KWRU Organizing Update: Kensington Welfare Rights Union,

Tom Boland (
Wed, 9 Jun 1999 14:40:25 -0700 (PDT)

FWD  Reply To: Kensington Welfare Rights Union <>

June 9, 1999

Members of the Kensington Welfare Rights Union hit the streets today to
begin a long summer of organizing and human rights documentation in
Philadelphia.  We began at 11:00 am to visit the city's Office of
Emergency Shelters and Services (OESS), in order to register several
members who are currently homeless.  A security guard attempted to seize
all of our flyers -- the same flyers we were trying to give to people
who needed emergency help with food, clothing, and housing.  We went
around to the administrative offices and could only speak to a
supervisor who was unable to help us at the time.

By noon, our organizers visited the Unity and the North District welfare
offices to pass out flyers about our organization.  We had already heard
so many people's problems that we called for an emergency membership
meeting for the next day at 10:00 am.

Finally, members of the KWRU walked the first streets of North
Philadelphia's 7th ward.  We knocked on doors, passed out flyers, and
spoke to the many residents enduring the 95 degree heat.  Many people
welcomed us and were familiar with our work.  Furthermore, our flyers
listed our phone number and almost immediately our office was inundated
with calls from Kensington residents dealing with the crises of poverty.

Also today, we were celebrating the birthdays of two of our leaders, Liz
and Esther Ortiz.  Liz is still recovering from triple bypass surgery
and dealing with her own homeless situation.  Esther continues to
struggle with lupus cancer and a lack of adequate health insurance.  We
know that the economic human rights violations we will document in
Philadelphia over the next several months are the same problems that we
struggle with on a daily basis.


Kensington Welfare Rights Union
PO Box 50678
Philadelphia, PA 19132-9720
Phone: 215/203-1945
Fax:   215/203-1950

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