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State House Watch: April 8, 2022


Photo: Cheryl Senter/AFSC

“…Equal rights, fair play, justice, are all like the air: we all have it, or none of us has it. That is the truth of it.” – Maya Angelou

April 8, 2022

Hello State House Watchers,

By a vote of 53-47, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court was confirmed by the US Senate. At the White House following the vote, Judge Jackson remarked that it had taken “232 years and 115 prior appointments for a Black woman to be selected to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States, but we've made it! We've made it—all of us.” She went on to acknowledge the shoulders she stands on, quoting the great Maya Angelou: "I [bring] the gifts my ancestors gave. I am the dream and the hope of the slave." Read more at NPR. We are inspired by this important step forward for democracy and justice.

We also want to acknowledge yet another big ‘win’ for workers—this time for graduate student workers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who voted overwhelmingly (1785 – 912) to form a union with the MIT Graduate Student Union. We cheer on the organizers as they bargain with greater power to address their concerns related to dental insurance, gender and racial equity, and the rising cost of living. Once the union is certified by the National Labor Relations Board, it will be “one of the largest new American labor unions in recent years, with more than 3,800 members.” Read more here.

 

Action Needed to Defend Asylum-Seekers

Following the news last week that the Biden Administration would end the use of Title 42 exclusions at the southern border, Republicans in Congress—joined by moderate Democrats including Senator Maggie Hassan and Congressman Chris Pappas—made moves to keep the harmful policy in place. The Lankford-Sinema proposal in the Senate, as well as the House version (Gonzalez-Golden), will come up for a vote when Congress returns from a district work period on April 28. Read more here. Our Members of Congress need to hear from us. Please sign here to let Senator Hassan and Congressman Pappas know that we want them to support, not undermine, the human rights of migrants at our southern border.

For your own messages, here are some key points from the Immigration Hub and the Defund Hate campaign:

  • The CDC was right to revoke Title 42 as there is no public health rationale to maintain it. Any challenge to their decision flies in the face of science and the highest authority on public health.
  • Any efforts to uphold Title 42 actively support the continuation of family separations, trauma, and violence against Black, brown, and immigrant communities.
  • The Lankford-Sinema bill is a Trojan horse with real, catastrophic impacts to America’s asylum system. If it passes, it could have lasting, detrimental effects on our asylum system and put at risk Ukrainans and others fleeing violence.
  • We need a real plan to increase capacity and resources to manage the needs of migrants seeking entry at the border, not a continuation of racist, misguided and inhumane policies.
  • As Congress negotiates a federal funding bill for 2023, they have every opportunity to ensure billions are invested in our communities, not more enforcement or invasive surveillance, so that families and communities are never separated or put in harm’s way because of unjust policies.

 

World Fellowship Center is Hiring!

Want to work with smart, fun, creative people in a multicultural and intergenerational community, in a uniquely beautiful setting? If so, check out the staff positions open at the World Fellowship Center, a wonderful place for summer vacation, social justice education and relaxation in nature. More information can be found here.

 

Action Alerts for This Week

Please take a moment early in the week to contact your legislators:

To Protect Public Education:

Oppose HB 1393, which allows municipalities to impose caps on school budgets. The bill passed the full House on a voice vote and is now scheduled for a hearing in Senate Election Law and Municipal Affairs on Monday, April 11 at 2:15 PM. Please sign in to oppose this bill.

To Protect Immigrant Communities:

Support HB 579, requiring advance notice to the public before immigration checkpoints are conducted. It passed the full House with a strong bi-partisan vote, but Senate Judiciary has recommended defeat (ITL) by a vote of 3-2. Please urge your Senators to overturn the committee recommendation and support this bill.

Oppose HB 1266, an anti-immigrant bill that would prevent local communities from prohibiting police collusion with federal immigration enforcement. The bill passed the House and is now in Senate Judiciary. A date for that hearing is still TBD. Here are some talking points from the NH Immigrant Rights Network. Please urge the committee members to defeat this bill.

To Protect Access to Reproductive Care:

Oppose HB 1080, which would allow nearly any employee at any public or private health care institution, including pharmacies, to not only refuse to provide abortion services, sterilization, or contraception, but also to refuse to fill prescriptions and refuse to make referrals, or even admit a patient for any of those services. For more information, see testimony from Planned Parenthood NH Action Fund. The bill has a hearing in the Senate Health and Human Services Committee on April 13 at 8:50 AM. Please sign in to oppose this bill.

