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Jessican Gordon Nembhard presents "Collective Courage"


April Right to Income Meeting


What's ONE DC been up to?

Check out the highlights from ONE DC's Annual Meeting & get a look at some of our ongoing campaigns.


Check out the highlights from the People's Platform Mayoral Forum


People's Progress Report 2013

The 2013 People's Progress Report is available! Check out the link below to find out what we have been up to for the past year.

2013 People's Progress Report

To check out past years, visit the People's Progress Report page.


Check out the powerful video from the People's Platform forum

Where does change come from? Politicians...? Or the People?


Direct Action Organizations Host People's Platform Mayoral Forum -- This Saturday

WHO:               Organizing Neighborhood Equity (ONE DC), Barry Farms Study Circle, Empower DC, Our DC, Working Families, Fair Budget Coalition, DC Jobs with Justice, ROC-DC, DC residents, Mayoral Candidates Bowser, Evans, Lewis, Orange, Shallal, Wells, Majors, Gray

WHAT:              Mayoral Forum

WHEN:             Saturday, March 8, 2014 at 4:00 PM

WHERE:           THEARC, 1901 Mississippi Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20020


(Washington, DC) — Native Washingtonian Sylvia Brown-Carson dedicated years of time and energy to her government job, only to be embroiled in a worker’s compensation battle due to her work-related injury. As a result, she was evicted from her home and is now living with and caring for her elderly mother in a small one-bedroom apartment. Due to the lack of affordable housing in the city, she has been unable to find a more suitable unit that is both reasonably priced and accessible to her mother, who is disabled. Sylvia, a ONE DC member, expressed her frustration with the situation: “the amount of units being built just doesn’t meet the need, and there are even fewer units available in my case,” she said, referring to her struggle to find an accessible unit. Though she has repeatedly sought housing that meets her family’s needs – a basic human right – she has not found such a place. Furthermore, she cannot put her name on the waitlist as it was closed in April of 2013 due to extremely high numbers. She continued: “It’s just saddening to see how politicians have neglected the affordable housing crisis to the point where it’s this bad, with over 70,000 families on the waiting list and more who can’t sign up now that [the list] is closed.” Like Sylvia, each of these tens of thousands of DC residents has a unique story, and each one has the right to quality, truly affordable housing. “Whoever the candidate is,” Sylvia said, “has got to vouch to clean up [the units] and house all the residents who need it.” We agree. It is time for long-time low-income DC residents of color to have their voices heard and their advice heeded. It is time for The People’s Platform.


Unlike other mayoral forums, ours is run by and for long-time DC residents of color who recognize that there are long-term consequences to candidates’ short-sighted decisions. The co-sponsoring organizations have a long history of organizing DC residents around truly affordable housing, income equity, and education reform using direct action, forcing politicians to not only talk the talk, but also to walk the walk. Instead of listening to the candidates repeat the same stale promises, this forum will feature the innovative voices and ideas of those who know the city best: its long-time residents of color. Through years of discussion and outreach, all contributing organizations and individuals have a strong working knowledge of residents’ needs and demands, and are ready to hold those in power accountable. 


The forum will include an opportunity to learn exactly what those who are running for mayor know about the city. The audience is encouraged to participate actively in asking the candidates to think critically about their own platforms and how they can bring about deeper, structural change that promotes equity. Just as direct action has played a crucial role in our work in the past, we plan to utilize similar strategies to ensure that candidates are present and engaged during the forum, and true to their word moving forward.

Given the challenges facing DC and the possibilities for positive change, we challenge candidates to stand for:

  • Deeper Affordability in All New Units: Affordable housing means affordable to all. Given that current commitments to the construction of affordable housing meet only 2% of the need for those earning less than 30% of the AMI ($32,250/year), funding for these units must increase.
  • The Protection and Preservation of Public and Project-based Section 8 Housing: Public and project-based section 8 housing provide community, stability, and one of the only affordable housing options for DC residents. The government has a responsibility to debunk the negative myths around public and project-based section 8 housing, halt demolitions and ‘opt-outs’, and restore and develop more units.
  • A Minimum Wage That Is Truly a Living Wage: To afford a two-bedroom apartment, a family must earn $27 per hour: 3.3 times higher than the current minimum wage ($8.25), and still 2.3 times higher than the coming 2016 increase to $11.50. A minimum wage increase to at least $15 is necessary, including $15 per hour for tipped workers.

For interviews and media credentials, please contact:

ONE DC (formerly Manna CDC) was founded in 1997 to help organize long-time, low-to-no wage income DC residents to exercise their political strength to address structural injustices in their neighborhoods, including gentrification and inadequate employment opportunities. ONE DC’s campaigns include the right to land, housing, and jobs.  For more information on ONE DC, please visit www.onedconline.org.

Barry Farm Study Circle organizes public housing residents to protect their human rights and challenge the systems of oppression that impede their physical and mental health and wellness. They organize and educate public housing residents to advocate for themselves while also collaboratively working with like-minded organizations and individuals to address the social injustices that impact our families and communities.

Empower DC, founded in 2003, is a citywide membership-based organization dedicated to effecting social change through a democratic, self-help empowerment approach to community organizing. They work to support low and moderate income District residents in raising their voices and building their collective political power.

Fair Budget Coalition advocates for budget and public policy initiatives that address poverty and human needs in the District of Columbia by leveraging the collective power of its member organizations, including working with social service providers to empower those directly affected by poverty to participate in the advocacy process.

Our DC is a not for profit organization working to connect people, communities and organizations to Bring Good Jobs to the District of Columbia. They are dedicated to ensuring that the voices of unemployed and under employed city residents are heard in local and national dialogs on jobs and job creation, and to supporting enforcement of living wage laws and first hiring rights for District residents.

