Join a Lending Circle with the Latino Economic Development Center

A lending circle is where a group of people lend each other money with no interest or fees each month.

The informal lending system, practiced by communities all over the world, is now being recognized by traditional financial institutions. Each payment made into a lending circle acts as payment towards a future loan, providing individuals with the unique opportunity to build their credit.

The Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) is starting a lending circle for community members to build their credit. For more information, please call (202) 540-7401.

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Join us for the Ward 4 Candidate's Forum on Housing, Jobs, & Development

THURSDAY, APRIL 2
7:00-9:00PM
Kingsbury Center - 5000 14th St NW

Invited Candidates:
Brandon Todd
Renee Bowser
Leon Andrews
Dwayne Toliver

RSVP by clicking here or RSVP on Facebook

TRANSPORTATION:
Parking available at the Kingsbury Center; entrance from 14th St NW.
Bus stops: Emerson St on the 52, 53, 54, S1, S2, S4; Farragut St on the 70.

Sponsored by: Jews United for Justice, Kennedy Street Development Association, Ward 4 Thrives, DC for Democracy, Fair Budget Coalition, Working Families, DC Jobs with Justice, Restaurant Opportunities Center, ONE DC, Latino Economic Development Center, Bread for the City and So Others Might Eat.

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ROC-DC Hiring Local Director

ROC-DC Director Position - TO APPLY Please send cover letter and resume detailing your qualifications and stating your salary requirements to stephanie@rocunited.org

Founded initially after September 11th, 2001, the Restaurant Opportunities Center (ROC) has grown into a national organization with over 13,000 low-wage restaurant worker members in thirteen locations, and growing rapidly. From 2001 until 2008, our work was focused in New York City, and achieved great success in impact for restaurant workers. In summer 2007, ROC-NY hosted the nation's first national restaurant worker convening, and the national organization, ROC-United, was born. In January 2008, the co-founders of the Restaurant Opportunities Center of New York (ROC-NY) left the local organization in the hands of former members and restaurant workers, and went on to launch ROC-United.

Over the last eleven years, we have won more than ten workplace justice campaigns, winning more than $10 million in misappropriated tips and wages and discrimination payments for low-wage workers, and significant policy changes in high-profile fine dining restaurant companies covering thousands of workers. We have partnered with more than 100 responsible restaurant owners to promote the 'high road' to profitability, and trained more than 5000 restaurant workers to advance to livable wage jobs within the industry. We have also published thirty ground-breaking reports on the restaurant industry, obtaining significant media coverage, played an instrumental role in winning a statewide minimum wage increase and paid sick days for tipped workers, and initiated other policy campaigns at the local, state, and federal level. We have organized restaurant workers to open their own cooperatively-owned restaurants in New York and Detroit.

Since January 2008 we have launched affiliates in the Bay Area, Boston, New Orleans, Miami, Michigan, Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, New Mexico, Seattle, and Washington, DC. In each region, we conduct workplace justice campaigns, partner with 'high road' restaurants to conduct advance restaurant workforce development programs, and collaborate with local academics and other allies to produce comprehensive participatory research and policy initiatives. Nationally, we organize convening of restaurant workers, Congressional briefings, public fora, and more. In these ways, ROC continues to build power and voice for low-wage restaurant workers at the local, state, and federal levels.
ROC-United worked with local residents to launch ROC-DC in 2009, to organize restaurant workers in DC, engages in workplace justice, research and public policy campaigns, and workforce development work, including operating a non-profit restaurant (COLORS) and a cooperative business incubator program.

RESPONSIBILITIES:

● Supervise local ROC staff to implement and strategically integrate local and national programs in worker and high road employer organizing, research, public policy, workforce development (including COLORS Restaurant), and cooperative development;
● Assist in developing the organizing skills of staff and member organizers with a focus on membership recruitment, leadership identification and development, dues collection, and formation of member-led campaign and organizing committees;
● Under the supervision of ROC-United National Program Directors, lead and provide support to local staff and members in the day-to-day implementation of national workplace justice organizing campaigns as well as local, state, and federal public policy campaigns that bring pressure to bear on targeted employers as well as the industry as a whole;
o Provide strategic input to overall campaign and strategy;
o Conduct individual and group meetings with workers to plan and implement the organizing campaigns;
o Develop leadership and political consciousness among restaurant workers through trainings, relationship building, and shared experiences;
o Motivate individual workers and groups of workers to take action;
o Strategically identify and engage local community allies
● Represent ROC-DC to other institutions, press, and priority relationships and lead local implementation of national communications plans;
● Provide local support as requested to a ROC-United staff team that provides centralized fundraising, accounting, and human resources management to ROC-DC
● Maintain sound and sustainable fiscal operation of ROC-DC including monitoring compliance with a local annual budget developed by ROC-United;

Additionally the Director will represent ROC-DC on the Council of Directors in their national strategy and decision-making process. The Local Director position is intended to be a senior-level, experienced organizer position. The Local Director will report directly to ROC-United’s Deputy Executive Director.

