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NYRA Freedom Volume 6, Issue 2

Written by NYRA Mar 29, 2011

NYRA Freedom

ISSN 1933-5229

Scott Davidson and Adam King

Volume 6, Issue 2

February 5, 2006

Contents:

Introduction
NYRA Starts Book Club
Website Hacked by Outside Group
NYC Voting Age Bill
Annual Meeting Dates Announced
Staff Changes and Requests
NYRA Bergen County
NYRA Needing Office Space Soon
NYRA Tables NCOR
New Chapter Formation Utility
Upcoming Events
News from the Web
Conclusion

Introduction

By Scott Davidson

January was a good month for youth rights. The New York City voting age bill is moving ahead, much to our delight. NYRA saw a significant rise in donations after the holidays, and our Executive Director’s contract was extended. Losing our office was to be expected, but if we look hard enough we should be able to find another one fairly soon. Our chapters remain active, and people continue to found new ones.

As NYRA moves in to 2006, its members must continue to donate their time and their money. Send donations, write to your representatives, and post flyers. Every little bit helps.

NYRA Starts Book Club

By Scott Davidson

A great deal has been written about youth rights theory, and about educational theory that is pertinent to youth rights. Authors such as John Holt, Richard Farson, and Mike Males have written works of great importance that all youth rights activists should read. It is also essential that youth rights supporters understand civil rights movements that came before the youth rights movement, so that they might learn from their example.

Realizing this, NYRA has created a book club. Members will read books about youth rights, civil rights, and things of this nature. The books will be discussed over an email mailing list. This is a chance for NYRA members to read works that are very close to the heart of the organization, and to engage in thought provoking discussion with like-minded individuals.

The book club will soon be reading “How Children Learn” by John Holt. This is one of Holt’s earlier works, and it is among his most popular. It should be available at most public libraries. If you are interested in the book club, please email Alex Koroknay-Palicz.

Website Hacked by Outside Group

By Adam King

During the first part of January, the National Youth Rights Association incurred problems on the organization’s website. An outside person or group hacked into their website, causing temporary chaos.

On the morning of Friday, Jan. 6, 2006, members and visitors began to notice obvious errors on NYRA’s website at www.youthrights.org. NYRA’s executive director, Alex Koroknay-Palicz, recruited all of the organization’s technical staff to begin correcting the problem.

At the time of discovery, NYRA’s administrators contacted their web host, UN Site Solutions. To prevent the problem from expanding, the account was suspended for a short period.

According to Koroknay-Palicz, a security breach in the organization’s merchandise store allowed the hackers to access the site. The hackers were not able to view any private or sensitive information. The group added files with malicious content to every folder and sub-folder in every directory.

The organization’s forums and merchandise store were shut down awaiting upgrades to more secure versions. It is reported that there was little or no data loss.

By Saturday morning, most other parts of the website were operational.

NYRA’s technical staff worked all of Friday and Saturday morning to resolve the problems visitors experienced on the organization’s website.

At this time, the merchandise store is still shut down.

NYC Voting Age Bill

By Scott Davidson

This past spring, New York City Councilmember Gale Brewer introduced a bill to lower the voting age to sixteen for municipal elections. About a dozen NYRA members were present when the bill was introduced, and a few spoke at Brewer’s press conference.

At a recent meeting, NYRA’s New York City chapter agreed that the voting age bill was a priority, and that they should work on it. Brewer’s office stated that all bills died at the end of the term, and that it needed to be reintroduced as a technicality. Soon, Brewer will contact the chairman of the Government Operations Committee, Councilman Felder, and ask that her bill be granted a hearing.

There is some concern that there may be a conflict between the voting age bill and state law, which has its own regulations regarding the eligibility of voters. When NYRA members in another part of New York lobbied for a lower voting age, they were told that they must take the issue to the state legislature first. NYRA NYC also plans to lobby for legislation that will clearly articulate the right of a municipality in New York State to lower its voting age for municipal elections.

Things should begin to move ahead in late February and early March. If this bill passes committee, it will receive even more press. Should the bill pass through the city council and the Mayor’s office, it will partially enfranchise over a million young people and set an example for the rest of the nation.

Annual Meeting Dates Announced

By Adam King

NYRA’s annual meeting will be held in Berkeley, California on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2006. NYRA’s annual election will start on July 5, 2006, and it will end on the day of the annual meeting.

