There is a LOT happening in the SURJ network right now. Here's a round-up of resources for activists and leaders. Whether you are new to SURJ or a long time chapter leader, these resources are for you.
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Rural Communities Support Harney County Residents
Since the occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge, SURJ has been committed to supporting the Rural Organizing Project and their long-term efforts to organize against outside militias and for rural community needs. SURJ was proud to co-create a tool-kit in the wake of the occupation and rural partners across the country created a petition that reads: “We need public investment and a new vision for thriving rural communities that is built on our shared interest in a fair economy and racial justice that go hand in hand.” To sign on, click here.
Take it Down- The Sound of Revolution
Efforts to #TakeItDown continue to expand and grow. In January, our friends the Peace Poets along with JLove and M1 Productions collaborated to create #TakeItDown--The Sound of Revolution. We're thrilled to have this song as an addition to the tremendous work that is happening to take down symbols of the confederacy and of white supremacy all across the nation. Click to hear #TakeItDown--The Sound Revolution
SURJ Black History Month Toolkit release!
This toolkit was created by SURJ Families to find ways to identify our mutual interest as White people in lifting up and calling for Black histories to be taught more widely. It will share online resources about Black histories so that we are not asking Black people in our communities to do the work of educating us, and we will offer up strategies to call in White communities when Black History Month is being approached in problematic ways. Click here to read and download the kit.
Denver SURJ in Action
Two weeks ago, members of the Marshall family, SURJ Denver and many friends lifted up song and hearts at Denver City Council to demand#JusticeforMichaelMarshall. Michael Marshall was a black community member who died Nov. 20 from injuries sustained in a Denver jail at the hands of law enforcement. Marshall was in jail on a $100 bond, charged as a direct result of Denver's criminalization of homelessness - the "Urban Camping Ban." SURJ Denver organized a sing-in and walkout on the City Council. Our actions sent the message: "We must not be silent; we must act now.#Resolve2Resist"
If we are going to build the kind of world we all want, we need a lot more white folks joining the fight for racial justice. The Base Building team in SURJ is launching an exciting series of calls to help local chapters hone skills, learn from what is working in other areas, and grow the base we need to challenge white supremacy now, and over the long haul. Each month, SURJ is hosting a base building call for group leaders, folks interested in starting a group and individuals looking to deepen their base-building skills on 1-1s, canvassing, throwing house parties, and holding space for coaching and trouble-shooting base building challenges. Click here for the complete schedule and to register.
SURJ Yard Signs
Chapters, affiliates and partners across the country are continuing their work to call in white communities through door to door outreach. We still have Black Lives Matter yard signs and we now have new yard signs available (see below) with the proceeds going to the Arab American Association of New York, a key partner in our work. To order, click here.
SURJ on the Road
SURJ at the White Privilege Conference
SURJ members, staff and the Mid-Atlantic SURJ groups will be gathering in April at the annual White Privilege Conference in Philadelphia. Always educational, fun, and challenging, SURJ will be leading a number of sessions including: Facilitating a one day workshop on engaging white people in our work, a three hour session on our work, accountability sessions and white caucuses. For more details, check out the schedule for the White Privilege Conference here. The discount code for SURJ members is SURJ15 at the nonprofit rate.
We are excited to welcome Kristen Brock-Petroshious as our new Development Director. Kristen is a founder of SURJ affiliate Groundwork, and is coming to us from being the Director of GSAFE, a statewide LGBTQ+ organization in Wisconsin. Kristen is based in Madison Wisconsin and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please welcome her to the SURJ team-
Dara, Erin, Andrew, Amy, Carla, Jess, Allyn and all of us at SURJ