August 2013

Fight for Philly and others to mark 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom

Media Advisory

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Jesse Kudler

617-974-3684, jesse@fightforphilly.org

 

Fight for Philly and others to mark 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom
At West Philadelphia memorial, activists will recall King’s “I have a dream” speech and note dreams of immigrants and others

 

Philadelphia, PAActivists from Fight for Philly, SEIU Health Care PA, and Pennsylvania United for Immigration Reform will solemnly observe the anniversary of the August 28, 1963 “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom” at a Martin Luther King, Jr. mural and marker in West Philadelphia on Wednesday night.  Recalling King’s famous, “I have a dream” speech, Fight for Philly members will read sections of the speech and talk about continued dreams for social and economic justice, including a path to citizenship for millions of immigrants. 

The 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom captured the nation’s attention as more than a quarter million people stood together in the nation’s capital and demanded the government invest in quality housing, improve education, create more jobs, increase the  national minimum wage, protect everyone’s right to vote, and end all forms of discrimination. The nation has made progress toward broader goals of the march, but we have a long way to go to achieve its vision for a more equal and just society. Today, far too many workers have low-wage jobs, income inequality is increasing, the fundamental right to vote is under attack in Pennsylvania and elsewhere,  and extremist lawmakers backed by corporate dollars continually try to undermine the social contract that has provided opportunity for so many to move into the middle class. Urban public schools, as we have seen in Philadelphia, remain drastically under-funded.  And, as the events that unfolded around the killing of Trayvon Martin have made all too painfully clear, the nation often has an unequal system of justice.  11 million aspiring Americans are forced to live in the shadows, without a voice in our economy or democracy.

At the intersection of 40th Street and Lancaster and Haverford Avenues sits a Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission historical marker, memorial bust, and public mural dedicated to civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  Dr. King spoke to a crowd of 10,000 at this West Philadelphia site on August 3, 1965 during his Freedom Now tour.

 

WHO: Fight for Philly, SEIU Health Care PA, and Pennsylvania United for Immigration Reform
WHAT: Commemoration of 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom
WHEN: Wednesday, August 28, 6pm
WHERE: Martin Luther King Jr. 1965 speech marker, 40th and Lancaster Ave.
VISUAL: Diverse crowd, MLK mural and marker, speakers, signs

 

###

Fight for Philly is building a grassroots coalition of residents, community groups, neighborhood associations, faith organizations and labor groups united in the fight for good jobs, corporate accountability and strong communities.

info@fightforphilly.org * (215) 232-3792 * http://fightforphilly.org

Did you like this? Share it:
Leave a comment

Massive rally and march to call for full, fair funding for Philadelphia schools

Media Advisory

For Immediate Release

August 22, 2013

Jesse Kudler

617-974-3684, jesse@fightforphilly.org

 

Massive rally and march to call for full, fair funding for Philadelphia schools

With only 18 days before students are scheduled to return to class, Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools will call for school funding. 

Philadelphia, PAOnly 18 days before Philadelphia public school students are scheduled to return, Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools (PCAPS) will march from Comcast Center to City Hall to Philadelphia School District headquarters, culminating in a massive rally outside the 5:30pm School Reform Commission meeting.

Students, teachers, school staff, former hunger strikers, parents, and supporters will visit Comcast to call on large corporations to pay their fair share in taxes to support city schools.  They’ll then march to City Hall to demand Mayor Nutter and City Council find immediate additional funding for all public school needs.  Finally, the group will march to School District Headquarters to rally outside of a meeting of the state-controlled School Reform Commission. 

Philadelphia schools are in a crisis.  24 schools have closed and thousands of people have been laid off.  Only after Superintendent Hite threatened that schools might not open in time did the mayor and City Council promise $50 million in newly-borrowed funds to provide the bare minimum to open doors on September 9.  The School Reform Commission passed its “Doomsday Budget,” eliminating funding for arts, music, sports, guidance counselors, assistant principals, secretaries, non-teaching assistants, and other essential staff and programs.  The state General Assembly and the governor have not done their part, finding only a portion of the money needed to adequately fund our schools and refusing to give Philadelphia even the authority to create a new cigarette tax.  City Council failed to introduce reforms to Philadelphia’s Use and Occupancy tax that would have raised taxes on large properties after the huge breaks they’ll get under AVI.

Scheduled speakers at Comcast Center include Philadelphia public schools graduate PA Sen. Daylin Leach and Rev. Alvin Herring of PICO National Network, a national network of faith-based community organizations.  At City Hall, a public school teacher, a public school student, a safe schools faster from UNITE-HERE, and others will speak.  Scheduled speakers at the School District Headquarters will include PA Sen. Christine Tartaglione; Jerry Jordan, head of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers; Gabe Morgan, Vice President, 32BJ SEIU; Pat Eiding, President of the Philadelphia Council AFL-CIO; Pastor Mark Tyler, and others.  Student  speakers from Boston, Baltimore, and other cities will also travel here in support of Philadelphia public school students.

The governor and corporate reformers like Comcast’s David Cohen want the school district to save money by forcing teachers and staff to make salary and benefit concessions.  But Philadelphia teachers are already paid 19 percent less than their counterparts in Bucks and Montgomery counties.  And large corporations like Comcast continue to benefit from the persistence of the Delaware loophole, low state business taxes, and AVI.  “Shared sacrifice” should mean that those most able should pay before teachers and staff give even more.  The state government found only $2 million in new funding.  The city has pledged $28 million from delinquent tax collection and is being asked to borrow $50 million.  Why must teachers and staff come up with $130 million?

 

WHO: Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools (PCAPS)
WHAT: March and rally for public school funding
WHEN: Thursday, August 22, 3:30pm
WHERE: Comcast Center (17th and JFK) to City Hall to School District Headquarters (440 N. Broad St.)
VISUAL: 1,000 marchers, signs, diverse crowd of protesters, speakers, students, teachers, parents, banners

 

###

PCAPS is a coalition of students, parents, and teachers with an unwavering commitment to improving Philadelphia’s school system.  Members of the coalition include ACTION United, AFT Pennsylvania, Coalition of Labor Union Women, Fight for Philly, Jobs with Justice, Juntos, Media Mobilizing Project, Occupy Philly Labor Working Group, Philadelphia AFL-CIO, Philadelphians Allied for a Responsible Economy, Philadelphia Home and School Council, Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, Philadelphia Student Union, SEIU 32BJ, UNITE HERE Philadelphia, and Youth United for Change.

http://www.wearepcaps.org

Did you like this? Share it:
Leave a comment

Attention: Rally to Save our Schools Tomorrow, Thursday!

Join PCAPS for a rally to demand full, fair funding for our schools, students, teachers, and vital school staff.

As the days tick down to September, our schools remain on course for a disastrous opening without the necessary staff to maintain health and safety, let alone insure that learning goes on. We can’t let that happen.


• 3:30 Rally at Comcast, 17th and JFK – Demand corporations pay their fare share
• 4:15 March to City Hall, Demand City Council and the Mayor take emergency action to fund the schools
• 4:45 March to SRC meeting, Demand they fight for funding instead of attacking teachers and school workers

Did you like this? Share it:
Leave a comment