QUALIFICATIONS:
● 3-4 years labor/community/political organizing experience;
● Experience coalition building, and understanding of member leadership development;
● Experience in conducting research;
● Experience in guiding policy campaigns;
● Significant experience working collaboratively with persons of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds, socioeconomic status, ages, and sexual orientations
● Demonstration of a professional attitude;
● Willingness and openness to learn and grow;
● Strong communication, leadership, and management skills;
● Possess reliable transportation;
● Demonstrated commitment to racial, social, and economic justice;
● Restaurant work experience a plus; and
● Fluency in oral and written Spanish strongly preferred.

Note: We recognize that not all applicants will possess all qualifications. We are looking for an applicant with the right mix to be successful in the position.

COMPENSATION
Salary is commensurate with experience and includes a generous benefits package, including Employer paid health and dental insurance provided after 90 days

TO APPLY
Please send cover letter and resume detailing your qualifications and stating your salary requirements to stephanie@rocunited.org

ROC-United is an equal opportunity employer. Women, immigrants, LGBTQ, low-income, and people of color are strongly encouraged to apply.

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Make DC a Worker Coop-Friendly City!

The DC Worker Cooperative Coalition (DCWCC) is a group of worker cooperative owners, worker cooperative incubators, lawyers, and grassroots organizing groups who support the development of worker cooperatives as a necessary tool for equitable economic development, and who wish to see a flourishing worker cooperative ecosystem in Washington, DC.

Worker cooperatives are businesses that are owned and controlled by their workers. Studies show that, as compared to other small businesses and traditional investor-owned businesses, they tend to pay higher wages and provide better benefits, invest more in their workers through leadership and skills development, remain in business longer given worker commitment to the businesses, and encourage democratic, participatory and dignified workplaces. There are examples of low-wage workers in New York City who have formed worker cooperatives and have seen their hourly wages increase from $10 to $25 per hour within just a few years.

In recent years, worker cooperative development has grown dramatically in a range of cities including Boston, New York City, San Francisco, Cleveland, Chicago, and Austin, in industries ranging from healthcare to sustainable energy production. Government support has been instrumental. In recognition of the benefits of this business model, in 2014, the New York City Council allotted $1.2 million toward worker cooperative development. Just last week, the NYC Council passed a law that requires the city to issue annual reports on the amount of goods and services it purchases from worker cooperatives, and to provide recommendations on how to lower barriers for worker cooperative participation in city procurement. This year, the Madison City Council committed $5 million over 5 years to worker cooperative development. The City of Cleveland has also been supportive of local worker cooperative development, providing land for a 3-acre hydroponic greenhouse and worker cooperative.

Given DC’s struggles with high inequality and a shortage of living wage jobs, we would greatly benefit from an integrated approach to supporting worker cooperative development. While the benefits of worker cooperatives are well-documented, they are widely unknown and underutilized as an economic development tool in Washington, DC. Supportive policies and legislation could change that.

Below is a list of policy recommendations to the City Council:

1) Pass a local definition of “worker co-op” and support public education on the model’s benefits

2) Equip the D.C. Small Business Development Centers to support worker cooperative businesses

3) Provide city-owned land and buildings to worker cooperatives

4) Provide funding (grants, loans) to worker cooperative businesses and developers

5) Make worker cooperatives a preferred contractor for city agencies

6) Provide tax benefits to worker cooperatives

On Thursday, March 26th, we will co-host the Second Annual Equitable Development Symposium, which will feature New York City Councilmember Maria del Carmen Arroyo, who championed the legislative effort to support worker cooperatives in New York City. The event will take place at the George Washington University Marvin Center Grand Ballroom (800 21st St NW) from 9am-3pm. We hope you can join us there.

The DCWCC would welcome the opportunity to meet with the City Council and others to explore these ideas and share additional resources we have collected from worker cooperative efforts around the country. We look forward to continuing the conversation and working towards an equitable DC with dignified, democratic workplaces.

