BY YVONNE JONES
November 11, 2015
It is with great sadness that I post of the passing of Belinda Meyers-Florence. Belinda was one of the founding members of DAREA. Belinda was our Communication Coordinator, Belinda made sure we were all connected and informed. Over this past year Belinda collected over 500 emails from retirees and concerned individuals who wanted to know what was happening with the bankruptcy and pension cuts. Belinda participated in the court hearing, protests, donated funds and whatever was necessary to keep the fight alive.
Belinda was at our meeting on November 4, she encouraged us to continue to fight for justice. Belinda was passionate about the cuts to our pension especially health care! She would speak about how unjust these cuts were. Many times Belinda would come to a meeting, court or demonstration not feeling her best, she would say I got do what I got to do! Belinda was a committed activist for Justice in the fight for Pension, an Elk Daughter, Retiree of 36.9 years as a Principal Social Planner & Development Specialist. Devoted wife, mother, daughter and friend. Belindafoll2 signing out! Peace & Love!
BY VOD STAFF
“Belinda Myers-Floreance was a committed soldier in fighting for City of Detroit employees pension rights and restoration, through the courts,” DAREA VP Cecily McClellan said. “Belinda was Corresponding Secretary for DAREA and Financial Secretary and Daughter of Beulahland Temple #569, she will be missed. Please send your blessing and support to the family.” Her family includes her husband Jesse, her daughter Erica, her son Jesse Jr. and many others. Funeral arrangements are below.
DAREA depended on Belinda for collecting its contact lists and keeping them in order, constant email updates, and her unfailing presence at DAREA meetings and at numerous protests against the illegal Detroit bankruptcy, Belinda was everywhere in the battle for justice not only for Detroit retirees, but for the residents of Detroit as a whole, as photos taken by VOD show. She was dedicated and tireless and always kept a cheerful demeanor.
Under the bankruptcy plan, health care costs for Belinda’s husband Jesse Florence, a retiree from D-DOT, and Belinda skyrocketed from $152 a month to $1062 a month, in addition to a $3,000 annual deductible. After putting their children through school, they faced the possible loss of their home.
Thousands of other City of Detroit retirees faced the same plight because of the vicious assault by the corporations and banks not only on their pensions and health care, but on the very assets the people of Detroit owned, including the Detroit Water & Sewerage Department, the Institute of Arts, and Belle Isle.
DAREA and Belinda’s family and friends weep for her loss, but vow to continue the fight for justice in her spirit forever.
PEOPLE’S WARRIOR TANGELA HARRIS JOINS THE ANCESTORS
SHARED BY TAWANA ‘HONEYCOMB’ PETTY
On Nov. 2, water warrior, social justice activist and community journalist Tangela Harris joined the Ancestors one day before her 40th birthday, after suffering an asthma attack and cardiac arrest. (Her homegoing service was held Nov. 7, 2015.)
Tangela was committed to the struggle for humanity in Detroit and across the globe. There was rarely an event for social justice that you didn’t see Tangela at, or you didn’t hear her voice contributing to. She was a frontline foot soldier, as well as a behind the scenes doer. Her interviews were just as passionate as her work, and her love and compassion for her city and her people showed through in everything she touched.
We will never forget Tangela Harris. She was indeed a woman full of “peace and love.”
There are hardly enough words to describe what Tangela Harris means to the city of Detroit, so I will leave you with Tangela in her own voice and her own words for 7 Mile Radio.
This clip is from one of the many events Tangela covered, participated in, or organized in Detroit. If you didn’t know Tangela or about what she poured into her people, this video should shed some light.