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Featured news by and for the local community


News :: Alternative Media : Labor & Economics

Union Struggle Continues at Sunshine Villa

On Tuesday, March 22, about thirty people gathered in the rain outside Sunshine Villa in Santa Cruz. The rally was in support of workers who are fighting management at the assisted living facility, for union recognition. Last July, most of Sunshine Villa's fifty workers voted for representation from SEIU Local 415. Read More

This radio story from November 2004, was produced for the Workers Independent News. Download Audio

News :: Alternative Media : Education & Youth : Globalization & Capitalism

UC Administrators Rolling in Money - the PROJECT March 2005

The March 2005 edition of The Project, a student organized newspaper from UCSC, is now available at various cafes and other locations around Santa Cruz and here on Santa Cruz Indymedia. This current issue helps shed light on the fact that UC administrators are rolling in money. A Coalition of University Employees (CUE) fact-finding report discloses the hard numbers of the so-called “budget crisis.?

Also in this issue, you will find a guide to DIY pot, an investigation of U$ imperial interest in Iran, some thoughts on cross-species solidarity, reportbacks from the Students Against the War (SAW) teach-in, the 2005 World Social Forum, and much more...


News :: Education & Youth : Peace & War : Resistance & Tactics

UCSC Students Against War Teach-In Draws Hundreds

On March 3rd, Students Against War (SAW), a newly formed UCSC organization, held a teach-in about the war in Iraq. SAW is comprised of three different campaigns that work closely together to fight against manifestations of the war-machine on a very local level. At the teach-in each group presented its current projects and through break-out groups, encouraged new students to get involved. Here is an overview of what was brought up at the event.

[ Harbor High’s Students for Peace and Justice Turn Up the Heat on Military Recruiters ]

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Commentary :: Government & Elections

Rotkin's Council To Cut Back Public Comment

On Tuesday March 22nd, Mayor Mike Rotkin introduces a radical measure to severely limit public comment on most of the agenda items that come up at City Council. Robert Norse sent the following critical letter to Mayor Rotkin and the City Council, urging them to defeat item #18.

Call 420-5020 or e-mail citycouncil (at) to register your opposition.

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Announcement :: Alternative Media : Civil & Human Rights : Peace & War

New Website Features Voices from the Bethlehem Ghetto

The Bethlehem Bloggers website is dedicated to bringing first hand insight into life and politics inside Israeli-occupied Bethlehem. The site is managed by a diverse group of activists and professionals living and working in the area. An introductory statement posted to the website explains:

"We are Palestinians and internationals who are living in the Bethlehem region, and who want to tell the world what it is like to be living in occupied territory, under an economic siege, encircled by a wall and military checkpoints: what it is like to live in a Palestinian Ghetto."

[ Bethlehem Bloggers: Voices from the Bethlehem Ghetto | Bethlehem bloggers online ]


News :: Civil & Human Rights : Peace & War : Police State

Interviews with Cindy Corrie and Joe Carr About the Life and Death of Rachel Corrie and Palestinian Solidarity

Rachel Corrie, a volunteer with the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), was killed by a D-9 Caterpillar bulldozer driven by Israeli soldiers on March 16th, 2003 while non-violently attempting to prevent the demolition of a Palestinian family's home in the refugee camp of Rafah, Occupied Gaza. There has never been an independent investigation into her killing.

On March 13, 2005, George Cadman, host of Peace Talks on Free Radio Santa Cruz 101.1fm interviewed Joe Carr, an eyewitness to Rachel Corrie's killing. Joe spoke about what he saw on the day that Rachel was run over by an Israeli bulldozer. He also talks about what kind of person Rachel was, what motivated her to do the work she had done and how he and others are continuing her work. He also answers criticisms of the International Solidarity Movement, the movement that both he and Rachel were a part of. (31:29 / 21.6 MB)
Audio: Listen to the Stream or Download the mp3

After speaking with Joe Carr, George Cadman interviewed Cindy Corrie about her daughter Rachel Corrie. Cindy talks about what kind of person Rachel was, why she did the work that she did, how Rachel's killing has affected her family and how they are continuing her work. Cindy also reads a few short clips of Rachel's writings and talks about their efforts to get an independent investigation into Rachel's killing. (57:44 / 52.9 MB)
Audio: Listen to the Stream or Download the mp3

