Triple Divide


Monday, December 17, 2012

Community Rights Workshop

Not to be missed by those who are committed to Community Empowerment for a Sustainable FutureSpace is limited to 35 maximum. Sign up early and please forward this to people you know who would find this a really useful 

Friday evening, January 4,  6pm to 9pm 
Saturday, January 5, 9am to 6pm
2013, located in the Friends Meeting House, 4836 Ellsworth Avenue.

NEW! PAY BY Credit Card or Pay Pal. 

Wondering why corporations have more power than those of you living in your community? Wondering why Harrisburg licenses and permits corporations to harm your community? Wondering why Harrisburg routinely prevents you from making decisions that are in the best interests of your community?

The Pennsylvania Community Rights Workshop takes an in-depth look at how Pennsylvania's political and legal structures have been set up to protect the interests of an elite minority, at the expense of the majority of Pennsylvanians. We'll look at how Pennsylvania's constitution has continually evolved since the American Revolution to protect wealth and privilege over community self-government; we'll look at how corporations in Pennsylvania have received more rights and protections than those of you living in your community; and we'll look at how Pennsylvanians have pushed back against these oppressive structures to reclaim democracy in their communities.

Finally, we'll consider what it would take to create a Pennsylvania constitution that protects the rights of people, communities, and nature by securing our inalienable right to local self-government, free from corporate and state interference.

and let us know how you will be paying. 

The total cost of the workshop is $50 per person.
A partial payment of $25 must be paid by January 1 unless a special arrangement is made (call Wanda at 724.327.2767 or 412.596.0066


Checks should be made out to the Thomas Merton Center, with a memo notation 
“for Env. Just. Workshop”
Please send to Thomas Merton Center, 5129 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, 15224

The balance should be paid in full the evening of Jan 4 at the workshop. 

We are keeping our expenses to a minimum to ensure affordability for everyone. 
For this reason we will be sharing food.

A member of the planning committee will be calling to coordinate POTLUCK OFFERINGS.


Pittsburgh's Community Bill of Rights: 
leading the way toward true local democracy, sustainability and justice

Can we support a Referendum?

In 2010, Pittsburgh famously became the first U.S. city to pass a Community Bill of Rights (CBoR) ordinance which, in contradistinction to the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision, limits the rights and influence of corporations and makes them subordinate to the rights of people and the natural communities upon which we depend. 

Now, this groundbreaking ordinance could become part of Pittsburgh's local constitution with great organizing. 

So what does the Community Bill of Rights do? It asserts the rights of residents to clean air, pure water, freedom from chemical trespass, peaceful enjoyment of home, local self-government, and the right to establish sustainable energy policies. It recognizes the rights of natural communities and ecosystems as well, and empowers community members with legal standing to enforce those rights. Included in the Bill of Rights, indeed the issue that prompted its introduction in the first place, is a provision that prohibits corporations from extracting natural gas within the city (with the exception of gas wells already established and in operation at the time of adoption of this amendment).

Here’s the reason why it could be important to move our Community Bill of Rights from the status of an ordinance to that of an amendment to the city Charter: Numerous times over this past year, the community has rallied to support the ordinance as the mayor was prodded by the gas industry to overturn the drilling ban so that such companies might "feel welcome" to set up their headquarters in Pittsburgh. If the citizens of Pittsburgh succeed in embedding the Community Bill of Rights in the Charter through a ballot initiative it will be clear to politicians that the people of Pittsburgh take their rights seriously. It will also take the Community Bill of Rights, including the gas extraction ban, out of the hands of future mayors and council members, who might be persuaded to rescind it on behalf of the gas corporations. 

So if you are a city resident and would like to learn more please come to the workshop.  

No comments:

Post a Comment