Sunday, July 19, 2009

Don't let Palmer Legare go to jail! Stand up for tenants!

Palmer Legare, longtime Central American solidarity activist, friend of Arise and housing organizer for the Alliance to Develop Power, was arrested a few weeks ago in Westfield. I received this email forwarded by Palmer and will let it speak for itself except to urge everyone to take action!


Three weeks ago I was illegally arrested for “walking while supporting democracy” in Westfield, Massachusetts. I have been threatened with arrest numerous other times and face arrest any day for organizing tenants to create affordable housing cooperatives. But this is nothing compared to what tenants have faced, from cops dragging them out of the shower and pointing guns at small kids before saying “oops sorry, we thought you were someone else” to police charging domestic violence victims for “having been in a relationship with a violent person and therefore putting their neighbors at risk.” The only thing that these people are guilty of is organizing the tenant coop. Please take a couple minutes now to make the call detailed below. EVERY CALL WILL HELP ME STAY OUT OF JAIL!!! PLEASE CALL!!!

In solidarity,


Take action now to defend organizing in Westfield! Tell Mass Housing to stand with the people, not the corporations! No more repression of tenant organizing!

Last month Alliance to Develop Power Lead Organizer Palmer Legare was illegally arrested at Powdermill Village in Westfield, Ma. The arrest was part of a systematic campaign of repression directed by Peabody Properties, a Boston-based corporation that is trying to wrestle control of the property from the tenants. They will not win! Powdermill Village will become a tenant owned cooperatively controlled permanently affordable housing complex! We need you to take action to stop the repression of tenant leaders and community organizers:

Please call Henry Mukasa, Director of Rental Management for Mass Housing, at 617.854.1000, extension 1161

Sample message:

It has come to my attention that Mass Housing has not been enforcing regulations at Powdermill Village in Westfield. I know that tenant leaders and community organizers have been arrested, threatened and intimidated based on their involvement with community organizing. Now that we have a former community organizer as President, we can not criminalize community organizing. I will continue to monitor the situation.

Please let us know that you have taken action so that we can track the effectiveness of this effort! Email ADP organizer Palmer Legare at palmer@a-dp. org or call 413-218-1313

Photo from the Global Justice Ecology Project (Pamler in the middle)

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