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Social Justice

What Cities Can Learn From Seattle’s Racial And Social Justice Law

The right-wing political campaign against diversity, equity and inclusion policies taking place in several states across the U.S. has called into question the nation’s commitment to achieving racial equality. In this landscape, Seattle is marking a milestone of sorts – the first anniversary of adopting its Race and Social Justice Initiative ordinance. This ordinance, signed into law in April 2023, places the Race and Social Justice Initiative under the Seattle Office of Civil Rights and states that all departments in city government are responsible for “implementing change toward ending institutional racism,” which is defined in Seattle as “policies, practices, procedures, and culture of an institution or system that work better for white people and cause harm to people of color, often inadvertently or unintentionally.”

Landmark Study Reveals Gas Stove Emissions Boost Childhood Asthma

People who use gas or propane stoves in their homes are regularly exposed to harmful levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a new study shows. The household appliances emit pollutants that can be linked to approximately 200,000 current cases of childhood asthma, with 25 percent of those cases tied to nitrogen dioxide alone. The study, published Friday in Science Advances, represents the first time researchers have quantified the link between gas stoves and asthma from NO2 exposures inside homes. “I didn’t expect to see pollutant concentrations breach health benchmarks in bedrooms within an hour of gas stove use, and stay there for hours after the stove is turned off,” Rob Jackson, a professor at Stanford University and the lead scientist on the study, said in a statement.

Unions And Worker Co-Ops: Economic Justice Requires Collaboration

Unions and worker cooperatives have a lot in common when it comes to passions and principles for democratic workplaces. Where they differ is in strategy and tactics. At this moment in history, it is clear to many that much needs to be torn down and much needs to be built up. To face this challenge and change our economic system to achieve genuine workplace democracy requires new ways of doing business and a multi-pronged approach. To explore these issues in greater depth, the Community and Worker Ownership Project at the City University of New York (CUNY) published a report titled A Union Toolkit for Cooperative Solutions, which highlights seven case studies of how unions and worker co-ops have together built worker power.

Ed Asner (1929 – 2021)

Ed Asner was beyond a gifted actor who created an identifiable, singularly American cultural character. He was also “one of us”–a veteran and a person of conscience. After the US illegally invaded Iraq, Ed Asner wrote the following: Our citizens either will not or cannot go to the streets until catalyzed by someone or something to motivate them. Courage to Resist accomplishes one part of this program of resistance by speaking for and defending the brave souls in the military who do not wish to be part of the perfidy of this administration. It behooves us to do all we can to support Courage to Resist with money and with spine. He was drafted during the Korean War in 1951 to the Army Signal Corps and served two years in Europe. As a veteran, it’s what he did after his time in service and during the course of his career that demonstrates who he was as a human who supported civil rights, the women’s Equal Rights Amendment, the rights of workers and labor, and his stand against war and militarism.

Social Justice Demonstrations Mark First Week Of NFL

NFL players marked the first full weekend of professional football by participating in social justice demonstrations, with various teams opting to stay in the locker room, link arms or kneel during the national anthem. All eyes were on the NFL players after a summer of protests against racial injustice years after former NFL player Colin Kaepernick first began kneeling during the anthem to demonstrate against police brutality and racial injustice. 

The Pandemic Revealed That Child Care Is Vital Work

The COVID-19 pandemic has created several shifts across the labor landscape while exposing how piecemeal family care policies have left workers in precarious situations. The closure of schools at the end of the spring semester and uneven plans for reopening this fall have prompted questions about how a society and economy can function without sustainable care work. In this interview with M.A.R.CH. co-founder Phuong Nguyen, we discuss what the Memphis-based organization has meant within the vibrant social justice scene and how developing care policies in a right-to-work state could impact the future of childcare movements, both in and out of academia.

What Can Safety Without Police Look Like?

This is a moment of contention and restructuring in America. Mass public outcry is exposing the long-buried, problematic foundations of a nation built on human trafficking, commodification and enslavement of people from Africa, and on the genocide and attempted erasure of Indigenous societies. Protesters across the country are tumbling the statues of profiteers and benefactors of those atrocities, and pushing the nation to dismantle its many false narratives and systems of power. This uprising asks for an acknowledgment that the police force, in particular, is a direct extension of a problematic history, which has vilified and punished Black and Brown Americans disproportionately from the beginning. And they are revisualizing the ways in which true safety and equity can emerge. What will stand in the place of the outmoded, harmful emblems and institutions? What can and should new systems look like? What new programs and justice models can replace the police?

These Activists-in-Training Are Scouting For Social Justice

Anayvette Martinez wanted to start a different kind of girl scout troop after her then fourth-grade daughter expressed her desire to join one. What Martinez found, however, was that her daughter Lupita would have been one out of two Brown girls to join. She knew this statistic had to change. “The traditional scouting model wouldn’t center her experience as a woman of color, and it would have been a watered-down version of what she could be exposed to,” says Martinez (who identifies herself as Queer) of the idea of starting the Radical Monarchs. She wanted the troop to truly center women of color’s identity.