Support HB 1609, which would remove the requirement that all people seeking abortion care first undergo an ultrasound at every stage of pregnancy, regardless of whether it is medically necessary, and make an important adjustment to mitigate some of the harm caused by New Hampshire's 24-week abortion ban, by allowing exceptions for fatal fetal diagnoses. The bill has a public hearing in Senate Judiciary on April 12 at 2 PM. Please sign in to support this bill, and use this action form to let your Senator know that you support the bill. 

To Protect LGBTQ+ People from Discrimination:

Support HB 238, prohibiting provocations based on a victim’s actual or perceived gender, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation from being used as a defense in manslaughter cases (also known as the panic defense). The bill has a public hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee on April 14 at 2:15 PM. Please sign in to support the bill.

To Protect Our Democracy:

Oppose SB 240, which will create gerrymandered NH Senate districts. This bill was passed by the full Senate in mid-February and is scheduled for a public hearing in the House Special Committee on Redistricting on April 14 at 10 AM. Please sign in to oppose this bill.

Oppose SB 241, which will create gerrymandered NH Executive Council districts. The bill was amended on the Senate floor with a new proposal that had received no public hearing. The bill has a public hearing in the House Special Committee on Redistricting on April 14 at 10:30 AM. Please sign in to oppose this bill.

Keep track of all of the redistricting bills here: Redistricting Process  Tracking.

 

In This Issue

 

Last Week at the State House

The House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee heard testimony last week with regard to SB 294, an anti-bail reform proposal that has already passed the Senate with a bipartisan vote of 20-4. AFSC’s Healing Justice Organizer, Ophelia Burnett, testified in opposition to the bill, explaining that it turns a fundamental principle of our criminal legal system—‘innocent until proven guilty’—on its head. From her testimony, during which she described her own experience waiting in jail for 18 months because she couldn’t afford cash bail: “After serving my time, it took years of mental health counseling, medication, and my strong … support system to get to right here where I am sitting today to tell my story. But not everyone has that support system or had the strong mindset I had, which is why I am here to say that SB 294 should be opposed. Let’s find better solutions to our problems, such as substance misuse treatment programs, mental health care and addressing the real reasons why individuals are doing the things they do. Putting people behind walls and throwing away the key is not the solution!”

We recommend this article about the dangers of pretrial incarceration, and this one about a positive solution. We hope that the committee members will move to defeat this harmful bill.

After approval in the full Senate on March 31, House leaders moved quickly to schedule an immediate public hearing for SB 418 which took place today in House Election Law. From the Kent Street Coalition: “SB 418 is a massive overhaul of the same day voter registration system in New Hampshire that threatens the ballot privacy rights of all voters and risks discounting ballots cast legally. The bill creates an ‘affidavit ballot’ program (essentially provisional ballots) in New Hampshire. Anyone who either does not present photo ID on Election Day or is a first-time NH voter registering on Election Day who does not provide proof of citizenship or domicile will be required to take a different ballot with a unique identifier and requires voters to do additional follow-up after Election Day or their ballot will be invalidated.” The governor has expressed concern about the bill but has not committed to veto it. The committee is expected to vote on Wednesday, so there’s still time for them to hear from you.

Advocates for children and teachers were out in force on Tuesday when the Senate Judiciary Committee held a public hearing on HB 1431, which would establish a ‘parental bill of rights.’ From the NH Bulletin: “The state’s outgoing director of the Office of the Child Advocate, Moira O’Neill, also spoke against the bill, which she said would promote the rights of parents at the expense of children. ‘Parents already have strongly established rights in New Hampshire,’ O’Neill said. ‘Being a parent, however, is a privilege. It’s a gift, and it’s a great responsibility. This chapter would pit the rights of parents against that of children.’”

And to wrap up this section with some good news: The House Criminal Justice Committee has recommended OTP for SB 393, a bill that prohibits shackling of incarcerated pregnant people. Read more in the Concord Monitor: “The American Psychological Association, which supports strictly enforced protections against the use of restraints, has found that restraining women during childbirth can cause severe mental distress, depression, anguish, and trauma. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also supports legislation limiting restraints during pregnancy. ‘SB 393 strives to keep moms, babies, medical staff, corrections staff, and the public all safe during this extremely vulnerable time,’ [the bill’s prime sponsor, Senator Rebecca] Whitley said in a statement.”

