Category Archives: Social Justice/Peace

These organizations fight the causes of peace and justice.

Not Dead Yet

Not Dead Yet was founded on April 27,1996, shortly after Jack Kevorkian was acquitted in the assisted suicides of two women with non-terminal disabilities. In a 1997 Supreme Court rally, the outcry of 500 people withdisabilities chanting “Not Dead Yet” was heard around the world. Since then, eleven other national disability rights groups have joined NDY in opposing legalized assisted suicide, chapters have taken action in over 30 states, and we helped put Jack Kevorkian behind bars in 1999. In the 2003-2005 fight to save Terri Schiavo, twenty-five national disability groups joined Not Dead Yet in opposing her guardian’s right to starve and dehydrate her to death.

Since 1983, many people with disabilities have opposed the assisted suicide and euthanasia movement. Though often described as compassionate, legalized medical killing is really about a deadly double standard for people with severe disabilities, including both conditions that are labeled terminal and those that are not. Disability opposition to this ultimate form of discrimination has been ignored by most media and courts, but countless people with disabilities have already died before their time. For some, a disabled person’s suicidal cry for help was ignored, misinterpreted, or even exploited by the right-to-die movement. For others, death came at the request of a family member or other health care surrogate. This is not compassion, it’s contempt. People already have the right to refuse unwanted treatment, and suicide is not illegal. What we oppose is a public policy that singles out individuals for legalized killing based on their health status. This violates the Americans With Disabilities Act, and denies us the equal protection of the law. Some bioethicists have even started to argue that intellectually disabled people are not persons under the law. That hasn¹t happened since slavery was legal.Legalized medical killing is not a new human right, it’s a new professional immunity. It would allow health professionals to decide which of us are “eligible” for this service, and exempt them from accountability for their decisions. Killing is not just another medical treatment option, and it must not be made any part of routine health care. In these days of cost cutting and managed care, we don’t trust the health care system, and neither should you.People with disabilities have an opportunity to lead society from the isolation and despair of today into a renewed recognition of belonging and community for all. The idea that people with disabilities are not worthy of society’s acceptance or resources is not new. We see this form of hatred throughout history, often masked as benevolence. But for the first time in history, people with disabilities are organizing our community to fight back, to demand the equal protection of the law.

Website:  http://www.notdeadyet.org/

Contact:
7521 Madison St
Forest Park, IL 60130
Phone: 708-209-1500 Fax:  708-209-1735
ndycoleman@aol.com

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Chicago Urban League

 
  Chicago Urban League  
  The Chicago Urban League (CUL) was one of the first affiliates of the National Urban League (NUL) organized in this country to address the needs of African Americans migrating from the rural South to the northern cities in unprecedented numbers at the dawn of the 20th century. Established in 1916, the Chicago Urban League is a civil rights organization that empowers and inspires individuals to reach and exceed their economic potential. The League focuses on growing Chicago’s African American workforce and business community. The Chicago Urban League is pursuing three strategies that advance our mission: ensuring that African American children are well-educated and equipped for economic self-reliance in the 21st century; helping adults attain economic self-sufficiency through gainful employment, home ownership, entrepreneurship and wealth accumulation; and ensuring the civil rights of African Americans by eradicating barriers to equal participation in the economic and social mainstream of American life. Today the work of CUL focuses upon education, economic development and community empowerment for African Americans, other minorities and the poor. As one of the largest affiliates in the nation, the Chicago organization remains a leader in the Urban League movement.  
 
Website:  http://www.cul-chicago.org
Address:  Chicago Urban League
  External Affairs
  4510 South Michigan Ave.
  Chicago, IL 60653
Contact:  Attn: Marquis Miller (Vice President of External Affairs)
Phone:  (773) 451-3500
Email:  please inquire
 

Food Not Bombs

Food Not Bombs logo

We are one of the fastest growing grassroots political groups in North America. There are over 70 autonomous chapters protesting militarism and poverty by serving free vegetarian food to people in need and in support of on-going political organizing efforts. We believe that society and government should value human life over material wealth. Many of the problems in the world stem from this simple crises in values. By giving away free food to people in need in public spaces we directly dramatize the level of hunger in this country and the surplus of food being wasted. We also call attention to the failures of the society to support those within it while funding the forces of war and violence, including the police. Food Not Bombs was formed in Boston in 1980 as an outgrowth of the anti-nuclear movement in New England. We are committed to the use of non-violent direct action to change society. It is by working today to create sustainable institutions that prefigure the kind of society we want to live in, that we build a vital and caring movement for progressive social change. Food Not Bombs serves food as a practical act of sustaining people and organizations, not as symbolism. Thousands of meals are served each week by FNB groups in North America and Europe.

Food Not Bombs is one of the fastest growing revolutionary movements and is gaining momentum throughout the world. There are hundreds of autonomous chapters sharing free vegetarian food with hungry people and protesting war and poverty. Food Not Bombs is not a charity. This energetic grassroots movement is active throughout the Americas, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Australia. Food Not Bombs is organizing for peace and an end to the occupations of Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine. For over 25 years the movement has worked to end hunger and has supported actions to stop the globalization of the economy, restrictions to the movements of people, end exploitation and the destruction of the earth.

