March 3, 2005
People Plus Center, Brunswick, Maine
President Doug Rawlings called meeting to order at 7:09 pm with 28 present. Minutes of 1/27/05 were reviewed and accepted.
Treasurer’s Report- Outstanding bills were paid and available balance was $6819.59. $100 received from Lewiston Monthly Meeting Friends group to support work of VFP/Maine. 1000 more brochures ordered- (“Do you know enough to enlist?”) by the AFSC, to be used in area schools. Cost was $660 to Atkins Printing paid on February 25, 2005. Treasurer’s report was accepted.
State of Cost of War Display
Cost of War Display is being shown around the state of Maine and is currently being shown in Blue Hill Maine. There was much discussion around creating another display as there has been a high demand to show it. It was also discussed about showing Display in area high schools. It was decided to give a plaque/certificate recognizing libraries that present the display.
Frequent Visit Program
Dud Hendricks, Jack Bussell and Bruce Gagnon have been organizing occupations of Senator Collins and Senator Snow’s office where activists read the names of American and Iraqi dead. They plan on occupying Representative Allen’s office on March 18th. There will be follow-up with letters to the editors of Maine newspapers. To join them or learn more about the action please contact Dud Hendricks or Bruce Gagnon.
Consideration of Rob Shetterly as an Honorary Member
There was much discussion of nominating Rob Shetterly as an honorary member of VFP/Maine. A letter was read written by Dud Hendricks in support of this action. Mr. Shetterly is known for his Americans who tell the Truth display of famous Americans which has been seen nationally and is a prominent activist in the state of Maine for issues of peace and justice. There was a unanimous vote to accept him as a honorary member of VFP/Maine.
Brochures are ready and will be sent to Maine English teachers, history teachers, guidance counselor at high schools. Anyone with interest in speaking in this program, contact Tom Sturtevant or Doug Rawlings. There will be a labeling party at Bob Lezer’s home.
There are plans for a training for veterans interested in speaking at area schools. It will be scheduled on an evening in early April in Brunswick. Training to be initiated by current speaker group. More to come.
The Hope Festival is scheduled for April 23, 2005. Anyone interested in manning a table contact Doug. There was discussion about splitting or paying fee with Bangor chapter. Art Whitman will contact Bangor chapter.
Past Activities: Postcards at PAM Dinner; Retreat
Postcards were passed out at the Peace Action Maine dinner last month to Rep. Allen’s office requesting opposition to the bombing of nuclear plants in Iran. There will be follow-up with letters to the editor in area newspapers. Contact Jack Buzzell for more information.
20 people showed up at the retreat at Snowbird Lodge and Doug felt that it was well worth it. Attendees were able to get to know each other a little better and discuss organizational issues within the chapter. There was interest in doing it again in the future. Peggy Akers talked about making connections with other women groups within the state.
Data Bank Updating
Bob Lezer volunteered for this task. Thank you Bob.
VFP Book Covers: Updating and Revising
There is much interest from Maine schools in getting more VFP book covers to counteract the current military recruiting book covers. It was felt that the information on the back needed to be revised and a coated paper is being considered to improve the longevity of the covers. Peggy Akers agreed to undertake this task. Thank You Peggy.
March 18, 2005
Representative Allen’s office action
11:30 am (Meet at 10:30 am at Peace & Justice Center of Southern Maine, 1 Pleasant St, Portland) Peace activists will occupy Representative Tom Allen’s office to deliver a statement asking for support of an immediate plan for withdrawal of U.S. military forces. We will then read the names and ages of the over 1,500 U.S. service people who have died in the illegal and immoral war in Iraq. FMI: Jack Bussell, Veterans for Peace 772-1442, Karen Wainberg, Peace Action Maine 772-0680, Bruce Gagnon, Global Network 729-0517.
April 8, 2005
March in Portland to honor soldiers returning home from Iraq/Afghanistan. After lengthy discussion it was decided to have a group presence along route and not actively march in parade. VFP members will wear black VFP t-shirts or sweatshirts and hold banner: VETERANS FOR PEACE- WELCOME HOME. Please contact Doug Rawlings for info on ordering shirts or information in participating in this event.
April 1, 2005
Fools No More gathering-
“Fools No More Parade”. Congress and High Street, Portland. Transformative and creative parade demonstrating process of conversion from military production to peaceful technologies. FMI: Bruce Gagnon, 729-0517.
March 19, 2005
National demonstrations with the main site in NYC and smaller demonstrations in local communities.
SATURDAY, MARCH 19th is the 2nd anniversary of the “shock and awe” bombing and invasion of Iraq. Actions will be taking place across the country. FMI: http://www.unitedforpeace.org. FMI on statewide local actions coordinated by Bridges for Peace, go to www.peacebridges.org.
PORTLAND, Saturday, 11 am: Petition gathering in the Old Port, Middle and Exchange St, followed by moving to the Casco Bay Bridge for bridge vigil, noon – 2pm. Gather at the South Portland side of the bridge. FMI: www.peaceactionme.org.
AUGUSTA, Saturday, 11 am – 1 pm: Rally for Truth at State House, Augusta, in front of Maine State Library; 2-4 pm: Memorial Bridge Vigil; 6-7 pm: Local candlelight vigils. FMI: Maine Students Against the War, www.nsaw.us. To print a flyer, go to www.nsaw.us/march.jpg.
FMI on statewide local actions coordinated by Bridges for Peace, go to www.peacebridges.org
March 31, 2005, 7 pm at the Peace and Justice Center in Portland