Massachusetts Peace Action is watching the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and following guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as local and state public health authorities. The safety of our members, volunteers, presenters, and event attendees, as well as community members, are paramount. We are carefully monitoring the situation, and we are following public health authorities’ guidance to protect health.
Public health experts are advising people to avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people; to avoid discretionary travel, shopping trips, or social visits; and not to go out to restaurants or bars. Those over 60, and those with special health risks, are particularly urged to stay home. Gatherings of more than 25 people are banned in Massachusetts, stores other than those selling essential goods are closed, and school is closed. “Social distancing” guidelines call for everyone to maintain a distance of 6 feet from others to avoid spreading the virus.
Are you feeling sick, or need help? The Massachusetts 2-1-1 site, mass211.org, has great information.
We have cancelled all public events through April 5, or converted them to virtual events, and will re-evaluate events between April 6 and 30 in late March.
The specific plans for our upcoming events are as follows, and are subject to change:
– March 19 Sanctions Kill panel: Cancelled.
– March 20 Music for Peace concert: Will be rescheduled. We at first announced a new date of September 18 but then realized that is the first night of Rosh Hashanah, so are still looking for a good date.
– March 28 Annual Meeting: The program portion of the meeting (keynote speakers, program report and breakout sessions) will be rescheduled for later in the year, when conditions permit it. The business portion (election of the board and approval of bylaws changes and other official documents) will be held via an online presentation and vote; stand by for details.
– April 4 Minds not Missiles conference: Postponed, tentatively to be rescheduled in fall
– April 15 Tax Day Community Gathering: Cancelled.
– April 18 Music for Peace concert: To be decided in late March
– April 24-26 World Conference for Nuclear Disarmament in New York, and April 29 presentation by Japanese peace movement delegation: Cancelled. An online version of the event is being prepared.
Mutual Aid groups are springing up across the state. Check here for a list of local groups and how you can get involved in requesting or offering aid.
Mass. Peace Action supports #ShutDownMASS, a call for the Governor to close non-essential businesses and support workers and tenants.
Questions for Mass. Peace Action? Please write firstname.lastname@example.org or call 617-354-2169, and check back in this space for updates.
Our office is closed until at least April 5, as is the First Church in Cambridge where it is located. Working group and committee meetings have been changed to online phone/video conference. Check with your working group chair for details, or use the above contact information.
Government is supposed to keep us safe. Its response to the crisis has been sluggish at best, but as of March 15-16, is finally improving. In the face of a coronavirus epidemic and a resulting economic crisis, it is time for America re-examine its priorities.
Universal access to healthcare– endless war?
Paid sick leave for everyone– or a $738 billion Pentagon budget?
A well-funded public health complex or a vast military industrial complex?
Increased spending for medical research or a military space force?
Affordable housing for all or tax breaks for the rich?
Quality free public schools and colleges or more useless weapons systems?
Good jobs and a rebuilt infrastructure or more prisons and mass incarceration?
A livable planet with better public transportation or government subsidies for fossil fuels?
See more information on the 2021 Pentagon Budget proposal
– Updated March 16