Peace Council Pages

Educate, Agitate, Organize


compiled by Carol Baum

Syracuse Peace Council
924 Burnet Ave., Syracuse, NY 13203
(315) 472-5478
OFFICE HOURS: Mon.-Fri. 10 am - 5 pm
STAFF and INTERN Email Addresses:
Andy Mager
Carol Baum
Jessica Maxwell
Aly Wane

Walkin' for Peace
Rose Viviano (right) signs the purchase agreement for the sale of SPC’s longtime home at 924 Burnet Ave. With her is Sue DeLima of FM Realty which donated real estate services to SPC for the sale. Photo: Carol Baum
When the NYS March for Peace walked into Syracuse on May 12, about a dozen SPC supporters greeted them with signs and cheers at the corner of S. Salina and Colvin Streets. A News 10 camera person followed the march through downtown to the Federal Building for a press conference. About 75 people came out for the potluck and program that evening featuring Winter Soldier 2008 video highlights and discussion with local members of Iraq Veterans Against the War. Walkers also shared some highlights of their journey, including being offered hospitality by a family in Homer whose son was killed while serving in Iraq. Check out for additional reports.

$timulate SPC
Bush would like us to believe that we can solve our economy's deep structural problems by using our "stimulus" checks on a spending spree. Here's another idea - invest the money in building the grassroots movement for peace and social justice by stimulating SPC.

We know that money is tight for many people - please be as generous as you can. Contact Carol for information about SPC finances.

924 Burnet is Sold! Time for Final Clean-up
SPC was thrilled to accept an offer to buy our former home at 924 Burnet for $23,000. Of this, $20,000 will be added to a mortgage SPC holds on the Center, a win-win financial arrangement in that the Center gets much needed cash and SPC pays less for its space each month once mortgage interest payments are factored in.

We are supposed to vacate the building by June 15. What remains to be moved is everything in the attic, the garage and the basement. To join in the cleaning/sorting/packing process and help sift through many years of SPC's history, or to just walk through the building one last time, contact Carol or Jessica.

Many thanks to Don Radke of FM Realty, attorney Cliff Forstadt and Peter Ascioti of Mountaintop Title and Abstract for providing pro bono services to SPC as part of the sale.

SPC’s Monthly Program

Video: Meeting Resistance (

"A rare glimpse into the hearts and minds of those who have dedicated themselves to ridding Iraq of its invaders." -Variety

Friday, June 20 @ 8:00 pm.

Westcott Community Center 826 Euclid Ave., Syracuse
Free and open to the public.

Iraq Activists Bring Passion to Syracuse
In early May over 35 folks gathered at the Peace and Social Justice Center to hear impassioned and knowledgeable presentations by veteran Iraq activists Mary Trotochaud and Rick McDowell.

Rick focused on the larger Iraq issue while Mary recounted her recent experiences at two conferences in India, one with Iraqi women and the other with Iraqi youth.

After years of working to close the US Army's School of Americas, Rick and Mary represented the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) in Baghdad in 2004 and 2005. Then, for two more years they lobbied Congress to end the Iraq war as Senior Fellows at the Friends Committee on National Legislation in DC.

Rick and Mary's talks were sponsored by three of the Center's partners - SPC, Peace Action and AFSC.
-Ann Tiffany

Outreach Tabling Opportunities

Summer brings many opportunities for SPC to be out in the community. Already we have booked tables at the Community Wide Dialogue's Duck Race to End Racism (June 7), the CNY Pride Festival (June 7) and the Downtown Arts and Crafts Fair (July 25-27).

Please help by spending a few hours at an SPC outreach table. We sell buttons, bumperstickers and t-shirts and give away literature. If you have never done this before, we are happy to match you with an experienced tabler. Contact Carol.

We also are selling Duck Race tickets for $5 each (SPC keeps half). To pick some up to sell or purchase one yourself, please stop by the SPC office.

Gay Pride & Juneteenth Parades
SPC rejoices in the California Supreme Court's recent decision to support gay marriage. As usual, we will have a contingent at this year's Pride parade on Saturday, June 7 and are looking for fellow marchers. We'll also have a contingent in the Juneteenth Parade on Saturday, June 14. Meet at 11:45 at Newell and S. Salina Sts. All are welcome. Contact Aly (Pride) or Jessica (Juneteenth).

Get There by Bike
SPC's summer Bikes 4 Peace program got a late start this year. SPC's move to a new location (without a garage for handy bike storage) might mean some changes to the program. We are in need of additional people to help at summer bike clinics (usually twice a month) - anyone with experience fixing bikes or interest in learning (especially young people!) is encouraged to get involved. Our first clinics of the summer will be at the Northeast Community Center, 716 Hawley Ave., June 10 and 17, 5-7:30 pm. We welcome bike donations during the clinics. Contact Jessica

Weekly Peace Outreach

Stand for Peace. Let the community know!

