Key themes to address:
- What is Metro Justice's role in moving towards the change we want to see and applying our theory of change?
- What do we offer that others don't?
- SWOT Analysis.
- What other organizations are similar to us that we should learn with?
Collective Suggested Reading:
- Black Liberation and White Anti-Racism in the Time of Ferguson (video)
- Project South: Consciousness, Vision, Strategy.
- Highlander Center Interactive Timeline.
- Demand Everything by Steven Williams.
- Preoccupying: An Interview with David Harvey.
- Who Works for the Workers.
- Causa Justa, Mission, Vision, History.
- Organizing Transformation: Best Practices in the Transformative Organizing Model.
- Gus Newport Skype meeting to discussion Role of Metro Justice. Details TBA.
- Meeting of Past Metro Justice Presidents.
Meetings and Discussions:
- Week 8/29-9/2: Metro Justice Role in class struggle social movement catalyzing. Details TBA.
- Week 9/5-9/9: Metro Justice Role in challenging white supremacy. Details TBA.
- Week 9/12-9/16: Metro Justice Role in political and popular education. Details TBA.
- Week 9/19-9/23: Metro Justice Role in building alternative institutions. Details TBA.
- Council Meeting 9/19 - Discussion of our theory of change broadly directing to our role. Details TBA.
Identify the skills, resources, and perspectives that we bring to the table to help create the changes we want to see. Clarify how we should relate with other organizations locally, regionally, nationally. Identify what our specific place in the Rochester movement for social justice is.
Below you'll find the written conclusions of our Theory of Change conversations within Metro Justice. These conclusions came from a major online survey of our members, presentations and discussions organized by membership and staff, dialogue with and the Annual Dinner presentation of Bill Fletcher Jr., discussions at each recent meeting of our Council, and discussions of the Strategic Planning Committee.
When reading it, we ask that you consider two things. First, our Strategic Planning Process is an on-going process. This will be a source of a discussion and will likely change in some ways throughout the process. Second, this is not a messaging document. We intend for this to help us find clarity in our mission and direction, not as our slogans or key talking points. This is a document meant for internal Metro Justice purposes. We hope that our members find this helpful in their efforts and that you share with us your feedback.
Pluralism and Diversity of Opinion
Metro Justice is an organization of individuals coming from a diverse array of political experiences and perspectives. Members have joined from a variety of political, economic and social backgrounds and have sought different levels of participation within the organization. There is no specific “guiding ideological framework,” nor do we have allegiance to a specific political party or tendency. We are an organization of veterans of many movement campaigns over many decades, as well as encompassing new “campaigners” in this work. Pluralism has not only been a factor in the life of the organization, but an unarticulated objective, as well. It makes sense to us that because of composition of our membership, a variety of approaches, viewpoints and indeed, routes to change exist within our ranks. There are strong points of agreement, however. From its formation, members have sought to express solidarity with persons of color and to challenge the organizations and policies that restrict, diminish and oppress the full expression of equality and justice for all people. In building our Theory of Change, we strive to develop a unity strong enough to provide meaningful clarity of vision and direction in this time. That unity should be broad enough and loose enough to encompass the wide range of our members and allies currently involved and communities and populations that we hope to include in the future work of Metro Justice.
We should note that as we work on this, the dangers of the right wing, in this country and globally, present new and profound challenges. This phenomenon underscores our desire to build the highest level of unity amongst ourselves, our allies and other progressive forces.
Class Struggle as Framework
As stated earlier, we see increasing concentration of power, wealth, and control in the hands of very few people in our nation and world. At the point of writing this, 84 people control the same amount of wealth as the bottom 3.5 billion people. The nature of our current economic and political systems ensures that this concentration will naturally increase without sizable, organized push for social and economic justice. In the case that substantial resistance doesn’t manifest, the livelihoods of millions of people will get more difficult in notable ways. Spreading poverty is the natural result of massive profits and wealth concentration.
It’s this conflict between two main economic classes that lead to problems of inequity, poverty, alienation, and exploitation. On the one hand, there is a small minority of people who hold the majority of the material and financial wealth, have unfettered access to positions of power, or to those who hold them; have an inordinate amount of influence over economic policy, and who benefit from international trade agreements in the neoliberal mold, international tax havens, etc. On the other hand, there is the vast majority who hold little to no material or financial assets; are often wage earners; who primarily sell their time, labor, and intellects as their primary means of survival. These two groups have inherently contradictory economic and political interests. We are firmly on the side of the working class. While there may be differences in degree of poverty and privilege within the working class, none of us have power or control over real wealth, nor - as individuals - do we seriously influence the way wealth operates in the community.
