Posts Tagged ‘psara membership meeting and party’

December Membership Meeting and Holiday Potluck

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

By Maureen Bo, PSARA Administrative Vice President

Please join us at our fabulous holiday potluck as we celebrate the spirit of community shared by PSARA members in our quest for a more just and humane world.

We will have a brief but important business meeting, where we will elect officers and board members and discuss long-term plans for PSARA. Included in the discussion will be a proposal to change our dues structure in order to strengthen and expand PSARA.

Our featured speaker is Jeff Johnson, President of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO, who has spent decades fighting for workers’ rights and continues to lead action for progressive solutions to state issues.

The PSARA Executive Board is fun and interesting, but requires work and participation in PSARA’s issues and goals. If you are interested in running for a board position that begins January 2015, please contact this year’s chair of the election committee, Maureen Bo, at, or call 206-448-9646 and leave a message.

Also please RSVP for the membership meeting to Maureen Bo at adminvp@ or 206-448-9646. Tell us what food or beverage you can bring to the potluck, i.e. main dish, salad, dessert, juice. Also please consider bringing a non-perishable food or drink item or cash for the ML King County Labor Council Food Bank.

The meeting will be at the Greenwood Community Senior Center, 525 N 85th St, Seattle, Thursday, December 18, from 12:30 to 3:00 pm. (See the flyer on Page 7 for more information).

Kshama Sawant Speaks to PSARA Membership Meeting

Monday, July 7th, 2014

By Bob Shimabukuro 

Seattle Councilmember Kshama Sawant delivered a feisty, emotionally charged address to PSARA members at our semiannual members’ meeting, celebrating the victory of the $15/hr minimum wage in Seattle. She challenged PSARA members to keep up the pressure, not only on the $15/hr minimum wage, but on also a number of other issues important for working families.

PSARA members returned her enthusiasm, cheering often as Sawant outlined the steps that changed the “agenda of what we’re going to talk about.” We listened carefully as she cautioned about letting the corporate interests develop the “narrative of our empowerment.”

“History is being made not because smart politicians brought stakeholders together and hashed out a law, but because of the pressure we brought to the negotiations,” she said. “When we win against the corporate interests, it is not a measure of their kindness, it is a measure of our determination.”

Sawant said the pressure had been building since the success of the SeaTac $15 campaign, which made it possible for $15 to be the center of attention in Seattle for the first six months of the year. “Working people decided they had had enough, and with polls showing 74% in favor of $15, we pushed as far as we could,” she said.

“The momentum continues to build. $15 Now is spreading across the country. In San Francisco, Columbus, and New York City chapters have been formed. We want every $15 Now to be better than Seattle’s, that each movement gets better conditions. Our responsibility is to keep our eyes on the enforcement issues.”

Sawant also stressed the necessity of linking the $15 Now struggles with others: from Social Security (Scrap the Cap) and better college student funding programs, to housing injustice

–rent control and evictions. “Don’t think your job is done,” she added. “We need your voice for a state-wide tax on the wealthy and big business to finance education; we need to talk about public transit.”

During the question and answer period after her speech, Councilmember Sawant, in her reply to a question about why the “seven-year phase-in loophole” was left in the $15 minimum wage bill, summed up her thoughts (and the thoughts of most of the people at the meeting):

“We got [only] as much as we got, because we didn’t have enough power. The best way to make this happen is to become more powerful. Despite the loopholes, we accomplished a lot —which was recognized world-wide.”

Sawant and the Socialist Alternative party is not going to be sitting still in the near future. Sawant announced that Jess Spear, Organizing Director of $15 Now, is running for the 43rd Legislative District against 20-year incumbent and House Majority Leader Frank Chopp.

She called Chopp a corporate politician who led the passage of Boeing’s $8.7 billion tax breaks at the expense of working people.

This could be a very interesting race.

Bob Shimabukuro is Associate Editor of The Retiree Advocate and a member of the PSARA Executive Board. 

June 19, Summer Potluck & General Membership Meeting

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

Seattle City Council member, Kshama Sawant, is our guest speaker at the PSARA annual summer potluck and general membership meeting. The event begins at noon with a potluck and socializing. Councilmember Sawant will speak around 12:45 with time for Q & A. Following the presentation, we will hold a brief general membership meeting.

A former software engineer from India, Sawant became a socialist activist and part-time economics professor in Seattle after immigrating to the United States. She held part-time teaching positions at Seattle Central Community College and Seattle University and was a visiting assistant professor at Washington and Lee University. Sawant ran unsuccessfully for the Washington State House of Representatives before winning a seat on the Seattle City Council, making her the first socialist to win a city-wide election in Seattle since the radical progressive Anna Louise Strong was elected to the School Board in 1916.

Kshama’s victorious campaign received national attention and provided fuel for a national debate. Her articulate advocacy for working people, including the call for a $15 minimum wage for all workers in Seattle, has added a new edge to the fight to address the perilous income equality that has become the shame of our community and nation.

Please bring a main dish, salad, fruit, dessert or soft drink to share at the party.

RSVP by calling 206-448-9646 and let us know the food item you can bring. You can also RSVP by emailing Maureen Bo at It is very helpful to know what you will be bringing to the potluck.

If possible, please also bring items of non perishable food for the Labor Agency Food Bank.

(There is a flyer in the mid-fold of this newsletter with more details about public transportation and parking.)

We hope you will join us at the annual summer event!

Fun, delicious food, and Big Decisions: It’s the June 21 summer Membership Meeting!

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

Thursday, June 21, from 12:30 –3 p.m., at the Greenwood Community Senior Center, PSARA will hold our annual summer membership meeting and potluck. The opportunity to socialize with other PSARA members, to hear an important speaker talk about the future of our state, and to help shape the future of PSARA are all bundled into one afternoon.

Our featured speaker, gubernatorial candidate Jay Inslee, will leave time for Q & A, offering a rare opportunity to question him about his vision for Washington in a more intimate setting. The race for governor promises to be hard fought and close.

The choice between the candidates is stark. Jay Inslee supported the Affordable Care Act (ACA). His opponent, Attorney General Rob McKenna, joined the lawsuit to overturn the ACA. If successful, the lawsuit could eliminate many of the improvements that were made to Medicare along with eliminating such reforms as barring exclusions for preexisting conditions, significant expansion of Medicaid, and coverage for kids under 26 through their parents’ healthcare.

Also at the meeting, you will learn about significant organizational changes PSARA will experience in the next several months. After twelve years of affiliation, the national ARA has determined that PSARA does not fit with their organizational model. After explaining what has occurred and what we need to do, the Executive Board will propose a new name for PSARA as well as several Bylaw changes.

The potluck, which displays the skill and creativity of our members, is always delicious and our membership is fun, lively and interesting! Please RSVP to adminvp@ or call the office (206) 448-9646. If no one answers, please leave a message telling us what you will be bringing for the potluck.

PSARA Annual Membership Meeting and Party

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Guest speaker: Rep. Jay Inslee, candidate for Governor Review of past 6 months and future actions.

12:30 to 3:00 pm, Thursday, June 21, 2012 

LOCATION: Greenwood Community Senior Center, 525 North 85th Street, Seattle. On Bus line # 48.

RSVP to office phone and let us know the food item you can bring: 206-448- 9646 or e-mail to 

12:30 pm Potluck lunch and socializing. Please bring a main dish, salad, fruit, dessert or soft drink to share at the party.

1:00 pm Presentation by former Rep. Jay Inslee with Q&A. Time to get to know Jay Inslee better and make our issues heard.

2:00 pm Business meeting