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Ending Violence Together in Bangor, ME

Posted by Erin Bechtol

by Mary Ellen Quinn  // Part of the Campaign Nonviolence Week of Actions 

The 5th Annual End Violence Together Rally & March was held in Bangor at West Market Square on Saturday, September 15th from 1 – 4 pm. The EVT action was initiated by the Peace and Justice Center of Eastern Maine and Pax Christi Maine, the Catholic Peace & Justice movement. Forty local organizations and faith communities co-sponsored the event as part of national Campaign Nonviolence Week Sept. 15-23, 2018.

About 100 people participated throughout the afternoon.There was an opening ceremony, music, speakers, interactive art activities and informational tables followed by a march through the downtown area and a closing ceremony.

EVT was emceed by Mary Ellen Quinn, Co-Coordinator Pax Christi Maine. Music was provided by Tom White-Hassler and Matt Sciacca of the Peace & Justice Center. Opening and closing ceremonies were led by Jason K. Brown, a member of the Penobscot Nation.

Art activities included an amazing mural designed by Andrea Simoneau and Andrew Williams of the Peace & Justice Center and was completed as part of the afternoon activities. There was also a beautiful art poster designed by Jamie Pratt, a Univ. of Maine senior studying International Affairs and Peace & Reconciliation. The poster was part of a community education effort with displays at downtown Bangor businesses. Both art projects depicted “The Roots and Fruits of Nonviolent Living” In addition, Penobscot Job Corps students engaged EVT participants to add their expressions of peace & nonviolence to an interactive graffiti board.

EVT speakers included Sherri Mitchell, Indigenous Rights Attorney/activist/author; Hugh Curran, Univ. of Maine professor of Peace & Reconciliation Studies; Amy Hughes Co-Coordinator at Peace & Justice Center and Hannah Ruhlin,LGBTQ Organizer for Health Equity Alliance. In addition, we heard from Paige Ravenscraft & Wells Mundell-Wood, both Students for Gender Equality at Bangor High School who spoke eloquently about the personal and societal impact of violence in the form of homophobia, bigotry and sexism especially on our youth. The EVT action included a march throughout downtown Bangor.
Karen Marysdaughter, Co-Coordinator at Peace and Justice Center organized the peacekeepers. Photo credits go to Jamie Pratt & Christina Diebold. Excellent media coverage came from local TV, radio, newspapers. Linda Sisson was our media contact.

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