See Also: The Courage of Rachel Corrie | Family of American Woman Killed by Military Bulldozer Files Suit Against Catepillar, Inc | Santa Cruz's Recent Visitor Amy Goodman Spotlights Lawsuit | Maia Ramnath speaks about her recent travels to the West Bank with the ISM

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News :: Gender & Sexuality : Government & Elections : Labor & Economics

Gay Marriage Advocates in Santa Cruz Celebrate Judge Kramer's Ruling

On March 15, 2005, The GLBT Alliance, a Santa Cruz queer political organization, held a rally at the Town Clock to celebrate a decision in San Francisco Superior Court that same-sex marriage could be legal in California. Superior Court Judge Richard Kramer ruled that sections 300 and 308.5 of family law codes violate equal protection, that the marriage statutes discriminate on the basis of gender and sexual orientation, and that they violate the fundamental right to marry.

I attended the Santa Cruz rally and spoke with Thomas Leavitt, co-chair of The GLBT Alliance. (4:56 / 2.3 MB)

Audio: Listen to the Stream or Download the mp3

Read more same-sex marriage news and commentary on Indybay's Queer page


News :: Environment & Food : Labor & Economics : Transportation

Introducing, a transit guide for Santa Cruz

Did you know you can get to SFO by public transit, for just $10? This is only one example. Indeed, there are very few places you CAN'T get to by public transit. The problem is information. You'd need to contact three different transit agencies to plan a trip to the airport. The Metro Riders Union has a better answer: an easy, online transit guide geared to people who live in Santa Cruz.

Unlike a transit agency Web site, which only covers transit routes in one city or county, we are free to cover lots of different routes in lots of different places.

We hope that the site will grow and evolve. We plan to add leisure destinations like Big Sur, the North Coast, and the Napa Valley. (Bet you didn't know you could take transit to those places!) We also want to make the site more interactive. For now, you can post short questions, comments and suggestions to the public forum.

[ | Paratransit Task Force ]

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Announcement :: Government & Elections : Health & Drugs : Police State

Medical Marijuana Provider and In-Home Caregiver on Trial in Santa Cruz

On Tuesday, March 8th, legal proceedings started in the trial of Roger Mentsch, local medical marijuana provider and in-home caregiver. After waiting nearly two years to stand trial, Mentsch is facing several charges that could possibly result in over ten years in prison. Local medical marijuana patients and humanitarian activists are rallying around Mentsch, claiming the charges are the result of a witchunt by the District Attorney looking to make an example out of Mentch despite his status as a certified medical marijuana provider.

On June 6th 2003 the home of Roger Mentch was raided by the Santa Cruz County Sheriffs drug task force. A warrant was issued because the money smelled funny, Monterey Bank stated. At 7:30am guns were drawn on Mr. Mentch as well as his girlfriend and 8 year old daughter.

Audio: Listen to a streaming FRSC interview with Roger or Download the mp3

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News :: Peace & War

Maia Ramnath speaks about her recent travels to the West Bank with the ISM

George Cadman of Free Radio Santa Cruz 101.1 fm interviews Maia Ramnath about her recent travels to the West Bank with the International Solidarity Movement (ISM). Maia is a UCSC grad student and activist in the global justice and antiwar movements. She has travelled to the West Bank twice, first in the spring of 2002 during the major Israeli army invasions of Palestinians towns and most recently in Dec 04 and Jan 05. (1:02:39 / 57.3 MB)

Audio: Listen to the Stream or Download the mp3

The ISM was founded in late 2000 by Palestinian and Israeli peace activists, who came together with the intent to end Israel's military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, which they say is the main obstacle to peace. Civilians from all over the world travel to the Occupied Territories to provide protective accompaniment for Palestinian civilians, as well as to engage in acts of nonviolent direct action.

Resources: Electronic Intifada | ISM | Palestinian Centre for Human Rights | Palestine Monitor | Palestine Diaries | B'Tselem | The Alternative Information Center

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