Deidra EmEl: sole Exec Dir 6/1!; need Office Mgr; Parole Justice Fri Wmsville; Happy Pride Month!

716-332-3904 | Thursday, May 27th, 2021 |

Dear Friends,

We’re more than glad to remind you that as of June 1, Deidra EmEl will be our Executive Director!! She’ll continue to shine with the grace, vision, and dedication to Principles and the Spirit that got her to this point!

 We remind you, too, that we’re looking for an Office Manager and/or volunteer for administrative-type duties. See the job description as the next to last item of this email/post.

Still shaking our heads over the Buffalo News’ mistake(s) re our beloved Father Joe Bissonette. The paper put an unsubstantiated accusation of child sexual abuse on the front page. Featuring such a spurious charge without due diligence, is sensationalism, and shows lack of regard for the consequences of amplifying such ridiculous accusations. They followed it up with another front page article the following day, giving the evidence provided in a letter by his brother Raymond Bissonette disproving it (without mentioning the letter). Please see Ray’s wonderful letter at the end of this email/post. Hopefully it will stop the Buffalo News from such behaviors , much as they need to sell papers – there are other ways!!!

Please join us tomorrow, Fri, 10am, at a special Parole Justice Rally at 5500 Main St, Williamsville, NY. Help us reunite our families and end mass incarceration: support the #ElderParole and #FairAndTimelyParole Bills (and please call Assemblyman Jon Rivera 716-885-9630 to urge his support).

Happy Pride Month!! This year the month will be full of great opportunities for smaller gatherings daily at art showing(s), free yoga & meditation, coffee hours and more. See the complete lineup here. The Pride Center of WNY would also like to invite you to eat, drink, and enjoy live music and togetherness at this year’s FLEX event, where BBQ will be provided with vegetarian/vegan options available on a first come first served basis. Socially distanced eating space will be open at The Underground Niteclub (21+) and Johnson Park. Community partners will be present to increase health literacy and wellness. Please RSVP using this link:

We are also still looking for volunteers for Camp Peaceprints, to be held M-F July 12-23. Camp Peaceprints is a collaboration between the SSJ Sr Karen Klimczak Center for Nonviolence, the Interfaith Peace Network, the WNYPC – and now (new partner) YO NY, a new youth program who will provide the meeting space (at 2251 George Urban Blvd, Depew, NY 14043). Volunteers are needed for driving children to camp, swimming (yes!), accompanying us on field trips, etc. Our theme this year, Camp Peaceprints Explores the World, will be fun while full of social justice, conflict resolution, arts, and leadership skills. Please email or

With this communication coming out less often, and so much going on – and more than every only coming together at the last minute! – you’ll want to check our website and social media for news more often. For details – including special and regularly scheduled events this week – plus campaigns, fundraisers, and more please go to, our Facebook page, Twitter (@wnypeace), and Instagram (@wnypeace)! 

Peace, thanks, solidarity, and yes – love!!

<3 <3 <3 <3 <3


Find more details and additional special events on our Event Calendar at

May 21 – July 2

Song of Myself – Pride Month, thru July 2

In person at 255 Great Arrow Avenue, Suite 200 Buffalo, NY 14207. Free. From the Gerald Mead Collection.  Buffalo Art Movement (BAM!) is proud to honor LGBTQ+ artists from WNY who throughout history have created a body of work that celebrates queer identity. The significance of their work continues to pave the road for a new generation of artists that will further enhance the contributions of the LGBTQ+ community to the art world.

