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Beloved Syracuse Beacon

"Until justice is blind to color, until education is unaware of race, until opportunity is unconcerned with the color of men's skins, emancipation will be a proclamation but not a fact."


Lyndon B. Johnson

ARCHIVE ENTRY: August 8, 2017

Action Alerts

This week in our work to transform Syracuse, eliminate poverty, and create equality:

Resolution Hearing to End Youth Solitary Confinement

August 09, 2017

When: Wednesday August 9th, 12:00 Noon Where: Onondaga County Clerk Building, 4th floor, room 407 Address: 401 Montgomery St, Syracuse, NY 13202

Onondaga County Legislator Chris Ryan has introduced a resolution within the Public Safety Committee. The resolution, which was written with input and collectively approved by the County Executives Office, The Onondaga County Sheriff's office, County Legislature attorneys, and other County Legislators, seeks the end of Youth Solitary Confinement in all Onondaga County facilities. It will be discussed during the committee meeting tomorrow, August 9th, at noon. Although Youth Solitary Confinement has been reformed at the Justice Center, this resolution is needed to end the practice county-wide. The ACTS Community, who stands against Youth Solitary Confinement, has been called to attend the meeting in solidarity. If the resolution is successfully adopted at this meeting, it may reach the floor of the County Legislature. The resolution arrives after a significant victory against Youth Solitary Confinement here in Syracuse. Other County Legislators who have supported this resolution include Linda Ervin, Monica Williams, and John Dougherty. 


Background Information:

“This is something to get involved with and bring an end to a practice that shouldn’t be happening.” ~Chris Ryan, Onondaga Legislator.

At the Onondaga County Justice Center in downtown Syracuse, children were subjected  to what the United Nations has called “cruel, inhuman, and degrading torture.” Between 2015 and 2016, the Justice Center forced at least 86 children into solitary confinement for 23 hours a day, and weeks or months at a time. Many of these youths were unconvicted and awaiting trial, and were jailed only because they could not afford bail. Some displayed symptoms of mental illnesses, and nearly all the youth systematically confined to isolation were also youth of color.


This abhorrent practice was addressed on June 26th, 2017, through a court settlement won by the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) and the Legal Services of CNY (LSCNY) against the Onondaga County Sheriff's office. The court has ordered the reform of Youth Solitary Confinement in Syracuse. ACTS believes this settlement has already set a precedent. LSCNY filed another lawsuit against a Broome County jail, where similar abuses have occurred. The resolution being considered at tomorrow's meeting wouldn't just end youth solitary confinement in Syracuse, but systematically outlaw the practice in all of Onondaga County. 

Present Tense: Selections from "The A-Bomb and Humanity"

August 09, 2017

Various Times and Locations: Click below to view schedule and learn more

"The A-Bomb and Humanity" is a set of 40 panels which depict in photographs and drawings the reality of human suffering created when the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were destroyed by atomic bombs at the end of World War II. In an effort to promote peace and move public opinion towards the elimination of nuclear weapons, a survivors’ (Hibakusha) organization produced the panels and Japanese consumer co-op unions have shared them throughout Japan and the world. We must work for a nuclear free future if we are to have a future at all.

Nagasaki Remembrance Day Procession through Syracuse

August 09, 2017

When: Wednesday, August 9, 11:30 am, Where: Hannover Square (start point), Address: Hannover Sq., Syracuse, NY 13202

On Nagasaki Day, members of the Syracuse community will be remembering and dedicating themselves to preventing nuclear terror in a solemn procession downtown. The procession will feature puppets and props symbolic of both the atrocities of nuclear war and our pledge to a nuclear free world. Gather in Hanover Square at 11:30am, the procession will begin at 12pm.  If your organization has a banner, you may display it in the procession to show your commitment, or carry the artistic and symbolic props we supply for the event.

Call-In Against Highly Criticised Federal Budget

August 08, 2017

Call Today, Or As Soon As Possible

The CNY Solidarity Coalition, an ally in the fight for social justice, has a call to action for the Syracuse Community: "The recently released House Republican budget resolution for the 2018 Fiscal Year contains the same draconian provisions that the White House’s budget proposal was so widely criticized for a couple months ago: a $1.5 trillion cut to Medicaid, a $487 billion cut to Medicare, and changes to Social Security that would alter the accessibility of benefits (such as raising the retirement age). Like the Trump budget proposal, the House budget resolution also paves the way for large tax cuts for the wealthy, and it increases military spending by roughly $929 billion over the next decade. Please call Rep. Katko today and urge him to speak out against this budget plan. Katko’s numbers are 315-423-5657 (Syracuse), 315-253-4068 (Auburn), or 202-225-3701 (DC)." 

Coordinated Care Services, Inc. Conducts Community Focus Groups

August 08, 2017

Call Willie T. Elliot for more information (read below)

"New York State Office of Children and Family Services and the Bureau of Youth Development are working to help counties develop a Results Based Accountability (RBA) framework to measure and track performance of programs and services. OCFS is providing our department with resources to develop and implement our own RBA framework – Achieving Results for Children & Families." ~Willie T. Elliot of Coordinated Care Services, Inc.  


Now they need your help. They will be conducting focus groups throughout the community in order to seek input on various indicators of community health; from combating poverty, to adequacy of health and academic services. Some examples of questions are, "What is the story behind the data? What are the root causes and contributing factors of the issues our children and families face?  Who has a role to play in addressing the issues? What works? What is missing? What are some new ideas/strategies that could be implemented?"


If you are interested in the community focus groups, email Willie T. Elliotat or call/text (315)435-2884 ext. 7146. 

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Weekly Community Events

If you are an ACTS Member Organization and have an upcoming social justice event please email Ryan Ivers at

Newsletter Archives

Weekly Stories

Together we came closer to our goals. Let's reflect on the vital work we have done:

Upstate County Jails Are Challenged for Sending Juveniles to Solitary

Written by the New York Times

The New York Times has picked up a story championed by the ACTS Community for two years.


As early as October 2015, youth at the downtown Justice Center were thrown in solitary confinement for weeks at a time. Many of the youth were unconvicted. Some had symptoms of mental illnesses, such as psychosis or depression.


That all changed when the New York Civil Liberties Union and Legal Services of Central New York secured a settlement with the Onondaga County Sheriff's Office. Read more by clicking the button below:

ACTS Youth Council Brings Multiculturalism to School Lunches

The ACTS Youth Council presented their new project proposal to the Syracuse City School Board earlier this week. In response to their peer's concerns about school-food variety and nutrition, the Youth Council's project aims to reform the status-quo of midday meals. After surveying 200 students from four district high schools, the Youth Council found that 93.9% of students believed the menu needed change. Apparently, the Syracuse School Board could not agree more. The Board has decided to approve the project for this fall. wrote an article about the presentation and its successful reception. To read the article, click below: 

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