Thanksgiving Washington Report, November 27, 2014


Good morning, and Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you are cozy in heart, hearth, and home, surrounded by loved ones or happily alone, enjoying the change in weather and delicious comfort food. As you make your final preparations for this special day, take a moment for personal reflection and express gratitude for life, family, friends, and everyday blessings.

Let’s not forget our neighbors who may not have the resources for a worry-free holiday season. This is a perfect time of year to lend assistance to community organizations that provide aid to our less fortunate and disadvantaged neighbors. Here are a few organizations that would be appreciative of your support.

Maryland Food Bank

Bea Gaddy Family Center

Catholic Charities of Maryland

Govans Ecumenical Development Corporation (GEDCO )

Community Initiatives and Developments

MTA Kirk Division Modernization Community Meeting

The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) cordially invites you to a community meeting to learn more about the temporary Kirk Division Bus Relocation Facility. The MTA plans to use the Seawall Development (formerly Anderson Automotive) site at 25th Street in Remington as a temporary bus storage facility during Phase II of the Kirk Division Modernization Project.

The meeting is scheduled for Monday December 1, 2014, at 6:00 p.m. at the Miller’s Court building, 2601 North Howard Street.  Please use the commercial entrance off Howard Street for access.

The MTA welcomes your input.  For more information on the Kirk Division modernization and other MTA projects, please visit

Baltimore City House Delegation “Eat, Drink, & Fight Hunger”

The Baltimore City House Delegation of the Maryland General Assembly would like to personally invite you to their second annual “Eat, Drink, & Fight Hunger” on Thursday December 4, 2014 at the Radisson Cross Keys, from 5:30pm to 8:30 pm.

The Baltimore City House Delegation of the Maryland General Assembly would like to personally invite you to their second annual “Eat, Drink, & Fight Hunger” on Thursday December 4, 2014 at the Radisson Cross Keys, from 5:30pm to 8:30 pm.

The purpose of the event is to collect canned goods for the Maryland Food Bank and to allow elected officials and constituents to fellowship in holiday festivities.

Food and drinks are complimentary with an entrance fee of 2 canned goods per person, or a monetary donation.

Way2GoMaryland: How to Prepare and Pay for College

The University System of Maryland (USM) is hosting a free event for 6th– through 10th-grade students and their parents/guardians to learn how to prepare for and pay for college. Admissions and financial aid representatives from University System of Maryland (USM) Institutions, Baltimore City Community College, and the Community College of Baltimore County will be available to answer questions. Representatives from the College Savings Plans of Maryland will tell you about steps you can take now to save for college, and the College Bound Foundation will also be onsite to discuss the human and financial resources they have available to help high school students go to college.

The event is Saturday, December 6, 2014 from 10am-1pm at Coppin State University Physical Education Complex, 2500 West North Avenue (Gwynns Falls Parkway Entrance), Baltimore, MD 21216. Space for this event is limited, so register on or before Tuesday, December 2, 2014.

For more information, please visit


Mary’s Meetings

Welfare Advocates Conference: Flip the Script

I had the pleasure of being a panelist for Welfare Advocates Conference: Flip the Script. Welfare Advocates is a statewide coalition of community-based organizations working to encourage an adequate safety net and public policies to support families. The conference addressed ending poverty and changing the public narrative regarding social services benefits for families.

Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland Weekend Conference

The Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland held its 2014 Weekend Conference Thursday, November 13, 2014 through Saturday, November 15, 2014. The conference included workshops, Business over Breakfast, and an Annual Gala. I am honored to serve as parliamentarian of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland, and I look forward to working with new members of the Caucus and to a successful upcoming 2015 legislative session.

Baltimore City Delegation Education Sub Committee

The Baltimore City House Delegation of the Maryland General Assembly hosted an Education Sub Committee meeting at the University of Baltimore on the status of Baltimore City Public Schools. Some of the topics discussed were school closings, the election of school commission members, and Phase II of Baltimore City school construction. Many community members were in attendance as well as representatives of the Baltimore City Board of School Commissioners; Board Chair, Shanaysha Sauls; Dr. Greg Thornton, Baltimore City School CEO; and Marietta English, Baltimore Teachers Union President.

Equality Maryland’s Signature Brunch

On Sunday, November 16, 2014 I attended Equality Maryland’s Annual Signature Brunch to celebrate the progress Maryland is making toward equality for all its citizens. Equality Maryland lobbies across the state to create equal protection under the law for LGBT Marylanders and their families. This year the organization honored the legacy of Governor Martin O’Malley. The event was a huge success and I am happy to have been present.

For more information about Equality Maryland, please visit



This year, we’ve seen story after story emerged in the media of individuals being injured or struck down in violent confrontations with law enforcement. These events raised issues of the use of excessive force, racial inequality, and gun violence, leading citizens around the country to question the social, economic, and historical circumstances that underlay them. Undoubtedly, many of you have been watching the protests as they have unfolded in Ferguson, Missouri and around the country. Although our nation has contended with a history of inequality and had moments of considerable strife as people press for change and justice, we are held by the glue of American democracy that permits us to make change peacefully. As adults, we have seen protests and movements and sometimes even violence in the name of change, but we are secure in the knowledge that eventually, we will return to normalcy as issues are settled in courtrooms, at the ballot box, or over the water cooler. Our children and teenagers, however, may be angry, frightened, or confused about the ebb and flow of our political process. If you and your children need help discussing the events in Ferguson and racial issues in America, please consider using some of these resources to aid your dialogue. Many of these resources are tailored to teachers, but parents can adapt the discussions for their use. I hope you find them helpful in these difficult times.

How can parents talk to kids about Ferguson?

Parents and kids sort through Ferguson grand jury decision together

Talking About Racism With White Kids

Helping Students Make Sense Of A Young Black Man’s Death in Missouri

Frontline: Divided

How Ferguson became Ferguson: Urgent Doc Spanish Lake Tracks a St. Louis Suburb’s Shift from White to Black

Ferguson Killing Inspires Young Black Activists

What White Children Need to Know About Race

Reading Ferguson: books on race, police, protest and U.S. history

10 Ways to Talk to Students About Sensitive Issues in the News


Are You Ready For Winter?

Maryland is expected to receive considerable snowfall and freezing temperatures this week and throughout this winter season. As you prepare for these periods of severe cold weather, please utilize these tools and resources that will aid you in weathering the storms. Following are links to agencies with information and tips on how to prepare for winter storms and bitter wintry weather.

Community and Personal Preparedness:

Pet Preparedness:

Driving Tips in Extreme Cold Weather:


Keeping in Touch

I will continue to do my best to provide detailed updates and alerts via email and at local community associations or other meetings, and you can follow my daily activities and breaking news by liking my Facebook fan page or via As always, I encourage you to contact me with the issues that matter to you at or call the district office at (410) 235-2707. I look forward to hearing from you.


In partnership,

Delegate Mary Washington