DC Worker Cooperative Coalition

Allison Basile
Impact Hub DC
basile.allison@gmail.com
443-562-5856

Eva Seidelman
Community Development Law Clinic
UDC David A. Clarke School of Law
evaseidelman@gmail.com
914-316-7901

Jennifer Bryant
Organizing Neighborhood Equity (ONE) DC
jbryant@onedconline.org

Jeremiah Lowery
Restaurant Opportunities Center (ROC) DC
jeremiah@rocunited.org

Jessica Gordon Nembhard, Ph.D.
ONE DC and Grassroots Economic Organizing
jgordonnembhard@gmail.com
202-882-6550

Josephine Chu
Zenful Bites Catering Cooperative
zenfulbites@gmail.com

Melody Webb
Second Chance Legal Project of Mothers Outreach Network, Inc.
Melody@mothersoutreachnetwork.org
202-276-9253

Tracy McCurty, Esq.
Black Belt Justice Center
tmccurty@blackbeltjustice.org

Zachari J. Curtis
Co-Founder
Community Farming Alliance
info@goodsensefarm.com

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Volunteer at ONE DC Equitable Development Conference

Please JOIN US as a volunteer for this year's ONE DC Equitable Development Conference! There are several opportunities during this phenomenal event and any time of service as a volunteer would be greatly appreciated. The following roles and time frames are below:

Set up: 8:00 - 8:30AM

Greeters: 8:15 - 9:30AM

Registration: 8:15 - 9:30AM

Runners: 9:00 - 2:00PM

Videographers: 9:00 - 3:00PM

Photographers: 9:00 - 3:00PM

Scribes: 9:00 - 3:00PM

Roundtable Facilitators: 1:30 - 3:00PM

Food Helper: 8:00 - 1:30PM

If you can commit to any of these volunteer positions partially or entirely please contact ONE DC organizer, Dominic Moulden, at this email address, dmoulden@onedconline.org. 

 

RSVP Here: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/equitable-development-in-dc-sustainability-from-below-tickets-15951673886

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Barry Farm Organizers Deliver Their Demands!

Barry Farm Study Circle, Barry Farm Tenants and Allies Association, Empower DC, and ONE DC continue to fight to preserve the history of Barry Farm and stop displacement of public housing residents. Barry Farm organizers presented their demands to DC City Council Chairperson Phil Mendelson and City Administrator Rashad Young. Our next meeting will take place onMarch 18th with Chairperson Mendelson, the Director of DC Housing Authority, and the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development.

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HERE ARE OUR DEMANDS:

1. Appeal the approval to demolish Barry Farms (From Zoning Commission, DC City Council, and National Capital Planning Commission) as there are no funds to complete these plans they approved.

2. Halt and suspend moving forward with ANY redevelopment/demolition plans for Barry Farms.

3. Audit of the Barry Farms Redevelopment Process. Audit will consist of:

  • ALL Documents signed by ANY resident council member regarding the redevelopment process.
  • A Funding report to include:
  • Funding necessary to complete the proposed project.
  • Funding necessary to provide for relocation and relocation wrap around services.

4. Analysis of how New Communities works here compared to similar programs in other areas, and how to improve:

5. Answers to the following questions:

a. Why are people relocated en masse long before construction will be complete?
b. Why are replacement units no longer public housing? Why are the leases held by the property's private management company (with hard to meet criterion)?
c. Why are units not replaced? (See Arthur Capper/Carrolsburg, Temple Courts, Lincoln Heights)

6. Immediate repairs made to units in Barry Farms. Fill ALL outstanding maintenance work orders. DCHA is purposefully neglecting this property in regards to maintenance! This is unacceptable!

7. Feasibility study on redeveloping in place to prevent displacement. (This was stipulated in the Small Area Plan approved in 2006 by the Council)

8. Immediate Moratorium on the demolition of Barry Farms. (We are in a serious HOMELESS CRISIS! It is irresponsible and very poor planning for the city to continue with the demolition now!)

