This victory was a result of work done by Peace and Justice Works' Iraq
Affinity Group and the American Friends Service Committee, among others.
(Note: the final version posted on 11/30/06 is different from the
previously posted draft, as Commissioner Sten introduced a few minor
amendments at the beginning of the
Here's an excerpt from Kelly Campbell of AFSC's report on the hearing:
WE DID IT!
A "standing room only" crowd witnessed moving testimony from more than 50
people who made the case for the resolution. Those testifying included
military families, veterans and Iraqi-Americans, labor and faith group
leaders, youth and students and those who work on health care, education,
housing, homelessness, environmental justice and other human needs issues.
The presenters made a strong case for the many local impacts of the war on
the Portland community and why we need to speak up as a city for peace.
Thanks to everyone who contributed to this campaign--those who signed the
petition, gathered signatures, volunteered, spread the word and showed up
for the hearing. This was truly a group effort and it showed!
Portland has spoken: now we have to make sure our federal officials act on
behalf of our wishes to bring the troops home from Iraq and to change our
policies to reflect Portland's priorities.
The next steps will include looking to the state legislature to pass a
similar resolution. At the hearing, Oregon Rep. Chip Shields announced his
intention to introduce a resolution in the house when the legislature
convenes in January.
(If anyone on this list has a particular connection to any State Rep. or
State Senator please get in touch with us here at PJW.)
The City resolution was sponsored by Portland City Commissioner Randy
Leonard, whose vote against a similar resolution prior to the 2003
invasion of Iraq led him to speak about how he felt he had been lied to by
the administration, and felt this was a way to make right the mistake of
supporting the war in the past.
Groups working on this effort included Military Families Speak Out-Oregon,
Environmental Justice Action Group, Sisters of the Road, Oregon Action,
Portland Area Rethinking Schools, and Portland Schools Alliance. (The full
list of endorsers/cosponsors includes 50 groups and
individuals-- http://www.pjw.info/resolutioncosponsors.html) Other
information, can be found at the AFSC Portland website
( link to afsc.org).
This effort is focused on the cost of war in human terms and in the amount
of resources that could be kept at home for education, health care, jobs,
housing and the environment. We also have posted the original proposed
resolution ( http://www.pjw.info/proposedcityresolution.html) for other
communities to look at as a model and to compare to the final version.