Category Archives: Articles

Working Food Community Food Center supports farmers, food entrepreneurs, resilient food system

by Maya Velesko

Forage and Blue Oven Kitchens have been working together and collaborating with our community to support and expand our local food system for over five years.

Their latest endeavor is no exception. The ambitious and exciting project – Working Food – will allow the organizations to combine forces and provide a physical hub for efforts at the intersection of Kitchens, Commerce, and Culture.

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New Gainesville city commissioners sworn in

by Joe Courter

Thursday, May 4, was a day where the hard work of political organizing bore fruits, as the new and re-elected City Commission candidates were sworn into office at a noontime event at the Thelma Boltin Center. New Commissioners David Arreola and Harvey Ward and returning commissioner Helen Warren took turns recognizing their campaign staffs and laying out their hopes and ideals for their coming term to a standing-room crowd of over 200. There was much support among all of them for an active addressing of community problems of income disparity, improvements to public services, and an especially welcome call for closer cooperation between city, county and school board. Low voter turnout was addressed by Harvey Ward with this story of his encounter with a potential voter while going door-to-door in Northwood Oaks:

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From the publisher … On bending the arc

by Joe Courter

These are challenging times to make sense of. Last week we saw Trump fire the director of the FBI and also announce thousands of more troops to Afghanistan. Healthcare is in the hands of the Senate. Each of these acts will impact lives and set off chains of events whose outcome we cannot know in advance. We are along for the ride, and it can easily make one feel powerless. But powerless we are not.

Martin Luther King Jr. popularized the phrase “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”

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Legislative Recap 2017: immigration, education, etc.

by Jeremiah Tattersall

Florida’s House, Senate, and Governor are all Republicans and thank God they don’t get along. This last session had both losses and defensive victories for working families. The overarching theme of the session was that of disunity and political bickering. House Speaker Richard Corcoran (R, Land O’Lakes) held many bills and the budget hostage, while Senate President Joe Negron (R, Palm City) and Governor Rick Scott did their best to save face.

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Update: Voting Rights Restoration Initiative

by Heidi Harris

Women’s March members, working with Julie Thaler, continue to collect signed petitions for the Voter Rights Restoration Petition to be delivered to the Florida State House and Senate and Gov. Rick Scott.

On April 20, the ballot language passed the state supreme court, a victory for this measure that will help restore voter rights to Florida citizens.

We have partnered with the Alachua County Labor Coalition (ACLC) to structure and manage the process of gathering almost 800,000 signatures statewide. Together, we have formed the North Florida Voter Rights Restoration Coalition, and will continue to network and join efforts with other activist groups across the state.

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Madres Sin Fronteras fights racism

by Gia Del Pinolead, organizer with Madres Sin Fronteras

In the aftermath of the Trump election a group of undocumented and semi-documented immigrants grouped together to stand up to the racism affecting their communities. After witnessing increases in bullying to their children and intimidation from their bosses they formed Madres Sin Fronteras to demand their human rights.

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May-June 2017 Gainesville Iguana

The 2017 May-June issue of the Iguana is now available! If you want to get your hands on a hard copy, check out our distro locations here.

Pierce Pettis to play benefit show for Civic Media Center on April 28

by Joe Courter

For those of you who missed Pierce Pettis’s wonderful house concert about a month ago, he is coming back to town to do a “pro bono” benefit show for the Civic Media Center on Friday evening April 28. The location will be next door to the CMC in M.A.M.A.’s Place, a new addition to the block spearheaded by Faye Williams inside the old location of Citizens Co-op at 435 S. Main St. (Pierce is, as usual, on tour and this one night of availability corresponded to Art Walk, which the CMC was already booked for).

Pierce is a veteran singer-songwriter with a great talent for heartfelt songs, great phrasing and a very entertaining presence, and this is a very kind gesture to  waive his fee (this is how he makes his living) to help the CMC raise the funds it needs to keep going in these times we are in.  It is kind of a reward for the over half dozen times I have set up shows for him in Gainesville over the last 20 years, including the old CMC, the current CMC, the Thomas Center and the Acrosstown Repertory theater.

The concert will be at 8pm sharp, but since it is Art Walk night, you can come early and browse the downtown galleries beforehand. There is parking in the lot just south of the building, across the street on Main, or just north at the courthouse lot. Tickets will be $15 in advance and $20 at the door. More details from Joe at 352-378-5655 or 

Women’s March on Florida -Gainesville Chapter going strong

by Women’s March on  Florida

The Women’s March on Florida, Gainesville Chapter is organizing for upcoming challenges to protect our civil liberties. During their first few months, they have created a sustainable grassroots organization with a foundation to support resistance efforts and to ensure that the voice of progressive Americans who care about our environment, civil rights and equality are heard.

WMFL is committed to supporting the causes you care about.  Join the 400 volunteers as they work collaboratively with the local government officials and other grassroots organizations. Get involved by coming to one of their events, email them at, and participate and like them on Facebook at

Upcoming Women’s March Gainesville Events

See our complete list of upcoming events at

April 17 at 6:30: Economic Justice Action Group Meeting. Alachua County Labor Coalition, 901 NW 8th Ave., Suite A1

April 22 at 11: March for Science. March begins at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium

April 27 at 6:30pm Action Group & Volunteers Leadership mtg. 

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Join League of Women Voters Alachua Solar Cooperative

by Wes Wheeler

The League of Women Voters – Alachua, in partnership with FL Sun, has a brand-new web page (you are among the first ones to see this!) that explains the Alachua County Solar Co-op.

If you’ve ever wanted to go solar and you live in Alachua County, this is an opportunity to use group buying power to get a discounted price for solar panels. The link is:

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