If anyone who is interested in attending the annual meeting needs a place to sleep at night, they should contact Pamela Tatz as early as possible.

To suggest ideas for workshops or anything related to the annual meeting, please visit this thread on the NYRA forums: http://www.youthrights.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6541

Staff Changes and Requests

By Adam King

NYRA is seeking to hire regional captains for chapter formation in the northeast, midwest and central regions. If you are interested, fill out an application here: http://www.youthrights.org/chapterformation.php or contact Adam King.

NYRA is requesting all members with website design and programming skills to apply for the development team. A lot of experience is not necessary, but it would be greatly appreciated. To apply, go here: http://www.youthrights.org/devapp.php.

There are no staff changes to report for this issue.

NYRA-Bergen County

By Scott Davidson

A new NYRA chapter has been formed in Bergen County, New Jersey. Based in the city of Hackensack, NYRA Bergen County lies in between the active chapter in Paterson, NJ and New York City. This location, coupled with a dedicated leadership, is conducive to action and success. NYRA expects great things from the Bergen County chapter in the future. If any member lives in this area and they would like to become involved, please email Nathalie Chica at sadesignsbyn@msn.com.

NYRA Needing Office Space Soon

By Adam King

Earlier in January, NYRA’s executive director, Alex Koroknay-Palicz, announced that NYRA would have to look for a new office in the Washington, D.C. area.

NYRA will soon have to vacate its office because Fairvote, the organization that is letting NYRA have office space free, needs the additional space.

If any members are aware of an office in the area available at no charge, please email NYRA.

NYRA members should also note that NYRA’s address has changed once again. Members should NOT send mail to the address in Takoma Park, MD, or to the non-existent PO Box address in Washington, D.C.

For the time being, ALL mail should be directed to 1703 Farragut Ave., Rockville, MD 20851.

NYRA Tables NCOR

By Scott Davidson

On February 4, Washington, DC members tabled at the National Conference on Organized Resistance held at American University in Washington, DC. Executive Director Alex Koroknay-Palicz was joined at the table by area NYRA members Katrina & Connor, together they raised close to forty dollars and recruited over thirty members. They met several NYRA supporters at the conference, and individuals from Misled Youth. Koroknay-Palicz also met several people from the Albany Free School, who expressed an interest in fighting an ageist policy at a local mall, and activists working to fight the President’s New Freedom Initiative.

New Chapter Formation Utility

By Adam King

Rich Jahn, NYRA’s member services director, has designed a useful application that will improve the chapter formation process.

If anyone would like to find out how many members and supporters of NYRA are in their proximity, just go here: http://www.youthrights.org/area_supporters.php

This utility will help the chapter formation process by encouraging new intents. If the new intents are aware of the number of supporters in their area, they may feel more compelled to form a chapter.

Upcoming Events

February 06, 2006, 8:00 p.m. EST – Youth Rights Chat in NYRA Chatroom
February 12, 2006, 8:30 p.m. EST – Online Chapters Meeting on AIM
February 19, 2006, 7:30 p.m. EST – Board Meeting on AIM
February 21, 2006, 8:00 p.m. EST – Youth Rights Chat in NYRA Chatroom

News From the Web

Indiana resident trying to bring back curfew for kids
http://www.youthrights.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6468

Illinois Legislator: Raise driving age
http://www.youthrights.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6465

Raise the Voting Age to 43
http://www.youthrights.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6440

Military drinking age battle in New Hampshire
http://www.youthrights.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6348

Tobacco-buying age will rise to 19 after Assembly approval of measure
http://www.youthrights.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6315

Underage drinking laws could be getting tougher
http://www.youthrights.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6315

Conclusion

By Adam King

The month of January seemed to start down a horrendous route with its website difficulties and later, the loss of its office. However, there will always be uncertain months with what seems to be horrible happenings. In the end, the amount of good things going on every day (the number of members and chapters gradually rising, the amount of youth rights activism, and other things) seem to outweigh the bad. While the calendar year is new, I urge everyone to do his or her part in the youth rights movement. Without everyone’s help, NYRA will not be doing as well as it could. I urge everyone to donate just a little bit of his or her time or money to help support the cause.

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