Social Justice assumes that we recognize the inherent worth and dignity of every person. This overarching principle applies to the equality of providing health care to those in need. Need is dramatic when a catastrophe hits. In April of 2015 23,000 people were injured by the earthquakes and landslides in Nepal. The immediate medical care was remarkably good considering the numbers of persons needing treatment and the rural locations of many of the injured. Now, 8 months later, thousands still require rehabilitation to recover from the multiple fractures, amputations, spinal cord and brain injuries sustained in the quakes and landslides. This portion of our world community needs our support to achieve justice for all who cannot access rehabilitation services and who because of disabilities cannot work.
The Social Action Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Marblehead has a long standing commitment to social justice work. We responded quickly to disaster relief after Katrina sending members to rebuild homes. Our minister, Rev. Wendy von Courter, was imprisoned when leading the call for justice for immigrants. And we have led in the call for racial justice and housing for homeless.
Now we are calling for social justice in providing rehabilitation care and vocational training to those injured in the Nepal earthquakes and those in the general public needing rehabilitation. Patricia E. Sullivan, DPT, PhD a member of the Social Action Committee of UUCM has 25 years of providing physical therapy services, education and consultation internationally. For the past few years she has consulted at Kathmandu University’s Dhulikhel Hospital to improve their physical therapy services and teaching methodologies. After the earthquakes she was asked by her Nepalese colleagues to assist in disaster relief. To that end she established Rehab Nepal, Inc. to provide that support and to provide a mechanism to collect donations and oversee fund raising.
Dr. Sullivan has the full and unanimous support of the UUCM Social Action Committee. Last year we recognized her remarkable international contributions which include providing service, teaching and consulting in 17 countries, by presenting her with the Social Justice award. She as President of Rehab Nepal Inc. is submitting this proposal for your consideration.
Full proposal is available here UUA Nepal Proposal a
Minutes of Social Action Committee January 10th 2016
NEXT MEETING March 13, 2016 12-1
Present: Gordie Corzine, Christine Krom, Stathi Stratis, Susan Barnard, Jean Hamburg, Nicki Moore, Susan Morrison, Jay Morrison, Trish Sullivan, Sheila Cran-Berry, Carolyn Corzine
Family Promise: Nicki reported that the first round of guests will be in residence from January 24-31st. 56% of the slots for volunteers have been filled both from inside and outside the church. The mechanism for doing that has been an on-line tool called Volunteer Spot to avoid duplicate sign-ups for the same dates and times. Nicki will be expanding her outreach this next week to complete the roster. Cheryl and Christine have agreed to shop for food and supplies not included in the evening meal. Trained volunteers can sign up for slots involving contact with clients, but others can provide meals or set up and break down. Further trainings will be offered in the future, and providing that this goes well, a second residency will happen in the summer. Nicki is studying to be a trainer.
Seventh Principle: Linda Weltner was informed that the Historic District Commission would not allow solar panels on any portion of our roof. However two individual members have been exploring using solar panels on their residences.
Nepal Disaster Response: Trish reported that Rehab Nepal Inc. is now a 501c3 tax deductible organization, and has collected nearly $5000 to date. Trish is currently writing proposals to the Nepal -American Medical Foundation, which can contribute between $30,000 and $50,000. A proposal will also be sent to the UUA. We as the Social Action Committee of the UUCM voted unanimously to officially sponsor the submission of Rehab Nepal Inc to the UUA. The goals of Rehab Nepal are: 1) to build an in-and outpatient Rehabilitation Center on the Dhulikhel Hospital campus 2) to expand 14 existing rural clinics operated by the hospital to provide consistent rehabilitation services and 3) to provide education and training programs for rehabilitation staff and community health workers. The amounts needed to accomplish these goals are $1,500,000 for the building, and $500,000 for its equipment and staffing. Additional monies will be required to equip, and staff clinics and train staff.
Racism: Susan Morrison reported that plans for the Racial Justice event were going ahead smoothly with the joint efforts of the Marblehead Racial Justice Team and the Marblehead Ministerial Association. On Sunday January 31, 2016, from 2-4 PM at the Marblehead High School Auditorium, Shay Stewart-Bouley Executive Director of Boston based Community Change Inc, and Debbie Irving author of Waking Up White will engage in an honest dialogue about activism for racial justice, and white privilege. A number of church book groups are reading Debbie’s book in preparation for this event and high school students are being specifically invited to attend. The event is being widely publicized.
The UUA Urban Ministry is offering Anti Racism Workshop Saturday January 23rd from 10-2 at 10 Putnam St. Roxbury. The panel discussion will address both “Black Lives Matter” and ” Islamophobia”. Nicki, Carolyn, Susan Barnard, Sheila Cran-Berry, and Stathi plan to attend.
UUJME: Carolyn reported that she attended a follow up meeting to the New Day conference which was directed to residents of the 6th congressional district. The group plans to develop a phone tree to contact Markey, Warren and Seth Moulton up to twice a month about congressional bills that relate to the Israel/Palestine conflict. Currently there is a Bill in the house seeking to penalize the EU for demanding that goods manufactured in the West Bank be appropriately labeled as such and not Made in Israel. She is hoping to recruit volunteers for that phone tree. Also UUJME is currently working to get a BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) Business Resolution on the Agenda at GA. Some of you may already have signed the Petition from UUCM asking for that to happen. 250 signatures are needed in all, and only10 can come from each church, If that Business Resolution is place on the Agenda, then UUJME will work to inform delegates to GA about the Resolution and the reasons why they should vote for it.
Meetinghouse Series Jay Morrison talked about the plans for the Meeting House series. So far, b/c it is the Tricentennial Year all of the presentations have been historical, and the previous speakers would like to return. Attendance has been about 20 per visit. Jay wondered about branching out to other topics, and also discussed timing of those meetings. Lori Erlich agreed to come to present but would like us to suggest a topic. Stathi suggested as an alternative topic to show the film Black Orpheus about Carnival in Brazil, and demonstrate how people cope with poverty thru dance, music and song.
Communication Alissa, who was not present, manages the church web site as a whole, has asked Gordie to manage the part of the site dealing with Social Action. If people want to announce matters related to their particular interest they should send the data to Gordie to list it.
Please edit for omissions and corrections before the Minutes are posted on the Web Site.
Carolyn Corzine, Chair