America’s Slide Towards Genocide: A Place of Refuge

I am declaring my home a refuge should the hate-mongers and bigots in this country threaten my Muslim friends and neighbors.

The day after September 11th 2001, I went over to a Mosque on the northwest side of Chicago and met with an Imam and several other members of the Mosque. After witnessing the genocide in Bosnia and Rwanda, and learning how a society descends into acts of genocide I was concerned for my Muslim friends and neighbors. To them, for fear of what this country might do to a minority, I offered my home as a sanctuary, vowing to give my life to protect and defend my neighbors. Never again and not in my name meant, and still means something to me.

I was to learn that an event like September 11th, in a nation without any real understanding of Islam would not undertake a serious pogrom. It was bittersweet when only a hand full of incidents occurred. Most people ignored the chicken-little hate-mongering against Muslims by FOX news and the Rightwing media. There were no internment camps during the criminal war in Iraq for Muslims as this country employed for Japanese citizens and immigrants during the Second World War. By the way, ask yourself why there were no such camps for white German Americans? But the media-fed bigotry descends upon the soul like a fog, eventually settling deep.

Genocide is a process. It needs a fertile soil; and base to grow from. That soil has been cultivated since September 11th. The idea of radical and extremist Islam has been constructed, feeding a self-fulfilling prophecy in ISIS, as this country has created an enemy as a means of legitimacy and control. Hard to believe? You now routinely surrender your constitutional rights for the illusion of protection and security. You accept banality and snarkiness as journalism. The government has more control in your lives thanks to the patriot act and the war on terror. It scrutinizes your emails and conversations and fondles you at airports. As long as your favorite shows are on cable TV and the fast food place on the corner remains open and you can walk into Target with a gun, freedom prevails!

Radical Islam must exist for the war profiteers and their media salespersons. Obama says we could be at war with ISIS for years to come, at a million dollars a cruise missile, or $300 thousand for a laser guided bomb; But the video is awesome! The oligarchs and their subordinates in government, including Obama and Tea party and Republican and Libertarian cohorts as well, amass great fortunes over gas and oil. Western companies do business with ISIS-without a single head being cut off. Western nations purchase oil from ISIS. ISIS, like America is at war with the poor and the weak. See a pattern yet?

But genocide is more a social affliction than a political one. It runs away with a society properly primed by the politic and its media. So the media today is filled with plots against New York, a workplace beheading by a deranged individual in Oklahoma and ISIS threatening to attack the American mainland. we have been fed the crime in the beheadings of Americans in stylish videos. next comes the investment of threatened terror at home. The third component will be an American shot down over ISIS territory. The hysteria of the media will increase to a din. They are on the verge. I saw it in ex-Yugoslavia, and I still have copies of the lists and reasons the Hutus in Rwanda read over the radio calling Tutsis cockroaches and detailing why they should be killed.

You think America is immune? We are more susceptible than any other culture on the planet, primarily because we believe we are better. And ISIS would lave for us to do something rash and terrible to our Muslim friends and neighbors to legitimize their brand and to solidify their power. The equation is simple if you are open to it.

That’s why as an American of conscience, who sees the world and people clearly for who and what they are, I am designating my home a sanctuary should this country transpire to some thing inhuman against Muslim friends and neighbors. God forbid that should happen, but if it does anyone threatening or violating this household and all who take refuge here would wish that ISIS was your only enemy.

CAM00236WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. He has been called the most dangerous voice on the Left. He is currently working on a new book “Shoot Down: An unflinching look at the events leading up to the shooting down of Malaysia Air Flight 17.” His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. He partners in a weekly radio show dedicated to issues, society and politics with cohost, activist and artist Brian Murray For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit

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The Case Against an Oil-based Economy

Sean Hannity in his propaganda screed the other day was unequivocal. He has, in the past few months been involved in “getting America back to work,” on his radio show and FOX News network. In reality it has been a commercial for tar sands and fracking. Revolution and Beer in a series of shows with environmental activist Dr Lora Chamberlain, and in an earlier blog showed that the promise of high paying jobs in North Dakota’s Bakken Oil fields was a dangerous illusion.

