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Racial Justice Rising is supporting the Poor People’s Campaign. If you have questions, please contact Ruth at ppc@racialjusticerising.org.

The first Poor People’s Campaign launched on Mothers Day, May 14, 2018 with 40 days of moral action across diverse issues and geography in at least 41 states. Actions will include rallies, education and organizing, cultural arts events, nonviolent civil disobedience, and fusion coalition building. 
5 Moral Monday actions will occur at Statehouses around the country, each Monday with a different theme. (Transportation to Boston from WMass is being arranged.) The events will begin at 2 PM. Dates and the current themes are:

  • May 14 – Children, Women, Youth & Disabilities
  • May 21 – Intersection between systemic poverty and racism, immigration, voting rights
  • May 28 – War economy and veterans
  • June 4 – Ecological Devastation – Health of the planet and the right to health care
  • June 11 – Everybody has a Right to Live – Wages and housing

On June 23 there will be a huge national rally in Washington, D.C. 

Western MA area
Come to an informational/introductory meeting April 25th, 6:30 – 8:30, Forbes Library, Northampton. Sponsored by ARISE for Social Justice, Springfield.
Sign up for a PPC Non-Violent Civil Disobedience training.
 The next 2 trainings in Western Massachusetts are on April 28 and May 6. Trainings are useful for anyone who will be participating in PPC events, and required for anyone who plans to risk arrest or support those risking arrest.  The first local training was held on Saturday, April 14th from 1:00-5:30 in Springfield MA and simultaneously in 39 other states, including a live link with Rev. Barber.
 Interested in joining a western MA committee? Please fill out form. 

Read the Declaration of Fundamental Rights and Poor People’s Moral Agenda:

“Fifty years after Rev. Dr. King and the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign declared that silence was betrayal, we are coming together to break the silence and tell the truth about the interlocking evils of systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, the war economy and our distorted moral narrative,” the Moral Agenda reads. “We declare that if silence was betrayal in 1968, revival is necessary today.” The co-chairs Revs. Dr. William Barber and Dr. Liz Theoharis also announced the first of the six weeks of action would be centered around child poverty, women in poverty and people with disabilities, launching on Mother’s Day with a mass meeting in Washington, D.C. Subsequent weeks will focus on systemic racism, veterans and the war economy, ecological devastation, inequality, and our nation’s distorted moral narrative. To prepare for the 40 days, organizers will hold simultaneous nonviolent direct-action trainings in 30 states, including Massachusetts.

 In the summer and fall of 2017, the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival was “on tour,” with stops in over 15 states across the country. At these stops, the Campaign held mass meetings, press conferences, truth commissions, and other events.

See, e.g., “A new Poor People’s Campaign wants to change how society defines morality,” by Katrina vanden Heuval, Washington Post, December 5, 1917,

Huge Organizing Effort, ’40 Days of Action’ Launching to Fight Poverty: Fifty years later, a new Poor People’s Campaign connects religious faith to social justice,” by Eleanor J. Bader, alternet.org, March 4, 2018.

Ready to take the pledge?  You may take the pledge here: https://poorpeoplescampaign.org

Watch the Poor People’s Campaign launch video:

On the Campaign, see, e.g., “A new Poor People’s Campaign wants to change how society defines morality,” by Katrina vanden Heuval, Washington Post, December 5, 1917,

Huge Organizing Effort, ’40 Days of Action’ Launching to Fight Poverty: Fifty years later, a new Poor People’s Campaign connects religious faith to social justice,” by Eleanor J. Bader, alternet.org, March 4, 2018.


Background

(from https://poorpeoplescampaign.org)

On December 4, 1967, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. announced plans for a Poor People’s Campaign to organize towards transformative actions to end poverty, racism, and militarism in America. At that time, the nation was deeply divided, particularly by the issues of racial justice and the Vietnam War.

And yet even after Dr. King’s assassination in April 1968, this multi-racial mobilization of the poor went forward, mobilizing caravans that converged in Washington, D.C. to erect a shanty town on the National Mall that came to be known as “Resurrection City.”

The Poor People’s Campaign culminated in a Solidarity Day Rally for Jobs, Peace, and Freedom involving more than 50,000 people on June 19, 1968. Over the past 50 years, social movements have continued the struggle against poverty and the interrelated issues of the war economy and militarism, racism, and ecological devastation. They have won some gains, but even the handful of select indicators in this report make clear that we are still living in a system that serves a tiny minority at the expense of the rest of us.

The Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival is working with the Institute for Policy Studies to produce an analysis of the Campaign’s four core issues: racism, poverty, the war economy/militarism, and ecological destruction. This preliminary analysis was released at the launch of the Campaign in Washington D.C. on December 4, 2017. Initial findings reveal that, by many measures, these problems are worse today than they were five decades ago. It is in all of our interest to recapture what Dr. King called the “revolutionary spirit” needed to solve these systemic problems.

 Links

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