The vast majority of people in our society have direct interest in a genuine societal redistribution of wealth. That redistribution can and should happen through many methods. Increased wages and benefits from our labor is a clear way to ensure that working people get a more just share of the wealth that their labor creates. Wealth can also be importantly redistributed through progressive taxation to fund a strong social safety net and public services. Wealth redistribution as a solution to many of our problems will almost always be opposed by those with wealth and power. We shouldn’t expect them to be on our side, but instead to fight us as directly as they can and to muddy the waters of debate as much as possible.
Recognizing class struggle, being able to name what class is and how it shapes our political lives, is critical skill for our current activism and a necessary component of leadership development. A clear class analysis helps to combat the view that poverty is the fault of the poor and dismantle internalized working class elitism. In the class-devoid narrative of the United States we must specifically and emphatically draw the connections to class dynamics at play.
Lastly, a class analysis should not be divorced from a racial analysis, and vice versa, as we’ll outline below. A major component of white supremacy and racism in the United States is the disproportionately high rates of poverty in Black and Latino communities. However, ascribing the lack of jobs and low wages among people of color to racism solely misses the story of the white working class and the historic interests of the wealthy. Keeping the two distinct from one another -- race and class -- provides only half the story, neuters us in our ability to understand the roots of the pressing issues today. It also removes points of solidarity with people of color, and prevents broader alliances. We believe firmly in the building of multi-racial alliances of the working class that highlight the need for real solidarity across racial and ethnic lines.
Challenge White Supremacy
The legacy of centuries of racial and national oppression, the experience of colonialism and the imprint of slavery and genocide have shaped and continues to impact life in the United States. We view institutional racism as the central factor in the plan to divide working people from acting upon a mutually beneficial agenda of lives free from exploitation and oppression, where each person’s full humanity is affirmed and there is a place of full equality for everyone. Due to this centrality, the fight against racism and white supremacy must be a part of our analysis and a component of our work at every level.
We believe that there is an interconnectivity rooted in race, class and gender. History has demonstrated time and again that the heaviest blows of crises fall upon communities of color. And the leadership of persons of color in building fightbacks and progressive initiatives has been a source of inspiration and emulation. While the leadership of communities of color in defeating white supremacy is critical, white people - particularly the white working class - must recognize both their responsibility and self-interest in combating white supremacy and institutionalized racism.
We believe that you fight racism with solidarity and that solidarity is a concrete task of finding our common interest of collective liberation. We advocate the building of multi-ethnic organizations of the working class. While segregation continues in our society, very few workplaces, apartment buildings, schools, or neighborhoods are represented exclusively by any one ethnic or racial group. Building organization around commonly held interests, that explicitly engages internal racial disparities, creates openings for unity and solidarity across races. This is the critical element of fundamentally destroying white supremacy.
Our racial analysis must include a class analysis, just as our class analysis must include a racial analysis. In the United States of today, these concepts are inseparable
For Collective Liberation
“If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” Lilla Watson, Aboriginal activist, Queensland.
We see the interconnectedness of many systems of oppression and marginalization that drive many wedges of separation through our communities. None of the struggles around race, class, gender, or sexuality can be completely won on their own. For us to have real hope of a world beyond institutionalized oppression, they must be fought together.
We do not approach our work as altruistic saviors, but as people seeking their own liberation and understanding that our liberation is bound together with that of all oppressed and marginalized people in our world.
Building Architecture and Catalyzing Social Movement
Ultimately, the many problems of oppression, marginalization, and inequality that we face in society are the result of power imbalances. The wealthiest among us and the political elite wield power to defend their own interests. Capitalism and White Supremacy are the tools of to retain those power structures.
The hope for marginalized, exploited, and oppressed people is organization and collective action. While individuals and small groups of the elite wield coercive power to maintain their dominance, our power lies in massive, broad-based organizations that refuse to be co-opted by elite power structures. When we take mass, collective action our power is considerably more significant than that of the ruling classes.
In critical, often unpredictable moments, organizations can spark into broader social movements, where many independent organizations and groupings erupt into high levels of activity demanding fundamental changes. It’s these social movements that have the capacity to most massively and rapidly change social structures, and our responsibility to try to catalyze them.
Organizations that are built by, accountable to, and democratically controlled by the working class and marginalized communities are the answer to the power imbalances that plague our current society and lead to the inequities and oppressions experienced in our daily lives. When bodies of workers, tenants, students, neighbors, etc. get together and take direct action to demand real changes in their livelihood, they simultaneously impact their immediate needs while building the power necessary for massive changes in our politics and economics.
