A new justice project aimed at creating different electoral strategies for those in the black community is set to launch, organizers announced Monday.
The Movement for Black Lives, a group that encompasses black organizations such as Black Lives Matter, will launch the Electoral Justice Project, a two-step initiative to help black people gain more power in their local communities.
“And in this political time, we also believe that it is our duty to answer two critical questions: Is it possible to bring the clarity and radical vision that many of us have brought to the protest lines to electoral justice and civic engagement? Can we interrupt a political system that has taken advantage of our voices and fallen short to transform our communities?” Jessica Byrd, an organizer, said during a Monday night conference call.
The Electoral Justice Project will consist of two parts. Project organizers plan to hire black organizers called the Electoral Justice League to focus on local strategies and champion certain issues facing the black community. The second part entails a national help desk to reach out and help black organizations with electoral strategies.
“This is really historic. This global movement of black-led organizations all across the country is going to have a help desk that is going to work with them to build capacity and technical support for all of our electoral visioning up and down the ballot,” Byrd said. “We will also build a cohort of 15 black organizers who will work on localized strategies in partnership with those organizations.”
The first big initiative of the project will be a series of 50 black-led town-halls in 50 cities across the country during the weekend of Nov. 5.
“We’re asking you to invite members of your community to your favorite place for a dialogue,” St. Louis activist Kayla Reed told those on the conference call. “We’ll help with the rest. It can be a kitchen table, a coffee shop, a union hall, a church, a school. This is a place where all types of black people can have a safe dialogue about the future of our community as these town halls will be the beginning of leading our culture towards political change.”
The Movement for Black Lives is an umbrella group for over sixty groups that fight for black liberation. The organization released a policy platform last year, calling for an end to the war on black people and free access to high school for all black Americans.
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