Just a few miles downtown, member organizations of People’s Action are converging in DC this weekend to have a big, organization-wide conversation: how to bring change, big change, for working families in the US.
Progressive Maryland members will be numerous -- and active -- among them. If you aren't signed up for the event, though, there is street action as well as lobbying your representatives on tap for the April 28-30 event. Read on.
Just a few miles downtown, member organizations of People’s Action are converging this weekend to have a big, organization-wide conversation: how to bring change, big change, for working families in the US.
Progressive Maryland members will be numerous among them. But outside the conference rooms and discussion sessions, the People’s Wave (Sunday through Tuesday, April 28-30) will wash outward -- to lobby members of the US government for our issues, making big asks and not taking no for an answer. And large numbers of us will be in the streets as well, making our case in no uncertain terms.
The Progressive Maryland delegation to the Conference has been set for some weeks, but there is still plenty of opportunity for action in connection with the People’s Wave. We will engage in strategic direct actions to elevate our narrative and forward our issues and bring our voice to the Hill for a lobby day. To find out more about how to participate in the direct action and the Lobby Day, contact [email protected]
Who’s coming to DC for this event? People’s Action blogger/editor Tim Wilkins has this account:
Are you with us?
This weekend, over a thousand People’s Action members from all across the country will gather in Washington, D.C. to compare notes, celebrate our victories, and prepare to take back the White House in 2020.
People’s champions will be there to greet us – including Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT), Reps. Pramila Jayapal (WA) and Ro Khanna (CA), Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes, New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and Black Futures Lab founder Alicia Garza.
But the most inspiring part of this #PeoplesWave convention will be the People’s Action members, and the stories they tell – folks like Bill Przylucki from POWER LA, who’s fighting for fair housing in Los Angeles, Emma Lockridge from Michigan United, who’s fighting pollution from the Marathon Petroleum Refinery in southwest Detroit, and Mary Gerisch of Rights and Democracy, who’s at the front lines demanding Medicare For All for Vermont and the entire country.
“We still have the power of the vote,” says Mary. “If we can name and claim our rights – to health care, housing and education – and if we all stand together, we can tip the balance.”
“I’m always inspired to see so many people speak truth to power and raise a ruckus,” says George Goehl, director of People’s Action. “What we do is create an arena for folks to tap into a sense of themselves and their power in that way that is hard to do in our society. We’re excited to be able to do that!”
We’ll be joined by the local and state champions who are People’s Action members and who we’ve helped elect – including Mandela Barnes, State Senator Jeff Smith and State Treasurer Sara Godlewski, Michigan State Rep. Laurie Pohutsky and Maryland State Rep. Pamela Queen. Two years ago at our founding convention, forty People’s Action members took a pledge to take back government by running for office.
Last November, we won the U.S. House of Representatives, electing an unprecedented number of women and people of color. People’s Action members and key allies are now elected officials in D.C. and all across the country, from Maine to Minnesota, Pennsylvania to Wisconsin, New York to California.
They are the #PeoplesWave – but you are, too. And together, we will win.
Andre Vasquez, a member of Reclaim Chicago, a People’s Action member group, took that pledge to run for office at our founding convention two years ago. This Chicago native and son of Guatemalan immigrants is now a newly elected Alderman on Chicago’s City Council, where he just unseated a 36-year incumbent.
“The #PeoplesWave of grassroots champions rising up to reclaim our government has just begun,” says Mehrdad Azemun, senior strategist for People’s Action. “People’s organizations like Reclaim Chicago, ONE Northside and the 312 Alliance in Philadelphia have worked cycle after cycle to end the power of machine politics and remake their City Councils. These efforts are now bearing fruit.”
Dozens of frontline groups are coming to D.C. for the #PeoplesWave convention– from PUSH Buffalo and VOCAL-NY to LUCHA in Arizona, COPA in Colorado, ONEAmerica in Washington State, Iowa CCI and many more from the People’s Action network all across the nation.We’ve accomplished so much in the last two years – saving the ACA, stopping the separation of immigrant families, taking back the House and fighting for Superfund. But our work has just begun.
Will you join the #PeoplesWave, as we take this important next step together?
Tim Wilkins writes frequently for the Progressive Breakfast blog at the Campaign for America’s Future.