “educational support professionals.” The rally was on April 14. The union has a web site at www.nasemta.org.

Homeless Rally

About 50 people attended a rally in Springfield on April 12. The goal was to get politicians to provide high quality homes for homeless people. The group that organized the rally has a web site at www.SpringfieldNoOneLeaves.org.

The most recent data for how many people in the USA are homeless comes from January 2020. At that time about 580,000 people were homeless. That data is from:

https://endhomelessness.org/homelessness-in-america/homelessness-statist...

Rally to Save the Fish

On April 2 about 30 people were at a rally in Montague, Massachusetts. Montague borders Greenfield. The goal was to get politicians to “stop the massive destruction of fish and related river life by the Northfield Mountain Pumped Storage Station,” on the Connecticut river near the Vermont – Massachusetts border. An April 4 mass email from the Wendell State Forest Alliance reported on the rally.

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Good News for Nature

Easthampton, Massachusetts is expected to pass a fee on vacant commercial buildings in the coming weeks. Easthampton borders Holyoke. Brattleboro will likely pass a fee on vacant commercial buildings within a few months, town manager Yoshi Manale told the Valley Post.

The Brattleboro Home Depot and its vast parking lot have been vacant for 14 years. In 2019 Home Depot spokeswoman Margaret Watters Smith told the Valley Post her company would like to find someone to rent the building and parking lot. Years before that, another Home Depot spokeswoman told the Valley Post the same thing.

Ukraine

On February 22 the owner of the Brattleboro Reformer daily newspaper published in the Reformer an opinion article written by him. “War is the Answer” was the headline. The long article elaborated on why the multi-millionaire businessman feels Russia invading Ukraine is a good thing for the U.S. economy.