We brought to you the voices of people currently working there on the lack of housing, and what was available was going for confiscatory prices. Hannity’s Shangri-oil in North Dakota had made life dangerous for women, bred crime, caused significant pollution and left many stranded and destitute in the winter-harsh climes of the North West. Still Hannity and others claimed there was a near endless supply of jobs in excess of $100 thousand per year salaries. On his show this week, despite his industry guests saying that most jobs started at $30-40,000, he kept quoting jobs at $90,000 or more, in a pitch that would make a school-yard crack dealer blush. Then he said something even more obscene, but true: That the US is an oil-driven economy.

I couldn’t argue, because, sadly it is true, and that is not a good thing. In fact for our economy, for stability and for our future it is more than just potentially disastrous, it is disaster in which the clock is already ticking. The economics are simple, and there are glaring and recent examples that prove that eventuality.

Recently the Dutch Safety Board released preliminary findings on the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight 17 over Ukraine in July. The report fell far short, and left more questions than answers. It also did not provide a backdrop to the disaster and the significant geopolitical and economic issues that contributed to the shooting down of a commercial airliner and the loss of all 298 on board. But those factors are significant and involve a superpower land grab for oil and gas concerns in eastern Ukraine-site of the bitterest fighting- and the Crimea. In a previous piece Revolution and Beer detailed much of that oil and gas rush, and named names. See “Obama’s missteps as tension mounts between NATO and Moscow. An excerpt from the upcoming book, “A TRAGIC FATE: Politics, Oil, the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17and the Looming Threats to Civil Aviation” by Revolution and Beer’s WC Turck.”

The Russian economy is almost solely based on oil and gas, by most estimates around 70%, which is an astounding and frightening number. Their budget depends on a barrel price of around $114. The current price, as of this writing for a barrel of Brent Crude is about $97/barrel. A tactic of the Obama administration’s sanctions against Russia- targeting primarily oil and gas concerns, has been to force down the cost of oil in order to strangle the Russian economy. Putin has replied by stoking military action as the one card he has to play in order to shock the market, maintain a modicum of insecurity and keep the prices as high as possible. In the short term the big oil and gas concerns in the West will suffer, but in the long term they will reap untold rewards. Russian firms and banks, and the whole of the Russian economy is on a long slow slide to insolvency because of the state of its infrastructure, a lack of technical capability and reliance on oil and gas.

But to a lesser extent the US economy is far too dependent on oil and gas as well. That dependency, as reserves and supplies mature, peak and decline will drag the US economy down as well. It also leaves us vulnerable to manipulation from foreign threats. No rational industry analyst believes that the US could ever supply its entire domestic and oil needs at current usage. Everyone agrees that oil and gas are finite resources that eventually will run out, or at the very least become cost prohibitive as research and extraction costs far outpace profits. It is also true that, at current technology, green energy alone could not support the US energy and transportation needs fully. Of course the argument to that is that in 1987 current technology could not support modern cellphone technology.

Green tech, most especially electric vehicles, and solar and wind power could currently offset a significant portion of the country’s needs at current technology. The effort must be, for all of those who believe that the country faces significant threats from abroad, must acknowledge that a preeminent reliance on oil is a virtual gun to the head of the nation. Reliance on renewable sources of energy, and in research to expand the availability and reliability of renewable is the only thing that will ultimately protect us from being blackmailed, or having our economy collapsed. The benefits resonate far beyond the growing threats to the nation, and include a boom in green jobs and a benefit to our environment. One is a short-sighted view by those simply interested in profits and those looking for long term viable solutions.

