WATCH THE VIDEO from SURJ Bay Area's May 2 Event
When We Fight We Win:
Building Community Power to Dismantle the Prison System
On Thursday, May 2, SURJ Bay Area hosted a panel discussion focused on strategies formerly incarcerated-led and -staffed organizations use to shift policy at the state and local levels. Moderated by former Black Panther leader and activist Ericka Huggins, the panel featured Legal Services for Prisoners with Children/All of Us or None Senior Organizer Sandra Johnson, Initiate Justice Policy Director Eric Henderson, and CURB Statewide Co-Cordinators Ivette Alé and Amber Rose Howard. All proceeds from this event went to LSPC/AOUON, Initiate Justice, and CURB, with specific focus on supporting today's Quest for Democracy Day, an annual advocacy day led by formerly incarcerated people and families with incarcerated loved ones to bring their voices to elected officials in Sacramento.
You can still donate to support the mobilization here.
Monday, May 20 • 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
2019 Quest for Democracy Day (Q4D)
Hundreds of formerly incarcerated people, family members with incarcerated loved ones, and allied organizations, including SURJ, are at the annual statewide lobby day in Sacramento sponsored by Legal Services for Prisoners with Children/All Of Us Or None (LSPC/AOUON). The day includes a training on sponsored bills followed by a rally that lifts up the voices and leadership of those most affected by the prison industrial complex. Learn more and donate to support Q4D Day here.
Location: California State Capitol, 12th and N Streets, Sacramento
Monday, May 20 • 7:00 - 8:30 pm
Equity Indicators & the People's Budget: Week 6 - Public Safety
Community Ready Corps Allies and Accomplices (CRCAA) is hosting the last of a series of workshops on the Oakland Equity Indicators Report and the People’s Budget on May 20th. The recently released report evaluates racial equity in the Oakland and the City's failing overall score clearly shows the effects of white supremacy.
This last workshop is on the theme of Public Safety: incarceration, police use of force, domestic violence, and juvenile felony arrests. Oakland scored a 17.3 out of 100 for public safety. At this workshop, CRCAA will share the data from the report and Cat Brooks will help contextualize the data with the work that she is leading on the ground with the Anti-Police Terror Project and Justice Teams Network. You will leave with next steps and more information on how to effectively advocate for a more equitable and fair Oakland.
Location: ACCE, 2501 International Blvd, Oakland
Saturday, June 1 • 1:30 - 4:00 pm
Visionary Organizing Strategies Panel
The Far Right is on the rise, and so is popular support for socialism and racial justice. What strategies will defeat the Right while concretely advancing our visions for liberation? At this Catalyst Project event, hear from three Black women movement leaders about what strategies our movements need now to build the world we long for. Panelists include Rachel Herzing, co-director of Center for Political Education and co-founder of Critical Resistance; Ash-Lee Woodard Henderson, co-executive director of the Highlander Research and Education Center in TN; and Vanessa Moses, Executive Director of Causa Justa:: Just Cause. Sliding scale donation of $0 - $15 suggested.
Location: Oakstop, 1721 Broadway, Oakland
Sunday June 2 • 3:00 - 5:00 pm
Migrants At The Border: What's Really Happening? What Can We Do?
Children separated from their parents, families traveling on foot for months to get to the U.S. border, people fleeing rape, gang violence, government brutality, torture, and murder . . . How can we show up in solidarity with the horrifying situation at the southern border? Hear from SURJ activists on how you can volunteer with Al Otro Lado, an organization known as the "most loving place in Tijuana." Al Otro Lado, a mostly volunteer organization, provides asylum seekers with know-your-rights training, legal consultation, document support, meals, and medical care. SURJ members who spent several days at the border will share their experiences. No Spanish needed.
Location: Oakland address provided upon registering
Sunday, June 23 • 10:00 am – 12:15 pm
Intro to SURJ, Family-Friendly Edition
SURJ moves white people to act for justice, with passion and accountability, as part of a multi-racial majority. Want to get involved? Come learn about our current work and activities. You'll hear about SURJ's pathways for entering the work, including committee work, workshops, and events. We are excited to offer family-friendly activities during this Intro Meeting! For children and youth who are interested in participating in the meeting, there will be child- and youth-friendly discussion topics and interactive activities. We will also provide free childcare for those who do not participate. As with every SURJ Bay Area Intro Meeting, all are welcome and encouraged to join (with children or without). Please RSVP - space is limited.
