Dateline: April 13, 2017

We are pleased to announce that Indivisible Tampa has merged with Action Together Tampa Bay resulting in INDIVISIBLE Action Together Tampa Bay.

Founded in January 2017 by Michael Broache, Indivisible Tampa is a leading force in Tampa politics, with over 1,000 members and known for their local action on federal issues as well as participating in the Resist Trump Tuesday rallies outside of Senator Marco Rubio’s Tampa office. Founded in November 2016 by Christine Hanna, Action Together Tampa Bay (ATTB) has garnered national attention for bringing together over 5,400 progressive activists throughout Tampa Bay. ATTB is focused on local, state and federal issues and has been recognized for their coordinated participation in town halls and city council meetings. The merger has come about in order to increase collaboration among progressive activists with the same mission—to promote progressive causes and candidates in Tampa Bay, the State of Florida, and the Nation.

The merger decreases duplication of efforts and makes the organization’s activism more efficient by streamlining calls to action and increasing tools to build community and relationships among members.

The current Indivisible Tampa Facebook page will become a place for posting calls to action and events, so that they are easier to find. The ATTB page will remain a place for finding discussions, sharing articles and posting ideas. Both pages will be rebranded as INDIVISIBLE Action Together Tampa Bay, with new graphics and a new logo. The two separate Twitter accounts will be maintained, though the two websites will be merged into one.

These changes will be rolled out gradually and completed by the end of April. We are so excited about the new name and the new resources that this partnership makes possible.

Human rights atrocities against gay men are happening with increasing frequency in the Republic of Chechnya. Chechnyan men accused of being gay have been “illegally detained, beaten, tortured with electric shocks” and held for ransom in “secret prisons” around Chechnya, including a former military facility in the town of Argun, according to the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta.

An Amnesty International Russia spokesperson has said that homophobia and intolerance both ubiquitous and encouraged by Chechen authorities. Amnesty International cautions against using the term "concentration camps" when referring to the "prisons," suggesting the term secret detention sites instead.

The Russian LGBT Network is accepting donations to help those who are in immediate danger in Chechnya. The administrators of this site, if identified, could be arrested, imprisoned or worse. The work they are doing is brave and commendable.

Huffington Post: Gay Crisis in Chechnya

Snopes: Report: Chechnya Opens ‘Concentration Camp for Homosexuals’

With 23 days left in the 2017 Florida Legislative session, there are still bills to be watched on committee agendas. These include many which are an affront to women's reproductive rights. Click on the bill for a link to its official page of record.

CS/CS/HB 19: Termination of Pregnancies

HB 215: Pub. Rec./Termination of Pregnancy

SB 348: Termination of Pregnancy (aka "Florida Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act"

SB 342: Public Records/Physician Abortion Reports

HB 841: Humanity of the Unborn Child

SB 1006: Humanity of the Unborn Child

Look for Call to Action information on the IATTB FB pages when/if action is needed to be taken on these bills.

The antics of the White House are always something to watch -- continuallysuspect, constantly unpredictable and never good. The myriad ongoing questions about Russia continue to both grow and get more complicated. And it might be time to start a pool betting on when Sean Spicer has that public breakdown we can all sense is brewing.

The Guardian:  Trump's relationship with Russia was confusing enough. Then Syria happened.

New York Times: Sean Spicer, United Airlines and the Fine Art of Repentance

Oh that Spicey.

Earlier this week, in the first of four special elections around the country to fill vacant Congressional seats, Democrat James Thompson narrowly lost to Republican Ron Estes in a deep red district in deep red Kansas.

Why is this notable?

Exhibit A: In that same district in November, 2016, #45 carried it easily, winning by 27 points. In this special election, Thompson lost by five to seven points, depending on the source you're reading. Talk about closing a gap...

As attention turns to next Tuesday's (April 18th) special election in Georgia, the momentum sparked by the surprising Kansas election results will hopefully keep building. IATTB will have a live chat thread open to follow the result of the Georgia election Tuesday evening. Meanwhile, these Monday Morning Quarterback/analysis articles about the Kansas election are worth a read.

The Hill:  Five takeaways from Kansas's special election

ThinkProgress:  The Kansas Democrat who nearly pulled off the impossible has some advice for his party

The members of Indivisible Action Together Tampa Bay and other area organizations under the Indivisible umbrella underwrote a billboard calling out Senator Marco Rubio for his continuing refusal to have a town hall meeting, as well as his accepting payments from special interest groups without taking the interests and concerns of his constituents into account. It can be found on the SE corner of W Hillsborough Avenue and Memorial Highway in the Starbucks parking lot in Tampa. Because of contractual requirements with the billboard company, the signage only reflects Action Together Suncoast. But this was truly a collaborative effort, funded by donations from progressive patriots across Tampa Bay!

