archive

December 2017

Action Steps 12/27/17

IL-9 Action Newsletter 12/27/17

 

5 Things To Do This Week to Resist from the IL-9

 

As 2017 comes to a close and 2018 begins, now is the perfect time for resistance reflection and goal-setting. During this week as the calendar changes to a new year, spend some time thinking about these questions to wrap up your 2017 resistance work and to set yourself some goals for 2018.

 

What did you do to resist in 2017? Thinking back on the full year, what did you do to contribute to resistance efforts? Did you attend a march or protest? Circulate or sign petitions? Phone bank for progressive candidates in typically red states? Make a list of all you did to resist this year, and note the activities that left you feeling particularly energized and empowered.

 

What would you like to do more of in 2018? Consider your 2017 activities, especially those that left you feeling like you were making a difference, and set some measurable goals to engage in those types of activities again in 2018. For example, if you felt powerful while canvassing to get local candidates on the 2018 ballot, make a commitment to spend time in 2018 canvassing or phone banking for those candidates as the midterm elections near. Add a recurring reminder to your calendar so you’ll get nudges throughout the year to follow through on your goals.

 

What issues are most important to you? One thing we learned in 2017 is that we could all easily stretch ourselves too thin by trying to take action on every topic that matters—there are so many issues that need attention and action. The resistance is large, however, which means that individuals really can make a substantial difference by focusing on just one to three issues that are most important to you. So sit down, make a list of the issues that move you the most, and think about two ways you can support progress on each issue. For instance, if you care most about immigrant rights, you can commit to donating to immigrant legal defense organizations and demonstrating and making calls to demand a DREAM Act. Don’t underestimate the value of donating to the causes you care about—funding is vital to helping make our ideal, equitable nation a reality.

 

What do you still want to know more about? It would be an understatement to simply say there’s been a lot of news this year; often it’s felt as though the main news stories have changed so quickly that it’s hard to stay informed. We all have topics on which we don’t know as much as we’d like or we should, so for 2018 make a commitment to learn about that topic, that legislation, or that idea that you keep hearing about but don’t quite understand just yet. Better yet, commit to exploring a new topic each month, or every week. A more informed citizenry makes our country stronger. Make sure you utilize reputable information sources as you grow your brain.

 

Do you know people who don’t or can’t vote? 2018 is a midterm election year, and the stakes—while always high—are particularly so this year. In Illinois, we have the opportunity to kick Governor Rauner out of office and elect a progressive governor; neighboring Congressional districts have the chance to send a Democratic representative to D.C. and help turn the House of Representatives blue. Commit to helping friends and neighbors register to vote if they’re not already, then commit to ensuring they can and do get to the polls on Election Day. It’s months away, but making the commitment now and being on the lookout for ways to help everyone vote—especially those who are typically marginalized—is a first step toward taking back our elected offices.

 

Together we can make our voices and our actions even more powerful than in 2017. Keep resisting.

Action Steps 12/20/17

IL-9 Action Newsletter 12/20/17

 

5 Things To Do This Week to Resist from the IL-9

 

Demand a DREAM Act

 

On Wednesday afternoon December 20, starting at 3 p.m., demonstrators will be participating in a sit-in at the office of Senator Dick Durbin downtown at 230 South Dearborn. This sit-in, an action from the #OurDream Alliance, is one of many demonstrations happening nationwide this week to demand that Congress pass a clean DREAM Act as part of their spending bill, which must be authorized by Friday, December 22 to avoid a shutdown. Find this and other events at the Fight for Our Dream website.

 

Learn from the Alabama Senate Special Election

 

Democrat Doug Jones won the Alabama Senate seat vacated by Jeff Sessions early this month in a special election. He won by an extremely narrow margin, and exit polls show his victory hinged on the votes of black Alabamans showing up to the polls. Many states don’t make it easy for people of color and other historically marginalized people to get out and vote—and voter suppression tactics tend to mean people who would typically vote on the liberal side of the ticket never get their voices heard. Gear up for the 2018 midterm election battles by reading up on the main lesson from the Alabama Jones win: that it’s vital to ensure black voters can cast their ballots.

 

Take some time to educate yourself on voter suppression tactics currently being used across the country to keep the poor, people of color, and the youngest and oldest potential voters from casting their ballots. Visit Spread the Vote to learn more, and consider donating to help Americans in districts requiring voter IDs to secure the documentation necessary to exercise their right to vote.

 

Be Prepared for Potential Demonstrations

 

There has been an uptick in chatter recently of conservative officials and pundits calling for the removal of special counsel Robert Mueller from the Department of Justice investigation into Russian collusion in the 2016 election. Groups across the country have put together rapid response demonstration networks that are ready to spring into action should Mueller be fired over the next few weeks. Find your preferred demonstration location and add your name to the list of those to be notified in the event of a Mueller firing.