9. Meaningful exploration of Converting Barry Farms to cooperative or limited equity cooperative.

Barry Farm organizers also "educated" DC City Council Chairperson Mendelsen on the "myths" of  deconcentration of poverty. Check out a few articles for yourself.

http://www.huduser.org/portal/periodicals/cityscpe/vol16num2/ch10.pd

http://herbertgans.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Concentrated-Poverty.pdf

http://www.qc.cuny.edu/Academics/Degrees/DSS/UrbanStudies/FacultyStaff/Documents/Myth%20of%20Concentrated%20Poverty%20-%20Steinberg.pdf

https://www.jacobinmag.com/2014/05/the-problem-with-mixed-income-housing/

http://ssascholars.uchicago.edu/mixed-income-development-study/content/new-public-housing-stigma-mixed-income-developments

http://www.nhlp.org/files/greenbook4/Chapter12/FN%20183%20Schwartz,%20Tajbakhsh%20-%20Mixed-Income%20Housing,%20Unanswered%20Questions%20%281997%29.pdf

http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2003/0703williams.html

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Fueled by reflections from the ONE DC Freedom School, Congress Heights residents testify at Zoning Commission Hearing

On January 22, residents of Congress Heights fought back against development aimed to line the pockets of one of the largest slumlords in the District. The development project seeks to displace families with the intention of capitalizing on their conveniently locates homes near the metro station, demolish 5 rent-controlled buildings, and eliminate an affordability requirement intended to keep eleven units accessible to low-income families. One after another residents testified at a hearing before the Zoning Commission to the deplorable conditions they have been continuously subjected to, and expressed their sentiment that “these slumlord do not deserve to be granted this new property”. Alternative forms of inclusive development were put forth as well: “I would like to see a housing co-op for our buildings” stated one resident. Ultimately, the project was not approved for the time being due to the articulately expressed concerns and ideas of residents, community members, and organizers of ONE DC.

The strength that tenants displayed at the hearing and their ability to stand up and speak the truth regarding the devastating realities of the current development model for poor black DC residents was due in no small part to a change in perspective after becoming involved with ONE DC. In December, a group of residents from Congress Heights attended a Freedom School organized by ONE DC that shaped the conversation by exposing many of those who would be affected and afflicted by the unaffordable, non-inclusive proposed development to other alternatives. Residents discussed the root causes of the hardships of displacement and the hostile living environments they have endured for years, and compared and contrasted the status-quo of capitalist, profit-driven development and “investment” with collective models based on principles of a solidarity economy. ONE DC worked with residents to expose them to the deep-seeded imbalance of power that perpetuates development beneficial only to those most privileged in our society. Together they watched videos and discussed other examples of instances where oppressed people have come together to take back power by realizing their own alternative collective visions of labor, housing, and food cooperatives. These ideas and visions were then applied to the specific situation facing residents of Congress Heights today. Some weeks later, these same residents took what they had learned through this discussion to the floor of the Zoning Commission in the first step of what will likely be a long fight for their housing.

The Freedom School is intended to grow and expand to include, unite, and empower residents throughout Ward 8 and DC to take back the city that is theirs. To this end ONE DC has and continues to work tirelessly to connect with residents and educate them in the fight for a fair and inclusive Washington DC.

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RSVP: Equitable Development in DC: Sustainability from Below

RSVP Here

ONE DC and George Washington University are joining forces for the second annual conference on equitable development in Washington, DC on March 26, 2015. To be held on the campus of George Washington University, Equitable Development in DC: Sustainability from Below will bring together residents of neighborhoods throughout Washington, DC, organizers, students, scholars, elected officials, and others who are engaged in efforts to create more living-wage jobs, affordable housing, and other opportunities for wealth accumulation for residents of traditionally underserved communities, many of which are experiencing rapid gentrification and displacement.

When: Thursday, March 26 from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Where: The Marvin Center Grand Ballroom 800 21st Street Northwest Washington, DC 20052

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Mindy Fullilove, Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at Columbia University and author of several books including Root Shock: How Tearing Up Cities Hurts America and What We Can Do About It and Urban Alchemy: Restoring Joy in America’s Sorted-Out Cities, will deliver the keynote address. Two panel discussions will follow; one focusing on national strategies and the second on local initiatives. But the objective is not simply to share ideas and inform the audience. The goal is to stimulate action to create the types of communities that are envisioned. A working lunch follows where participants will engage in further discussion and debate, and where they will be encouraged to join with ONE DC and other advocacy groups to create equitable and sustainable neighborhoods throughout the DC community.


The mood in the room at last year’s conference was truly electric with participants and attendees engaging in intensive conversation hours after the formal proceedings concluded. We anticipate this annual conference will become a national model for community-engaged research, networking, and advocacy for equitable and sustainable development principles and practice.

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Maya Angelou Housing Coop Accepting Applications!

Contact Ms Michele Washington at Oakes Management 202-388-3900 for an application

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City-wide Forum on Barry Farms Displacement

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ONE DC
Organizing for Neighborhood Equity in Shaw and the District

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