May 21,2023
 **** I will be on vacation from 5/22-6/5 and unlikely I will have internet access.  Leave your messages if any and I’ll get back to you shortly after I return.

>> The first order of business at our next meeting will be to accept nominations for officers for the next year and then conduct an election.  If interested in running, please send your nomination to Bill Okerman, ( so I can include the names in the agenda in advance of our June 12th meeting.  As usual the Zoom meeting will start at 7:30pm, with a Zoom invitation sent out at the latter part of the week of June 5th.

>> Are you interested in joining with Diego Low at CASA to seek a grant?  Here is a portion of a  letter I received from Cheryl.  Please contact her directly if interested in helping out ( ).   Hi all —  It has been awhile!  I want to share this grant opportunity with you.  Boston Children’s Hospital has released a Request for Proposals (Community-Based Health Initiative) and have identified priority communities and priority populations- Immigrants and low-income households are among the priority populations and Needham, Framingham two of the priority communities.  

They are looking for community-based and faith communities with a 501C3 status to be the lead for the funding proposals,  however these groups can partner with public agencies/schools. I went to the info session this past Wednesday and have been floating around some ideas with Diego, nothing concrete.  

The grant proposal is due on June 9th so it does not give us a lot of time -however it is a great opportunity and we could consider a Needham/Framingham project.  Mull it over – and maybe we can get a meeting together next week to see if this is a feasible undertaking.  Also feel free to send along any thoughts you have about this. Enjoy the week-end.   Peace, Cheryl

>> Marketplace reports that private prison companies with lucrative immigrant detention contracts with the U.S. government are paying close attention to the end of Title 42 since there’s a chance of more migrants crossing into the United States — and into immigrant detention centers.  SEE:

>> Politico reports “How a green card freeze will exacerbate the nursing crisis” “Health groups say the move could devastate a nursing workforce that is plagued by staffing shortages”. SEE:

>> On May 19, Mother Jones published an informative article entitled, “The Republican War on Alejandro Mayorkas: The Man with the Most Impossible Job in DC”. (You get a flavor of the Republican position from the House Republican Majority Leader when  Steve Scalise (R-La.) is quoted, “We will give Secretary [Alejandro] Mayorkas a reserved parking spot [at the Capitol], he will be testifying so much.”   SEE: On war-on-alejandro-mayorkas-the-man-with-the-most-impossible-job-in-dc/ 

>> The Wall Street Journal has published a very interesting article about what the rest of the world is doing about its need to fill employment needs with immigrants. (IMHO the Congress needs to wake up to remain competitive in the world economy.)  SEE:

>> Food for thought:  On May 16th the NY Times published an op-ed written by its highly respected foreign affairs op-ed columnist, Thomas Friedman, entitled, “It’s time for Biden to out-Trump Trump on Immigration”.  Frankly he makes a lot of sense, so read the entire op-ed before you come to any conclusions.  Go to:

>> I received this item about a program at Temple Beth Shalom (TBS) in Needham that I thought would be of interest.       Thanks to Gerry Koss for sending it to me.  (taken from an email from Temple Beth Shalom in Needham)

“We are thrilled to share exciting news regarding the work of TBS’s Refugee Resettlement Initiative.  In partnership with Jewish Family Services of MetroWest and the Shapiro Foundation, TBS is participating in a life-changing pilot program that is bringing Ukrainians to the U.S.  Upon learning about the effort, TBS moved quickly.  We are thrilled to share that three women from Ukraine will be joining us as educators in our TBS Children’s Center!  The first of our new Ukrainian teachers – Alina – arrived at Logan Airport yesterday and was warmly welcomed by many, including members of our TBS Volunteer Corps!  This thrilling development was covered by CBS-Boston News.  To watch last night’s broadcast of the story, click here.  Through the generosity of contributions made by members of our community to fund our Refugee Resettlement efforts, TBS has worked in partnership with JFS and the Buy Nothing Dover/Sherborn group, we have been able to furnish a two-bedroom apartment at Hancock Village in Chestnut Hill.  As well, TBS volunteers have stocked Alina’s kitchen with food for her first week in the U.S.  Throughout the coming days, TBS volunteers will be showing her around the area and supporting her new beginning.  TBS is looking forward to welcoming two other women from the Ukraine who will be joining us in the coming weeks!”  

 >> The Needham Diversity Initiative and the Needham Human Rights Committee are holding Race Amity Day on Sunday, June 11, from 4-6 pm at Amity Path at the Needham Reservoir, 500 Dedham Avenue.  Live music, food, craft activity and fun. This event celebrates the friendships between people of different races and cultures, and recognizes the collaborations which advance equity and social justice.  Free and all are welcome.

 >> On Saturday, May 20, the Boston Globe published an editorial entitled, “Give in-state college tuition to undocumented immigrants”.  Please read the editorial so at our next meeting in June, we can discuss what the TASK FORCE can do to convince our legislature to pass the Senate Bill.

 That’s it for now.
 Stay safe
Gerry Rovner