While the demands and activities of these organizations are often more narrow than that of social movements, these organizations serve as critical ground for training, political education, and reflection among exploited and marginalized people. They also serve to build critical capacity and resources for the moment when social movements take off. Providing early social movements with leaders and resources can often be the deciding factor between success and failure. So as activists we have a clear imperative to build, nurture, and strengthen these organizations of the base.
As the high levels of social movement activity die-down, whether through success or attrition, these organizations should be in a strengthened position to push forward the mission of the movement. Sustaining the power of working class and marginalized communities between times of social movement activity is the final critical role these rank-and-file organizations.
Through organizations of workers, students, tenants, etc. we discover the ability to win short-term demands, build community leadership, catalyze and sustain social movements. For these reasons the creation of these organizations is our primary concern.
Building Alternative Institutions
From the occupied factories of Argentina, to the cooperative economies on Mondragon in Spain, the poor and the dispossessed are proving daily the possibility of building and running their own institutions.
Alternative institutions may take many forms: community banks, worker cooperatives, free schools, free clinics, copwatch programs, alternative media, counter-cultural institutions, and beyond. But in all instances, alternative institutions should be considered those in which the working class makes all the fundamental decisions, doing so directly, through organizations of its own choice.
There are dangers and limitations, however, that we should be conscious of in the building of these institutions. There is a long history of alternative institutions being swallowed up and integrated into capitalism, ultimately becoming a part of the very system they were meant to challenge. There is also a potential that they may draw time and resources away from the building of social movements, which should be viewed as the primary engines of social change. However, at their best, alternative institutions have the capacity to pose a real threat to the 1%, lend to the building of social movements, and demonstrate to oppressed people their own capacity to control their own communities and institutions.
Revolutionary Edge of Reform
In an era of never-ending assault on the working class and oppressed people, we believe that any and all resistance to those attacks are noble and critical. However, resistance itself is not enough. We need to win concrete change in people’s lives and do so in a way that advances our long-term goal of highly organized communities, workplaces, schools, etc.
This means that we don’t simply fight to win benefits just for the sake of the victory and its impact on our communities. We also don’t hold to extreme demands that offer no hopes of building a broader movement of social, political, economic struggle. This notion, fully developed in Steve Williams’ “Demand Everything: Lessons of the Transformative Organizing Model” provides clear criteria for how we select the issues that we will organize around. They are:
Improve the living conditions of our members, constituency, and the broader working class.
Establish building blocks of the organization’s long term vision.
Build the power of and solidarity among various sectors of the working class, of low-income people, and of people of color.
Undermine the power of the ruling class and its institutions.
Shift public discourse to make larger victories possible by undermining the logic of oppression.
Develop the leadership of the organization’s membership and staff.
Expand and deepen strategic and tactical alliances with key forces.
Grow the membership and strengthen the organization.
By following this organizational model, we believe we can win vital improvements in people’s lives without sacrificing our long-term vision. Instead each victory will move us towards greater victories and power for the working class and communities of color.
Because we don’t simply fight for the sake of immediate victories, but for the purposes of building power of our own organizations, we engage in the legislative arena with hesitation. Winning legislation to solve the problems of our community can, at times, undermine the community’s ability to realize it’s own power or build stronger organization to win more sustainable demands. When we find that winning legislation is the result of genuine transformational organizing rather than the political maneuvering of power brokers, we can then commit to fighting in that arena.
It’s for these same reasons that we don’t see electing new people to office as a part of our mission.
Developing Deep Political Analysis Broadly
When one sails, one must first learn their position. The second thing one learns is that even if your destination is straight north, one will need to swing east to west to capture the energy of the movement of the wind. As an organization that is learning more and more where it is going, Metro Justice needs to understand the current power of the moving social winds, when to ride them, and when to turn sails to get closer to its destination. We are a small ship, we can turn faster than others, we can serve as a reference point to where we want to be.
Somedays Metro Justice will need to focus more on base building, other in developing its leaders, others in action. Only when we know our destination we will know how to set course, and shift with the wind.
If our destination is to have an organization ready to take action in support of increasing democracy in the ways and places we make a living, in the ways we are able to support our families, and in the ways we are able to support our local, national, and international communities, then we need support the process by which people get ready to take action. For this, we believe that a popular education model that is willing to dive deeply into histories and ideas of social change is critical.
We have seen the great success of Metro Justice as it concentrates on action toward the specific victory of the Fight for 15. We have also seen the cost of ongoing mobilization on the workers, volunteers and staff that made that victory possible. Our size and resources do not allow us to process and restock volunteers and workers leaders. It has been always clear that our strategy needs to answer the question: how do we nourish those taking action and how do we prepare others to take action?
