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August's community page is packed with great info, resources, and ideas for dialogue leaders. We've got info and links to help keep you informed about the fight for reparations, info about a new global non-violent peaceforce that you can become involved in, and ways you and your groups can take action against racial profiling. We've got great new intergroup relations books and guides, terrific online resources you'll want to know about, and excellent training opportunities. Enjoy! And please let us know what you think ().

Is America Ready for Reparations?

The idea of reparations for African Americans is getting a lot of attention these days. People are discussing it heatedly at work, major newspapers are examining the concept, groups are engaging in dialogue about it.

This is an important and timely topic for dialogue groups to discuss, and an issue they may want to take action on. For more information, visit the N'COBRA (National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America) website, or read the articles listed below.

Declaring the Slave Trade a Crime Against Humanity: The Moral and Legal Basis for Reparations by Ron Daniels

Slave Reparations Divides U.S., World Conference Against Racism by Candice Choi

Reparations Move Mainstream: Is America Ready for the Conversation? by Linda Wallace

Become Part of a Global Non-Violent Peaceforce

A newly-formed and ever-growing Global Nonviolent Peace Force (GNPF)
dedicated to unarmed intervention in areas of political repression and violence
seeks to mobilize and train a multicultural, nonviolent, standing peace force.
The Peace Force will deploy to conflict areas to help create the space for local groups to struggle, dialogue, and seek peaceful resolution while protecting human rights and preventing death and destruction.

Currently focused on research and planning, GNPF hopes to deploy field troops by 2003. These troops would be sent to trouble spots when requested by local peace groups. Through GNPF, founders Mel Duncan and David Hartsough hope to create a viable alternative to large-scale military involvement. During the next two years, a multinational planning team will develop, organize, recruit and train a global peace force. Interested people are invited to join in creating the Global Nonviolent Peace Force.

Click here to read more about the GNPF, or call 651-487-0800. Email to receive the GNPF email newsletter. Or click here to read an excellent article on the project called Blessed Are the Peacemakers: Nonviolent Activists are Being Deployed in Trouble Spots Around the World.

New Book on Improving Intergroup Relations

Walter and Cookie Stephan's new book Improving Intergroup Relations will be released later this month ($29.95 paperback from Amazon.com). The book is a comprehensive review and evaluation of various techniques for improving intergroup relations. Intergroup dialogue is examined, among many other techniques.

New Guide to Connecting Communities
through Reconciliation

An excellent guidebook was developed by MRA: Initiatives for Change and Hope in the Cities in time for the Connecting Communities forum which took place last month in Washington, DC. The guidebook, which is also called Connecting Communities, was written by Robert Corcoran and Karen Elliott Greisdorf, and can be ordered by calling MRA at 202-872-9077 ($10, plus $5 for shipping). Connecting Communities features key lessons and insights from people working in the field of racial reconciliation, a guide to organizing an intergroup dialogue on race, and much more.

Youth Magazine Promotes Peace in the Middle East

Crossing Borders, a courageous, cooperative youth publication from the Middle East, has sustained its publication against all odds in these difficult past months, and is now being made available to others who are interested. Crossing Borders is a bimonthly regional youth newspaper (in English) whose readers are Israeli, Palestinian, and Jordanian young people.

Throughout the publication, Israeli (Jewish and Palestinian), Jordanian, and Palestinian youth write articles and opinion pieces about political, cultural, social, and youth related subjects. It is a vehicle of communication between the youth of the region in English, and serves as a platform to exchange ideas to promote just and lasting peace.

Crossing Borders is part of a regional project called: "Learning to live together in the Middle East," which was initiated by the International People's College (IPC) in Elsinore, Denmark. For more information, and to obtain a copy of the last issue email Shimon Malka at .

New Book on Interethnic Conflict

Edited by Mohammed Abu-Nimer, Assistant Professor of International Peace and Conflict Resolution at American University, Reconciliation, Justice, and Coexistence: Theory and Practice provides lessons and insights for post-settlement peacebuilders.

Abu-Nimer has brought together scholars and practitioners to address questions such as: Do truth commissions work?; What are the necessary conditions for reconciliation?; Can political agreements bring reconciliation?; and How can indigenous approaches be utilized in the process of reconciliation? Essays focus on the conflict dynamics in regions such as Northern Ireland, Israel-Palestine, South Africa and Rwanda.

Abu-Nimer is also the author of Dialogue, Conflict Resolution, and Change: The Case of Arabs and Jews in Israel (1999). To order, contact Lexington Books (800-462-6420 or www.lexingtonbooks.com).

New Listserv for Dialogue Leaders Gaining Momentum

DialogueLeaders, the new listserv (email discussion list) for organizers, facilitators, and researchers of intergroup dialogue, is now over 110 members strong, and growing every day! For info on how to join the list, which was developed by the Dialogue to Action Initiative to provide a forum for people in the dialogue field to network with one another and share important information, click on the DialogueLeaders icon.

