R&R; Collective Nonviolent Direct Action; Fr. Bissonette matched grant

Friday, August 21st, 2020

(Thumbnail image credit: Kim Saira)

This week we would like to emphasize the importance of rest; of taking some time for a break to refresh. This is especially important in in the midst of the ongoing public health crisis, and also because there is a lot to prepare for in the upcoming months. This is a critically important time of overwhelming change, and the election is now less than 75 days away. Tactically speaking, the WNYPC will be focusing on fewer, larger events rather than many small events. Consequently, we are highlighting only a few items this week, all of which could be done from home.

This Sunday from 3:00 – 4:30 pm, the WNY Liberation Collective and WNYPC are offering another session of First Steps! Collective Nonviolent Direct Action. This will be a hybrid event, taking place in person at Niagara/Liberation Square with masks and physical distancing, and also streamed live on Facebook.

– Collective Nonviolent Direct action will be key to keeping and improving our democracy. These first steps are part of a series for shared learning as we plan and prepare.

– We will cover the principles and the spirit (including music, a great tool for such actions), Know Your Rights with Daire Brian Irwin, Esq., and safety info regarding protective gear from Nick of Buffalo Action Medics.

– Preparatory videos and the full planned agenda can be found on our website. Please watch the videos so we can spend more time in discussion!

We also want to remind you that we are coming to the end (!) of the very generous matched grant from the Fr. Joe Bissonnette Fund for the WNYPC. This fund sustains our on-going work and helps prepare for strong social justice activism coming out of quarantine.

– Father Joe Bissonette (1932-1987) was known throughout WNY for his ministry in Buffalo and his advocacy for the poor and disadvantaged. Recognizing the many challenges AND opportunities of the present moment, the Fr. Joe Bissonette Fund has committed to match any donation of $100 or more made between July and August, up to $5000.

– These contributions also qualify for your choice of one of Amanda Besl’s beautiful limited-edition pieces (while supplies last) and an individual or organizational WNYPC membership with your choice of the #RESIST or #LoveIsLove lawn sign. If you would like to make a donation, please see our fundraiser page. You can purchase Amanda’s powerful art here.

As you have time, there are other vital campaigns and an employment opportunity (see below) that you can put some energy into as you can and will. Please remember to pace yourselves, as no one person can do it all. We are at a fork in the road of the future of this country, and we recognize the importance of collaborating, strategizing, and also resting when needed.

Please see details and much more below, including other special events this week, regularly scheduled events, campaigns, fundraisers, and more at wnypeace.org, on our Facebook page, Twitter (@wnypeace), and Instagram (@wnypeace)!

Peace, thanks, solidarity and yes – love.

<3 <3 <3 <3 <3

*** Please refer to our website for details on our *UPDATED* REGULARLY SCHEDULED (monthly/weekly) EVENTS and *UPDATED* ‘Helping Hands’resources. We also update our SPECIAL EVENT CALENDAR often as we learn of new events, so please be sure to check back regularly! ***


SATURDAY, AUG 22 @ 4 PM – Stand Up! East Aurora! March Against Racism

Behind Vidler’s 5 & 10, Inc., 676-694 E. Main St., East Aurora 14052. Join the WNY Liberation Collective to stand and march in solidarity against racial injustices continuing to happen against BIPOC in our communities. Bring your signs, voices, friends, and a mask. Wear black and stay hydrated and safe. #WeThePeople #WeTheChange

SUNDAY, AUG 23 @ 3 PM – First Steps! Collective Nonviolent Direct Action Study

See above for details.

FRIDAY, AUG 28 @ 5PM – The Hertel Hurdle

Meeting point outside of Illos Piano Restorations, 2490 Main St. (at Hertel), Buffalo 14214. Join the WNY Liberation Collective and WNYPC for a Black Lives Matter march standing with Washington, D.C. Help us continue to make the noise that is being heard all around the city, bringing awareness one day at a time to ongoing societal issues of racial justice and police brutality. #WeThePeople #WeTheChange

TUES, SEPT 1 @ 2:00 PM – Climate Resolution Meeting

On Zoom. The WNY Youth Climate Council invites regional organizations, community members, and fellow activists to join in a finalization of their climate resolution draft before presenting to the Common Council. Please share your input and hear from other organizations leading the climate justice movement here in WNY! Register and sign the Declare a Climate Emergency Petition.

WEDS, SEPT 2 – El Salvador in the Time of COVID-19: A Rights-based Analysis of the Drives and Triggers of Force Migration

Rochester Committee on Latin (ROCLA) and Latin American Solidarity Committee (LASC, a task force of the WNYPC) invite you to join this collaborative virtual presentation featuring speakers Magda Lanuza and Jeanne Rikkers. For more information including on the speakers, visit our event page.



RMM is looking for someone who is a storyteller; who can develop a marketing strategy to go hand-in-hand with their development program; and who can develop, implement, and oversee a communications strategy for their entire organization. For more information on this amazing opportunity and to apply, please visit http://www.ruralmigrantministry.org/en/job-openings


1. Support the repeal of 50-A, a NYS secrecy law that blocked police misconduct and disciplinary records from being released to the public, including victims of police brutality. This legislation is under attack from police unions across the state, including the Buffalo Police Department (BPD) union.

– Send a copy of the petition calling for open access police misconduct to your legislators by texting SIGN YKNGJA to 50409

– Join the Amicus Brief opposing the police unions’ effort to shroud police records in secrecy by signing here: https://bit.ly/PoliceRecordsNow

– Call your local legislators (contact info here) and ask them to join the fight for police transparency.

– Join the social media campaign calling for police transparency and records justice! #RecordsJustice #StoptheShadowRepeal #PoliceAccountabilityNow

2. Free the People WNY 6 Weeks of Action: The 10-year Buffalo Police union contract expired in 2019, and the City of Buffalo and the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association (BPA) are currently negotiating a new contract (more background here). The negotiations stalled by are set to resume this month, which means they need to hear from us!

– Use this toolkit to call, email, and tweet the City Law Department.

– Contribute to and/or share the Darryl Scott Legal Defense fund.

3. Support the demand that the police budget is defunded to invest in traffic calming infrastructure and take BPD out of traffic enforcement all together. Please fill out the questionnaire shared by Fair Fines + Fees to participate in a budgetary process that aims to make positive changes to the City’s budget.

#UNITE | #OneLove | #WeShallOvercome | #SiSePuede!