 

Coming Up in the Full Senate

The Senate meets in session on Thursday, April 14 at 9 AM.

On the Consent Calendar

EDUCATION
HB 1421-FN, relative to lead in school drinking water. Recommended OTP/A by a vote of 5-0.
HB 1594, relative to assistance to certain students with disabilities in registering to vote. Recommended OTP/A by a vote of 5-0.

ELECTION LAW AND MUNICIPAL AFFAIRS
HB 87, relative to the definition of electioneering. Recommended for IS by a vote of 5-0.
HB 1157, relative to electronic ballot counting devices. Recommended OTP by a vote of 5-0. This bill prohibits electronic ballot counting devices from being connected to the internet.
HB 1457-FN, relative to chain of custody of ballot boxes after an election. Recommended OTP by a vote of 5-0. This bill modifies the retention policy for ballot boxes to allow for the validation of the chain of custody.

EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND ADMINISTRATION
HB 1037, relative to the governor’s duties during a state of emergency. Recommended OTP by a vote of 5-0.
HB 1337, relative to the duration of unemployment benefits. Recommended ITL by a vote of 5-0.

JUDICIARY
HB 576, relative to victims’ compensation fund eligibility. Recommended OTP by a vote of 5-0. This bill will amend the provisions of the Victims’ Compensation Fund by permitting claims for victims of human trafficking to be filed at any time and eliminating the consideration of contributory negligence.
HB 597-FN, relative to the expectation of privacy. Recommended for IS by a vote of 5-0.
HB 1411-FN, relative to transparency of federal agency operations within New Hampshire. Recommended ITL by a vote of 5-0.
HB 1577-FN, relative to exemptions from prosecution for victims of human trafficking. Recommended OTP by a vote of 5-0.
HB 1614-FN, requiring the recording and storing of digital video in all state-funded juvenile detention facilities. Recommended OTP by a vote of 5-0.
HB 1673-FN, relative to the scope of the fetal life protection act. Recommended OTP by a vote of 5-0. Enacting this language will clarify that the law is not meant to require an ultrasound for every abortion, but only for those where there is a risk that there is a gestational age of 24 weeks. As the Body has already supported this policy in SB 399-FN, the Committee recommends this bill be Ought to Pass.

On the Regular Calendar

ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES
HB 543, establishing a commission to study nuclear power and nuclear reactor technology in New Hampshire. Recommended OTP/A by a vote of 4-0.

JUDICIARY
HB 579, requiring notice to the public before immigration checkpoints are conducted. Recommended ITL by a vote of 3-2.

 

Coming Up in House Committees

The House does not meet in full session this week but will meet on April 21, with additional sessions planned for May 5, 12 and 26. In addition, the House may schedule a session on May 4, if necessary.

Monday, April 11

EDUCATION, Room 205-207, LOB
9:30 AM SB 381-FN-A, establishing an office of the advocate for special education.
10:00 AM SB 394-FN, relative to the definition of a child with a disability under special education laws.

SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND ENERGY, Room 306-308, LOB
9:00 AM SB 268-FN, relative to the approval of power purchase agreements for offshore wind energy resources from the Gulf of Maine.
10:00 AM SB 269-FN, establishing a commission to study energy saving weatherization programs.
11:00 AM SB 270, establishing a low-moderate income community solar program.
1:00 PM SB 395, relative to the broadband matching grant initiative.
2:00 PM SB 424-FN, relative to renewable energy and natural gas.
3:00 PM SB 429-FN, relative to the site evaluation committee.

Tuesday, April 12

CHILDREN AND FAMILY LAW, Room 206-208, LOB
10:00 AM SB 431-FN, relative to child support in cases with equal or approximately equal parenting schedules.
11:00 AM SB 458-FN, relative to the Sununu youth services center and operation of a replacement secure facility.
1:30 PM SB 446-FN-A, directing the department of health and human services to develop a plan relative to fostering sustainable childcare opportunities for working families and businesses.

ENVIRONMENT AND AGRICULTURE, Room 301-303, LOB
10:30 AM SB 379-FN, establishing the solid waste management fund and grant program.
11:00 AM SB 380-FN, relative to solid waste rules and landfill containment tests.

EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND ADMINISTRATION, Room 302-304, LOB
10:30 AM SB 357-FN, relative to mental health training for first responders.