Take Action Against Racial Profiling

Whites who participate in intergroup dialogues on race are often taken by surprise when they hear personal stories about People of Color who have been taken aside at airports, pulled over on the highway, or even searched while taking a walk, all for no discernable reason besides the color of their skin.

In response to the growing realization that racial profiling is pervasive in our communities, hundreds of police departments have begun to voluntarily collect detailed records of traffic stops. Nine states have adopted legislation requiring their police departments to collect data, including the gender and perceived race and ethnicity of the person stopped as well as whether a search was initiated and if any warning or citation was issued.

Until now, Congress has failed to act on this injustice. Recently, some Senators and Representatives introduced the End Racial Profiling Act of 2001 which would, among other things, concretely define racial profiling and declare it illegal.

Here is an easy way for you and your dialogue participants to support the End Racial Profiling Act of 2001. The ACLU's website features a free mechanism which allows anyone in the U.S. to fax their Congress members, urging them to support this legislation, in only 2 clicks. To read more about the proposed legislation or fax your Congress members, click here.

They say that faxes are 100 times more effective at influencing politicians than emails are, but letters are 100 times more effective than faxes, and personal visits are even more effective. If your dialogue participants want to take more concrete action on this issue, you could organize a letter-writing session or even set up a group meeting with a Congressperson.

New Maine Law Requires Local Native American Culture Be Taught in Schools

After a year of legal struggle, Native American tribes in Maine have won one battle. Maine public schools will now be required to teach about the Wabenaki confederation, which encompasses the state's four tribes. "Chiefs and governors of the tribes gathered in the state capitol for a signing ceremony with Maine Gov. Angus King, who remains a determined foe on the issue of tribal sovereignty.

"The bill requires an American Indian studies component in the already mandatory Maine studies curriculum. It will also set up a 15-member commission to develop material and advise educators in setting up the course?…. In the course of the year's legal battles, tribal members have often deplored the lack of public knowledge about their history and even their existence." Click here for the full text of this June 20 Indian Country Today article by Jim Adams, which overviews a policy change which may inspire your dialogue groups to work for similar legislation.

Unique Project Unites Urban and Rural Communities

Founded in 1996, the Victory Gardens Project is attempting to bridge the divide between oppressed urban and rural communities while merging the struggles for black liberation and earth liberation. The Victory Gardens Project was inspired by the survival programs of the Black Panther Party and the nature-based philosophy of the radical ecology and anarchist movements. The Victory Gardens Project provides healthy food to inner city community groups and brings volunteers up from these urban communities to work on the garden. Click here for an article about this interesting project.

Upcoming Trainings for Facilitators

The Public Conversations Project (PCP) in Watertown, MA offers two affordable trainings which are excellent for dialogue facilitators.

PCP's excellent Power of Dialogue workshop gain an understanding of the principles and practices underlying PCP's approach to dialogue facilitation through experiential exercises and faculty presentations, and by design and facilitation of a complete PCP-type dialogue in an extended simulation. This workshop (approx. $450) will be held in Boston, MA on October 18-20 and in Los Angeles, CA on November 15-17. William Madsen, Ph.D. and Sallyann Roth, M.S.W. will be facilitating this workshop.

Inquiry As Intervention focuses on how to ask the kinds of questions which open the 'stuck places' to more constructive communication. According to PCP, the choices a facilitator makes about which questions to ask at a particular time "have an enormous impact on the quality of the relationships, listening, and information that emerge in subsequent discussion." This one-day workshop ($150), offered in Watertown on September 13, 2001, is facilitated by Sallyann Roth and Bob Stains.

Visit www.publicconversations.org to find out more or to register for these workshops, or call 617-923-1216.

NAME Conference to be Held in November

The 11th Annual National Association for Multicultural Education (NAME) Conference will take place on November 7-11 in Las Vegas, Nevada. This year's theme is High Stakes: Achievement, Assessment and Advocacy Through Multicultural Education. There will be over 150 concurrent sessions, keynote addresses from some of the leading experts in the field, exhibits, entertainment, film festival, cultural tours, chances to network and discuss your work, NAME chapter meetings and much more. Click here for more information about the conference.

World Conference Against Racism

World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance will take place in Durban, South Africa from August 31 through September 7, 2001.

For specific inquiries, you can contact the Development and Human Rights Section of the United Nations by calling 212-963-3771 or emailing . You can also go to www.igc.org/igc/gateway/arn/worldconf/ or www.un.org/WCAR/ for more details.

Have Suggestions for the September Community Page?

We update Dialogue to Action Initiative's Community on a regular basis, so we invite you to bookmark this page and return frequently. If you know of some news or a resource that should be mentioned here, or you have a site or project you'd like us to feature, please let us know about it by emailing us at .

- a production of www.thataway.org -
?2001 Sandy Heierbacher