ONE DC Monthly Voice January 2019

 

"Privatization is a neoliberal and imperialist plan. Health can’t be privatized because it is a fundamental human right, nor can education, water, electricity and other public services. They can’t be surrendered to private capital that denies the people from their rights.”
-Hugo Chávez


400 Years of Inequality

2019 will be the 400th Anniversary of the arrival of the first Africans to be sold into bondage in North America: in 1619 at Jamestown.  400 Years of Inequality is a nation-wide coalition of organizations and individuals dedicated to dismantling structural inequality and building strong, healthy communities. We are calling on families, organizations, neighborhoods and cities to observe the anniversary by telling their stories of oppression and resistance. We must link arms in radical equality.

Inequality is a threat to our health and democracy. Nearly 400 years of division have created an apartheid society: we need a new social infrastructure to carry us through the challenges of climate change, decaying physical infrastructure, rapidly evolving jobs, underperforming schools, uneven access to health care and lack of affordable housing. Communities and organizations across the country are already observing the call, and addressing these inequalities in bold and impactful ways.

In 2019, ONE DC will join in organizing, observing, and building around the theme of 400 Years of Inequality. Save the dates:

  • Emancipation Day Celebration - Tuesday, April 16
  • Juneteenth Festival - Saturday, June 15
  • Juneteenth Community Learning event - Wednesday, June 19
  • Black August - Date TBD
  • October closing event - Date TBD

To join the 400 Years of Inequality planning committee, email Kelly at kiradukunda@onedconline.org


SAVE THE DATE: ONE DC Annual Membership Meeting

The Annual Membership Meeting is a space for members to guide the vision of ONE DC. The agenda will include:
-Elections for two open seats on the ONE DC Shared Leadership Team
-Overview of our 2018 wins and goals for 2019
-Community learning exercises on shared leadership
-Financial updates

The ONE DC Annual Membership Meeting is an opportunity to meet and build relationships with other members. The program will also include music, spoken word, videos, and political education. Free food will be provided. Childcare will be provided and transportation is available upon request.

Click here to RSVP

About 2019 Shared Leadership Team Elections

ONE DC is governed by a 9-person Shared Leadership Team (SLT) made up of appointed and elected board members and ONE DC staff. At the 2019 Annual Membership Meeting, we will hold an election for two open elected positions. All are welcome to attend, but only members who paid dues in 2018 are eligible to vote in the election.

According to our by-laws, requirements for being elected to the Shared Leadership Team are:
-Be a resident of the District of Columbia,
-Be at least 18 years of age,
-Be a ONE DC member for at least 6 months and current in the payment of membership dues,
-Complete ONE DC leadership and capacity training, and
-Demonstrate commitment to ONE DC’s values, work and mission as demonstrated through an interview process with the Shared Leadership Team.

We strongly encourage members interested in running for the SLT to attend one of our pre-election orientations to learn more about the roles, responsibilities, and expectations of being a SLT member. If you are interested, please visit onedconline.org/annualmeeting for more information and contact us at organizer@onedconline.org for orientation details.

2019 Membership Drive

Membership dues support the organizing campaigns of ONE DC, membership event, & member-leader development. As we grow more powerful, it becomes more and more important to be funded by our base. Click here to pay your 2019 membership dues.


ONE DC Learning Circle

ONE DC's Learning Circle is a space for ONE DC members to come together to learn about the legacy of progressive action that we are carrying forward. By engaging with text, media, and storytelling, we learn from one another and our predecessors about guiding principles and ideals of racial equity, cooperative economics, and community building.

The Learning Circle is currently reading Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice by longtime ONE DC member and SLT co-chair Jessica Gordon Nembhard. Copies of Collective Courage are available for sale and borrowing.

No pre-reading is required to attend - all are welcome!

Gatherings of the Learning Circle are the first Wednesday of each month, from 6-8pm at the Black Workers and Wellness Center. Contact Gabrielle Newell (gnewell14@gmail.com) for more information. The next learning circle will be Wednesday, February 6.

Click here to RSVP


Black Workers & Wellness Center: A Community-Controlled Space

The BWWC served as a volunteer check-in & warming station at the 2019 MLK Jr. Peace Walk & Parade

Rental Space
The ONE DC Black Workers & Wellness Center 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. We strive to transform and subvert the capitalist system which exploits and under-employs, through its emphasis on dignified and sustainable work. The BWWC also provides community space that is available for use by grassroots community organizations and for events that align with ONE DC’s mission, vision, and values. In 2018, ONE DC members and partner organizations used the BWWC for organizing trainings, tenant association meetings, restorative circles, film screenings, political education sessions, special events, and more.
Click here to learn more about reserving space at the BWWC

BWWC Stewards
ONE DC is calling on our membership to take leadership in the routine maintenance and stewardship of the property. With the support of ONE DC organizing staff, the responsibilities of the BWWC Stewards will include:
-Scheduling regular volunteer clean-up days
-Monitoring inventory and helping order supplies
-Reporting maintenance issues to staff
-Learning how to open and close the building for partner events & meetings
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a BWWC Steward, send an email to bwc@onedconline.org.

