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ADPSR Thanks AIA for Reconsidering Human Rights

February, 2016 - AIA has informed ADPSR that the AIA National Ethics Council will (re)consider our proposal to prohibit the design of execution chambers and spaces intended for torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment. This is big progress from 2014, when AIA rejected ADPSR's proposal, but a new turn for the National Ethics Council, which had never considered the proposal before. We salute AIA's 2015 and 2016 Presidents for taking another look at this vitally important issue. Since AIA's rejection, two more medical professional associations -- this time, of pharmacists -- have told their members not to participate in executions, and the United Nations has adopted new human rights rules for the treatment of prisoners specifically barring the kind of solitary confinement routinely practiced across the United States. ADPSR explained these and other trends in a letter encouraging AIA to consider last year.

Please JOIN US in thanking AIA for their reconsideration and encouraging them to take a strong stand for human rights!

2015 ADPSR Lewis Mumford Awards

Three organizations were honored on September 18th in Seattle, with Architects Designers Planners for Social Responsibility (ADPSR) 2015 Lewis Mumford Award in the categories of Peace, Environment, and Development. The ADPSR Lewis Mumford Awards are presented to individuals and organizations nationally on an annual basis in recognition of their innovative and influential work. The winners of the 2015 (21st annual) Lewis Mumford Awards embody ADPSR’s mission to promote world peace, environmental protection, and socially responsible development. This year's awardees: 

Peace --  Black Lives Matter 

• Environment -- Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition 

• Development -- Environmental Works Community Design Center 

The award ceremony took place during Seattle Design Fest: Design for Equity at the Bullitt Center, 1501 East Madison Street, Seattle, on Friday, September 18th.

Raphael Sperry speaks September 19th, 2015, on panel Questioning Youth Incarceration

ADPSR President Raphael Sperry spoke at the Seattle Design Festival conference Saturday Sept. 19 on the panel "Questioning Youth Incarceration." http://seattledesignfestival2015.sched.org/tag/Con... We hope to get people to ask bigger questions about seemingly "normal" institutions in our society. Is designing prisons, youth jails, and detention centers inevitable? Who designs these spaces, and who is affected by the existence and harms of these spaces? What does a community movement to resist incarceration and caging look like? FEATURING: • Angelica Chazaro: Law professor, University of Washington School of Law; • Nikkita Oliver: poet, spoken word artist, organizer, pugilist, teacher, and law student; • Sensei Gregory C. Lewis, producer/host of All Power To The Positive! and local founder of Black Lives Matter, Seattle; • Raphael Sperry: Architects, Designers, and Planners for Social Responsibility.

Saturday, May 2- Jane's Walk: Upper West Side Urban Renewal: Blight or Right in the Sight of Jane?

Walk co-leader Jim Wunsch shares his knowledge of the area's history and its many changes over time.

Every year during the first weekend in May, people all over the world participate in Jane's Walks to get to know their neighborhoods and celebrate the life and work of urbanist/activist Jane Jacobs. 

In 2015, ADPSR's New Village Press hosted a walk in Manhattan's Upper West Side to explore the area's history of urban renewal, particularly in relationship to low and moderate income housing, mixed-use development, and neighborhood vitality. With over 40 participants, many of whom contributed their own stories and experiences along the way, the walk was a huge success! In the weeks that followed, New Village Press continued the conversation digitally with photos, videos, and walker responses. To join the conversation, head to WhatWeSee.org!

Media Responds to Ethics Campaign

February 16, 2015 — Michael Kimmelman, chief architecture critic of the New York Times covers AIA's rejection of ADPSR's proposal to amend the AIA Code of Ethics in his article, "Prison Architecture and the Question of Ethics."

Other Recent Media Response

AIA says No to Human Rights

December 11, 2014 — AIA has rejected ADPSR's proposal to amend their Code of Ethics to prohibit the design of spaces intended for human rights violations, including execution and prolonged solitary confinement. We are deeply saddened and shocked that a professional association that claims to maintain the highest standards of ethics would permit members to participate in torture and killing. Read AIA's letter (with ADPSR's annotations) here. An un-annotated version is available here. ADPSR President Raphael Sperry's Op-Ed in response can be found here. ADPSR's media alert and response can be found here.

New Village Press cohosts Building Together symposium on participatory design at Pratt Institute

November 21-22, Brooklyn NY — Michael Pyatok, Roberta Feldman, Yvette Shiffman, Roberta Washington, David Burney and others listen to ROLAND ANGLIN, PhD, Director, Cornwall Center, Rutgers, moderating discussion on the importance of Building Together from Domestic and International Perspectives with panelists: Michael Cohen, Director of International Programs, The New School Mathias Heyden, Chair for Urban Design and Architecture, TU Berlin Rahul Srivastrava / Matias Echanove, Mumbai, India, URBZ-user generated cities Kenneth Reardon, Director of the Graduate Program in City & Regional Planning, University of Memphis

UC Berkeley Exhibition

ADPSR is proud to have curated the exhibition "Sentenced: Architecture and Human Rights" shown at UC Berkeley Oct. 14 to Nov 21th, 2014. The exhibit, which is available for travel, highlights problematic and little-known spaces within United States prisons and detention centers that house activities deemed to violate human rights: execution chambers, supermax prisons, and juvenile isolation cells. It includes rarely available documentation including architectural plans of execution chambers, drawings from people held in solitary isolation, and photographs of the interiors of juvenile detention centers. Read more about it on our blog.

ADPSR Supports Freedom of Assembly

1. We support the right of citizens to peaceful protests and freedom of expression.
2. We support the principle of non-violent actions for social change.
3. We support the use of public space for political expressions and dialogues.
4. We stand in solidarity with communities and activist organizations around the world seeking democracy and economic, environmental and social justice.

5. We call architects, designers, landscape architects, and planners to support open, democratic civic engagement through individual and collective actions.