The Truth Matters: Tax Day March

Saturday, April 15th

12 noon - 4 pm

Marina Jack's "Unconditional Surrender" Statue

Island Park Drive, Sarasota, Florida 34236

Join with other progressives from the west coast of Florida to march in protest of #45's still-unreleased tax returns and to support truth, transparency, media respect, human rights and environmental protection. If you're interested, comment on the event tab on the IATTB FB group page -- that would also be a great place to coordinate carpools/caravans down to Sarasota!

Organize Florida Criminal Justice Committee of Tampa

Juvenile Justice Rally

Sunday, April 30th

2-4 pm

Centennial Park (Ybor)

1800 E 8th Avenue, Tampa, FL, 33605

Come join Organize Florida's Criminal Justice Committee's Rally for Juvenile Justice in Centennial Park (Ybor) where we will have speakers from the community to discuss the school-to-prison pipeline and ways that the justice system impacts all of ours lives. We will discuss ways to solve these problems, and discuss the legislation currently working its way through the Florida House and Senate.

For all events, please RSVP on the Events tab located on the ATTB FB Group page.

We have a new feature here at The Shake-Up called Whatchu Think? Each week, we'll be posing a poll  on the IATTB FB Group page to see what members think about issues, actions and current events -- people will contribute answers and then results will be shared here in the newsletter.

Here's the pulse of IATTB for this week:

Volunteer Interest Meeting:

People's Climate March Tampa Bay

Monday, April 17th

7-8:30 pm

Organize Florida-Tampa Bay

3105 W. Waters Avenue, #107, Tampa, FL 33614


Tampa Bay's People's Climate Change March needs your help!  Would you like to be hands-on and lend your time and talents to making it a huge success? You would? GREAT! The Volunteer Interest Meeting is the place for you!

Volunteer positions include march marshals, petition-gatherers, sign-makers, banner-holders, chant leaders and more!

Seminole Heights Elementary PTA TP Supply Drive!

Sunday, April 23rd

2-5 pm

Fodder and Shine

5910 N Florida Avenue, Tampa FL 33604

File this under Unbelievable But True: Seminole Heights Elementary PTA in Tampa is asking for TOILET PAPER to be donated to their school! It seems there is an operational funding shortfall and the Administration is reaching out to PARENTS for TP donations. Fodder and Shine is hosting a drive to accept TP donations.

Bring your TP to Fodder & Shine Sunday April 23rd between 2-5 pm, then stay and enjoy good company and refreshments on a lovely Florida spring afternoon!

Events You Should Know About...

For all events, please RSVP on the Events tab located on the ATTB FB Group page.

Get Out The Vote 2018: Voter Registration Training Pinellas

Saturday, April 15th OR Sunday, May 14th

2-4 pm

Clearwater Countryside Library

2642 Sabal Springs Drive, Clearwater FL 33761

Tired of making calls to your elected officials that go directly to voicemail- EVERY DAY? Exhausted by town halls where all that’s accomplished is a pat on the head by your elected official- who then turns around and votes contrary to your demands? Feel overwhelmed by the “dark money” those same elected officials rely on to be re-elected, confident they don’t really have to represent YOU? What can you do about it?

Get. Out. The. Vote.

It’s time to elect representatives that truly REPRESENT. We know that we are not being heard. We know that voter turn-out is lower in mid-term elections. That’s why your involvement is so important right now. Become part of the Get Out the Vote Army. We will build this army knocking on one door at a time. Making one call at a time. Registering one voter at a time.

Go here to register:

The Democratic Party will provide training on how to register voters. We’ll give you the information you need for impactful engagement, with as much or as little time you can dedicate. Learn more about Precinct Committeeperson & Block Captain roles, Phone Banks, Canvassing and other opportunities to make a difference.

Enlist today! Your country needs YOU!

Meeting with Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gaultieri

Tuesday, April 25th

2 pm

Pinellas County Sheriff's Administration Building

10750 Ulmerton Road

Largo, FL 33778

People Power is a a grassroots member-mobilization project of the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union.) Through People Power, the ACLU will engage volunteers across the country to take action when Trump or his administration attempt to enact unconstitutional policies or trample on people’s constitutional rights. By mobilizing in defense of our civil liberties, volunteers will build local communities that affirm our American values of respect, equality, and solidarity.

The People Power project has created an Action guide that, amongst other things, outlines some of the major threats that members of our marginalized communities are facing as a result of the current administration's agenda. A massive new ACLU initiative called “Freedom Cities” looks to harness the grassroots action of engaged volunteers.

