UNITY COALITION of the POCONOS
"Harmony and Justice"
 
Unity Coalition of the Poconos Home

Unity Coalition Pledge and Volunteer Registration
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Bob HillmanOur Founder, Bob Hillman, memorial page

Our History

    Unity Coalition of the Poconos P.O. Box 1174 Brodheadsville, Pennsylvania 18322-1174 USA To file Civil Rights complaints: 717 787-9025 Phone: 570 895-4993 Email: info@poconounitycoalition.org

The Coalition was started in 1993, as a result of a cross burning in Stroudsburg PA. A representative of the Monroe County Branch of the NAACP and members of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of the Poconos met at the home of Art and Sally Freedman to discuss their concerns for the victims of hate crimes in our community. The Coalition was formed as a result of that meeting. Bob Hillman was appointed Chairman of the new organization called the Monroe County Unity Coalition. The name was later changed to the Unity Coalition of the Poconos (UCOTP). The name change allowed people from outside the county to feel that they were welcome to join and participate in the activities of the group. The first public meeting of the UCOTP was held at East Stroudsburg University on February 1994.
 

Function

    The primary function of the Unity Coalition has been to offer a "Positive Response to the engative activities of hate groups and individuals who perpetrate acts of hate in our community. If a family is the victim of a cross burning, we send a group of our members to let them know that there are people who care about them in the community. We also offer to plant a tree or flowers on the spot where the cross was burned so the family will see something of beauty planted by people who care rather then a burned spot in their yard put there by people who hate. We also contact all of our members and ask them to send cards and letters to the family, again to let them know there is more good in our community then bad.

    We clean up hate graffiti whenever it appears in our community. We feel that on the first day the graffiti shows hp on a building, sign, tree or rock it is shame on the person who put it there. But if it is allowed to remain in view for a few days or weeks, it is shame on the community that allows it to do so. By allowing it to stay in view, we are perceived as condoning the message and the beliefs of those who put it there. We have found that when people see hate graffiti, they don't say "look at what someone did", they ask "what kind of community is this that would allow this to remain in view".


Accomplishments


    The Unity Coalition has presented a number of community forums, TV programs and other activities designed to inform people of some of the problems affecting our area. The forums promote dialog between the various groups that make up our community. It is our hope that if we can get people talking, we can increase their understanding of each other and help them remoe the barriers caused by ignorance and misunderstanding.


 

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