|For Immediate Release: June 20th, 2011|
CODEPINK's Anti-War Resolution Passes at U.S. Mayors' Conference. Mayors Will Bring Resolution to Congress and White House
When the US Conference of Mayors embraced the Resolution Calling on Congress to Redirect Military Spending to Domestic Priorities, it signaled a growing call to end war and bring funds back to our communities. Now the mayors will take this resolution to their meetings at the White House and Congress.
This Resolution wouldn't have existed without a simple question from one woman, and the grassroots campaign it inspired CODEPINK Co-Founder Jodie Evans asked Los Angeles Mayor Villaraigosa to help bring war dollars home to serve the needs of LA. He suggested a mayoral resolution could be adopted by the next US Conference of Mayors. Evans immediately went to work, raising funds to hire organizer C.J. Minster to oversee the campaign. Minster researched and wrote the resolution at the kitchen table of CODEPINK Co-Founder Medea Benjamin, working to highlight the true cost of war in terms of lives and dollars lost, and then contacted peace groups around the country asking them to pressure their mayors to support the resolution.
While many mayors agreed with the sentiment, it was hard to find a mayor who would step forward to be the lead sponsor. CODEPINK was delighted when Mayor Kitty Piercy from Eugene, Oregon finally stepped forward as the lead sponsor, even though--precisely because of cut-backs--she didn't have the funds to attend the conference. “Our city has had to cut 20 million from our budget in the last three years,” said Mayor Piercy. “I travel when I need to in order to do something for my city. I must be very sensitive to our local economic situation.” Of course this only underscores the need to bring our war dollars home to our struggling communities.
As Mayor Villaraigosa said to the New York Times, the idea “that we would build bridges in Baghdad and Kandahar and not Baltimore and Kansas City absolutely boggles the mind.” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/18/us/18cities.html?_r=2
This is the first time since the Vietnam War that the U.S. mayors have called for an end to war. "I'm grateful that the nation's mayors supported the will of the people, but we can't stop now," said Ms. Minster. "The mayors will deliver this resolution to Congress and the President, and CODEPINK is launching a new phase of this campaign to deliver the resolution to Congresspeople all over the country. It is high time that Congress understands that their skewed funding priorities are bankrupting our communities. Human security is based in job creation, food security, access to healthcare, and environmental protections. Drone attacks and endless military occupations make no one safer."
CODEPINK organizer C.J. Minster is available for interviews and can be reached at (818) 383-2300 or email@example.com. She can also connect reporters to the resolution's mayoral co-sponsors.
About CODEPINKCODEPINK (http://www.codepink.org) is a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end U.S. funded wars and occupations, to challenge militarism globally, and to redirect our resources into health care, education, green jobs and other life-affirming activities.