The first thing we understand is that no power point presentation, no matter how good, will save us. We understand that action that provides disruption is necessary. We experience class and race in our bodies, at a specific time, in a specific place, surrounded by specific people. We need to learn to provide disruption in those specific moments that create pause and challenges to what is happening.
The second thing is that disruptive action may need to start taking place in small settings. It is then crucial to take those actions and evaluate them in the setting they take place and within the context of the bigger destination.
Commitment to National Project
Drastic social, economic, and racial justice cannot be achieved and sustained in Rochester alone. Many of the structures of exploitation and oppression we face are national in character, others are international. We must commit to supporting national and international social justice efforts.
Rochester is our home, and where the vast majority of our organizing efforts will focus. But we will actively search for opportunities to connect to movements that extend beyond our region and with like-minded organizations across the country and world. Building key strategic alliances across the United States in particular will be critical for several reasons: 1) shared leadership, skills, and vision will help with deep development of our leaders, 2) the momentum of nationwide and global movements helps to grow our movement locally, and 3) these relationships can help us tap resources from across the country to help us build our organization and movement at home.
Through serious and thoughtful discussions, we've come to a collective Analysis of the Moment. As our 2016 Strategic Planning Process continues, we'll now begin a similar discussion around what Metro Justice holds as its Theory of Change. While we often think that agreement on the issues of the day are sufficient for us to have real unity, often we find that the most difficult conversations happen when people who have similar values begin to discuss how we create effective and lasting change.
While we don't expect, or even hope, to create a very narrow conception of Metro Justice's Theory of Change, we do hope to find what unity already exists. Our Theory of Change should dictate much of our daily work in the coming years.
Key Themes to Address:
- Electoral politics
- Direct action
- Popular power
- Charity vs. solidarity
- Race as primary? Economics as primary? Collective Liberation?
- How do we develop intergenerational movements?
- How do we develop interracial movements?
- Are popular movements single issue or broader?
Suggested Readings and Videos:
- From a Place of Love, Interview with the Catalyst Project
- Instruments for Doing Politics, by Marta Harnecker
- The Alinsky Model: A critique, by Staughton Lynd
- Radical Social Change: Search for a New Foundation by Adjoa Florencia Jones de Almeida in The Revolution Will Not Be Funded
- Money for Our Movements Conference Debate in 2010
- Charity and Solidarity by Tim Wise (video)
- Direct Action: An Introduction by LibCom
Meetings that will discuss the plan:
- April and May Metro Justice Council Meetings
- Movie Night TBA
- April 21st Noam Chomksy, members attend and discuss online.
- May 14th Focus Group Meeting with Bill Fletcher Jr.
- May 15th Annual Dinner Speaker Bill Fletcher Jr. and online discussion after
- May 22nd Left Forum in NYC: A group will attend and bring reflections home
- June 4th Cookout TBA
- For members there is continued discussion happening on the Strategic Planning Facebook Group.
- A written document outlining our Theory of Change will be written and added here by June 11th.
Written for Metro Justice's Strategic Planning Process March 2016.
Why an analysis of the moment? We have to know where we’re at to know where we’re going. Political tactics and strategies are always shaped by our understandings of the problems, opportunities and realities in our world. Thoughtful reflection on the larger trends allows us to target our organizing and more effectively engage people and movements. Below, are three major areas: First, economic and political shifts that we see a global trends. Second, we identified five core issues arising within the United States that are shaping the current social justice landscape. These issues are results of the global and economic climate. Third, we turn our lens to the current condition of the American Left and our national political system
Ultimately, we believe that the conditions are such to expect a period of bold, mass social movements in the United States. The opportunities are real for ideas of social justice to find a new popularity and strength, and we’re positioned to take a leading role in that new era.
GLOBAL ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL SHIFTS
- Unprecedented global systems:
As power and wealth concentrate in fewer hands, economic and political decisions are made further away from our communities. Local institutions are increasingly weaker. A handful of CEOs have determined how global economics function in the 21st century. Local issues have increasingly international solutions.
Social media and internet communications are providing new openings:
The internet and social media are offering new alternatives in communication. Alternative ideas increasingly have means of mass communication at their disposal. Massive communication can happen much more rapidly. There is also increasingly a tendency towards isolation and click-activism, where people feel as though they’ve contributed by speaking their opinion into the echo chamber of social media. This offers both serious opportunities and challenges. But, historically massive movements tend to erupt amidst big changes to communication technologies.