HEALTH, HUMAN SERVICES AND ELDERLY AFFAIRS, Room 205-207, LOB
9:30 AM SB 459-FN, relative to a health care facility workplace violence prevention program.
10:00 AM SB 407-FN, relative to expanding Medicaid to include certain postpartum health care services and making an appropriation therefor.
10:45 AM SB 403-FN-A, re-establishing the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Farmers Market Nutrition Program.
11:30 AM SB 444-FN, relative to childhood adverse experiences treatment and prevention.
2:15 PM SB 430-FN-A, relative to health and human services. This bill would enact a broad array of changes in health and human services, including lead paint poisoning standards, establishing a special fund for the administration of opioid treatment programs and adjustments to Medicaid such as coverage for preventive health care.

SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND ENERGY, Room 306-308, LOB
2:00 PM SB 321, relative to the purchase of output of limited electrical energy producers in intrastate commerce and including qualifying storage systems.
3:00 PM SB 448-FN, relative to energy reduction by state agencies.

TRANSPORTATION, Room 201-203, LOB
9:00 AM SB 417-FN, establishing an electric school bus pilot program.
9:40 AM SB 447-FN, establishing the electric vehicle and infrastructure fund.
10:00 AM SB 308, relative to driver’s licenses for certain visa holders.
2:00 PM SB 449, relative to the retention of social security numbers by the division of motor vehicles.

Wednesday, April 13

COMMERCE AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS, Room 302-304, LOB
1:45 PM SB 287, relative to balance billing for certain health care services.

CRIMINAL JUSTICE AND PUBLIC SAFETY, Room 202-204, LOB
9:30 AM SB 306-FN, relative to the penalties for various motor vehicle violations.
10:00 AM Full Committee Work Session on SB 294-FN, relative to the release of a defendant pending trial.
11:30 AM Full Committee Work Session on SB 292, requiring notice of arrest to a probation and parole officer.

EDUCATION, Room 205-207, LOB
10:00 AM Executive Session on SB 420-FN-A-L, establishing an extraordinary need grant for schools; SB 381-FN-A, establishing an office of the advocate for special education; SB 394-FN, relative to the definition of a child with a disability under special education laws.

ELECTION LAW, Room 306-308, LOB
10:00 AM Executive Session on SB 348, relative to political expenditures and contributions; SB 365, relative to absentee ballot outer envelopes; SB 366-FN, requiring an audit of ballots cast in the 2022 primary and general election; SB 418-FN, relative to verification of voter affidavits; SB 425-FN, relative to the establishment of an election information portal; SB 427-FN, modifying the absentee voter registration process, absentee ballot application, and absentee ballot voting process.

FINANCE, Room 210-211, LOB
10:00 AM SB 445-FN, relative to the broadband matching grant initiative.

JUDICIARY, Reps Hall, SH
9:00 AM SB 399-FN, relative to certain provisions of the fetal life protection act requiring an ultrasound examination.
11:15 AM SB 344, relative to the electronic participation requirements of meetings open to the public under the right to know law.

Thursday, April 14

JUDICIARY, Room 206-208, LOB
9:00 AM Executive Session on SB 217, relative to eviction notices; SB 399-FN, relative to certain provisions of the fetal life protection act requiring an ultrasound examination; SB 344, relative to the electronic participation requirements of meetings open to the public under the right to know law.

LABOR, INDUSTRIAL AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES, Room 305-307, LOB
10:45 AM SB 209, relative to electronic wage payments.
11:30 AM SB 345, relative to youth employment.

SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON REDISTRICTING, Room 201-203, LOB
10:00 AM SB 240, apportioning state senate districts.
10:30 AM SB 241, apportioning executive council districts.

 

Coming Up in Senate Committees

Monday, April 11

ELECTION LAW AND MUNICIPAL AFFAIRS,
Room 100, SH
1:20 PM HB 1194, relative to the procedure for overriding a local tax cap.
1:30 PM HB 1268, limiting the authority for city council bylaws and ordinances.
1:45 PM HB 1272, limiting the authority of town health officers.
2:15 PM HB 1393, relative to the adoption of school district budget caps.

Tuesday, April 12

COMMERCE, Room 100, SH
9:00 AM HB 1165, repealing the Granite State paid family leave plan.

