Wednesday, December 28, 2011

World Peace Day Observance January 7

A celebration of World Peace Day will take place on Saturday, January 7, at the Unitarian Universalist Church on Fruitville Road in Sarasota. The event is sponsored by the South West Florida Coalition for Peace and Justice and will last from 9:30 am to 1:30pm, beginning with a complimentary continental breakfast.

The program will feature a presentation on Latino issues led by Kelly Kirschner, of Unidos Now and Louise Brumberg of Englewood, founder of Escuela Suenos De Luisa in Nicaragua. The annual Duisberg Peace Award will be presented to Rob Lorei, Director of Public Affairs at WMNF-88.5 FM and host of "Florida, This Week" on WEDU-TV. Lorei will moderate a panel of former peace award winners from this area, including Adam Tebrugge, Samar Jarrah, Andrea Blanch, and Mindy Simmons who will also present musical selections. A special appearance will be made by Faith Fippinger, human shield and first Peace Award winner, who returns to Sarasota for a family visit from three years overseas.

In addition to the formal program, over fifteen vendors will offer snacks and displays. Organizations participating are Veterans for Common Sense, WSLR, the Peace Education and Action Center, Transition Sarasota, Beyond War, Englewood Peace Initiative Coalition, Coalition for Concerned Patriots, Center for Religious Tolerance, Pax Christi- Manasota, and Peace and Justice Committees from St. Boniface, Sarasota Quakers, First Congregational Church, UCC, and Unitarian Universalists from Venice, Charlotte, and Manatee.

This event is open to the public free of change but donations are welcome for the school in Nicaragua. For further information, contact 941-721-3486.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Will Conservatives Help Advance Criminal Justice Reform in Florida?

Little progress has been made on criminal justice reform over the past decade. Laws grow more harsh, more crimes are created, greater numbers of people are sent to prison for longer sentences. Our only hope is that our legislature's failures have now caught up with them. The best place to save money in our budget is with meaningful criminal justice reform. Now some traditionally conservative groups are starting to understand.