Present: Peter, Ellyn, Glenda Rae, Rey, Ronda, Lois (by phone).
1. Approval of Minutes for March 11: The minutes were approved as corrected.
2. Progress Reports:
a. Topic of the Month: We discussed the topic of draft registration which we had approved in 2005. We decided to change "his or her" in the first paragraph to "their." The rest of the statement seems as applicable today as when it was written 12 years ago. We decided to add a paragraph as follows:
"MPJC would support a gender-neutral civilian service draft which, if activated, would involve draftees in medical, disaster relief, rescue operations as well as infrastructure work similar to the CCC. Participants would receive the same pay and benefits as those in the armed forces. Young people who registered for this draft would have the same access to educational loans and grants as those who register for the military draft."
Once we have approved the wording, we will send the entire statement to the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service, which is currently conducting hearings on whether to abolish the draft or to expand it to women.
b. Tax Day Vigil, April 15: 5 of us held signs urging people to think about their tax dollars going for war. at our regular Monday vigil on tax day. We took a picture and sent it to NWTRCC for their website. The weather was cool but sunny and we received plenty of honks. No press covered the vigil. Our press release was a little late.
c. Book of the Month report: No one was reading books that they wanted to share.
e. Immigration Coalition Report: The coalition is down to a skeleton crew and is working to regain a more active status. Some conservative church members have dropped out. The group has no plans for action at this time.
3. Treasurer's Report: $104.52 with $30 in petty cash.
1. What do we (can we) do next? We incorporated this topic into other discussion
2. Topic of the Month: See above.
3. Memorial Day Parade: We decided not to have an entry in the parade this year since we would not have enough people to pull it off. Lois will try to find a veteran who is going to march in the parade to carry our Veterans for Peace banner. She will have the veteran contact Peter and Ellyn to arrange pickup.
4. Other Topics and Issues: Lois was quite moved by a column by Rabbi Goldstein in the April 29 South Bend Tribune. He was shot by the San Diego gunman who attacked a synagogue near San Diego. He said, "We need to battle darkness with light." Lois asked if someone could draft a letter to the editor to respond to the rabbi. Peter volunteered to do so. Lois will have her name at the bottom along with Michiana Peace and Justice Coalition. Lois was worried that no one would be able to find the MPJC website, but Ronda and Rey assured her that folks can find it via google.
Friday, May 10 is the 9 year anniversary of the opening of the Civil Rights Heritage Center. Darryl is supposed to return for a 6:30pm celebration at the center.
On May 30 at Our Lady of the Road, CFED will hold their Part II meeting on Homelessness in the community. The gateway center is still in the planning stages. Dave Matthew's buildings are definitely out.
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5. Next meeting: Monday, June 3, at 2:30pm at Peter and Ellyn's. We will send the directions in the meeting announcement.