Interested in supporting the BWWC in other ways? We are currently looking for donations of folding chairs and folding tables to increase our seating capacity at events.

Later this year, we will begin a full-scale renovation to transform the space into a more accessible, environmentally-conscious, and inclusive organizing center. Click here to donate to the BWWC Capital Campaign


For Akheem Film Screening: Ending the School-to-Prison Pipeline


On October 23rd, ONE DC and Restorative DC collaborated to host a screening of the documentary feature film For Ahkeem at ONE DC's Black Workers & Wellness Center. For Ahkeem follows two years in the life of St. Louis teen Daje Shelton, - two years in which friends die, love blossoms, Michael Brown is murdered, and she finds out she is pregnant. The film discussed topics such as the school-to-prison pipeline, raising a Black child in the US, structural racism, institutional inequality, and how justice is handled in public schools.

The audience of the screening was mostly local high schoolers; they are probably the most important viewers of the film. After the film, a few members of the audience stayed for a discussion led by Maria Blaeuer of Advocates for Justice and Education and Jordan Brown, a student at Georgetown University. Both women have a deep interest in restorative justice practices and equitable justice in public schools. The discussion touched on how privilege and oppression played into the film, Black motherhood, and what responsibility, if any, the filmmakers had in changing the thoughts or actions of the film's subjects.

This event was part of the Dignity in Schools Campaign's National Week of Action Against School Pushout, where this year's theme was "Counselors, Not Cops!" The Dignity in Schools Campaign is a national coalition working to end the school-to-prison pipeline and the current national culture of hyper-criminalization, punishment, and systematic racism.


Coalition Wins

Clean Energy DC!

In December 2019, after years of relentless community pressure by the DC Climate Coalition, the DC Council passed the Clean Energy DC Act:

  • The District will be powered by 100% renewable energy by 2032. This puts DC on the fastest timeline to 100% renewable electricity among states in the country, faster even than California!
  • The bill creates groundbreaking efficiency standards for existing buildings. Buildings account for 74% of the District’s greenhouse gas emissions.
  • This landmark legislation takes aim at emissions from electricity and natural gas use. It scales up the existing Sustainable Energy Trust Fund (SETF) utility fee, which will raise tens of millions of dollars to finance renewable energy and energy efficiency projects and provide assistance to low-income DC residents.
  • The Clean Energy DC Act will fund local programs to assist low-income residents as the city transitions to more sustainable clean energy systems, and create a clean energy workforce development program.
  • Finally, the Act begins to tackle transportation, the #1 driver of climate pollution nationwide. It does so by adjusting the vehicle excise tax to incentivize clean cars and make owning dirty vehicles more expensive. The Mayor is now authorized to put a price on transportation fuels with a DC carbon fee if Virginia and Maryland commit to the same, and to join DC to emerging regional efforts like the Transportation Climate Initiative.

The DC Climate Coalition will continue to push for progressive environmental policies in DC. If you are interested in serving as a ONE DC representative on the DC Climate Coalition, please email Claire at ccook@onedconline.org.


End Pay to Play Politics
!

In early December, the DC Pay to Play Coalition organized to pass sweeping campaign finance reform in the District of Columbia including a new pay to play law. The DC Council passed the Campaign Finance Reform Amendment Act of 2018 (B22-0107) unanimously on December 4th. Mayor Bowser did not veto the bill, but did not sign it either, which means it will become law after an obligatory 30 day Congressional review period. The legislation will:

  • Restrict major government contractors from making campaign contributions to those responsible for issuing the contracts, addressing ongoing concerns about “pay to play” politics
  • Ensure the independence form political interference of the campaign finance enforcement agency
  • Enhance the disclosure requirements for money in District elections and require that “independent” expenditures be truly independent of candidates
  • Mandate training of all candidates and campaign treasurers of the campaign finance and ethics laws

Congratulations to everyone in the DC Pay to Play coalition! Jews United for Justice, DC for Democracy, Campaign Legal Center, ONE DC, Empower DC, People For the American Way, the Ward 3 Democrats, DC NOW, Franciscan Action Network, the Brennan Center for Justice and DC for Reasonable Development.

Decriminalize Fare Evasion!

