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Black Workers & Wellness Center

The ONE DC Black Workers & Wellness Center is a member-led community & wellness space in Anacostia that builds racial & economic justice through popular education, promotion of sustainable employment, & the incubation of economic alternatives.

In 2018, ONE DC’s Black Workers and Wellness Center (BWWC) in Anacostia officially opened, but the space is currently closed to undergo renovations. The BWWC is part of a national consortium of Black Worker Centers and is a project of ONE DC. The BWWC is a resident-led space that creates and maintains racial and economic justice through popular education, direct action, and the creation of worker-owned alternatives. The BWWC strives to transform and subvert the capitalist system which exploits and under-employs, through its emphasis on dignified and sustainable work. ONE DC has held multiple events to raise money to continue renovations of the BWWC to improve the community organizing space for long time, low income, communities of color in the area.

What is the Black Workers & Wellness Center?

  • A center for finding and creating positive, dignified Black work and training.
  • An incubation space for alternatives to low-wage work, such as worker cooperatives, collectives, and small businesses created, owned, and operated by Black workers.
  • A place to openly discuss the intersection of race and work, particularly what it means to be "working while Black," as well as a place for Black workers to positively recognize their Blackness.
  • An environment to challenge bad employers who exploit, cheat, & steal from their workers.
  • An educational space to talk about ways to work safer and for more money and benefits.

Our Vision: A Community-Controlled Space to Build Power with Black Workers

  • Cooperation DC: Cooperation DC is a project of ONE DC that works with residents to expand employment opportunities in low-income communities of color by developing worker-owned cooperative businesses and other alternatives to the current system. We partnered with Co-Familia Childcare Cooperative and Dulce Hogar Cleaning Service Cooperative to work towards official incorporation as worker-owned cooperatives. Cooperation DC is beginning outreach in Southeast DC to assess community needs for cooperative businesses and to then begin organizing new cooperative capacity. Cooperation DC is working to increase funding from grants and foundations and overall capacity building.
  • Black Workers Center Chorus: With over 25 members, the Chorus continues to grow and broaden their musical talent! The group practices two to three times a month in public housing spaces and libraries and performs at direct actions and community events.
  • Grassroots Fundraising: After two year of fundraising, ONE DC successfully raised $1.2 million to purchase the building at 2500 MLK Jr Ave SE formerly owned by the United Black Fund. Now, we've moved into the second phase of fundraising $2 million for renovations. Click here to donate to our campaign.
  • Hosting Events: The BWWC not only exists as a space for ONE DC programs, but also to host various community events and coalition meetings. This year, we've hosted events for the DC Paid Family Leave campaing, DC Jobs with Justice Steering Committee, and Cure the Violence, and a volunteer clean up day with the William Penn House. If you are interested in using the space, email Claire at ccook@onedconline.org.
  • Workers Rights Clinics: in partnership with the Washington Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs Workers Rights Clinics, low-wage workers can receive free legal advice on employment matters, such as unpaid wages/overtime, discrimination, sexual harassment, illegal termination, and more. By appointment only. Call 202-319-1000 x138 to make an appointment.

The ONE DC Black Workers & Wellness Center is located at 2500 Martin Luther King Jr Ave SE, Washington, DC 20020. To contact us, email bwc@onedconline.org or call 202.232.2915.