EDUCATION, Room 101, LOB
9:00 AM HB 1624-FN-A, relative to students with disabilities participating in co-curricular activities and making an appropriation therefor.
9:15 AM HB 1671-L, relative to the content of an adequate education.
9:30 AM HB 1627-FN-A, establishing an education freedom account program administrator in the department of education and making an appropriation therefor, and relative to the school meals direct certification with Medicaid program.
9:45 AM HB 1135, requiring a performance audit of the department of education, education freedom account program.

JUDICIARY, Room 100, SH
1:00 PM HB 1235-FN, relative to compensation paid to a crime victim.
1:30 PM HB 1682-FN-A, establishing the law enforcement conduct review committee in the New Hampshire police standards and training council and making an appropriation therefor.
1:45 PM HB 1647-FN, relative to the calculation of child support.
2:00 PM HB 1609-FN, relative to certain provisions of the fetal life protection act requiring an ultrasound examination.

TRANSPORTATION, Room 101, LOB
2:00 PM HB 2022, relative to the 10-year transportation plan.

Wednesday, April 13

EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND ADMINISTRATION, Room 103, SH
9:45 AM HB 1417-FN-L, relative to payment by the state of a portion of retirement system contributions of political subdivision employers.
10:05 AM HB 1587-FN-A, relative to determination of average final compensation under the retirement system and making an appropriation therefor.

HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, Room 100, SH
8:50 AM HB 1080, relative to the rights of conscience for medical professionals.
9:10 AM HB 1379, relative to the department of health and human services’ rulemaking authority regarding immunization requirements.
9:30 AM HB 1488, expanding the prohibition against discrimination based on an individual’s election not to participate in the state vaccine registry.

Thursday, April 14

ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES, Room 103, SH
The Committee will meet at 10:30 AM, or 15 minutes following the end of Session.
10:30 AM HB 1547-FN, setting maximum contaminant levels for perfluorochemicals in the soil.
11:00 AM HB 478, relative to treatment of PFAS contaminants in the drinking water of the Merrimack Village Water District.
11:15 AM HB 1185, relative to treatment of water contaminated with perfluorinated chemicals.

HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, Room Reps Hall, SH
Note: The committee will meet at 10:30 AM or 15 minutes following the end of Session.
10:50 AM HB 1608-FN, relative to withdrawal from the state immunization registry.
11:30 AM HB 1622-FN, relative to mental health parity.
11:50 AM HB 1604-FN, including state medical facilities in the statute providing medical freedom in immunizations.

JUDICIARY, Room 100, SH
2:15 PM HB 238, prohibiting provocations based on a victim’s actual or perceived gender, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation from being used as a defense in manslaughter cases.

 

State House Watch on the Radio

Join us for State House Watch radio on Monday, April 11; the show will be hosted by leaders at the NH Youth Movement. The program airs on Mondays at 5 PM and is rebroadcast on Tuesdays at 8 AM. You can listen at 94.7 FM, WNHN in Concord, and online. You can find podcasts of our past shows here, including last week’s show with Louise Spencer and Liz Canada.

 

Upcoming Events and Programs

Saturday, April 9

Remembering Wentworth Cheswill  A Celebration of Local History 7 PM. Millspace – 55 Main St., Newmarket. Hosted by Millspace: Center for Art, History & Culture. Celebrate New Hampshire historical figure and Newmarket Town Father Wentworth Cheswill the week of his 276th birthday! Learn about efforts to memorialize the 18th century teacher, judge, Revolutionary War soldier, and pioneering archaeologist. Offer input on a proposed monument for Cheswill, who is noted as the first person of color to hold elected office in the United States. This event is free and open to the public. There will be community speakers, light food, music and art.

Sunday, April 10

Race Class Academy: A Guided Discussion Series (4 Parts) 1 PM to 3 PM. Hosted by Rights & Democracy. Race-Class Academy is a 12-video introduction to how we can beat dog whistle politics by building cross-racial and cross-class solidarity. Our April workshop series is open to anyone who wants to better understand the importance of using race-class messaging as a strategy to overcome efforts to divide us, change the narrative and win the changes that benefit us all. With so much at stake for our communities, this is a highly recommended series for all leaders, organizers and people considering running for office.