In January 2019, the “Fare Evasion Decriminalization Amendment Act of 2018 was successfully passed. This bill makes evading fare on WMATA buses and trains a civil offense punishable by a fine, rather than a crime that can result in arrest, jail time, and/or a fine of up to $300.The zero-tolerance criminal enforcement of low-level offenses like fare evasion by Metro Transit Police has a negative impact on all District residents. It has proven especially harmful to young people and to poor Black and brown residents who rely on public transit the most and who are disproportionately targeted by police enforcement.

After the DC Council voted to pass the bill in late 2018, Mayor Bowser vetoed the bill. With her veto, the Mayor put in jeopardy this important criminal justice reform that will prevent hundreds of Black DC residents from unwarranted arrests, jail-time, and criminal records for failure to pay a $2 fare (91% of fare evasion enforcement has targeted Black riders). Thanks to broad community support, the Council voted 11-2 to override the Mayor's veto, protecting the bill.


Local Job Postings

Fair Budget Coalition Advocacy Manager
Since its founding in 1994, the Fair Budget Coalition (FBC) has brought together community members directly affected by poverty, human and legal services providers, advocates, faith organizations, and concerned District residents to advocate for a District budget and public policies that meaningfully address poverty and human needs. FBC leverages the collective power of its sixty plus member organizations to accomplish this work, including by helping them increase the civic engagement of those they serve and by creating processes and structures to ensure that those directly affected by poverty are at the forefront of crafting solutions. FBC’s vision is of a just and inclusive D.C. that supports strong and stable communities, allows low-income residents to live in dignity, and makes it possible for all residents to achieve economic security. Fair Budget Coalition (FBC) is seeking a motivated and enthusiastic individual to join our team as the Advocacy Manager. Reporting directly to the Fair Budget’s Executive Director, Advocacy Manager is responsible for implementing the organization’s advocacy/policy strategy and overseeing community engagement.
Click here for more information

Working Families Organizer
Working Families is a progressive political organization that fights for an economy that works for all of us and a democracy in which every voice matters. We believe that our children's life chances must not be determined at birth and that America must be a nation that allows all its people to thrive. We fight to elect strong progressive advocates and advance legislation that will reduce inequality and improve the quality of life for people living in Black, Brown, undocumented, and White lower-income and working-class communities. We are an anchor group in the new Birth to Three for All DC Coalition (B3DC), which is organizing across the District for policies and city funding that support infants, young children, and their families so they can thrive and that also work to end the inequities confronting poor children from before birth. This position’s primary focus will be on organizing grassroots engagement for this campaign, but it will also support Working Families’ other organizing efforts.
Click here for more information


D.C. Area Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action


From February 4-8, teachers across the D.C. area will implement Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action curriculum in their classrooms. In the evening, there will be events for educators, students, stakeholders, and community members to actively engage in the movement. Educators, schools, organizations, and community members are invited to learn more and sign up to participate in the week of action.
Click here to check out the events


Upcoming Events

ONE DC Happy Hour Fundraiser at Madam's Organ
Thursday, February 7 - 5:00 PM to 9:00pm
Madam's Organ - 2461 18th St NW
Come out to support ONE DC's work at a fun and lively night at Madam's Organ. $1 from every drink or food item sold during the happy hour benefits ONE DC.
Click here to RSVP

DRUG$ the Price We Pay Film Screening
Sunday, February 17 - 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
THEARC: Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus - 1901 Mississippi Ave SE
The MOST important film of 2019! Are you or a loved one dependent upon prescription drugs? Did you know that prior to 1997 drugs could not be marketed directly to consumers via ads? Did you know with pills that sell for as much as $1k with a production cost of $1 makes the Drug industry the most profitable industry in America by far? #dosomething Join us as we expose how #BigPharma decides who lives or dies.
Click here to RSVP


ONE Bit of Good News - ONE DC member Dewayne Brown makes recovery from gunshot wound

Dewayne Brown is a fifth generation Washington, longtime ONE DC member, and served on the Shared Leadership Team for 8 years. Dewayne was a leader in the Right to Income and Marriott Jobs Training Program campaign. NBC Washington recently covered Dewayne's story of recovery. Click here to view

Dewayne at a Respect DC rally in 2011.

A Special Note About ONE DC Organizer Nawal

In early January, Nawal's apartment building caught on fire while she was inside. Nawal jumped out of her bedroom window to escape and is recovering from an injury she sustained - she is healing well and in good spirits. We know that Nawal will have many needs in the coming days and as members of her community we want to show her our support! We have started a GoFundMe page to collect donations to aid in Nawal's healing and future emotional, spiritual and material needs.

Everyone who knows Nawal knows how kind-hearted she is and this is a chance for us to show how special she is to us. Please give anything you can to support!


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Do you want to be a writer, editor, or designer for the ONE DC Monthly Voice? Email organizer@onedconline.org
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