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Washington D.C.

District To Celebrate Emancipation Day Amid Congressional Interference

As Kelsye Adams gears up for D.C. Emancipation Day festivities, she’s focused, now more than ever, on driving home the point to District residents that her hometown’s lack of statehood exacerbates many, if not all, of local policy issues. “We’re not able to make our laws, rules and regulations,” said Adams, a founding core organizer of Hands Off DC, a coalition of more than 50 organizations dedicated to rebuffing congressional interference in local affairs. “It’s blasphemous that residents don’t have a voice.” More than a year ago, Adams joined Nee Nee Taylor, Makia Green, Alex Dodds and a litany of other organizers and organizations in launching the Hands Off DC movement.

Indigenous Human Rights Hearing In DC Scrutinizes Uranium Industry

Washington, D.C. — Members of the Navajo Nation, Ute Nation and Oglala Lakota Nation will testify on Wednesday during a thematic hearing on the impacts of uranium exploitation on the human rights of Indigenous peoples in the United States. The hearing is being held by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and will “allow Native communities who have lived for generations with the waste from historic uranium mining and milling to hold U.S. government officials to account in a public forum,” according to a press release.

United We Dream And Allies Demand Ceasefire And Immigrant Protections

Last week, I joined an action hosted by United We Dream in DC’s Capitol Hill. We demanded a ceasefire now in Gaza and permanent protections for immigrants who have made the United States our home. This action was a response to Senate leaders proposing a bill earlier this month that would fund Israel’s assault on Gaza, the war on Ukraine, more militarization in the Indo-Pacific, and the denial, deportations, and detentions of migrants at the US-Mexico border. Essentially more taxpayer dollars for war and border militarization.

DC’s 2024 Crime Bill Is More War On The Black Working Class

The "Secure DC” Omnibus bill  is the latest attempt by DC’s local government to impose law and order, while ignoring the root issues that lead to street-level crime and advancing the war against the Black working class. After passing unanimously by the DC Council's Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, the new crime bill was voted on and unanimously passed on February 6, 2024, by the full council. Pan-African Community Action (PACA) contends that Black people in the U.S are a domestic colony, an internal colony that is enforced by a massive police presence meant to control and keep us exploited for our labor and other human resources.

150 Mennonites Arrested At Capitol For Demanding Gaza Cease-Fire

The faith-based pro-Palestinian rights group Mennonite Action on Tuesday reported that 150 members and supporters were arrested by U.S. Capitol Police for holding a peaceful occupation of the Cannon House Office Building, demanding a cease-fire in Gaza. The group displayed signs reading, "Mennonites for a Cease-fire" and, "Let Gaza Live" as they sang hymns and other songs from a "cease-fire songbook" organizers had distributed. On its Facebook page about two hours after the peace action began, Mennonite Action reported that "all Mennonites in the Cannon building have been placed in police custody, singing hymns through their arrest."

400,000 Marched In Washington DC Against Biden’s Complicity In Genocide

On January 13, a crowd of 400,000 gathered in Washington, DC’s Freedom Plaza to take the Palestine solidarity movement straight to Biden’s doorstep. Hundreds of thousands then marched, holding Palestinian, Yemeni, South African, and Puerto Rican flags, through DC and straight to the gates of the White House. The mobilization was organized by the American Muslim Task Force on Palestine, which includes American Muslims for Palestine, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Islamic Circle of North America, Muslim American Society, Muslim Student Association-National, Muslim Legal Fund of America, Muslim Ummah of North America, and Young Muslims, and the ANSWER Coalition.

The Largest Palestine Protest In US History Shut Down The Streets Of DC

On Saturday, hundreds of thousands gathered in Washington, D.C., to demand a ceasefire in Gaza. Organizers estimate 300,000 people attended the rally and march, easily making the largest demonstration for Palestine in United States history. Protesters gathered in Freedom Plaza, where organizers delivered speeches and led chants in support of Gaza, before marching to The White House. The event was organized by a coalition of organizations and endorsed by over 500 organizations representing justice movements across the United States. A companion rally was held on the West Coast in San Francisco and drew an estimated 50,000 people.

Biggest Health Worker Strike In United States History Begins

On October 4, 75,000 healthcare workers at Kaiser Permanente facilities in several US states are set to go on strike for three days following the breakdown of contract negotiations last week. A coalition of several unions representing health workers in California, Colorado, Oregon, Washington, Virginia, and Washington, DC is battling the nonprofit health giant for safe staffing levels, cost of living pay increases, and against a two-tier pay system that Kaiser is trying to introduce. The largest union in the coalition is Service Employees International Union (SEIU)-United Healthcare Workers West (UHW) with 57,443 members, but the coalition also includes Office and Professional Employees International Union (OPEIU) Local 30, SEIU Local 49, OPEIU Local 2 and others.

