The Brooklyn Electoral Working group is holding a meeting on Thursday, October 4th at 7:00pm. There will be a debriefing on Julia Salazar’s win in the Democratic Primary, and a discussion of potential future projects. This is a perfect opportunity for those interested in electoral politics to learn about the various committee work that goes into campaigns. Register here.
Debt & Finance
The Debt & Finance Working group has been developing a variety of projects, including:
Postal Banking Campaign. Together with the Racial Justice Working Group and the Postal Workers Union, they are collecting signatures for a petition to bring a postal banking pilot program to the Bronx. In the summer they hit their target of five thousand signatures, and are now coordinating to press the idea to the Bronx Borough President and the Postmaster General.
Public Banking Campaign. Together with the New Economy Project and the Climate Justice Working Group, they have been participating in strategy and research meetings to develop a plan to bring public banking to New York, and hope to grow this project into a broader DSA priority in the coming months.
Medical Debt Jubilee. They have been working with the Debt Collective to raise funds for a medical debt jubilee. The plan is to raise a fund of approximately $5,000, which will then be used to abolish approximately $100,000 of medical debt. The jubilee is also planned to spread awareness about DSA's broader New York Health Act campaign.
DSA Credit Union. They have established a sub-group to explore the idea of potentially establishing a DSA credit union. Currently, they are developing the idea and seeking legal advice, with the goal of presenting the idea to the broader DSA if it appears to be a feasible goal.
The Immigrant Justice Working Group is currently focused on two campaigns: SanctuaryHood and ICE out of the Courts. SanctuaryHood is a community-oriented project currently active in Bushwick and Bay Ridge, with the goals of establishing sanctuary spaces in immigrant neighborhoods to protect undocumented immigrants from deportation and building grassroots organizing through network-building, community education and resiliency. ICE out of the Courts is a campaign targeting NY State Chief Judge Janet DiFiore in order to restrict ICE access into courtrooms. To get involved in SanctuaryHood canvasses or upcoming actions for ICE out of the Courts, email firstname.lastname@example.org or join us at our next working group meeting on Tuesday October 9th. Find the details here.
The Climate Justice Working Group and Red Rabbits were part of the People's Climate March coalition that planned and organized a left contingent for the three-thousand person Rise March on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2018 in Battery Park. At the post-rally coalition meeting, it was revealed that NYC-DSA had the most sign-ups of any group in the rally. DSA members also played a prominent role the next morning in civil disobedience when ten individuals shut down the street outside the midtown office of Gov. Cuomo. Afterwards, Mayor de Blasio and Comptroller Stringer announced the reinvestment of $4 billion in green energy and clean water projects that had been removed from the city's investments in fossil fuels at the instigation of climate organizers.
The working group also contributed to the canvassing for Julia Salazar. During canvassing, they queried voters about their energy bills and explained how socialist politics can fight for changes to energy.
Climate Justice also brought a contingent out to an event held by Sunset Park’s UpRose in Union Square on Thursday, September 21 to mark one year since Hurricane Maria and condemn disaster capitalism, indifference, and displacement. NYC-DSA's Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Naomi Klein, and others spoke at the rally.
Alongside the Red Rabbits/Medics and the Libertarian Socialist Caucus, the working group is currently planning to deal with the next climate emergency in NYC including developing maps of problematic areas and collaborating with existing community groups around a program for vulnerable neighborhoods.
Climate Justice is also developing programs and platforms around food justice and ecosocialist issues at the NYC, state, and federal levels in alliance with committed activists. As part of a commitment to a just and sustainable food environment, they are helping to support the nascent Central Brooklyn Food Cooperative and are participating in community gardening through the Bronx, Upper Manhattan, and Brooklyn.
Finally, they have joined in protests and petition deliveries to encourage the NYC to adopt legislation that would require buildings to retrofit boilers and end the use of dirty energy to power buildings. This includes fighting to transform the REV/VDER (Reforming the Energy Vision - Value of Distributed Energy Resources) energy rate-setting process at the NYS Public Service Commission to ensure that the development of renewable energy will be viable and affordable for users.