Eliot Neighborhood Association Board meeting minutes June 15, 2020

Chairs: Jimmy Wilson & Allan Rudwick

Monday, June 15 2020

6:30-8:00 pm

Board Members Present:

Allan Rudwick

Jennifer Wilcox

Jimmy Wilson

Jonathan Konkol

Shireen Hasan

Jim Hlava

Sue Stringer

Darren Holcomb

Others Present:

William Francis (Community Cycling Center)

Cameron Whitten (Black Resilience Fund)

Meeting called to order at 6:33pm

1 Welcome & Introductions

2. William Francis of the Community Cycling Center spoke.  The Community Cycling Center’s mission is to broaden access to bicycling and its benefits.  More than just a bike shop, they do a holiday bike drive, donate bikes each year, run a repair shack in the New Columbia Village, offer a low income community discount and several other programs.  They are located on NE Alberta street. 

During the pandemic the Community Cycling Center is working towards providing mutual aid.  They are connected with a food pantry at the Rosa Parks school and another pantry in the Cully neighborhood.  They are reaching 91 families delivering food by bicycle each week.  There is a team of 6 volunteers making the deliveries.  The idea is to bring food to individuals who may not be able to go to pantries for a variety of reasons. 

They are looking for a food pantry to partner with in our neighborhood. There is one at the Boise Eliot School.  Immaculate Heart church has a food pantry.  Saint Philip the Deacon gives out food on Saturdays. They would also need to gather names of individuals or families in need.  They make their deliveries by bike so families need to be within a 1-2-mile radius.  Discussed putting an article up on the web about the program and then updating it for the fall newsletter.  Sue will put a brief ad in the summer issue of the newsletter to ask for individuals who are in need of support.  Shireen agreed to be the point person to help coordinate the neighborhood needs. Allan will also connect William to the Boise Eliot School as a way to gather names of families in need.

3. Cameron Whitten of the Black Resilience Fund spoke.  The fund was founded two weeks ago to create resources to provide immediate support to Black Portlanders. They have received over 3000 applications for support.  Their goal is to raise $1 million, and they are more than halfway there.  They want to support a path toward healing and reconciliation to communities; create joy and build community.  Their model is culturally specific.  People who apply are being interviewed by Black Portlanders and funds are delivered by Black Portlanders.  It is creating a way for individuals to be more connected. The website: BlackResiliencefund.com has lots of great stories.  The fund is solving immediate needs for neighbors who are currently suffering.  Becoming a program of the nonprofit Brown Hope. Jimmy stated it was very encouraging to see this work.  He suggested that Cameron speak to the mayor.  Black 211 workers are able to volunteer their time to help with Black Resilience Fund.  It is a very empowering experience for many people.  Sue suggested putting something on the website and also an article in the newsletter in the fall.  Over 600 people applied to volunteer. Two co-founders. Shireen moved we donate $1000 to the Black Resilience Fund.  Darren secondedMotion passed unanimously.

4 Newsletter updates: Sue is finishing up the layout right now.  Goal is to get it in everyone’s mailbox by July 1st.  We have 12 pages which include interviews with essential workers, info about I-5, COVID-19 testing and many other articles.  We are covering the cost for the issue though we are light on advertising. Would love to get more voices from the community for the next issue.  Jimmy gave a statement about the protests.  Sue reached out to Jimmy Wilson, Shireen Hasan, and Patricia Montgomery and Monique Gaskins to make sure the Black perspective was included in the newsletter.  Jimmy wanted to make sure Sue explained why she asked those individuals in particular.  She stated did not want to say the wrong thing or go in the wrong direction in the newsletter.  Discussed the importance of honoring this moment.  Jimmy said we are all in this together.  Sue shared Jimmy’s statement to the group and a few edits were made.

5. Statement of support: Allan sent out a statement of support for the Black Lives Matter movement before the meeting. The idea is to acknowledge that we have been a part of the problem in the past and that we want to work to make amends and promote an anti-racist society.  The group reviewed and edited the statement.  We also agreed to add a paragraph to the masthead of the newsletter.

6 Ongoing business:

  • Land Use Committee did not meet this month.  Nothing to report.
  • Stanton Street have not been able to meet with the police.  The police are not able to commit at this time because they are busy with the protests.
  • Livability committee: Adopt a Block is the focus at this point. Do $100 gift certificate drawing quarterly for individuals who are doing the Adopt A Block.  Sue will talk with Jodi about how to connect the committee more closely with the Board.  Jimmy stated he feels like he is stuck and not making progress with the Blazers. Jere gave Jimmy a list of names and an email chain but he does not know those individuals.  He does not want to contact someone he has not been introduced to.  Jimmy is trying to get support from the Board so he can do his job. Karla Gosnell has had the most recent contact with the Blazers but we don’t know if her contact is even still with the Blazers.  Who can make this connection?  Sue will reach out to Karla to make a connection with Jimmy and the Blazers
  • Jere is stepping down from the board.  She does not feel she can make the time commitment. 
  • Allan listened into the Emanuel Displaced Persons 2 Zoom call.  They are a group of descendants of the un-kept promises from that era. EDP2 is asking the Eliot Neighborhood Association to sign onto a letter that would negate the current process for the Hill Block.  Jimmy stated that Emanuel has not followed through on their promises.  He also pointed out that there are Blacks fighting against Blacks, both groups have ancestors who were affected by the displacements.  As a neighborhood association we have asked for more land to be donated. What is our goal? Jimmy suggested that we need to protect our name and not put our name on anything until we know it is right. Shireen suggested that Byrd come to another meeting to clarify. Some people in the group decided to stay out of the conflict between the two groups. Shireen did not agree with this decision.
  • April Minutes: Allan moved the minutes be approved as corrected, Sue seconded. Motion passed.
  • May Minutes: Allan moved that the minutes be approved as corrected., Jonathan seconded. Motion passed.

Meeting adjourned at 8:50