GREATER BOSTON INTERFAITH ORGANIZATION (GBIO)

The Greater Bostion Interfaith Organization (GBIO) subcommittee of AFREJ coordinates BWC's involvement in GBIO - focusing on criminal justice reform, healthcare, and gun control.

If you'd like to get involved, please contact Steve Vogel at strongvog@rcn.com.

GBIO Action May 18, 2017

Join Boston Workmen's Circle at the next Greater Boston Interfaith Organziation’s next action on May 18th. Items on the agenda include: 

  • Out of Many One – a follow up to the moving solidarity meeting held at the Islamic Center of Boston soon after the Trump election.
  • Criminal Justice Reform – report on GBIO’s campaign to support elimination of Mandatory Minumum drug sentencing, reform of Solitary Confinement, reform of Pre-Trial/Bail, and changes to onerous fees for Probation and Parole.
  • Affordable Housing- work after passage of the CPA in Boston
  • Health Care Cost Containment

Please let Steve Vogel (strongvog@rcn.comknow if you are planning on attending as soon as possible.  

GBIO Action Update (February, 2017)

On February 2nd, 900 people gathered at the Bethel AME church, representing a broad cross section of Greater Boston. The crowd was racially and ethnically diverse, including Christians, Muslims and Jews from Boston and surrounding cities and towns. 

Criminal Justice Reform-  Senate President Stanley Rosenberg, with Senators Chang Diaz, and  William Brownsberger supported GBIO’s Criminal Justice Reform platform – eliminating excessive  Solitary Confinement, eliminating Mandatory Minimums for drug offenses, reforming the Pre-Trial and Bail process, and eliminating excessive fees and fines for people who have dealings with Probation and Parole.  There will be a call for people to lobby their representative in the next 1-2 months.  Anyone interested please email Steve Vogel strongvog@rcn.com.  Or call 617-820-2802.

Affordable Housing- City Counselors Tito Jackson, and Ayanna Pressley supported GBIO’s affordable housing agenda. The Community Preservation Committee to be formed after the passage of the Community Preservation Act will make recommendations for how the funds should be spent.  GBIO demands that the 4 community representatives on the board should be Boston citizens should not be appointed by the Mayor. They should have a history of involvement in their communities, there should be particular attention to adequate representation to communities of color, and that the Yes for a Better Boston Coalition (GBIO is a member) should nominate 12 candidates for the Council to choose from.  There will be a hearing at Boston City Hall on Monday Feb. 13th at 11:30 AM  we need as many people as possible to go. 

Health Care- GBIO is starting a campaign to save the Affordable Care Act -ACA.  We are asking people to call anyone they know in one of seven states to call their Senator to vote no on repealing the ACA .  In  Alaska- Lisa Murkowski, and Dan Sullivan, Arizona- Jeff Flake and John McCain, Iowa- Chuck Grassley, Maine- Susan Collins, Nevada- Dean Heller, Ohio- Rob Portman, Pennsylvania- Pat Toomey, Tennessee- Lamar Alexander, Bob Corker and West Virginia- Shelly Moore Capito.  Direct them to www.savemycare.org which has talking points and a system to directly connect them to their Senator’s office.

There is an amazing groundswell of activism after the election.  Great things can happen if we keep organizing and use the political pressure we have.  We have the power to make a big difference.

Boston Community Preservation Act (CPA) Campaign/ Affordable Housing 2016

Greater Boston Interfaith Organization (GBIO), which BWC is a member of, has joined The Yes For A Better Boston Campaign to pass the CPA in Boston this fall.  If passed, real estate taxes would go up by 1% with exclusions for the first 100,000 in property assessment for all, and greater exclusions for low income home homeowners, and low to moderate elderly homeowners.  It would raise $20 million dollars yearly to go to affordable housing, development and improvement of parks, playgrounds, and the protection of water resources.  Based on communication with the Walsh administration the emphasis would be on affordable housing.  The CPA would cost the average homeowner only $24 dollars per year.

We are looking for Workmen Circle members who live in Boston and are interested in being part of the campaign.  Our goal is to identify voters who would support the campaign, educate the public, and to register new voters to support the campaign and to build greater voter/electoral power in Boston.

If you are interested in volunteering (we are looking for people who can give even small amounts of time calling and speaking with friends, neighbors and co-workers), or learning more, please contact Steve Vogel at strongvog@rcn.com, or call 617-820-2802.