Monday, April 11

Crossover Report Webinar 4 PM to 5 PM. Hosted by New Futures. As we cross the halfway point of the 2022 legislative session, join New Futures' policy staff for a presentation on the status of priority health and wellness bills as well as a preview of policy and advocacy needs to come. The discussion will include updates on the Campaign for a Healthy New Hampshire as well as other priority bills related to children's behavioral health, early childhood, alcohol and other drugs, health, access to treatment, and health equity. If you cannot attend, please know that a recording of the webinar will be available after the event. We look forward to seeing you!

Peace & Justice Conversations: 350NH Climate Justice Activists Report 7 PM to 8 PM. Hosted by NH Peace Action. Militarism and climate disruption are deeply linked. In January, Marcy Winograd helped us more clearly see those connections. NH Peace Action has supported 350NH since its inception and welcomes Jen and Wren, Climate Justice Organizers with 350 New Hampshire, for a conversation about their goals for a more just, sustainable world. They will speak about their coalition work to stop the burning of coal, the systems of power that suppress our agency, their vision of a better future, and the work that seeks to connect these things.

Thursday, April 14

Indigenous New Hampshire Collaborative Collective’s Educational Resources 3:30 PM. Hosted by Cowasuck Band of the Pennacook Abenaki People, NH Farm to School and Indigenous New Hampshire. Join the NH Farm to School and the NH School & Youth Garden networks, and other teachers, schools, and educators from across New England for a webinar series covering a variety of farm to school and school garden topics. Learn about Indigenous farm to school curriculum in New Hampshire, network around farm to early childhood education, find out more about establishing a school garden, and more!

Wings of Knowledge: Bearing Witness – The Endurance of Voice – 4 PM to 5:30 PM. Hosted by NH Technical Institute. Lucy Terry Prince was born in Africa, where she was kidnapped by slave traders and transported to Rhode Island. While still enslaved in 1746, she wrote “Bars Fight,” the oldest known poem in the United States written by an African American person. Prince later regained her freedom and moved to Vermont with her husband, where she fought for her family’s land rights all the way to the highest court in Vermont. In this presentation, Shanta Lee Gander will perform Lucy’s only surviving poem, “Bars Fight,” and illustrate Prince’s importance as a poet, orator, and activist.

Sacred Ally Quilt Ministry: “What Kind of Allies Will We Be?” – 5 PM to 6 PM. Hosted by Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St., Durham. Join us for a panel discussion and lively community conversation around racism and violence in America, and the kinds of allies we might be in the dismantling of white privilege and systemic racism.

Open Democracy Book Club: How Democracies Die 7 PM to 8:30 PM. Hosted by Open Democracy. Since the days of ancient Athens, democracies have arisen and disappeared, often suffering violent deaths. In How Democracies Die, Harvard professors Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblat teach us that democracy no longer ends in a shower of bullets but with the slow, steady weakening of critical institutions and the erosion of long-standing political norms. The culprits are not wild-eyed revolutionaries or foreign adversaries, they are us, or at least a sub-set of us. They give us clear examples of how some democracies have died in the last century and invite us to consider what lessons these fates offer for our own country. This is the way democracy ends, not with bang but a whimper.

Friday, April 15

Sacred Ally Quilt Ministry: “Art, Conscience & Social Justice” – 7 PM to 8:30 PM. Hosted by Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St., Durham. With the Rev. Mark Koyama, pastor of the United Church of Jaffrey (NH) and organizer of the Sacred Ally Quilt Ministry. We’re honored that community member Mark will join us for the evening, sharing with us his vision and experience in this project, and screening for us Stitch—Breathe—Speak, the documentary film produced about the quilt project in NH.

Monday, April 18

WEBINAR: School Budget & Tax Caps 4 PM. Hosted by Reaching Higher NH. Tax caps have become a hot topic in New Hampshire over the past several years. This year, a new mechanism for limiting school spending has emerged: the school budget cap. Join us for a discussion on school budget and tax caps, current legislative proposals in New Hampshire and beyond, and the impact on students and schools.

Powerbuilders Action Workshop: Disobedience + Disruption for Social Change 6 PM to 7:30 PM. Hosted by Rights & Democracy. Join us for an exciting new Powerbuilders training to delve into what it means to plan and execute an effective direct action! Together, we will explore types of direct action and when to use them; why direct action is so important as a way of challenging unjust power dynamics and achieving social change; and elements of tone, timing, location and messaging that make for a "good" action.

Tuesday, April 19

Clinica de Vacunas Contra el COVID-19 (Vaccine Clinic) 4 PM to 7 PM. 189 Spruce St., Manchester. Hosted by Centro Latino.

