Saturday, May 1, 2004 Meeting Notes for People for Peace, Justice, and Healing

PPJH meeting minutes

People for Peace, Justice and Healing met May 1, 2004, at 10:00 a.m. at Associated Ministries. Present for check-in: Benjie, Karen H., Colleen, Sharon, Karen K., Kyle, Vivi, Elaine, Sallie S., Sheila, Mark J.

NOTE: There was no meeting of PPJH on Saturday, April 24, because of the county caucus delegates' meeting.


1. Publicity for May 18 Ericksen lecture
2. NW Detention Center update and discussion
3. Discussion of the present conjuncture

1. May 18 Ericksen lecture publicity. Robert P. Ericksen will present a lecture entitled "The Illusion of Overwhelming Force" co-sponsored by People for Peace, Justice, and Healing and United for Peace of Pierce County at 7:00 p.m. in the Olympic Room of the Tacoma Public Library on Tuesday, May 18, 2004. Sallie distributed 8-1/2" x 11" and 11" x 15" flyers and organized posting responsibilities. The 8-1/2" x 11" version is posted on the web as a 126k .pdf file at http://www.tacomapjh/EricksenMay18.pdf -- please print and help distribute.)

2. NW Detention Center update. On the night of April 23-24, 2004, the Northwest Detention Center, the Homeland Security jail at 1623 E. "J" St. built at the Tacoma Tar Pits Superfund site on the Tacoma Tideflats and privately owned and operated by Correctional Services Corporation (NASDAQ: CSCQ) of Sarasota, Florida, populated the facility for the first time with an unknown number of detainees. The Bill of Rights Defense Committee-Tacoma led by Tim Smith continues on a number of fronts its efforts in opposition to the facility and on behalf of the rights of those detained. Sharon said that the religious rights of detainees was the best way to gain access to them. BORDC-Tacoma will be organizing an educational event in the near future. There was consensus that PPJH could play a useful role in helping increase community awareness of the issues surrounding the facility, particularly with respect to the history of the mistreatment of non-citizens in Tacoma and Pierce County.

3. Discussion of the present conjuncture. Thoughts were shared about the present conjuncture. There is good reason to believe that public opinion is moving against the war and against the Bush administration at this time. PPJH members seem to share a consensus that most of the positions taken by leading figures in the Democratic Party at this time are problematic and disappointing, however.


1. Presentation by Benjie Peters. Colleen will host an evening presentation Benjie Peters of his thesis work on the evening of Tuesday, May 11 (soup at 6pm, talk at 7pm). The presentation by Benjie, a graduate student at the UW Tacoma who worked last summer at the Martin Luther King Jr. archive at Stanford University and will soon begin Ph.D. studies at Rutgers University, will be a part of PPJH's ongoing "Seeking Alternatives to War" series. Please contact Colleen (759-9680) if interested in attending.

2. Legal Marriage. (Colleen). Evening of Friday, May 12, in the UPS Rotunda.

3. PPJH is a co-sponsor of a conference on coalition building called "From Chaos to Community: Where Do We Go from Here?" The conference will be held at First United Methodist Church (423 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Tacoma). There will be an evening tea and social hour followed by an address by Leslie Braxton (probably on what Martin Luther King Jr. called the "giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism") on the evening of Friday, May 14. On the morning and afternoon of Saturday, May 15, there will be a number of workshops on topics including: labor and the environment; immigration and labor; health care; communities of faith/peace and justice; overcoming wedge issues in electoral politics. There will be a nominal fee for attendance; however, no one will be turned away. (PPJH's meeting on the morning of May 15 will consist of attendance at the conference; the regular meeting is cancelled.)

4. Special skills draft (Benjie). Howard Welsh is organizing around the prospect of a special skills draft of health care workers.

5. PJAG (Benjie). PJAG at UW Tacoma is thinking of holding an alternative service job fair with the need for 'counter-recruitment' in mind.

Mark J.