Meeting opened at 7PM by Doug

Members present: Doug Rawlings, Peter Morgan, Rita Clement, Richard Clement, Bob Lezer, Dan Ellis, John Morris, Martha Morrison

October Secretary’s report accepted as written

Treasurer’s report: balance as of 12/27/2018 was $3,601.89

Membership report: 107 total, 70 paid up. It was pointed out that members should take advantage of all opportunities to recruit new members

The meeting agenda included an article by the Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild outlining the legal issues involved in the deployment of US military members to the Mexican border. Informational flyers have been distributed to service members who have been deployed should they consider challenging the legality of the orders to deploy. VFP has expressed willingness to help with legal support for such challenges. We agree with this position

We also agree with the National VFP statement expressing support for President Trump’s decision to withdraw US troops from Syria. The complete statement can be found in the agenda

The agenda also included info concerning a petition crafted by a coalition of human rights organizations supporting a press release asking major media outlets to provide continuous coverage of the number of days refugee children have been separated from their parents.

Discussion was held on the possibility of holding a Spring concert/fundraiser in lieu of a retreat. It was decided to have the former rather than the latter with the proposed venue being the UU Church in Brunswick for the benefit of Catholic Charities Maine Refugee and Immigration Services. The date would be March 23rd and Dan estimated that the church rental would be less than $500. He will coordinate with the church and Doug will contact Catholic Charities. The event will be informal and it is hoped that various local musicians will be enticed to participate.

Discussion was held on the future of the VFP newspaper Peace in Our Times. It was agreed that the paper is one of the most important and valuable aspects of the organization and that every effort should be made to insure it’s continuation

Meeting adjourned at 8:45. Next meeting in Augusta on Jan. 31