Location: Freedom & Movement Center, 888 44th St. Oakland
Help Pass Vital Criminal Justice Reforms
May 23 - 30 • Lunchtimes
Call Your Legislator (we'll provide the numbers and script)!
Vital criminal justice reform bills must pass this week or they are tabled for the year. Join SURJ Bay Area for a statewide week of lunchtimes calls to urge the Legislature to PASS THESE BILLS. We’ll provide the scripts, you provide the calls! Click here to sign up and learn about the important bills in front of the legislature.
Check Out SURJ Bay Area Policy Priorities for 2019
SURJ Bay Area's Policy Working Group is working in service to, and in collaboration with our people of color-led partner organizations that work on legislative advocacy. As we enter the 2nd quarter of the 2019 California legislative cycle, we’d like to share the bills, propositions, and campaigns that are our focus for 2019. Learn more about the organizations we partner with and the legislation we're working on here, and join our legislative action list here.
Ask Governor Newsom to Remove Gregory Ahern from the Lottery Commission!
Please join SURJ's Mobilization Committee and the Prison Abolition Working Group in calling on Governor Gavin Newsom to remove Alameda County Sheriff Gregory Ahern from the California Lottery Commission. The California Lottery is supposed to embrace the values of integrity and transparency, but in 12 years as Alameda County Sheriff, Ahern has overseen massive growth in his jail budget even as the jail population declined by 45 percent. His office has perpetrated a stunning array of human rights abuses, including overseeing 33 in-custody deaths, punishment of people in need of medical care, pressure on women to get abortions, and other egregious mistreatment and neglect. Governor Newsom has the authority to remove Ahern as Lottery Commission chair and reduce the reach of his power. Please take 20 seconds today and sign this petition to the governor to remove Ahern from this statewide office.
Donate to Pine Ridge Reservation Emergency Relief
The Oglala Lakota Nation has declared a state of emergency on the sprawling Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Severe flooding there has made many roads impassible and trapped some residents in their homes for over two weeks. In response to the devastating situation, local community members founded Pine Ridge Reservation Emergency Relief, working in tandem with Oglala Sioux Tribe Emergency Management. You can help by donating to relief efforts here.
A SURJ Member’s Eyewitness Report from the Border
"Children separated from their parents, families traveling on foot for months to get to the U.S. border, people fleeing rape, gang violence, government brutality, torture, and murder..." Horrified by the stories she had been hearing about the situation at the southern border, SURJ Mobilization Committee member Lynn Levey traveled to the border with her daughter to volunteer and support asylum-seekers there. Read her moving eyewitness account of the experience and learn how you can support El Otro Lado, the amazing organization they volunteered with in Tijuana.
Free Masonique Saunders in Columbus OH
Columbus OH police killed 16-year-old Julius Tate Jr. in December and a week later arrested his 16-year-old girlfriend, Masonique Saunders, charging her with the murder the police committed in fear that she would testify against them. SURJ Columbus is working with a community coalition, demanding that Masonique be released from jail and that all charges be dropped. Learn more about the case here, sign the petition here calling on the Franklin County Prosecutor to drop all charges (you do not have to be an Ohio resident), and donate here to help with Masoniques' legal fees.
Boycott 24-Hour Fitness
Join Black Lives Matter Los Angeles in pursuit of justice for Albert Ramon Dorsey and Dennis Todd Rogers, killed by police who were called by 24-Hour Fitness employees. On December 23, 2018, more than 500 community members voiced their outrage at 24-Hour Fitness' practice of calling police on Black members. Join the boycott of 24-Hour Fitness until they meet demands to work in partnership with BLMLA to: issue a statement affirming the value of Black lives; conduct cultural competency training for all managers, workers, and franchises; and develop new protocols and alternatives to calling the police. For full details, read the letter here.
SURJ Bay Area Chapter - Join us! Through community organizing, mobilizing, and education, SURJ moves white people to act as part of a multi-racial majority for justice with passion and accountability. Learn more at www.surjbayarea.org. SURJ Bay Area is one of 150 chapters and affiliates nationwide. Learn about SURJ National and our mission, vision, and values HERE.
Want to support our work? You can make a donation for SURJ's organizing and educational efforts with over half of what we raise going to Black and people of color-led partner organizations. Make a one-time donation or become a monthly sustainer HERE. Contributions are tax-deductible.
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Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) Bay Area c/o PO Box 22748, Oakland CA 94609
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