Lilac Philly

Monthly News: February

By Lilac Newsletter Team, Feb. 23, 2020
Lilac endorses Nikil Saval for PA 1st Senate District!
Lilac endorses Nikil Saval for PA 1st Senate District!

Lilac endorses Bernie Sanders and Nikil Saval!

The Bernie Sanders campaign has given socialism a platform that it hasn’t had in decades in the US. His call for universal programs and grassroots organizing has energized millions who had been left out by the politics of the Democrats. Nikil Saval is a dedicated community and labor organizer who also co-founded Reclaim Philadelphia. His run for state senate could mean having a real ally in Harrisburg to help fight for the same issues that Lilac fights for. Stay tuned for canvasses and other events we’ll be running to help these two candidates get into office!

International Women’s Strike

International Women’s Day has historically been a holiday celebrating radical, socialist feminism. In contrast to the Democratic Party’s liberal feminism, which claims that women should be able to be CEOs and exploit workers, socialist feminism concentrates on the issues of working women. This extends all women including immigrants, prisoners, domestic workers, and sex workers. Come out to the International Women’s Strike to learn more, have a rally, and join in on a potluck!

Other Upcoming Events

  • Lilac General Meeting: South Philly Library at 1700 S Broad St on February 23rd (Sunday) from 2:00 - 4:00 PM
  • Bernie 2020 Debate Watch: Underground Arts at 1200 Callowhill St on February 25th from at 7:00 PM
  • Bail Watch and Bail out: Juanita Kidd CJC lobby at 13th and Filbert on February 26th from 7:45 to 10:00 PM
  • Planet To Win Book Event: Location TBD on March 17th

Help Wanted (reach out here if interested)

  • Housing is looking for people to do data entry of their petition signers, and to help out with follow up emails.
  • Housing is also developing a flyer for our rent control canvasses. We’re looking for anyone who is experienced or interested in graphic design who can help out.
  • The Electoral Working Group is looking for people who are interested in canvassing or organizing canvasses for Lilac-endorsed candidates.

Working Group Updates

Housing Working Group

  • Rent Control Data Entry: We’ll be entering data from our rent control canvasses on February 15th and 29th.
  • Housing Coop: The next housing coop meeting will be on February 25th from 6:00-7:30 at 615 S 48th St. For more information, contact Sam Schwartz at samueleschwartz@gmail.com.

Electoral Working Group

  • Signature Collection: Last month we organized events and participated in canvasses that collected signatures for Nikil Saval and Lilac's Bernie delegate candidates, who got more than double the number of signatures necessary to be on the ballot!
  • Canvasses: This month we plan to organize and executive canvasses for our endorsed candidates and mobilize our members to attend them.

Political Education Working Group

  • Red Rogues: This month we started a transition to a themed format for Red Rogues. We did events on Martin Luther King, moms4housing, and open borders.
  • Working Group Meeting: February 28th at 4:00 PM at Good Karma Cafe

Criminal Justice Working Group

  • Bail Watch: We bailed out 3 people last month, with 2 referrals. We'll be changing the standing date so more can attend next month.
  • Letter Writing: We're planning to mail bail fund contact info to recently arrested people. This way we'll be able to bail out people arrested outside of our regular bail watch.

Local News Summaries and Links

  • A federal bankruptcy judge has approved the sale of the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery to Hilco Redevelopment Partners. Their intention to repurpose the site as a multi-use industrial space is a major victory in Philly Thrive’s effort to close the refinery. This win also comes despite the Trump administration’s push to keep the refinery open. In other good news, the city has implemented a new system of monitoring air quality, and City Council is considering a ban on use of hydrofluoric acid.
  • A new question about the creation of a permanent Department of Labor has been added to the April 28th primary election ballot. The Department of Labor would enforce the raft of new progressive city labor laws, such as paid sick leave, the Domestic Worker Bill of Rights, and fair workweek scheduling.
  • In housing news, badass Councilwoman Kendra Brooks calls for hearings on rent control during her first day on City Council. Also, a new pilot program run by the Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation, will provide rent vouchers of up to $300.00 to some low income renters. Finally, the Philadelphia Housing Authority wants to sell two of the three crumbling apartment towers of its West Park site at 42nd-46th and Market to private developers. Plans to build low-rise, affordable housing on the remaining public land “don’t seem concrete” according to West Philadelphia Councilwoman Jamie Gauthier.
  • Mercy Hospital in the Cobbs Creek neighborhood of West Philadelphia is ending its inpatient care and could be shuttered by August. Many of the hospital’s patients are either on Medicare, Medicaid, or are uninsured.
  • Many of Philadelphia’s rec centers and playgrounds have deployed devices called “mosquitos" that emit an irritating ringing sound heard only by people under 25 and are intended to keep young people away at night. Helen Gym has called them “weapons” and said they discriminate against the young.
  • Openly gay Rev. Roger Broadley, the pastor of St. Luke and the Epiphany Episcopal Church at 13th and Pine, is retiring. During his forty years there, the church established what may have been the first full-time, church-run AIDS program in the country, St. Luke’s Hospitality Center. They hosted Philadelphia Act-Up, Action AIDS, a support group for women with HIV, and hundreds of memorial services for those who died of AIDS.
  • After forty-two years in prison as a result of the long confrontation in 1978 between the Philadelphia police and the radical black liberation group, MOVE, Delbert Africa has been freed.
  • The non-profit group, Preservation Pennsylvania, declared the National Landmark John Coltrane House at serious risk of deterioration and called on the city to be more proactive in preserving it.

Solidarity,

The Lilac Newsletter Group