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Democracy Initiative Weekly Update 8.31.2017

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Monday, August 28th marked the 54th anniversary of the March on Washington.  The Democracy Initiative (DI) is deeply disappointed with the current Administration's continued support and advancement of hate, discrimination, and economic inequality that benefits corporations and large campaign donors. This administration rolls back climate and worker protections at a time when “kitchen table” policies are in need of being addressed for millions of hardworking families and in the face of yet another natural disaster at a time when the administration rolls back climate protections. Read the full DI press release here.

The Democracy Initiative expresses our support for our partners and activists in Texas. To find out ways to help, visit this source shared from DI partner, Greenpeace.

Let's show our Unity and Strength on September 12, 2017: Mobilize Members at the sham commission

It's time to stand together and show who the real frauds are: the members of the Pence-Kobach "Election Integrity" commission. The commission is filled with all-star champions for blocking everyday people from participating in democracy. They want to shrink your power and open the floodgates to corporations and monied interests that oppose economic equality and prioritize pollution profits over the health of communities and families

We cannot leave democracy in the hands of elected officials and big monied interests alone. Our ability to move the issues that matter most in our communities - climate justice, public education, criminal justice reform, and healthcare -- is at stake in this political landscape.

Join the day of action on September 12, 2017 to mobilize millions of people to stand up and demand a democracy that works for all. The Democracy Initiative, Leadership Conference on Civil Rights and many state and national organizations are planning actions to lift up the stories of the millions of Americans whose basic right to participate in democracy is in jeopardy. The coalition is planning multiple grassroots actions and online mobilizations.  Please access the Democracy Initiative’s Pence-Kobach Mobilization Packet to support the mobilizations in the states.

Let us know your capacity to plan actions! Our next meeting will be Wednesday, September 6th, 2017 from 3-4pm ET. Please contact Getachew Kassa, 202-394-2388 with questions.

Our Partner’s Membership is at Risk of Being Purged

Kris Kobach and other commissioners want to use the flawed Interstate Crosscheck, which could purge millions of eligible voters, targets minorities based on insufficient data, and is threat to our democracy.  Mobilize your members to tell the commission #DontMessWithOurVote. Submit written testimony directly to the commission through the Common Cause action page, or use the language drafted to create your own!  Contact Jack Mumby at Common Cause (jmumby@commoncause.org) with questions.



The Power of Our Stories #DontMessWithOurVote      

When we stand together, we can hold our leaders accountable. It is time to make sure we preserve the protections for our health, our neighbors, and the environment.


SHARE A STORY -  Thank you to the DI partners, SEIU, Friends of the Earth, National Action Network, and Clean Water Action for sharing stories. We want to continue to gather stories and identify activists who are speaking out. Mobilize your members to share a short quote on why voting matters to them and connecting the dots to core issues such as the environment, criminal justice, and healthcare. Email Michelle Whittaker, mwhittaker@democracyinitiative.org, with a story.

Interested in learning more about the flawed commission? The Democracy Initiative can provide a special 1:1 presentation with your organization to better understand how the commission impacts your members and how to message them on the urgent need for action. Sign up here.

Voting Victories!

Illinois Automatic Voter Registration Victory

Illinois officially joined with 1/5 of the nation to update and modernize their voting rolls through Automatic Voter Registration (AVR).  AVR became law in Illinois thanks to the work of grassroots organizations, DI Partners and Allies, including Common Cause IL and the Just Democracy Coalition in IL.

AVR will provide Illinois with a possible increase of 2 million new registered voters.

Now that more eligible voters have a voice, citizens of Illinois can hold leaders accountable who do not fight for a higher minimum wage

Congratulations to Allies on Texas Victories: Voter ID is Discriminatory & Redistricting Ruled Unconstitutional

Congratulations to the DI Allies in Texas for your grassroots activism and for calling out injustice. Now more eligible voters in Texas will be able to hold their leaders accountable.

U.S. District Court Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos struck down Texas’ S.B. 5 law, a voter ID law.  Ramos rules that legislators that proposed the law acted with discriminatory intent and that federal supervision of Texas voting laws may be necessary.

Another win for Texas voters last Thursday when the 3-judge panel in the Texas redistricting case ruled that the 2013 State House plan was unconstitutional. The redistricting was found to intentionally dilute minority voting strength and racially gerrymandered districts.  

Mobilizing & Collaboration

Bi-Monthly Mobilizing Meeting


September 6th at 3pm EST / 12pm PST

RSVP to gkassa@democracyinitiative.org, cc: eorbuch@democracyinitiative.org.

Our bi-monthly meetings focus on field strategy with groups working both at the national and state level so we can collaborate and move democracy reforms effectively. All DI Members are welcome.

Protect Our Communities #DefendDACA

August 15th marked the 5th anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.  Over the past 5 years, 800,000 young people have been protected through the program. The Trump Administration is suggesting it will revoke DACA and the protections it provides to these 800,000 young people.  DI Partner, CASA, is mobilizing people to #DefendDACA.

Mobilize your members to #DefendDACA with these actions:

Labor Day: Stand Up For Strong Unions

SEIU is leading a day of action(s) this Labor Day with working people to stand up for the ability to join together in unions to fight for a better future. We know that wages aren’t keeping pace with what it costs to pay the bills, get an education and save for retirement.

Fast-food workers will kick off the day and be joined by working people from healthcare, higher education, airports and other service industries, as well as those leading the fights against racism and to protect immigrants, the environment and healthcare.
Check out the action packet here!
Mobilize your members to:
  1. Tweet, share graphics, and share messages of support over social media
  2. Record a video message of support for workers joining together to form union


Stay Connected with DI Partners

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