Part of the BAM! experience is to ensure that your health and safety is of priority, guests are encouraged to make a reservation before visiting the gallery by using our online reservation system:

About Buffalo Art Movement

BAM! supports the development and works of emerging and established artists in Western New York. As an exhibition space and art incubator, we strive to foster collaboration among artists, patrons, students, galleries and art institutions within our community. We are a space free of commercial, political, religious, socioeconomic and ethnic bias, where ideas and new voices are celebrated. Our vision is to provide a platform for local artists to flourish beyond the borders of WNY. Event host: Jeffrey Heras 716-939-2445;

Also see more info re the FLEX BBQ above, & please check out more ideas for Pride Month at

May 27 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am EDT

Cuba: Right to Live Without a Blockade

Webinar – “Right to Live Without a Blockade: The Impact of U.S. Sanctions on the Cuban Population and Women’s Lives.” Haga click aquí para leer en españolOxfam is publishing a ground-breaking, extensive report this week titled “Right to Live Without a Blockade: The Impact of U.S. Sanctions on the Cuban Population and Women’s Lives.” It focuses on the human dimension of this cruel, 60-year policy with concrete and personal examples of how the U.S. embargo has affected the Cuban population, specifically Cuban women, and how these effects have been magnified during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To highlight the launch of this critical report, we will be broadcasting the webinar Right to Live Without a Blockade, The webinar will be viewable on CODEPINK’s YouTube page and on the New Good Neighbor Policy Facebook page

May 27 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm EDT

Music & Indigenous Arts from Our Mother, Earth

(on zoom) – Honoring Our Connections with Our Ancestors & the Seventh Generation” with Native flute player, artist, and educator, Dan Hill (Cayuga, Heron Clan). The Gathering of Good Minds 2021 Invites You to Another Very Special, Virtual Event. Please register in advance for this meeting:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.For more info and/or more GGM events, please contact Lisa Latocha, GGM Event Planner, at or 315-813-3533Nyah-Weh! Tabutne! Yaw! Migwetch! Nyawen-ha! Thank you!

May 27 @ 7:00 pm EDT

Housing & Education Workshop

On  zoom.  Political  education  session.  From @OURCITYbflo featuring Teresa Watson. This workshop focuses on the relationship between housing and education in Buffalo. Register here: .

May 28 @ 10:00 am – 11:00 pm EDT

Parole Justice Rally & Speak-Out

At 5500 Main St, Williamsville, NY. Justice for our Elders now. Come help us reunite our families and end mass incarceration. Support the #ElderParole and #FairAndTimelyParole Bills (and please call Assemblyman Jon Rivera 716-885-9630 to urge his support).

June 2 @ 7:30 pm EDT

Talking Peace – Israel/Palestine

On our Facebook page, livestreaming. Also at Think Twice Radio (both website and Facebook Page). Please join us for a discussion with young Palestinian and Israeli/Jewish persons about their respective feelings, thoughts and experiences re the situation in Is/Pal. Re-broadcast audio on WBNY 91.3FM at 1pm Mon, June 7. (Also video will be put on our YouTube channel.)

June 2 @ 8:30 pm – 9:30 pm EDT

Talking Peace – Happy Birthday Brother Cornel!

On our Facebook page, livestreaming. Also at Think Twice Radio (both website and Facebook Page). Please join us on Beloved Brother Cornel West’s actual birthday! To celebrate the occasion, we’ll share a portion of our Evening with Dr. Cornel West. Re-broadcast audio on WBNY 91.3FM at 2pm Mon, June 7. (Also the video of the entire Evening is on our YouTube chanel and the carousel of our website home page.)

June 3 @ 9:00 am EDT

Buffalo 5 Court Date

In Ceremonial Courtroom, 2nd Fl, Old County Hall, Buffalo NY. The Buffalo 5 case (indictment no. 41-413) and their wrongful conviction and imprisonment (and parole) will be revisited. Three of the original Buffalo 5 remain living and are seeking a complete exoneration and clearing of their names. More under Campaigns below.

