IC-SS News 10-30-23: Learn & act

8 mins read

IC-SS Weekly News: October 30, 2023

Thanks to Our Letter Writers!

Last week, we held our final letter-writing session for this election cycle. Meeting at the Nile, fourteen of us gathered to write Vote Forward letters to people in Ohio and Virginia.

All told, 29 people have written letters with us in 2023. Most recently, we’ve sent off 2,400 letters to Ohio and Virginia voters. 

A very hearty shout-out to Steve Kagan, our tireless letter leader who printed out letters, provided envelopes and pens, and mentored us all. Steve reminds us: Mail any remaining letters by tomorrow, Tues. Oct. 31.

Thank you, thank you to everyone who wrote letters with us in person and at home and to everyone who donated stamps!

Our writers this year (alphabetical by first name): Barb Schmidt, Barbara Brotman, Betsy Rubin, Carlton Ferrono, Clairan Ferrono, David Derbes, Elaine Hadley, Esther Peters, Joyce Mannis, Justin Hill, Kathleen Atlass, Kay Poyner Brown, Kineret Jaffe, Lisa Oppenheim, Lisa Rademacher, Mary Naftzger, Meredith Conn, Michael Aaron, Richard Pardo, Sarah Lincoln, Sarah Rubin, Sheron Shapiro, Sophia Watson, Stephanie Weaver, Steve Kagan (our letter leader), Susan Avila, Tara Maguire, Teri Watkins, William Weaver.

Do Letters Make a Difference?

Vote Forward letters target voters in key districts who may not otherwise get out to the polls. Letters are part of awareness efforts, which include canvassing and phone banking.

Vote Forward writes: “Over multiple experiments in the past few years, we’ve proven that Vote Forward letters mobilize voters—at the polling booth and via absentee ballot, in multiple states, and in multiple types of elections.” Read more here.

With regard to awareness raising in Ohio, Steve Kagan shares a news story that voters “in Democratic-stronghold counties are showing up in mass to vote early for the November election.”  We believe our Vote Forward letters contributed to the larger get-out-the-vote effort.

Ceasefire: Share Your Views

The situation in Gaza is ever more dire. In the U. S. House, Congressman Jonathan Jackson (IL-01) has joined Illinois lawmakers Delia Ramirez (IL-03) and Jesus (Chuy) Garcia (IL-04) in co-sponsoring Congresswoman Cori Bush’s House resolution calling for a ceasefire.

View the House ceasefire resolution and the full list of co-sponsors — and be aware that more Illinois lawmakers may be signing on.

To date, both Senator Dick Durbin and Senator Tammy Duckworth have spoken out for humanitarian aid to people of Gaza, but neither has called for a ceasefire.

In fact, per video shared by investigative journalist Carlos Ballesteros of Injustice Watch, Senator Duckworth specifically refuses to call for a ceasefire. Watch their websites and social media for further statements.

Illinois lawmakers need to know what their constituents think. Share your own message with them here:

Organizations and Opportunities

📣 Indivisible Chicago-South Side shares information and actions from other organizations on issues important in our country, state, city, and communities. 

Town Hall with Rep. Jonathan Jackson: Nov 5

From Congressman Jonathan Jackson (IL’s 1st Congressional District): What are YOUR top concerns regarding housing, health, and the migrant crisis?

I’m hosting a town hall on critical issues confronting IL-01 at the South Shore Cultural Center-Robeson Theater (7059 South Shore Dr.) on Sunday, Nov. 5th from 1:00-4:00 PM.  Register here.

New Ways to Help Asylum Seekers

As the temperatures dip into the thirties, asylum seekers are being bussed into the city at increasing rates. Along with unhoused citizens, hundreds of folks are still living inside and outside all of Chicago’s police district stations, often for weeks, while awaiting shelter space. 

In June, Brenda Delgado spoke to IC-SS about the District 2 & 3 effort


Support the purchase of needed supplies: At an Indivisible Chicago-South Side event in June, we heard from Brenda Delgado, lead volunteer for Chicago Police Station Response Team in police districts 2 & 3.

Ms. Delgado is now purchasing items to fulfill specific needs at these police stations. These crucial supplies include clothing, tents, tarps and other items to make living outside in Chicago fall endurable. 

Donate coats: Block Club Chicago reports that a national nonprofit is working with the City of Chicago to provide 18,000 coats to migrants. One Warm Coat asks people to collect coats and drop them off with a local partner. Coats must be clean and have functional zippers or buttons.

  • For Hyde Park, One Warm Coat lists a coat collection partner as the Chicago Center for HIV Elimination, 1525 E 55th St., Suite 205. ImportantBEFORE you go to the site, phone or communicate by email to arrange the drop-off: 773-702-4377 or jdehlin@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu
  • There are also partners in South Shore, Bronzeville, Greater Grand Crossing, the South Loop and more. To donate coats, find a local partner here. Be sure to contact the partner BEFORE dropping off any coats.

Find One Warm Coat drop-off locations for clean, wearable coats

Black Maternal Health & Environmental Justice

At a recent live event, the League of Women Voters of Chicago welcomed Chakena D. Perry, Senior Policy Advocate for the Safe Water Initiative, NRDC. Ms. Perry spoke about clean water access and Black maternal health.

Chakena D. Perry: read her op-ed, see her presentation

Missed the event? No worries! To learn more, watch and read:

Tues, Nov 14: District Council 2 Meeting

If you live in Chicago’s 2nd police district, attend the in-person meeting of the 2nd District Council on Tuesday, November 14th, 6:30-8:00 pm (doors open 6:00 pm) at Wabash Avenue YMCA Building, 3763 S. Wabash(You can also attend remotely – sign up here for the Zoom link.)

Don’t live in the 2nd district? Find your police district here. Connect with YOUR District Council on this page and get meeting announcements and minutes. Learn more about the role of Chicago’s 22 district councils and the Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability (CCPSA) here.

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The mission of Indivisible Chicago - South Side is to unite south siders to fight for progressive values by exerting grassroots influence on our elected officials.

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