 

Move On is also putting together a contact list for individuals who want to be kept informed of demonstrations that may follow any event deemed necessary of a crisis response, from an attack within the United States to an attack on the civil liberties of Americans. Add your name to ensure you’ll be in the know should any sudden event inspire a demonstration in response.

Action Steps 12/13/17

IL-9 Action Newsletter 12/13/17

 

5 Things To Do This Week to Resist from the IL-9

 

Urgent! Last Chance to Choose Your Health Plan!

 

December 15 is the final day of open enrollment for those seeking health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. That means it’s your last chance to change or add coverage for yourself and your family, and also to make sure all your friends and neighbors know it’s time to enroll, too. Visit the Get America Covered project’s website for resources and support to make sure all your friends and family know that enrollment lasts only through December 15.

 

Indivisible Illinois is also organizing daily phone banking to alert Illinois residents to the Affordable Care Act enrollment period. Whether you’ve got just a few minutes to spare or can gather groups of friends to make calls together, it’s not too late to sign up to participate in the phone bank. You’ll be doing your part to ensure everyone in Illinois who needs health insurance through the ACA is able to choose their coverage during open enrollment.

 

Preserve National Lands

 

The president has taken steps to drastically reduce the size of Bears Ears National Monument and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, two federally designated public lands created to preserve and protect the landscape—which has sacred import to several Native American nations. Read about the impact of this reduction from a Native perspective, then take steps to support Native peoples and these lands by working with the Bears Ears Coalition and Patagonia.

 

Demand Unbiased News Coverage of LGBT Issues

 

There’s been much discussion of the gay rights case that was recently before the Supreme Court, in which a Colorado baker refused to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple. Mainstream television news programs have covered the topic, including disgracefully biased content as seen on Megyn Kelly TODAY. Read more about the problematically biased coverage of this case and take action to demand our news sources do a better job of objectively and informatively sharing the news.

 

Make End-of-Year Calls to Your Representatives

 

Our elected representatives here in the IL-9 have aggressively upheld progressive values this year, no small accomplishment considering the political environment we find ourselves in. Take some time at the end of the year to call your representatives to thank them for their hard work—and to remind them of the issues that are most important to you, including the necessity of passing a DREAM act. Get contact information for your federal representatives here.

Action Steps 12/6/17

IL-9 Action Newsletter 12/6/17

 

5 Things To Do This Week to Resist from the IL-9

 

Make Calls for the Alabama Senate Race

 

The Alabama Senate special election will take place on Tuesday, December 12, which means all hands are on deck to get out the vote for Democratic candidate Doug Jones. Jones offers the type of Democratic representation the state needs—and that’s without taking into account that Jones’s Republican challenger, Roy Moore, is embroiled in allegations of his history of dating, pursuing, and harassing underage women. Use this tool to phone bank to predominantly African American voters in Alabama, who have the power to elect Jones to the Senate if they show up on election day next week. Login instructions and scripts are available in the tool.

 

Refill Your Well

 

Resistance efforts draw strength from the energy of resistors, which means it’s vital to take time to recharge throughout the year. Indivisible Evanston will be hosting an end-of-year potluck celebration for people to gather in fellowship and support. The event, which will take place on Wednesday, December 13, from 6:30-8:30 at the Lorraine H. Morton Civic Center, will center on stories of success and hope since the 2016 election. Bring a dish to share.

 

Refill the Well of an Incarcerated Woman

 

Chicago Books for Women Prison is a local charitable organization that works to connect incarcerated women in Chicago with books to feed their brains and skillsets. After a successful #GivingTuesday campaign in which over 350 books were donated to local women, the organization is hoping for continued community support during the holidays. Take a look at their wish list of titles and give a gift that will bring both education and opportunity to some of the most disenfranchised and overlooked members of our community.

 

Reminder: Choose Your Health Plan—And Remind Others to Sign Up, Too

 

We’re approaching the end of open enrollment for those seeking health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. That means it’s time to change or add coverage for yourself and your family, and also to make sure all your friends and neighbors know it’s time to enroll, too. Visit the Get America Covered project’s website for resources and support to make sure all your friends and family know that enrollment lasts through December 15.

 

Indivisible Illinois is also organizing daily phone banking to alert Illinois residents to the Affordable Care Act enrollment period. Whether you’ve got just a few minutes to spare or can gather groups of friends to make calls together, sign up to participate in the phone bank. You’ll be doing your part to ensure everyone in Illinois who needs health insurance through the ACA is able to choose their coverage during open enrollment.