It is all rather like the squirrel in autumn who collects nuts without building an adequate nest through the winter, and the squirrel who collects enough nuts while also building an adequate nest that will protect it and its offspring from a harsh winter. It is really a rather simple lesson

CAM00236WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. He has been called the most dangerous voice on the Left. He is currently working on a new book “Shoot Down: An unflinching look at the events leading up to the shooting down of Malaysia Air Flight 17.” His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. He partners in a weekly radio show dedicated to issues, society and politics with cohost, activist and artist Brian Murray For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit

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CALL NOW to Stop the Bombing

As you know, last night the U.S. bombed Syria in what is likely to become another long war in the Middle East. Last year, we forced the Obama administration to rightfully ask Congress for authorization to bomb Syria. That authorization never came because of staunch public and congressional opposition. Now there is a new target and mission. Yet, there are three reasons to pause and oppose these bombings.

First, it is unclear whether these bombings are legal under international law. Second, the Obama Administration claims it has Constitutional authorization from the 2001 congressional vote after 9/11, but not all in Congress agree. And lastly, expert upon expert say that military escalation will fail to solve these problems in the long run (even the CIA is skeptical).

Please take a few moments and call your Representative and both Senators at (202) 224-3121 and say:

“I am a constituent and I want Congress to fully debate a new authorization (AUMF) that deals with Syria, Iraq and ISIS. And when the vote comes, I want you to vote no.”

Under Article 51 of the UN Charter, a country under attack has the right of self-defense, but that only applies to actual or imminent armed attacks, not potential or possible attacks. The U.S. claims it was thwarting terrorists from the Khorasan Group from a plot on America. Yet we don’t know the details of this so-called imminent attack. What was the weapon? When were they going to use it, and where?

Pick up the phone and call your Representative and both Senators at (202) 224-3121 and use the script above.

Congress has not voted on a war authorization regarding terrorism since 2001. Things have changed and many members in Congress agree it is time to have a full and fair debate and for Congress to take back its Constitutional authority to declare war. This debate and vote should happen ASAP.

Your calls to your Representative and both Senators at (202) 224-3121 can make a difference. Use the script above.

President Obama is right when he says that there is no military solution to ISIS. Yet it seems that most of the U.S. energy is directed towards a failed military strategy. Already there are reports of innocent women and children being killed in the U.S. attack last night. We know this tends to create more enmity toward our country. Regional diplomacy that includes the UN and efforts to end the Syrian civil war, cutting off ISIS’s oil revenues and access to weapons, and humanitarian aid to refugees in Iraq and Syria will be far more effective in dealing with ISIS and other terrorists than military escalation.

Make three calls to your Representative and both Senators at (202) 224-3121. Use the script above.

Finally, we need to take a step back and get at the root of terrorism by supporting tolerance, education, poverty alleviation and justice. Additionally, limiting the amount of lethal weapons that end up being used by the wrong people will remove some of the fuel from the terrorist fire.

Humbly for Peace,

Kevin Martin
Executive Director
Peace Action

P.S. – Make your voice heard to your Representative and both Senators at (202) 224-3121 and tell them:

“I am a constituent and I want Congress to fully debate a new authorization (AUMF) that deals with Syria, Iraq and ISIS. And when the vote comes, I want you to vote no.”

Take Action:

Call Your Rep Now to Stop the Bombing (202) 224-3121


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Washing Rahm’s Windows, Calling for Corporate Tax Transparency

While corporations are “cleaning up” with secret tax-breaks, we are paying the price for corporate tax dodging in the form of increased taxes and fees, cuts to city services, school closures and crumbling infrastructure.


The Chicago Corporate Responsibility and Tax Disclosure Act would require corporations that get subsidies from or do business with the city to disclose how much they pay in state corporate income tax and what special tax breaks they use to reduce their payments.

But Mayor Emanuel has been dragging his feet in offering his support for corporate tax transparency. So we’re going to ask Rahm what he’s hiding and help bring a little transparency to his office by washing the glass doors to his office.

Washing Rahm’s Windows, Calling for Corporate Tax Transparency

10 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. on Thursday, September 25

Chicago Temple, 77 W. Washington Ave., 2nd Floor

We’ll meet at the Chicago Temple and march over to Emanuel’s office as a group.

