PJP meets at 6:30 pm on the first and third Tuesdays of the month, currently at the south area of the food court (near Sweets and Treats, toward the parking garage) of the Old Capitol Mall in downtown Iowa City. Please bring your dinner if you wish. Anyone who is in basic agreement with our mission statement is welcome.
$uggestion: Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to UNRWA (UN relief for Palestine refugees). More than $3,000,000,000 of U.S. tax money goes to support Israel every year. Offset your share with a donation to UNRWA.
GAZA EMERGENCY: IOWA CITY RESPONDS
Friday 26 September 2014
The summer war has had a devastating impact on the families in the Gaza Strip. A densely packed coastal enclave, with 1.8 million people living in an area only about the size of Omaha, Nebraska , Gaza has been brought to its knees by a devastating blockade in force for the last seven years.
Even before the war, Gaza faced a humanitarian emergency. According to Save the Children, 1 in 10 Gaza children under 5 suffer growth stunting from malnutrition. The UN says the majority of families (57%) are food insecure, and 80% dependent on aid. 90% of local water is unfit for human consumption. The World Health Organization has warned of a health crisis; with critical shortages of medicine and the power to run hospitals and surgical units. The economy is being strangled by trade restrictions, including a near total ban on exports. The vast majority of those who suffer are completely innocent. The majority of Gaza’s population (53%) are children under 18.
All this was true BEFORE the war broke out in July.
The current fighting has made things unimaginably worse. Whole families have been killed; half a million made homeless. Schools and hospitals are overwhelmed with catastrophic numbers of refugees and the wounded. Power and water infrastructure lie in ruins. The damages run into many billions of dollars.
Iowa City, an international city open to the world, opens its heart to the suffering of people far away.
Please join us for a special evening fundraiser with Middle Eastern food and music at Old Brick Church, on FRIDAY 26 September 2014 at 6:30 PM. Proceeds will go to the UN relief agency for Gaza families.
This event is sponsored by People for Justice in Palestine and the CopyExchange. Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate, please contact Julia at 337-9303.
Proposed reading and discussion: "Two-State Illusion"
Time and place TBD. Watch this space for details.
ACTION ALERT: SODA-STREAM BOYCOTT
Supporters of the South African struggle against white apartheid played their part by campaigns of boycott, divestment, and sanctions. We can play that role again.
Click here for a printer-friendly version of this petition.
Attention: Local Retailers of SodaStream Products
BED, BATH AND BEYOND Coralville BEST BUY, Coralville HY VEE WATERFRONT, Iowa City HY VEE FIRST AVENUE, Iowa City JC PENNEY, Coralville KOHLS, Coralville STAPLES, Iowa City TARGET, Coralville WALMART, Coralville WALMART, Iowa City YOUNKERS, Coralville
WE THE UNDERSIGNED, as customers of one or more of the above-listed stores, ask you to stop carrying SodaStream products. SodaStream produces home beverage carbonation machines that are manufactured in the Mishor Edomim industrial park, near the illegal colony of Ma'ale Adumim in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
We object to trade with illegal Israeli settlements because the forcible confiscation and settlement of occupied territories as in Ma'ale Adumim is prohibited by the Fourth Geneva Convention, Article 49. Moreover, the rapid expansion of Ma'ale Adumim in particular threatens to slice up the West Bank and make a viable Palestinian state impossible, defeating the chance of justice and peace in the two-state territorial compromise endorsed by the U.S.
Company defenders say that it employs Palestinians and brings many economic benefits to the area, but taxes from the plant go to the illegal settlement. Palestinians live under a brutal and repressive military occupation in conditions of high unemployment and are forced to find work wherever they can. Palestinian workers at SodaStream get just half the minimum wage and are subject to a “permit” system, which means immediate dismissal if they complain about the harsh working conditions at the SodaStream plant. SodaStream workers do not receive the rights to which they are entitled under Israeli labor law.
For these reasons, there is a large and growing movement to boycott SosdaStream. This movement has been endorsed by a coalition of faith-based and peace and justice organizations, such as the United Methodist Kairos Response and Holy Land Task Force, the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship, Jewish Voice for Peace, the American Friends Service Committee, the Episcopal Peace Fellowship, and Unitarian-Universalists for Justice in the Middle East.
In recognition of the desire of retailers to meet customer demand for products like those produced by SodaStream, we ask you to consider a wide range of alternatives that are currently on the market in the U.S. Some of these are listed on the following website: www.globalexchange.org/economicactivism/sodastream/alternatives. For more information on the SodaStream Boycott, see the website of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation.
Thank you for your prompt consideration of our concerns.
Click here for a printer-friendly version of this petition.
For more information about the labor law violations, see this new report by the Israeli Coalition of Women for Peace. For more information on alternatives to SodaStream's products, see the Global Exchange website mentioned above. For more information on the SodaStream Boycott, see the website of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation.
NOTE: This is not an official action by PJP, but an invitation to our friends to act on their own consciences.
Samsung refrigerators, and Kool-Aid, Crystal Light, and Country Time drink mixes are now being advertised as partners with SodaStream. It may be effective for consumers to ask these companies to consider partnering with companies whose human rights practices are more in accord with our values.
Do something now. Nothing too taxing.
In 2011, the average U.S. taxpayer gave Israel $21.59 for weapons. That adds up to three billion dollars a year to kill the hope of peace for Israel and Palestine.
With April 15--tax time--coming up, you might like to offset that amount by making a tax-deductible donation to UNRWA (UN relief for Palestine refugees) With a $20 donation to UNRWA--less than what you're paying for Israeli weapons--you will protect a Palestinian refugee child from disease. With any donation to any group or organization working for peace and justice, you'll be un-doing some of the harm that our government does with your tax money. Please consider it.