Wednesday, April 20

Hope and Healing for Survivors of Trauma 7 PM. 293 Wilson St., Manchester. Hosted by HOPE for NH Recovery and King’s Cross Church. If you are looking for next steps forward in finding hope and healing as a survivor of trauma, or are a friend or family to someone who has experienced trauma, we would love for you to join us for this event. This will be a welcoming and safe environment to hear from Rachael Denhollander, a trusted advocate, attorney, author, and educator who is recognized as a leading voice on the topic of sexual abuse on how to find next steps forward. We hope you will join us.

Thursday, April 21

Community Safety Beyond Policing: Gun Violence and Community Safety 8 PM. Hosted by AFSC. Many communities across the country have experienced an uptick in gun violence over the last two years at the same time that we are having a robust debate around the role of policing in our society. How has or should the movement to divest from policing and invest in community been responding?

Saturday, April 23

Earth Day Mobilization 11 AM. 107 N Main St., Concord. Hosted by 350 New Hampshire Action and Rights & Democracy NH. We need climate action at the scale of the crisis. We need millions of union clean energy and care jobs. We need real action on racial, economic, and environmental justice. Join in a nation-wide Earth Day mobilization to demand President Biden, Congress, and Sununu prioritize bold investments in climate, care, green jobs and justice. Join us to plant the seeds of change in NH, grow stronger as a community, and demand Governor Sununu declare a climate emergency—or get out of the way! We will have music, posters, and native NH seeds to giveaway to all participants. We will also write postcards together to collectively mail to Sununu. All are welcome!

Sunday, April 24

NH Interfaith Climate Justice Conference 2:30 PM to 6:30 PM. Hosted by Unitarian Universalist Church of Concord and several partners, including AFSC. Join us for an afternoon of worship, education and relationship building as we strive to unleash the power of faith communities into the climate justice movement in New Hampshire and Beyond. Our keynote speaker will be Rev. Mariama White-Hammond. This hybrid event will be held at UU Concord and online over Zoom.

Monday, April 25

Peace & Justice Conversations: Costs of War with Stephanie Savell 7 PM to 8 PM. Hosted by NH Peace Action. Join us for a webinar on the Costs of War Project which analyzes the implications of the U.S. post-9/11 wars in terms of human casualties, economic costs, and civil liberties. Stephanie Savell, co-director of the Project will tell us about their research which documents that over 929,000 people have died due to direct war violence; 38 million war refugees and displaced persons were created; and the U.S. federal price tag for the post-9/11 wars is over $8 trillion—funds that could have been spent on public health or in sectors that create far more jobs than the defense sector, like education or green energy.

Sunday, May 1

International Workers Day 3 PM. Veteran’s Memorial Park – 723 Elm St., Manchester. Hosted by Progressive Manchester NH, The Reproductive Freedom Fund of NH, Worker’s Democracy NH, Party for Socialism & Liberation. Join progressive working class organizations for May Day in Manchester. We will have a rally, live music, speeches, teach-ins and more!

Tuesday, May 3

Demilitarizing the Budget: Important Even in Times of War 7 PM. Hosted by AFSC. As the war in Ukraine adds to the many violent conflicts around the world, governments are responding by increasing military budgets, sending weapons to allies, and calling for escalatory measures against other nations. In 2020, the world spent almost $2 trillion on militaries, and if we don't join together, this number will only get worse. In this webinar, you'll learn why the United States' obscene spending on weapons and war isn't actually keeping us safe, how the budget and appropriations process works, and how you can get involved in the call to move money out of militarism and into our communities.

With best wishes,

Maggie Fogarty, Grace Kindeke and Anne Saunders

AFSC’s New Hampshire "State House Watch" newsletter is published to bring you information about matters being discussed in Concord including housing, the death penalty, immigration, education, civil liberties, and labor rights. We also follow the state budget and tax system, voting rights, corrections policy, and more.

The AFSC is a Quaker organization supported by people of many faiths who care about peace, social justice, humanitarian service, and nonviolent change. Maggie Fogarty and Grace Kindeke staff the New Hampshire Program which publishes this newsletter. Anne Saunders is AFSC’s State House Watch researcher and co-writer.

“State House Watch" is made possible in part by a grant from the Anne Slade Frey Charitable Trust. Your donations make our work possible. Click the
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