Last year, the City of Chicago’s share of Illinois’ corporate income tax revenue was $390 million. Yet fully two-thirds of corporations doing business in Illinois pay NO state corporate income tax. Chicago is likely losing tens of millions of dollars in per year in revenue to corporate tax dodging at the state level.

When corporations profit from special tax breaks, the city must raise taxes and fees on regular citizens and cut important services. Here are a few examples:
•Red light cameras cost Chicagoans more than $71 million per year (and almost $500 million since 2007)
•Pothole and street repair from the 2013-2014 winter could cost as much as $200 million (as estimated by Mayor Emanuel)
•Chicago cut $6.7 million per year from Chicago Public Library’s budget in 2012
•Chicago closed six mental health clinics with the hope of saving $2.2 million per year in 2012

What good things would YOU like Chicago to do with tens of millions of dollars in extra revenue? The first step in restoring this revenue is to know where its going instead, so I hope to see you on Thursday!


David Hatch, Executive Director

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Developer Mark Fishman is trying to purchase and flip the Milshire before the SRO ordinance takes effect, and without meeting with or explaining his plans to the community. We want to preserve this important source of affordable housing, and we can!

WHAT: Rally to Rehab the Milshire Hotel as Affordable Housing

WHEN: Tuesday, September 23rd, 6:00p.m.

WHERE: Meet in Logan Square at ‘The Eagle’ (Milwaukee Avenue and Logan Boulevard)

Reply to this email with questions or call Philip at 773-292-4980 ext 246

Volunteer, donate, connect on Twitter and Facebook

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Occupy Chicago Holds Overnight Protest at Jackson & LaSalle on Movement’s Third Anniversary

6am, Tuesday 9/23 – 9am, Wednesday 9/24

All Day/All Night Protest at Jackson & LaSalle
Demonstrators return to the heart of the financial district to call out continued inequality, corporate domination, political corruption, and U.S. warmongering.

CHICAGO 9/22 — Organizers who worked with Occupy Chicago from the day the movement began in the city — September 23, 2011 — say they are holding an all day, all night protest at Jackson & LaSalle, the home of the Occupy movement in Chicago in the heart of the city’s financial district.

Members of some of the city’s grassroots organizations are expected to join them, including organizers from the Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign and the Revolutionary Poets Brigade.

“The issues that brought thousands to the streets in 2011 are still critical – the housing crisis, massive inequality, crushing debt, political corruption and never-ending war,” says Babur Balos, who organized with Occupy Chicago and is now an organizer with Chicago Light Brigade. “We are here today to draw attention to groups in Chicago fighting for a brighter future, including the Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign and the Revolutionary Poets Brigade.”

During the demonstration, donations of winter coats and school supplies will be collected for those in need.

The local Occupy movement was a training ground for young organizers who now work with grassroots groups and unions across the city. National successes include Bank Transfer Day in November of 2011, when over $50 million was moved out of big banks, and Strike Debt, which has cancelled $14.7 million in medical debt and nearly $4 million in student loans.

Contact: Megan Groves, 310-625-5726,
Babur Balos, 267-246-2173,

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Love to the IVAW: Honoring a Fallen Warrior

I would like us all to take a moment to honor IVAW member Jacob David George who’s untimely passing has left a community with an empty seat at the table. This remembrance was provided by our fried Robert:

“From Arkansas, Jacob was an Afghanistan Veteran, musician, and good friend of many of
the members of the IVAW Chicago chapter. Jacob utilized art and music and traveled the country, even returning to Afghanistan to advance his message of peace.  Jacob returned his medals with his IVAW brothers and sisters during the NATO summit and was a key in IVAW’s collaboration with the group Afghans for Peace.”

A gathering to celebrate and remember Jacob’s life was held for Jacob this past Friday, September 19th, on west Division street here in Chicago.

We at Revolution and Beer extend our hearts and thoughts to his family and friends. We greatly respect the work that the IVAW does, and their willingness to come on our show and talk about their struggles and triumphs.

Thanks to Robert Clack for reaching out to let us know.

