What do we encounter every day that most of us just don't see? The cruelest life circumstances are translated into statistics — cold percentages that don’t fully show the heartache of poverty, addiction, crime, and loss. The numbers represent real people in our hometowns who are struggling to cope, to build or rebuild their lives, but it’s as if they’re invisible to us. Connie Jenkins introduces us to two “life in progress” stories of North Country residents who have battled substance abuse.
In this investigative article created through the St. Lawrence Citizen Journalism Incubator (SLCJI), Gwendolyn Deuel examines the fallout from the cancellation of SUNY Potsdam’s CLEAR program, which offered conferences, workshops, summer camps, non-credit programs, and training seminars to the community in the North Country.
“What comes to mind when you think of a refugee camp? I had always imagined the refugee camp as filled with tents, temporary residents, humanitarian organizations, and international workers – a place for the mobile migrant fleeing war, poverty, or political unrest. But, what does a refugee camp look like when it stands in the same place for over seventy years?” Charlie Finn reports on his visit to two Palestinian refugee camps in the occupied West Bank.
On Friday, April 19, the TAUNY Center in Canton, NY hosted a “Citizen Journalism Showcase” organized by the St. Lawrence Citizen Journalism Incubator (SLCJI), a collaboration of four North Country organizations: Weave News, North Country Public Radio, The Hill News, and Nature Up North. The event showcased the projects of eight citizen journalists who participated in the first year of the SLCJI.
By Brendan Reilly
Activists around the world often find themselves advocating for initiatives and policies that will make their communities more livable and sustainable. But what happens when different progressive values animating such work come into conflict with each other? In the first installment of a three-part series for our Weaving the Streets series, Brendan Reilly reports from Freiburg, Germany on a local debate that pits affordable housing against the desire for “green living.”
By John Collins
At a time when socialism is enjoying a resurgence and the structural flaws of capitalism are coming under greater scrutiny, when the evils of mass incarceration are being openly discussed, when even US support for Israel is on the table for debate in Washington, there is no better moment to seek out the prophetic voice of Angela Davis. Yet as John Collins notes in this news analysis piece focusing on National Public Radio (NPR), her voice is rarely found in the broadcasts and pages of US establishment media.
By Ifat Gazia
“I want children of the future to have memories different than my own - so that when they remember the sunshine, it is not in the pain of loss, in the heat of flames,” write Ifat Gazia in her first piece for Weave News. Gazia has lived through the daily reality of militarization in Kashmir, where the impact on ordinary people is tremendously underreported. Join her on this journey of memory, anger, and hope.
By Charlie Finn
Olives, garbage, and security are simultaneous embodiments of Palestinian resistance and Israeli settler colonialism.
By Torri Lonergan
As political violence continues in Nicaragua, neighboring Costa Rica is receiving a significant number of Nicaraguan refugees. In recent months, Costa Rica has seen an upsurge in anti-immigrant sentiment as well as popular demonstrations in support of the refugees. Torri Lonergan reports from Costa Rica in her second installment for our Weaving the Streets project.
By Asmaa Tayeh
Zeyad Aabed has devoted his career—26 years—to running an NGO dedicated to offering education and health services to the deaf. It was, to say the least, a labor of love. But now, much of the funding on which his NGO depends is drying up. And today, he feels exhausted and depressed, fearful he will have to close the El-Amal Rehabilitation Society altogether. (Reposted from We Are Not Numbers)
By Torri Lonergan
The issue of marriage equality, set within a larger struggle over LGBTIQ rights, has become a central element of Costa Rica’s ongoing political debate during the country’s 2018 presidential election campaign. In her first post for our Weaving the Streets series, Torri Lonergan reports on how the potential legalization of same-sex marriage is sharpening the fault lines between progressive Costa Ricans and those who hold more more conservative Catholic and evangelical views.
Interweaving with Hanif Abdurraqib: “To know that I cannot move the world on my own means that I can’t be silent”
By Nicole Roché
On the morning of October, 11, 2018, poet and essayist Hanif Abdurraqib spoke with students on the St. Lawrence University campus, where the subjects ranged from Kanye West to Black Lives Matter to Abdurraqib’s extensive sneaker collection. After the Q&A, Nicole Roché, who teaches a class about storytelling and identity in the first-year program at St. Lawrence, interviewed Abdurraqib about his work and about his experiences talking with young people in America.
By Jana Morgan
For decades, powerful interests have attempted to intimidate and silence public watchdogs, journalists, and advocacy groups by filing meritless lawsuits. This repressive tactic — called “Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation” (SLAPPs) — is an abuse of the court system and a violation of the First Amendment rights of those who speak truth to power. Weave News contributor Jana Morgan announces a new initiative designed to push back.
By Adam Marcinkowski
Barre, VT, once an affluent hub of granite exportation, has experienced a dramatic decline in prosperity. Home to an industry that once employed thousands of workers spread between more than sixty manufacturing firms, the Barre Granite Association has dwindled to just over five hundred employees in two dozen firms. The effects of these labor cuts can be observed within the city limits of Barre, which has since fallen into dramatic decay. The downtown and surrounding suburbs are scattered with many rundown storefronts and homes in need of repair. The town is also known to have a severe problem with drugs and poverty. Adam Marcinkowski explores the history of the Barre Granite Industry and attempts to determine key factors that helped initiated this shift in economic standing.
By Łukasz W. Niparko
Reporting from Poland, Łukasz W. Niparko warns of a troubling trend toward authoritarianism in the country as thirty years of post-Communist “shock therapy” give way to sustained attacks on democracy and the rule of law by the ruling PIS party.
By Eliza Maher
Though not a global city, Geneva, New York, located in the Finger Lakes region of the state, has become increasingly popular among tourists, entrepreneurs, culinary artists, and young, creative people. In the first installment of our new “Glocal Dispatches” series, Eliza Maher critically analyzes the revitalization of Geneva into a city driven by local businesses, art, music, Hobart and William Smith colleges, and Seneca Lake, and explores the shift to an image-saturated society. However, the shift, often characterized as positive, innovative, and diverse, fails to acknowledge the influence the urban branding will have on the minority groups in Geneva who cannot afford the lifestyle driven by localism.
By Alexandra Nicoletti
In this reflection on the experience of living and studying abroad as an American in France, Alexandra Nicoletti explores the complex process of cultural translation involved when the #MeToo movement crosses the Atlantic.
By John Collins
What role does spatial planning play in the Israeli process of colonizing Palestinian land? Researcher and longtime Weave News contributor Somdeep Sen discusses this issue in a recent podcast hosted by the Danish NGO Mellemfolkeligt Samvirke.