Tuesdays: 4:45 - 5:30 pm

June 3... Rt. 11 in front of Northern Lights Plaza (Mattydale)
June 10...
Rt. 20 Albany St and Lincklaen St. (Cazenovia)
June 17...
Adams St. and Rt. 81 (Downtown)
June 24...
Seneca Tpk. and S. Salina St. (Valley)

July 1... Rt. 257 (Fayette St.) and Rt. 173 (E. Seneca Tpk.), Manlius
July 8...
James St. and Thompson Rd. (Northside)
July 15...
S. Salina St. and E. Colvin St. (Southside)

Also every Saturday 9-10 am
in front of the Regional Market Park St., Syracuse

Immigrant Rights are Human Rights
The so-called "War on Terror" has strengthened the forces of xenophobia in this country. Local families are being separated, and enforcement of nonsensical punitive laws is the norm. Migrant workers are being "disappeared" from our streets by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents who have blatantly racially profiled members of our community.

Activists, including members of the Syracuse Peace Council, formed the Detention Task Force as a response a few months ago. So far, we have formed a bail and legal fund for migrant workers, have held educational forums, and are planning some local pro-immigrant actions. We meet Friday mornings at 9 am at Plymouth Congregational Church. Contact Aly.

Alternatives Career Fair
Much thanks to Military Alternatives Education Project (MAEP) intern Mariah Daniels, a Nottingham junior, for assisting with this year's alternative career fair for local high school youth. The fair was held on May 14 at the Westcott Community Center. Despite low attendance, some good connections were made.

MAEP also had a successful spring of tabling at local high schools thanks to Amber Coon, Rich Vallejo and Carmen Viviano-Crafts. Students were particularly engaged by the Iraq quiz (from Z Magazine) - and surprised by the answers. We hope to improve our tabling materials over the summer.

Hari Chathrattil (on right holding peace sign) at SPC’s mass anti-war rally on October 26, 2002. Hari had just recently arrived in Syracuse. His son Shivhari is to his left. Photo: Mike Greenlar

Activist Appreciation: Hari Chathrattil
We are all saddened by the imminent departure of our good friend Hari. A ubiquitous presence in the community, he is an irreplaceable part of the SPC community. His brilliant, compassionate analysis of current world events has been a source of inspiration to many of us. It seems that wherever there is a peace-related event in Syracuse, Hari is there with his wise and witty observations. He has been a member of the Steering Committee, a Study Group participant, and has helped at demonstrations and rallies. He is also an excellent cook, and we will miss his fabulous concoctions. Due to the harsh immigration atmosphere, he will have to leave to find work outside this country. Our community's loss is Viet Nam's gain. We'll miss you Hari.

Study Group rolls on into the summer
All are welcome to join our study group, SPC's famed "Book Club," which will continue during the summer. It's a great opportunity to meet people of all stripes who are concerned about issues of peace and justice. Past authors have included Howard Zinn, Naomi Klein, and Noam Chomsky. The group has become more than just an opportunity to share ideas; it has also grown into a "support group" of sorts, a place where people's minds are engaged, and hearts are encouraged for the struggles ahead. Please consider joining us: June 9 and 23, 7-8:30 pm, 821 Euclid Ave. We are looking at titles for our next discussion. Contact Aly.

Progressive Coalition
In the wake of our victory on voting technology for Onondaga County, the Greater Syracuse Progressive Coalition is regrouping to develop plans for a new campaign. That includes reaching out to new organizations and reconnecting with groups who haven't been active recently.

SPC staff Andy Mager, Carol Baum and Jessica Maxwell (left to right) put up the new sign at the Syracuse Center for Peace and Social Justice, SPC’s new home at 2013 E. Genesee St. The past several months have involved a tremendous amount of time and effort on SPC and the Center’s infrastructure. Photo: Kristin Mosher

The coalition was initiated by the Peace Council and the CNY Labor Federation in the aftermath of the 2004 election to bring together progressive forces in the community to network and collaborate more effectively. Thirteen organizations initially signed on as Coalition members.

Within the coalition there is significant interest in educational issues in our community, recognizing that insufficient educational infrastructure is a major problem for all city residents. That will be the focus of our June 2 meeting (5:30 pm at 2013 E. Genesee St., 2nd floor) where we'll hear brief presentations from several organizations working on these issues. Please consider joining us.

The coalition will resume its usual meeting schedule, the last Monday of the month, on June 30. Contact Andy

NOON Co-sponsors Solstice Concert
Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation (NOON) is co-sponsoring the Syracuse Community Choir's Summer Solstice Concert, Courage of the Heart. Join us Sunday, June 15 at 4 pm at the Onondaga Nation School, Rt. 11A. An ice cream social starts at 3 pm.

In addition to the Choir's inspiring music, Audrey Shenandoah will speak, children from the Nation will be involved and there will be Native Arts and Crafts and traditional food. This is a great opportunity to connect with and support our Onondaga neighbors. Call 428-8151 for more information.