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Rogers Park Residents Call on Bank to Donate ‘Community House’ to Nonprofit Land Trust

CHICAGO, IL: The Rogers Park community is rallying to stop the eviction of the Dolores-Calvillo family and preserve what has become known as the neighborhood’s “community house.” On Thursday, September 18 at 9 a.m., members of several neighborhood and housing-rights organizations will hold a press conference in front of the Daley Center, where the family is scheduled to attend eviction court.

The Dolores-Calvillo family has resided in their home at 7245 N Ridge for two years. During that time, Maria Dolores-Calvillo and her brother Gerardo Calvillo, who run a neighborhood daycare, have also turned the home into a focal point of community life, hosting a community garden, Spanish and English-language film screenings, clothing donation-drives, and even health fairs where medical practitioners volunteer to provide a day of free consultations for the uninsured.

“We saw that there was a need in this neighborhood for a community center, for a space for youth and other residents to gather and share support and resources,” says Calvillo. “The importance of community was instilled in me at an early age by my mother. Basically everything that I do is to honor her and her tireless devotion to helping others.”

The family hopes to halt their eviction, which could proceed this fall, and also to gain a negotiation with CitiBank, which currently owns the home following a foreclosure. The family is seeking a novel resolution: donation of the home to a community land trust, which housing advocates say is a promising strategy for reviving neighborhoods and preserving affordable housing.

Casas del Pueblo, a 501(c)3 land trust in Albany Park, is willing to receive the title of the home and is working with the family to negotiate donation. Housing activists argue that this could be a win for the bank as well: A recent report by Casas del Pueblo found that in one-third to one-half of foreclosure cases in low-income neighborhoods, banks could have improved their bottom line by donating homes to community groups and taking tax write-offs instead of proceeding with costly foreclosures or paying to maintain vacant homes.

Kate Morgan-Olsen, a Rogers Park resident and volunteer with Communities United Against Foreclosure and Eviction, is among those who will attend court to support the family on Thursday. “We are asking for the right to maintain this house as the loving and beautiful community space that it is,” she says.
Press Contacts:

Gerardo Calvillo, resident, 979-575-6640

Antonio Gutierrez, Casas del Pueblo, 773-803-0810

Kate Morgan-Olsen, Communities United Against Foreclosure and Eviction, 773-412-9148

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Faith Leaders Hold Prayers for Trauma Center at Univ of Chicago Hospital – Ask U of C Hospital President O’Keefe for Update on Trauma Talks

What: Interfaith Group Holds Rally, Song and Prayer for a South Side Trauma Center

Where/When: Thursday, September 18, 4:00pm; 58th St. and South Maryland Ave.

Who: Faith leaders, choirs, and trauma center activists including mothers of victims

Visual: Choirs, Pastors, Rabbis, and Community Singing and Rallying for trauma center

Chicago, IL – Faith leaders pushing for a South Side trauma center will hold a rally, songs and prayers on Thursday, September 18 at 4:00pm at 58th St. and Maryland Ave. The group includes Pastors, Chicago-area Jewish clergy, and Choirs from Trinity United Church of Christ and St. Sabina. The Interfaith group is coming together after University of Chicago Hospital President Sharon O’Keefe recently announced that she is talks with other hospitals about how to expand access to trauma care on the South Side.

President O’Keefe’s announcement that she is in talks about a trauma center were welcomed by faith leaders who have long been calling for a South Side trauma center. On Thursday faith leaders will ask President O’Keefe for a meeting to discuss updates on the talks and a timeline for when their talks will result in expanded access to trauma care on the South Side. Reverend Alice Harper-Jones of the Kenwood United Church of Christ said “the continued lack of a trauma center is a violation of human rights, a moral violation and an injustice that we, as a faith community, must speak out about.”

Reverend Harper-Jones and other faith leaders will be joined by Ella Smith, the grandmother of Terell Dobbs, who at age 22 was shot in the leg and died en route from the Woodlawn neighborhood to a trauma center 10 miles away on the North Side in 2008. She believes he might have been saved were there a trauma center closer to home. “We are right in the University of Chicago Hospital’s backyard. If something happens to one of our young people they shouldn’t have to go to Northwestern or Christ Hospital. If we don’t get up and take a stand things will not change” said Ms. Smith.