June 4 @ 7:00 pm – 7:40 pm EDT

Meditation/Prayer Vigil to Stop Executions

On zoom. Meditation/Prayer Vigil to Stop Executions, Torture, Murders & Assassinations & Promote Peace in the World upcoming 30-minute silent meditation/prayer vigil sessions against human executions, torture, murders & assassinations—these sessions are aimed at bringing more peace to the community, to the nation, and to the whole world. ZOOM link:   For more information, contact:

June 5 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm EDT

Native Plant Sale

In person at 2489 Whitehaven Road, Grand Island, 14072. Plant Sale on the Historic Alt Farm To Benefit Wildlife and Environment. (Social distancing and masks required – thank you!) The plant sale is a fundraiser to support the educational and outreach activities of the Citizen Coalition for Wildlife and Environment. Native and wildlife-beneficial plants will be offered that help create healthy ecosystems.

Plants are from a family-owned nursery located in Central NY: The Plantsmen Nursery. Plantsmen provides a great diversity of native plants found in New York and the Eastern US. They grow them in a spray-free environment – no pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or other chemical applications are used in their plant production. Most of their plants are seed-grown for genetic diversity and most of the seed is locally collected for local adaptation.


Find more details and additional weekly/monthly events on our website at


1pm-3pm – Talking Peace (WNYPC radio show). On WBNY 91.3 FM or streaming online at Insights on peace and justice with the WNYPC. At the moment, the show is being pre-recorded by Think Twice Radio at The Home of the Future! (This week rebroadcast of Candidates’ Forum for Erie Co Sheriff.)


1ST & 3rd Tues: 6:30pm Nekanehsakt: Friends of the Ekwehewe, an Indigenous support group, gathers to discuss and support needs and campaigns of the Indigenous communities, including protection of Mother Earth. On zoom here. Meeting ID: 862 5047 8013  Passcode: 269980


4pm – Prisoners’ Rights weekly vigil: No More Deaths! at the Erie County Holding Center (ECHC). Please bring your own signs. Please come out to stand in solidarity with families who’ve lost loved ones in the ECHC.

7:20 (approx.) – Talking Peace with the WNY Peace Center, livestreaming on Facebook (and subsequently broadcast on WBNY 91.3FM on Mondays 1-3pm). Two session each just under an hour. This week a Nonpartisan Primary Candidates Forum for Mayor of Buffalo!!


5pm – Immigrant & Refugee Justice (IRJ) weekly vigil: End Ice Terror! Outside the Delaware North Building. Please bring your own signs.

Starts Thursday, June 3rd – 6:30-8pm – 8 Thursdays –

Summer Book Discussion facilitated by Gabrie’l J. Atchison

Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God by Kelly Brown Douglas

(Thursdays, 6:30pm-8pm – in June & July (no meeting on July 1st))

Register here REGISTER

 to receive the Zoom information and then drop in as you can.


2pm – Environmental Justice weekly vigil: No Nuclear Waste over the Peace Bridge! At Front Park. Signs on hand.


10am- Myanmar Community Weekly Vigil, At Bidwell & Elmwood.

12 pm – Women in Black weekly vigil. At Elmwood & Bidwell. Signs on hand.


10am- Myanmar Community Weekly Vigil, At Bidwell & Elmwood.

4pm- Riverside Salem Weekly Gathering. Various topics. Currently on Zoom at

Meeting ID: 363 944 0486; Passcode: 756084. Also beginning to have in-person gatherings. To check, call 716-931-3520.


Find more details and additional campaigns and fundraisers at

Policing & Criminal Justice Reform

– Please sign the Buffalo Police Accountability Ballot Initiative if you are a resident of Buffalo. It will give the Buffalo Police Advisory Board some real power, “teeth” if you will, with subpoena power and more. Details are here. Or just go to Burning Books, Talking Leaves or Khari’s Café (at Jersey and Fargo) to sign the petition for a referendum. Thanks, VOICE-Buffalo for putting this together.

Free Mumia!

