Sign Petition to Divest NY Teachers from Fossil Fuels

New York’s recently passed Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act requires New York to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% in just ten years. Continued investments by teacher pension funds into fossil fuels are sending the wrong message and are contradictory to the goals of students for a sustainable future. In addition, New York state pension funds have lost billions of dollars holding onto fossil fuel stocks, a loss which local governments and school systems must make up for with citizens’ tax dollars. Please sign this petition asking the New York State United Teachers to support divestment from fossil fuels and work with the NYS Teachers Retirement System to get fossil fuels out of pension funds.

Tell Cuomo We Need the New York Health Act!

In the past few weeks, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has stated that we have to “Reimagine New York.” He explains that we have to learn from the lessons of COVID-19 to make a better New York by changing the systems that so obviously have failed us, namely the healthcare system. As the Health Committee Chairs of the state say, “The need for the New York Health Act has never been clearer. Stop wasting tens of billions of dollars on insurance company profits, administrative overhead, and marketing, making doctors and hospitals spend billions on administrative costs to fight with insurance companies, and paying excessive prices to drug companies. Invest those dollars into guaranteeing care for every New Yorker and supporting health care providers.” Click here to send a message to Governor Cuomo that we need the New York Health Act. Read more of what Health Committee Chairs Gustavo Rivera and Richard N. Godfreid have to say here.

Workers Center of the Southern Tier of New York

This grassroots organization empowers low-wage workers throughout the community to combat workplace abuses and improve wages and working conditions. How do these local powerhouses do so? By providing training related to workers’ rights and occupational health and safety, orchestrating campaigns to combat wage theft, promoting employer compliance with the law, and organizing to push for…

HOLT Architects

The designers of the Peggy Ryan Williams Center, Food Bank of the Southern Tier, their own NET-ZERO ENERGY OFFICE RENOVATION (read more about that here) and much, much more. HOLT Architects keep social, economic, and environmental sustainability at the forefront of all their designs and pride themselves on understanding their clients’ goals, so they can make them realities! Over on their Facebook page, they have a weekly series called ‘What Are We Thinking Wednesdays’, comprised of segments where the architects ponder how thoughtful design can benefit us as we navigate our changing world. To learn more about these folks, visit their website.

Become a Lake Friendly Living Champion!

Making small changes as we live in the watershed can make a big difference. The health and recreational enjoyment of the Finger Lakes depends on our actions and involvement. This summer, a new program, Lake Friendly Living, will provide steps you can take right now, at home, to make a difference in watershed health! What can you do to get involved? Join the Lake Friendly Living program and adopt Lake Friendly Living practices!

New York Progressive Action Network of the Southern Finger Lakes (NYPAN-SFL)

NYPAN-SFL, a chapter of the statewide umbrella group New York Progressive Action Network (NYPAN), is a grassroots organization dedicated to the promotion of progressive issues at the local level. They were inspired by the political movement started by Senator Bernie Sanders, but are open to participation from all progressives regardless of their political-party affiliation. Their leadership members meet regularly to plan activities (including public outreach and education around the issues), to build networks, and to recruit and support candidates for public office. To see what they’re up to, visit their Facebook page. To get involved, check out their events calendar and jump in!

Vote Vote Vote! (+ Early Voting Info)

Exercise your right to vote up until June 23rd! Visit voteearlyny.org and select your county to get started. You’ll find all your early voting options, including times the polls are open and voting locations. You’ll also find instructions for how to vote by mail, your early voting rights, and resources to report an incident of difficulty voting or intimidation. A lovely resource! Here are some sample ballots for the Presidential Primary, City of Ithaca, and towns in Tompkins County.

New Remote Tutoring Program

The Public Service Center has proudly supported the local community through tutoring and other academic programs for almost 30 years. In our best effort to continue supporting the needs of our community, we have established a new virtual tutoring program as a response to the cancellation of in-person tutoring opportunities. The Supportive Tutoring for Area Youth (STAY) program is offering free, remote tutoring by Cornell students for grades K through 12 in a variety of subjects based on students’ needs.

Mini-Conference on COVID and Sustainable Transitions

On May 27th, Future Earth Knowledge-Action Network on Systems of Sustainable Consumption and Production will host a mini zoom conference on COVID-19 and Sustainability Transitions. RSVP here to register and to receive the required Zoom link. As a part of this Mini-Conference, participants are invited to share a visual representation accompanied with a text description of their hopes and inspirations, lives, or experiences of sustainability transitions in the era of COVID-19. Click the link to submit an image or video (up to 5). Once you upload your images feel free to leave a comment about where the picture/video was taken or anything else you would like to share! Please also include your name and current location.

Healthy Food For All helps Local Farmers and Food Insecure

Healthy Food for All, a project of Cornell Cooperative Extension is boxing up packages of fresh food for over 600 families in need to help those suffering with economic effects of the COVID crisis. Grant money is being used to pay local farmers for packages and are being distributed to food-insecure community members in Tompkins County. To request a box of produce and pantry items, sign-up here. To support the project and help provide fresh produce and pantry boxes for neighbors in need, make a donation directly on Healthy Food For All’s website. 100% of donations will go towards compensating local farmers for the food. Gifts to both the United Way and Community Foundations COVID-19 funds are also still being accepted. Donors can give through the United Way of Tompkins County online by selecting “COVID-19 relief,” or by calling (607)500-GIVE, and through the Community Foundation by writing in “COVID-19 Response Fund” under “Fund Name” or by calling (607) 272-9333. To find out more about this great program, read the Ithaca Voice’s article.

Greenstar becomes “Food Hub”

Greenstar has recently sold The Space, to be eventually be used as some food/beverage/entertainment space, part of a larger project called “Agora”. However, because of the COVID crisis, that development will be put on hold for the time being. But for now, it’s being put to good use. According to the Ithaca Voice, “Thanks to some coordination between the new buyers and Tompkins County Legislator Anna Kelles, it’s being used in the short-term as a “Food Hub” by the Food Bank, meal and CSA delivery services, and other organizations working to prevent a hunger crisis in a time where thousands of households have lost their jobs in the wake of the COVID pandemic.” Read more about this transition here.

Help Invest Stimulus Money into Green New Deal

Billions of dollars are at stake in federal stimulus legislation, and we must make sure the money doesn’t end up in the coffers of fossil fuel companies.

Call Senator Schumer at 877-852-4710 and leave a message urging him to block a bailout of the oil & gas industry.

As our nation recovers and rebuilds from the pandemic, we must invest in programs that benefit people and the planet, including good green jobs in water infrastructure, not polluters.

As the Senate’s top Democrat, Schumer must lead the way in championing a Green New Deal and standing up to greedy corporations.