Echoing a commandment from Leviticus, Cantor Faryn Rudnick of Temple Beth-El, Northbrook, said: “We must not sit idly by while our neighbors shed blood during long rides to trauma centers.”

There is currently no level-one trauma center for adults on the South Side of Chicago. Activists and public health leaders have been calling on the University of Chicago, best-resourced institution in the area, to help fill that gap.

The campaign for a level-oneadult trauma center at the University of Chicago was sparked by the shooting death of Woodlawn youth leader Damian Turner in 2010. Turner was taken more than 10 miles away, to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, and died en route. Recent research by Dr. Marie Crandall of Northwestern, has shown strong links between increased travel time and mortality.

Faith Leaders and institutions organizing the event Thursday include: Kenwood United Church of Christ, St. Phillips Lutheran Church, Park Manor Christian Church, Trinity United Church of Christ, Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, Reform Cantors of Chicago.


facebook event page:

Recent stories on the trauma center campaign:

“Chicago needs help, not Obama Library,” LZ Granderson,

“Doctors add voices to demand for UofC trauma center,” Chicago Tribune

“Activists protest university’s bid for Obama Library,” USA Today

“University of Chicago Alumni: No Donations Until Trauma Center Opened,” Progress Illinois

“Why This Hospital Turned a 18-Year Old Away After He Was Shot,” The Huffington Post

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Chicago House: Inclusivity and Equality, Addressing LGBTQ Poverty

A Letter from Avi Rudnick, Hospital to Housing Case Manager

Chicago House provides support to the most vulnerable individuals experiencing homelessness. Utilizing a housing first model, our Scattered-Site Housing programs effectively reduce harm by providing case management services and linkage to medical care, mental healthcare, substance use treatment, and job training. Our Permanent Supportive Housing programs also assist individuals with the most complex challenges. Many of our clients face an intersection of oppressions and a varied set of issues.

LGBTQ individuals experience higher rates of poverty and homelessness, and transgender and gender non-conforming individuals of color are disproportionately impacted by violence. The client-centered and harm reductionist frameworks embraced through these programs embody the idea that housing is healthcare, and that individuals should be able to live with dignity and attain greater self- determination once they are housed.

The first HIV/AIDS housing provider in the Midwest, Chicago House has evolved since our founding in 1985 to meet the changing needs of those we serve. While early on in our history we ran a hospice that allowed those dying of AIDS to close down their lives in dignity, we now own, manage, and run four housing facilities in Chicago that are designed to guide people toward wholeness and self-sufficiency.

If you would like to talk to our staff and learn more about housing opportunities at Chicago House & Social Service Agency, call 773-248-5200 and dial Ext. 2 to reach our Housing Support Line. A housing support representative will return your call within 24 hours on business days, Monday-Friday.

Supportive Living Program

The residential housing programs at Chicago House include the Supportive Living Program, established in 1987, which provides a 24-hour staffed, 16-bedroom residential facility for adults. It is often a first step for individuals who come to us directly from the streets or shelters.

Family Support Program

Our Family Support Program is for families with dependent children. Adults living in this facility receive mental health services, case management, and career counseling from on-site professionals. Chicago House also offers extensive developmental, educational, and after-school programming for the approximately 35 children and youth who currently reside in the Family Support Program with their parents or guardians.

Independent Living Program

Our third facility is the Independent Living Program for single adults who are in need of affordable housing with intermittent supportive services. These residents are able to live independently, but still need access to some support services that Chicago House provides, such as group counseling, employment services, and case management.

TransLife Center

CH_circle_images-06 Our newest housing program, opened in July 2013, is the TransLife Center. In the same 9-bedroom facility that we once used as a hospice, we now deliver housing, employment, linkage-to-medical care, case management, and legal services to transgender individuals.

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