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[Photo credit: ACLU, President Trump is Accelerating the Militarization of the Southern Border]

Recently, I spoke with a person in a Texas border town who was concerned about the people and families being detained in such numbers that they are being forced into makeshift shelters. Our call was interrupted by sounds of military aircraft and surveillance as they flew overhead in El Paso. The presence of our military forces in our local communities and within our borders is real and present.

Border Patrol and other immigration agents' occupation of U.S. towns on the southern border is not new. But they have increased in intensity and are now accompanied by our military forces as well. Our president has called for hiring thousands of more Border Patrol agents. This will likely affect our region, as it did in 2011 in Forks, WA, when Benjamin Roldan Salinas drowned running away form Border Patrol officers. (Terror in Twilight, Seattle University, School of Law). The work we do against U.S. militarism also affects the current immigration crisis, militarism within U.S. borders, and racist targeting of communities of color. Thank you for supporting our work and helping our Peace and Justice community do our part.

In peace,
Junga Subedar, WPJC Board Member

(Link to ACLU report, President Trump is Accelerating the Militarization of the Southern Border.)

Mike Yarrow Peace Fellowship

Learn about peace and justice issues, nonviolent movement building, and gain skills such as public speaking, group leadership, media development, conducting surveys, public relations, outreach, and lobbying. After an intensive training June 29 to July 2 at the Seabeck Conference Center on Hood Canal, you get support, including $600, to carry out a nonviolent campaign or project of your choice. 

Open to anyone 14-23 years old. Applications are due May 1. To apply, email and request the application.

This past year, Bellingham had two Mike Yarrow Peace Fellows. Read a reflection from one on WPJC's blog.

6 p.m., April 2
Jobs with Justice meeting
Union Center (1700 N. State Street)

6:30 p.m., May 7
Racial Justice Coalition meeting
Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship (1207 Ellsworth)

4-5 p.m., April 5
Peace Vigil
Corner of Cornwall & Magnolia

8 p.m., April 3
Harlan County, USA, Movie Night
Alternative Library (519 E. Maple)

1:30-4:30 pm, April 7
Solidarity Day at NWDC, La Resistencia
NW Detention Center, 1623 E. J Street, Tacoma

8 p.m., April 17
WPJC Movie Night
Alternative Library (519 E. Maple)

6:30 pm, April 16
FairVote Whatcom Public Meeting
Local Studio (221 Prospect Street)

6 p.m., April 19
Veterans for Peace meeting
Room 103 in Co-Op Connections Building (405 E. Holly)

7-9:00 a.m., May 1
3rd Annual Law Day, LAW Advocates
Northwood Hall (3240 Northwest Ave)

6 p.m. May 11
Ride the Long WANDER, LAW Advocates

Wander Brewing

FCNL Advocacy Corps application deadline

The Advocacy Corps is a 9 month-long program where young adults between the ages of 19-30 get paid to organize their local community around federal legislation. Advocacy Corps organizers connect local activists and leaders with their local member of Congress to affect big, long-term change. During the course of this program, Advocacy Corps organizers learn critical organizing skills and put them into practice with hands-on leadership experience.

This year's Advocacy Corps class will learn about the sensible legislation Congress can pass to reduce deaths from guns. 

Applications are due April 19. Get details and apply here. 

Honor Walk for Our Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women, May 9
Lummi Victims of Crime

From the event page: This will be an honor walk for our missing and murdered indigenous women. Please join us and wear the color red. See Facebook event page for more details and updates.
Update on Court Case: charge dropped others deferred -Red Line Salish Sea
In February of 2017 , more than a 100 people conducted a protest against the North Dakota Access Pipeline on I-5 in Bellingham, Washington. The demonstration aimed to bring awareness to the atrocities happening on the Standing Rock Indian reservation, as well as the environmental racism and ongoing settler colonialism by oil corporations both there and locally.
What followed was a year-long investigation and ongoing harassment of the Indigenous led activist group the Red Line Salish Sea (RLSS). Accordingly, in January of 2018, the Whatcom County Prosecuting Attorney filed charges against seven people. The charges were extreme in an effort to scare local activists from further organizing. Charges included: Reckless Endangerment; Obstructing an Officer; and Disorderly Conduct.
On March 13, 2019, after a second year of gathering evidence and hiring an expert, the seven defendants agreed to a nine-month deferred prosecution, a resolution that did not involve anyone pleading guilty or being found guilty of any alleged crime. As part of the agreement the prosecutor agreed to dismiss the Reckless Endangerment charge outright. The two other charges will be dropped after 9 months so long as there are no criminal law violations. The seven defendants also agreed to do community service and pay court fees.
Link to full statement from Red Line Salish Sea:
Why Should We Care? Understanding Racism in Whatcom County and What the Legal Community Can do
Whatcom Civil Rights Project, LAW Advocates and JustLead Washington

Our local civil legal aid community is taking steps to bring understanding of racism and they can bring more equity and justice into the work.
Copyright © 2019 Whatcom Peace and Justice Center, All rights reserved.

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