D.C. Working Families, an affiliate of the national Working Families group, is a coalition of progressive labor unions and community-based organizations, which aims to combine efforts to bring about meaningful change in regards to employment justice in the District.

ROC-DC, founded in September 2009, is a local restaurant workers’ organization dedicated to improving working conditions in the restaurant industry. ROC works with its over 500 members and broader DC community to build, develop, and lead the worker center.

DC Jobs with Justice is a dynamic coalition of labor organizations, community groups, faith-based organizations, and student groups dedicated to protecting the rights of working people and supporting community struggles to build a more just society. 


  • “A Decade of Progress: Investing in Lives and Neighborhoods through the Housing Production Trust Fund,” a Report by the Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development, 2012
  • DCFPI Report: DC’s First Right Purchase Program Helps to Preserve Affordable Housing and is One of DC’s Key Anti-Displacement Tools, September 2013
  • Housing Wage from the National Low Income Housing Coalition’s 2013 DC State Profile

Equitable Development Symposium Update!

Together with The George Washington University, ONE DC invites you to attend the inaugural equitable development symposium, Is Equitable Development Possible in the 21st Century? Prospects and Possibilities for Washington DC. This symposium will provide the opportunity for you to actively engage in debate and discussion with organizers, public officials and other DC residents on the prospects for equitable development.  This symposium, which we expect to become an annual event, is intended to emphasize the need for equitable development across the nation in general and within the DC region in particular.

Is Equitable Development Possible in the 21st Century? Prospects and Possibilities for Washington DC Agenda:

8:30 - 9:15 - Opening Reception/Continental Breakfast

9:15 - 9:30 - Short Documentary: There Goes The Neighborhood, a film produced by Al Jazeera English.

9:30 - 10:00 - Keynote Speaker: Angela Glover Blackwell - Founder and Chief Executive Officer of PolicyLink

10:15 - 11:15 - National Panel Moderator: Gregory D. Squires - Professor of Sociology, and Public Policy and Public Administration at the George Washington University


  • Amanda Huron - Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences at the University of the District of Columbia
  • Rosemary Ndubuizu - Local Organizer at ONE DC and Doctoral Candidate in the Department of Women and Gender Studies at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
  • Greg LeRoy - Executive Director, Good Jobs First
  • Jessica Gordon Nembhard - Associate Professor of Community Justice and Social Economic Development at John Jay College of the City University of New York
  • Marisela B. Gomez, Director and Founder of Social Health Concepts and Practice

11:15 - 12:15 - Local Panel on Equitable Development in the DC Region

Panel Moderator: Linda Leaks, Executive Director and Founder of Justice Advocacy Alliance (JAAA)


  • Sabiyha Prince - Research Analyst at the Anacostia Museum (AM) Smithsonian Institution
  • Ed Lazere - Executive Director and Vice President at DC Fiscal Policy Institute (DCFPI)
  • Derek S. Hyra - Associate Professor of Urban Affairs and Planning at Virginia Tech
  • K. Nyerere Ture - Executive Director and Founder of Teaching, Urban Research and Engagement (TURE) and Doctoral Candidate, Department of Anthropology at American University, Washington, DC
  • Parisa Norouzi - Executive Director and Co-Founder of Empower DC

12:30 -1:00 - ONE DC's People's Platform

1:05-1:35 - Closing Remarks and Reception

Reserve your seat - RSVP here.



New Partnership with Georgetown University's Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor

From Nick Wertsch, Program Coordinator from the Kalmanovitz Initiative:

Georgetown University's Kalmanovitz Initiative (KI) for Labor and the Working Poor develops creative strategies and innovative public policy to improve workers' lives in a changing economy. We conduct research, develop policy ideas, and facilitate student programs.

The Kalmanovitz Initiative is grounded in a commitment to justice, democracy, and the common good. We draw on Georgetown University's tradition of excellent scholarship in the service of the common good, in Jesuit and Catholic social teachings, history of inter-religious cooperation, global reach, and prominence as an arena of policy debate in the nation's capital.

We are thrilled to be working with ONE DC, and we believe this will create a stronger connection between Georgetown and the larger DC community. By collaborating with ONE DC, we hope to support their efforts to promote a more fair and equitable DC for all of the city's residents.


Public Meeting to Discuss the Fate of Parcel 42

From Ivan Matthews, the project manager at DC's Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development: 

As you may know, the District owns two lots, 0106 and 0803, in Square 0442 on the corner of 7th and Rhode Island NW, which are collectively called Parcel 42. As part of the Districts redevelopment process, the property must be declared surplus by the D.C. Council. Declaring a property surplus means that it is not required for a public purpose.


The District will conduct a public meeting to receive comments on the proposed surplus of Parcel 42. The surplus meeting is held in order to receive feedback from the community on the District's finding that the property is not required for public purposes. Comments collected at the public meeting will be submitted to the D.C. Council for their review. The surplus meeting is conducted pursuant to D.C. Official Code §10-801. Below, please find the date, time and location of the meeting:


Date: Monday, 3 March, 2014 

Time: 6:30pm 

Location: Watha T Daniel Library (WTD Meeting Room) 1630 7th Street NW, Washington D.C. 20001


Make your voice be heard! We are seeking both newer and long-time residents to testify on behalf of the need for affordable housing at the site. Public officials and local media are happy to divide and conquer wealthier newcomers and longtime low income residents - this is an opportunity to show we're united for a just and inclusive city.

Would you be willing to prepare a 2-3 minute testimony to share at this hearing? Do you have friends in Shaw who would consider this as well? Join us at 5:15 PM at the ONE DC office on Monday to prepare or at 6:30 PM Watha T Daniel Library (WTD Meeting Room) 1630 7th Street NW for the hearing.

Contact dmoulden@onedconline.org for more info.