The White House is seeking to recruit, and where that fails, compel local law enforcement agencies to help the current administration pursue its mass deportation agenda. The intent of the "Freedom Cities" project is to thwart this and other plans that fly in the face of our Constitution and norms. In the same vein as the locally-organized airport protests against unconstitutional detainment, People Power activists will organize in our communities to ensure that our local law enforcement officials defend – not threaten – our friends, families, and neighbors, especially those in marginalized communities. As part of this local grassroots strategy, the ACLU has identified areas in which municipal opposition to, or lack of cooperation with, the current administration will impede objectionable policies the president is pursuing.

In addition to public demonstrations of support like protesting, People's Power has outlined a pro-active plan to help achieve the goals of protecting our families and our neighbors’ families from some of the worst abuses of the current administration. The ACLU has outlined nine “model” state and local law enforcement policies and rules, called the Model 9 for short. You can read the details of the Model 9 HERE. (click the link)

People's Power has scheduled a meeting on Tuesday, April 25th at 2 pm with Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gaultieri to understand his stance on the ACLU Model 9 policies and request that the Pinellas County Sheriff's Department follow these policies. As the Sheriff's Department jurisdiction is all of Pinellas County, it's important to have a large countywide turnout.

Please check your calendars and schedules for Tuesday, April 25th to see if you can attend this very important meeting. To RSVP, please do so HERE.

Mark your calendars for these

events coming up later in April!

Saturday, April 22nd

March for Science

Poynter Park to Williams Park, St. Petersburg

(Poynter Park: 801 3rd St S, St. Petersburg, FL 33701)

10 am

The March for Science is a celebration of our passion for science and a call to support and safeguard the scientific community. Recent policy changes have caused heightened worry among scientists, and the incredible and immediate outpouring of support has made clear that these concerns are also shared by hundreds of thousands of people around the world. The politicization of science, which has given policymakers permission to reject overwhelming evidence, is a critical and urgent matter. It is time for people who support scientific research and evidence-based policies to take a public stand and be counted.


We are scientists and science enthusiasts. We come from all races, all religions, all gender identities, all sexual orientations, all socioeconomic backgrounds, all political perspectives, and all nationalities. Our diversity is our greatest strength: a wealth of opinions, perspectives, and ideas is critical for the scientific process. What unites us is a love of science, and an insatiable curiosity. We all recognize that science is everywhere and affects everyone.

Science is often an arduous process, but it is also thrilling. A universal human curiosity and dogged persistence is the greatest hope for the future. This movement cannot and will not end with a march. Our plans for policy change and community outreach will start with marches worldwide, such as this one in St. Petersburg, and a teach-in at the National Mall, but it is imperative that we continue to celebrate and defend science at all levels - from local schools to federal agencies - throughout the world.

Saturday, April 29th

People's Climate March Tampa Bay

10 am

Lykes Gaslight Square Park. Tampa

Organize Florida member and Communications Director for the People's Climate March Kelsey Tressler writes:

Ready to fight for our planet? Then come out to the Tampa Bay People's Climate March at Lykes Gaslight Park on April 29, 2017 at 10 a.m. for a rally, march and day of action.

Our planet is in more danger than ever before. Under the current administration, we've seen dramatic rollbacks of environmental regulations and protections. But climate change doesn't exist in a vacuum. It's a justice issue that has devastating consequences for front-line communities that include low-income communities of color; women and families; people with disabilities; and more. Tampa Bay is one of the top ten cities most vulnerable to climate change in the world. This is our home, and if we don't do something, we could see all of this washed away faster than we can imagine. We could lose our homes, our health and our lives as a result of long-term and unmitigated climate change.

It's time to stand up and make a statement -- that Tampa Bay is ready to move toward renewable energy sources in an equitable way. So come out this month, invite your friends and stand up for our planet with us.

Organize Florida's Climate Justice Committee is a group working to get legislation passed locally to protect frontline communities from climate change.

IATTB May Planning Meeting

Saturday, May 6th

3-5 pm

John F. Germany Library

900 N Ashley Dr, Tampa, FL 33602

Our next Planning Meeting will take place on Saturday, 6th from 3 -5 pm in Hillsborough County at John F. Germany Library in Tampa. We have planning meetings every other month. This meeting will focus on upcoming elections, such as the Mayor/City Council races in St. Petersburg later this year, and how we as an organization can make an impact. After the meeting, there will be a social at The Independent (5016 N Florida Avenue, Tampa) to celebrate the merger of ATTB and Indivisible Tampa. Mark your calendars and come work a little, learn a little and play a little with us on May 6th.

For a comprehensive listing of progressive meetings, activities, and events, hit up ATTB's Google Calendar. There truly is something for every interest, location and availability to be found there.

Remember: you can RSVP for any event on the parallel Events calendar on the ATTB Facebook Group page.

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