Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Efrén Participates in First International Radio Interview with Canadian Latino Radio Station

Yesterday, Efrén participated in his first international radio interview which will be broadcasted this Saturday at 10:00 PM EST in English on the show Barrio Nuevo of Radio Voces Latinas 1610 AM in Toronto, Canada. The interview was conducted by radio host Pablo Vivanco.

Radio Voces Latinas is the first community radio station in Canada devoted to the Spanish speaking community and is part of San Lorenzo Latin American Community Centre. According to the San Lorenzo Latin American Community Centre web site the Centre:

"[I]s totally self-sustaining, [and] was established to provide a space for the Latin American immigrant and for the preservation of the Latin American culture in Canada. With close to 300 active and 500 occasional members, which include children, youth, adults and seniors, we strive to preserve, promote and share the rich Latin American culture and traditions." (http://www.sanlorenzo.ca/english/Community_Centre/Our_Beginning.html)

The interview lasted a half-hour and covered a broad range of issues. In addition to discussing Efren's wrongful conviction they discussed struggle, international issues, causes that Efrén supports, the support he has received globally, etc.

A transcript of the interview will be made available for circulation and also featured in a Toronto-based Latino newspaper. Pablo invited Efrén to return to the show to provide updates about his case and to be interviewed on another Toronto-based Latino radio station as well to discuss other issues related to the Latino community.

Efrén was pleased with the interview. Last night he said:
"It has been the grassroots community that has been the driving force behind giving visibility to our campaign and helping us realize its successes and victories. The grassroots community has helped us educate people about my struggle by speaking to fellow citizens in homes, churches, libraries, colleges, and community centers, displaying flyers, handouts and information about my case, wearing the Free Efrén T-shirt, gathering postcards, letters, and petition signatures of support, etc. For me, it was a proud moment to have a Latino grassroots community radio station also help put our campaign on the world stage."

To listen to Efrén's interview on Saturday, August 23, 2008 at 10:00 PM EST please click on the following link: http://easylink.playstream.com/winlive/voces_latinas2.wvx.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Peace Education Center (PEC) Features Efrén's Case in Summer 2008 Newsletter

Click here to download the Peace Education Center (PEC) Summer 2008 edition of the Peace Notes newsletter which features information about Efrén's case on pages 2, 4, and 5. The print version of Peace Notes is being mailed to 600 people.

Included in each mailer is a Free Efrén postcard that recipients can sign and mail to the Governor asking her to grant Efrén's commutation request. We are grateful to the PEC, its Board of Directors, and members for supporting our efforts to obtain justice for Efrén and restore his much deserved freedom.

You are encouraged to also visit the PEC web site to learn more about their organization and the courageous work they are doing to help combat social injustice and help create a better world. Their web site is www.peaceedcenter.org. Efrén strongly supports their efforts.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Detroit TIME Committee Members Attend Two Events Last Week to Generate Support for Efrén

We received an e-mail from a member of the Detroit TIME Committee on Saturday, August 2, 2008, and are sharing its content with the rest of our friends as well upon Efrén's request. The following is the text from that message:
We just returned from an excellent presentation by the ACLU of Macomb County. It was by ACLU attorney Mark Fancher on the incredible degree to which school children (starting in first grade) are being criminalized in many ways.

The point of this message though is to encourage everyone to use the [Free Efrén] T-shirts as a way of getting the message out. Several of us were at the Wednesday presentation by Bill Wylie Kellermann's daughter Lydia and other amazing youth from Detroit summer.

The shirts really help to open the opportunity to tell people about Efrén and to get them to the commutation [campaign] blog. It might be good to use some of the postcards or just print out the web link on strips of paper. This afternoon also, we found that we got a lot of people interested. Carmen was able to give out around 10 postcards and the web link along with some other basic information based on the 10 talking points from the Efrén web page.

People are much more likely to follow up if there is a brief personal exchange and then they are left free to act on their own. On Friday Ruby was wearing her T-shirt at a rally to call for no war on Iran and this too was very effective. It seems that the shirts are most useful in a setting likely to have people open to hearing about injustice and how to resist it. For a lot of us though this is probably a large number of places we go.

To be most effective you've got to have some info along with you to distribute. It seems that a brief face-to-face background explanation and a request that people check out the information for themselves — and expressing belief that they too will want to sign the petition and otherwise get involved — is a good tactic. Of course, each of us will have a style and approach which works well for you.

P.S. The shirts are very comfortable in hot weather too!!

Mike Kelly
Free Efrén Paredes, Jr. Poster and T-Shirt Slide Show

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