A Call For People’s Awareness Of Venezuela

In 1999, we decided, as a nation and democratically, to be independent and sovereign, to move towards a model of social justice and equality, as well as to freely make use of our vast wealth. We agreed that such a transition would be made peacefully and democratically. This, our decision, became a threat for the United States administrations, loyal representatives and spokespeople of large capital. They declared war on us since that moment. That war intensified since 2013, when Hugo Chavez passed away. This is not unconventional warfare, they are not launching missiles, nor are they bombing military zones. This is even a more fateful war, causing affliction and damage to the whole population, to boys, girls, women, the elderly, men, civilians, and also to soldiers. It is a war that is leaving appalling injuries.

Civil Rights Groups To Hold Social Justice Rally In Atlanta Before The Super Bowl

Organizers will stage a rally to call for the removal of Confederate monuments and symbols on the eve of the big game. A group of civil rights organizations is planning to hold a rally in Atlanta to denounce white supremacy, among other themes, ahead of Sunday’s Super Bowl 2019. On Saturday, organizations, community members and activists will take advantage of the Super Bowl’s spotlight on Georgia’s capital to launch a movement calling for the removal of Confederate monuments and symbols in the state. Demonstrators at the “United We Shall Stand Rally,” set for noon at Piedmont Park, will also address voter suppression and police brutality, according to Richard Rose...

Reflections On Olympia Assembly: An Experiment In Popular Power

Olympia Assembly started in March of 2017, amidst ecological and political catastrophe. It was created as a communal assembly project, coalescing around points of unity such as direct democracy, non-hierarchy, ecology, mutual aid, and direct action. The goal of the organization is to build the new world in the shell of the old by creating the building blocks of a libertarian socialist dual power project. It seeks to meet people’s needs and decentralize power, leading to a crisis of legitimacy for the state where people powered institutions are posed against hierarchical structures.

As The Universal Declaration Of Human Rights Turns 70, It’s Time To Resurrect Its Vision Of Global Sharing And Justice

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is one of the most translated and celebrated documents in the world, marking its 70th anniversary this year. But relatively few people are aware of the significance of its 25th Article, which proclaims the right of everyone to an adequate standard of living—including food, housing, healthcare, social services and basic financial security.[1] As our campaign group Share The World’s Resources (STWR) has long proposed, it is high time that activists for global justice reclaim the vision that is spelled out in those few simple sentences. For in order to implement Article 25 into a set of binding, enforceable obligations through domestic and international laws, the implications are potentially revolutionary.

Scholars For Social Justice Launches With 100+ Members

Scholars for Social Justice (SSJ) is a new formation of progressive scholars committed to promoting and fighting for a political agenda that insists on justice for all, especially those most vulnerable. We are clearly living in dangerous times with the election of Donald Trump and the empowerment of a set of rabidly right wing and racist forces. Trump, Pence and the Republicans have made it clear that not only will they usher in a radically conservative policy agenda threatening any incremental advances won under the Obama presidency, but more fundamentally reactionary right-wing supporters will directly target the rights, status and lives of people of color, Muslims, women, immigrants, LGBT communities, the poor, indigenous and differently-abled and all who have been forced to live on the margins in this country.

Pennsylvania Community Finds Its Bearings In Trump Era

TITUSVILLE, PENNSYLVANIA — Shoehorned between the state line and the Allegheny River in Pennsylvania’s northwest corner, the city of Titusville is as red as America gets, a place where virtually every one of its 5,601 residents identified his or her race as “white” on the 2010 U.S. Census, and a few storefront windows, rather  bewilderingly, display Confederate flags and “Trump: Make America Great Again” campaign banners even now, more than a year after the 2016 presidential election. Unsurprisingly, African-Americans across the state, if they’ve heard of it at all, tend to view the bucolic enclave and its environs with some trepidation, peppering their goodbyes with so many warnings to “be careful” and “be safe” that black students enrolled at the University of Pittsburgh’s feeder campus in Titusville often joke that their parents think that Crawford County is a combat zone in Kabul or Fallujah.

Lifting Up Community Voices To Tackle Injustice

Lillie A. Estes calls herself a "community strategist." Others see her as a force of nature. She has lived in Richmond, Virginia, for 35 years, where she builds and develops innovative alliances between organizations and people. Estes is well-known and respected both in the public housing project where she lives and by many public officials in Richmond. She has been a pioneer in race reconciliation work in the heart of the Confederacy, and is on what she calls a "spiritual journey" to improve her community. This began with her first efforts as a high school student in Newport News, Virginia, and as an active member of the NAACP Youth Council.
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