The frightening health crisis facing Mumia Abu-Jamal, internationally renowned political prisoner and writer is serious. Mumia, at 66, has had COVID-19,  heart surgery and other medical emergencies in the picture, this Call is more urgent than ever.
Mumia, as you may recall, was very ill five years ago as a result of misdiagnosed and untreated Hepatitis C. He was very close to death at that point, and we are sad to report that his situation may indeed be even more precarious now. Despite decades of amazing international and US support, and Mumia’s own great inner strength, MUMIA’S LIFE IS IN IMMINENT DANGER.
We therefore ask that you sign the simple but powerful Religious Call for Mumia’s Immediate and Unconditional Release. Please reply to us at:

Please support the WNYPC {Cariol Horne} Whistleblower Fund! Encourage police to intervene the way Cariol did to make sure police stop their colleagues from abusive acts or unnecessary use of force.

Re-visit the Buffalo 5 case (indictment no. 41-413)! Three of the original Buffalo 5 remain living and are seeking a complete exoneration and clearing of their names. Go to their hearing on June 3 (see above) and please also see the petition and campaign.

Contact ECDA John Flynn’s office (by phone: 716-858-2424 and by web: urging him to give Deyanna Davis more freedom while she’s in house arrest! Visit for a petition, fundraiser, and more information.

Please thank – again! –  the Common Council members who voted in favor of ending the Speed Camera Program as recommended by the FFFC: Councilmen Wyatt (particularly, who proposed the resolution), Pridgen, Bollman, Nowakowski, Rivera, and Feroleto (contact info

Environmental Justice & Indigenous Rights

Re #StopLine3 (and associated)

– Call MN Governor Tim Walz at 651-201-3400 to urge him and other officials (e.g., Congressman Keith Ellison) to stop Line 3.
– Visit the Water Protectors website for information on needed donations and coming out to put your body on the line to protect Mother Earth, the waters, and the creation.
-Donations (physical items and/or monetary) also gratefully received at Burning Books (420 Connecticut St, Buffalo, 14213 – open daily, 11am – 7pm) or to Nekanehsakt’s PayPal. #DefendTheSacred #WaterIsLife
– SIGN THE PETITION HERE to get President Biden to #StopLine3.
For more info and ways to help, go to:

West Valley Nuclear Waste Clean-up

Join the West Valley Action Network and support the full cleanup of one of WNY’s most dangerous radioactive pollution problems. Help protect our drinking water, environmental, and community! Join in proactively protecting our region from the long-lasting, deadly nuclear and hazardous waste at the West Valley site. Please also contact all of your legislators – local, state, and federal – to urge full covered cleanup with extensive monitoring!

Foreign Policy

We need to #ReSealTheDeal with Iran. Please sign the petition  to President Biden urging that he return the US to that commitment. Please join the twitter storm too, and/or call the President at 202-456-1111.

Please also urge Biden with every means at your disposal to work to #EndTheBlockade of Yemen. #YemenCantWait. It has been especially heinous the siege being so persistent throughout Ramadan.

Don’t forget to keep telling @POTUS and @Ablinken to #EndtheBlockade of Cuba as well. People have suffered too long. If you can help CodePink raising $$$ to send Cuba much-needed syringes and medical supplies! Please give generously and you will receive a tax-deductible donation receipt instantly.

Support the campaign to break the US blockade and send syringes to the people of Cuba!

CODEPINK is committed to raising $$$ to send Cuba much-needed syringes and medical supplies! Please give generously and you will receive a tax-deductible donation receipt instantly.

Immigrant and Refugee Justice

Justice for Erick Mejia. Sign on to the petition. Erick was a 26-year-old Honduran shot 28 times and killed by San Antonio police in Texas. The family is demanding that the city of San Antonio fire the police. Erick was undocumented and ran in fear after being stopped by traffic police. It is a travesty of justice that his family had to flee violence in their homeland only for their son to be shot down in cold blood in this country.
Please share and sign the petition: 

The letter from Ray Bissonette to the Buffalo News (see details above in email letter portion)

Mike Connelly, Editor                                                            

18 May 2021

The Buffalo News                                                                          

One News Plaza,

Buffalo NY 14203

Dear Mr. Connelly:

In your 17 May issue I read with horror your front page story about my late brother, Father Joseph Bissonette, and his alleged pedophilia 44 years ago. I will not attempt to litigate this by letter but would like to express and share with your readers my thoughts about your management of this “news.”