The first group was formed in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1980 by anti-nuclear activists. Food Not Bombs is an all-volunteer organization dedicated to nonviolent social change. Food Not Bombs has no formal leaders and strives to include everyone in its decision making process. Each group recovers food that would otherwise be thrown out and makes fresh hot vegetarian meals that are served in outside in public spaces to anyone without restriction. Each independent group also serves free vegetarian meals at protests and other events. The San Francisco chapter has been arrested over 1,000 times in government’s effort to silence its protest against the city’s anti- homeless policies. Amnesty International states it will adopt those Food Not Bombs volunteers that are convicted as “Prisoners of Conscience” and will work for their unconditional release. Even though we are dedicated to nonviolence Food Not Bombs activists in the United States have been under investigation by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, Pentagon and other intelligence agencies. A number of Food Not Bombs volunteers have been arrested on terrorism charges but there has never been a conviction.

http://www.windy-city.com/fnb/ or

http://www.chicagofoodnotbombs.net/

c/o Dave @ The Autonomous Zone
3012 W. Chicago Ave.
Chicago,IL,60622
773-252-6019

ElginFNB@hotmail.com

StreetWise

StreetWise Logo 

Since 1992, we have provided employment to more than 3,600 homeless men and women, enabling them to secure housing and buy food, clothing and personal necessities. Most importantly, StreetWise has served as the opportunity for their journey back to self-sufficiency. Since the first edition of our paper was issued on the streets of Chicago, we have relied on the support of the community’s businesses, philanthropic organizations and volunteers to create a successful program. At the heart of it all is the motivation of our vendors to help expand and evolve our offerings. For these vendors, we are a bridge to full-time employment, economic stability and self-respect. StreetWise has created and delivered a unified voice that has expanded awareness of homeless issues to a diverse Chicagoland readership

http://www.streetwise.org/

1201 W. Lake St.
Chicago, IL. 60607
(312) 829-2526
mail@streetwise.org

Teachers for Social Justice

Teachers for Social Justice
Teachers for Social Justice
Who we are Teachers for Social Justice is an organization of teachers, administrators, pre-service teachers, and other educators working in public, independent, alternative, and charter schools and universities in the Chicago area. We have come together based on our commitment to education for social justice. We are working toward classrooms and schools that are anti-racist, multicultural / multilingual, and grounded in the experiences of our students. We believe that all children should have an academically rigorous education that is both caring and critical, an education that helps students pose critical questions about society and “talk back” to the world. We share ideas and curriculum, and support each other in our work. We are also an activist organization, working to get the voices of educators into the public discussion of school policies. Why is there a need? Chicago’s one dimensional model of school “reform,” based on accountability and high-stakes tests, has been created by the upper echelon of administration without the participation of those affected by the new policies parents, students, teachers. Teachers, who know what is happening in schools and are grappling with the hard questions of educating students in urban contexts, have no voice in Chicago school policies. As educators, we also know that the practices of public and private school teachers who are doing exciting things in their classrooms could be the basis of an alternative to CPSÕs test-driven agenda, but there is no space for open discussion in CPS. The current policies lead by default because public discussion and debate is stifled. We are committed to working together with other educators, parents, students, and community members collectively to reshape the discussion of school policy in order to create more just and humane schools.
 
Website: http://www.teachersforjustice.org
Email: teachersforjustice@hotmail.com
 

Bread for the World

Bread for the World (BFW) is a nationwide Christian movement that seeks justice for the world’s hungry people by lobbying our nation’s decision makers.

In October 1972, a small group of Catholics and Protestants met to reflect on how persons of faith could be mobilized to influence U.S. policies that address the causes of hunger. Under the leadership of the Reverend Arthur Simon, the group began to test the idea in the spring of 1974. By year’s end, more than 500 people had joined the ranks of Bread for the World as citizen advocates for hungry people. This small group has grown to a nationwide movement of more than 58,000 members. In September 1991, the Reverend David Beckmann succeeded Simon as president.

BFW’s 58.000 members are organized by congressional district into local networks nationwide. We write, call and visit members of Congress, and generate media attention about national legislation and other efforts that address hunger. BFW staff keep members up-to-date on hunger-related issues and pending decisions.

 

As individuals, we may volunteer in social ministries and give to our churches’ hunger appeals. But we also know that a single decision by Congress or the president can outweigh or multiply our contributions.

 

Every year during worship services and other events, tens of thousands of BFW members and others offer to God letters we have written to our members of Congress on legislation that is important to hungry people. Again and again, our Offerings of Letters win significant victories.

 

Website: http://www.bread.org

 

Contact:

 

Illinois Field Office

205 W. Monroe
Chicago, IL 60606

Phone: 312-629-9529 Fax: 312-629-9531

breadchicago@bread.org

World Vision Chicago

WorldVision Chicago
WorldVision Chicago
The core purpose of World Vision in Chicago is to bring together passionate people who share a desire for serving with the poor. World Vision’s programs, global reach, and opportunities to engage are available right here in Chicago. Join us as we help to meet basic needs, unite communities, and demonstrate God’s unconditional love in Chicago and other communities around the world. Our History In Chicago World Vision has had a presence in Chicago since 1995, when The Storehouse opened on the west side of the city. The Storehouse began to provide families in under-resourced communities with high-quality building materials at just a fraction of the retail cost. The Storehouse of World Vision quickly expanded to include free personal items for churches and organizations to distribute to families, and school supplies for children and teachers in the Chicago Public School system. When we outgrew our warehouse and office space, the Chicago Public School system donated a 40,000 sq. foot warehouse in order to continue to grow. Our Work Today Today, our work has expanded to serve and partner with more than 60,000 people each year from almost every Chicago neighborhood and across Chicago’s suburban communities.
 
Website:  http://www.worldvision.org/get_involved.nsf/child/metro_chicago_home
Address:  World Vision in Chicago
  5001 W. Harrison St.
  Chicago, IL 60644
Phone:  773.921.3900
Email:  chicago@worldvision.org