On Tuesday, May 31, 2016, at the third and final session of the Brookline, MA, Annual Town Meeting a resolution asking for the end of the US embargo against Cuba was adopted on the unanimous recommendation of the Board of Selectmen and a concurring Advisory Committee who voted an overwhelming 95% in favor. “The Brookline Town Meeting calls for an immediate end to the United States’ economic, commercial and financial embargo against Cuba; and strongly encourages Representative Joseph P. Kennedy III to support measures that achieves these goals.”
This is the first resolution of its kind adopted on the East Coast. The campaign initiated on the West Cost by the International Committee for Peace, Justice and Dignity, along with local activists, recently achieved the passage of three similar resolutions in the San Francisco Bay Area. All four resolutions represent the sentiment of public opinion in the United States that calls for a change of U.S. policy towards Cuba.
Brookline, Massachusetts, is an independent town of almost 60,000, surrounded on three sides by Boston and to the west by the city of Newton, governed by an elected town meeting and a five-person Board of Selectmen, and is known for its progressive schools, culture, and character.
Peter Miller, the primary citizen petitioner, recently returned from a community technology delegation trip to Cuba and published a report about it in the Brookline TAB as part of the effort. He worked with the support and encouragement of local peace and justice activists and organizations like Brookline PAX as well as the Boston based July 26 Coalition, a group that works in solidarity with Cuba and is an affiliate of the National Network on Cuba (NNOC).
According to Peter, “It was a remarkable campaign and I learned much from it. As the first local campaign on the East Coast that I am aware of, it joins the local grassroots call to end the embargo passed by Richmond, Berkeley, and Oakland in California and can hopefully contribute to this growing movement that will help finally put an end to this bad policy once and for all. It can simultaneously be non-partisan and broad-based, and speaks to everyone. It brings solidarity activists and sympathizers out into the general community in constructive and informative ways and helps educate whole communities and especially those with political interests.”