Some years ago I enjoyed the privilege of publishing my views on your op-ed page. To find my columns appearing alongside the likes of George Will and Charles Krauthammer was frankly gratifying and flattering. But I also recall the high standards of accuracy, precision, and balance to which you held my submissions.

In this context of journalistic standards let me offer a few thoughts  about your article on my late brother.

My principal concern is how your eagerness to publish this allegation seems to have short circuited even basic due diligence — a step I would think of special concern when a person’s memory and reputation will be indelibly and irreparably stained by your story. Did anyone check with the Diocese to learn that in 1977 while Father Bissonette was allegedly violating this “victim” in his office at St. Bartholomew’s he was not at St. Bartholomew’s but assigned full time to St. Brigid’s? He did  not set foot in St. Bartholomew’s for another three years when the victim’s school  was already closed. You would have seen that in your own published obituary from 1987. The rich, salacious content of the attorney’s complaint is reported with faithful, vivid detail while the difficulty of engaging in this behavior from a distance is ignored, or more likely, unknown. Nor does it appear that anyone has looked into the background of the attorney lodging the complaint. I strongly urge you to do so. My little contributions years ago would have been stopped cold for such omissions. Would it be cynical to suspect your interest in selling papers may outweigh your concern for the destruction of the accused? Should something in this remind us of turning the principle of innocent until proven guilty on its head?

For the record: no one is more outraged by sexual predation than I. The behavior was extensive, often with complicity of the Church. My brother and I had frequent conversations about this issue and he fully shared my views.

Finally, as I read the attorney’s heart rending recitation of his exclusive concern for his client’s effort to heal I look in vain for comparable (or any) concern by your paper for the accused, his family or his many admirers.


Raymond Bissonette


WNY Peace Center Office Job Description

The WNY Peace Center seeks a highly organized person who is passionate about peace and social justice issues to help in the office working for our mission of “Peace Through Justice at Home and Abroad.”

The WNY Peace Center is a nonprofit, member driven organization founded in 1956. Our nine taskforces focus on particular issue areas and we stress the interconnectedness of our issues, Uniting the Struggles and Movement-Building. We provide many opportunities to learn about, reflect, and act constructively to address issues of concern to our membership. As a force for progressive change, the WNY Peace Center serves as an incubator for new ideas and the promotion of activism.

The Office Position is for  approximately 10 hours/week at $15/hour.

Candidates should be detail oriented, have great verbal and written communication skills, computer skills (QuickBooks knowledge is a plus), and a cooperative spirit. Experience in the non-profit sector and/or community organizing is helpful.


Skills: Knowledge of Quickbooks, Word, Mac computer.

with Duties to include:

Answering phones, returning calls.

Data entry and maintenance, including bookkeeping (making deposits, check-writing, running reports) using Quickbooks and a Mac

Order and maintain office supplies and equipment, arrange bulk mailings

Design and layout of office publications and literature such as newsletter/weekly news as needed, annual dinner program book, annual reports and membership appeals/ renewals (either performing or arranging therefor)

Assist in keeping the office clean and organized, other office maintenance

Work closely with the Executive Director, as variously directed, possibly including: Communicating with the staff, board and members; Assist in media and publicity outreach, including press releases, media advisories and follow-up; Participate in designing, publicizing and implementing strategic campaigns; Assist in planning, publicizing and executing meetings, speakers, fundraisers, rallies and other events; Assist in fundraising through grant-writing, membership appeals and events; Conduct research on legislation, grants, social issues and potential services; Assist in outreach and work with other peace and justice organizations; Assisting as needed

Please send your resume and a cover letter to by Wednesday, May 26th. Thanks!

#UNITEtheStruggles | #OneLove | #WeShallOvercome | #SiSePuede