D.C.’s Street Vendor Regulations Formalize The Informal

Informality often makes something beautiful. A rapper freestyling. A jazz musician improvising. A drag queen lip-syncing. Their organic, in-the-moment, uncodified nature is a huge reason they captivate and excite. Street vending is supposed to be the informal version of commerce. In this country, lawmakers and law enforcement have made attempts to codify street vending, and usually it gets pretty ugly, pretty quickly. Maybe this summer in Washington, D.C. will be the start of something different. After years of street vendor-led organizing, earlier this year D.C. Council Members unanimously passed legislation overhauling the District’s street vendor regulations.

Activists From Coast To Coast Demand Biden End Fossil Fuel Era

Washington D.C. – Over 2,000 climate activists, frontline leaders, and environmental justice organizations in over 65 locations in more than 25 US states joined together from June 8–11th for a national week of action to send a strong message to President Biden: no more fossil fuels. With the approval of Willow Project, fast-tracking of the Mountain Valley Pipeline, and rollbacks for environmental protections, the US is doubling down on it’s role as the world’s top oil and gas producer at a time when scientists could not be clearer that stopping fossil fuels is the only way to avert global climate catastrophe.

These Lawsuits Could Turn The Tide On Section 8 Discrimination

In October, the Washington, D.C., attorney general’s office announced the largest civil award in a housing discrimination case in U.S. history. The lawsuit was filed in 2020 against D.C. real estate firms DARO Realty, DARO Management Services and Infinity Real Estate, LLC, which oversaw investing for companies. A judge ruled that DARO would have to pay $10 million to settle a lawsuit brought by holders of Section 8 vouchers, a federally-funded payment system that allows low-income people to rent in the private market. What’s more, DARO had to dissolve its property management business and certain members of leadership who were named as defendants were permanently banned from owning property management businesses in D.C.

WaPo’s All-White Editorial Board Decides DC Can’t Have Democracy

President Joe Biden surprised fellow Democrats when he reversed course and announced he would support a Republican resolution to nullify an overhaul of crime laws passed by the Washington, DC, Council. While Congress has the authority to override DC legislation, it hasn’t done so in more than 30 years, making this move a dangerous new precedent at a time when Republicans are eager to use state power to swat down any progressive advances. Some observers (Slate, 3/3/23; Popular Information, 3/7/23) called out Biden’s hypocrisy. The president’s move comes after he had both endorsed DC statehood and publicly opposed the resolution (2/6/23), arguing that it was a “clear [example] of how the District of Columbia continues to be denied true self-governance and why it deserves statehood.”

Labor And Civil Society Groups Outline Shared Priorities For IPEF

Washington, D.C. — Over 400 labor and civil society organizations outlined shared priorities for the pending Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) trade agreement in a letter sent to President Biden.  The letter comes shortly before the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative is expected to introduce U.S. proposals for IPEF’s labor, environment and digital trade chapters during a key negotiating round being held later this month in Bali, Indonesia. “A wide range of organizations across the United States are ready to fight for an Indo-Pacific trade deal that furthers the President’s vision of creating a new model for trade and international cooperation that prioritizes working people, combats global climate change and reins in Big Tech abuses,” said Arthur Stamoulis.

Federal Lawsuit Filed Against Washington DC Over Police Violence

The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF), and its Center for Protest Law & Litigation, filed a federal lawsuit against the District of Columbia challenging the Metropolitan Police Department’s “repressive and violent tactics including the authorized indiscriminate use of ‘less lethal’ projectile weapons against peaceful protestors and bystanders, gratuitously and without notice or warning and in order to intentionally retaliate against and inflict pain upon protestors challenging policing in our society.” The lawsuit seeks to end the MPD’s unconstitutional and punitive tactics of indiscriminately deploying less lethal weapons, including maiming projectiles, into crowds of persons engaged in First Amendment protected activities, in particular those challenging racist police violence. 

Report On The Rage Against The War Machine Rally

The crowd was about 95% white, with the largest demographic being white men between the ages of 25 and 50, many of whom wore clothing with libertarian slogans. A lot of the older people in the crowd wore peace signs. Most people seemed to have come as individuals, not in groups. There were a few African-Americans, some Middle-Easterners and a few women wearing scarves in the hijab custom. Interestingly for a “coalition,” there were very few signs or banners from organizations other than the Libertarian Party and the Schiller Institute, a project of the right-wing LaRouche cult, which had a speaker, Diane Sare.
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