Rising Millennial Generation with new politics and new economic realities:
The “Millennial” Generation is coming of age in the US, and are doing so with vastly different political outlook. The group of people currently aged roughly 18-33 are one of the most left-leaning generations in a long time. This generation shows support for socialism as an idea and tends to support anti-discrimination social ideas. They are also largely entering adulthood into a rigged economy with massive debt. Precarity is their norm, so for many social change is their drive.
Current economic and social realities have led to an erosion of community:
Increasing economic precarity, longer work hours, increased debt, and transient employment have led to an erosion of community. This has increased skepticism in organizations, while simultaneously weakening them. From churches to community organizations to unions, active participation has declined in recent years.
Era of unimagined inequality marked by powerful racial disparities in wealth:
For around 40 years wealth inequality continued to get worse. Productivity skyrocketed by comparison to wages, meaning the rich were getting richer in relation to the poor. Wages, particularly at the low end were stagnating. The financial and housing crisis of 2008 led to a further erosion of wealth among poor people. This is highly notable in Black and Latino communities, as the newer wealth of their homes was the first lost in the crisis. The wealth divide between average white families by comparison to average black and latino families increased since 2008. Economic recovery since 2008 has also been largely at the top. Unemployment has dropped due to replacement by low-wage jobs in retail and food-service. While the narrative of the nation is that we’ve left crisis, poor people and communities of color have continued decades of crisis.
Massive system of incarceration and policing:
Today there are 2.3 million people incarcerated in the United States. While the Black population makes us only 13% of the US population they are 40% of the prison population. Whites make up 39% and Latinos 19% of the prison population. There are another 820,000 on parole and 3,8 million on probation. That said, the United States has by far the highest incarceration rates in the world. Prisons are increasingly private for-profit industries, and are often putting inmates to work for private for-profit companies at wages slightly above zero. The precarity faced by our communities, particularly the Black community from this system is powerful. While this has been an active concern of the Black community for decades, the white left and institutional powers have been negligent in their response.
Climate change forces urgency and is a clear challenge to right wing ideology:
As the threat of irreversible climate change bears down on the world, it becomes increasingly clear that we can’t wait to create serious global change. The changes necessary to genuinely combat climate change are collective in nature, require a re-capturing of the commons, and are inherently a threat to right-wing, individualism, free-market ideas.
Continued attacks on already weakened public and social services:
Public services like K-12 education and public benefits like Medicaid and SNAP are facing continued political attacks. These attacks are aided by the already low-levels of support these institutions receive. Poorly funded schools, just like poorly funded support programs are cited for their failures as reason to fund them even less. Politically, this is part of a nationwide project of austerity to dismantle public benefits and services and replace them with private for-profit services and tax cuts for the wealthy.
Rise in International militarization:
The never ending “War on Terror” that sparked the anti-war movement of the early 2000’s has done exactly as we said it would. It has destabilized the middle east, led to an increase in terrorism, and emboldened a massively profitable war industry in the US. While the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan continue in a quieter way than before, this war has since expanded to Yemen, Syria, Libya, Pakistan, Somalia, and many others. It has sparked an international refugee crisis.
CONDITIONS OF POLITICS AND THE LEFT
Recent movements have made status quo seem untenable:
Occupy Wall Street shined a spotlight on worsening wealth inequality. Black Lives Matter has made clear the life and death consequences that economics, politics, and police practices have in the Black community. The People’s Climate March and growing movement highlight the shrinking timeline available for massive changes to be made. To huge numbers of people, the urgency of genuine change seems to be amplifying.
Left locally has notable intergenerational split:
Not unlike much of the rest of the country, there seems to be a generation missing from left activism. We have long-term activists from the founding in their 60’s-80’s and then younger activists in their 20’s-30’s. While basic values may have some similarities, there are notable differences in strategies, ideologies, and modes of operation and communication. Notably, some of the most successful social movements of our history have been successful at bridging these gaps.
Recent mass popular movements are impacting public opinion, but aren’t building sustained organization:
Since the year 2000, we’ve had increasingly regular “movement moments”. From the anti-globalization and anti-war movements in the early 2000’s to Occupy, Black Lives Matter, and the Fight for 15 more recently, there is an abundance of movement activity. This activity has had massive impacts on public opinion. The narrative of the 99% is a strong example. However, these movements haven’t built strategies to sustain beyond their moment and therefore haven’t built longer-term capacity for social justice forces. Even the Fight for 15, as an institutionally led movement, has yet to figure out the organizational question of long-term mass membership.
Gridlock of national and state political systems:
As the remnants of the right-wing power elite cling to whatever entrenched power they can and popular opinion swings to the political fringes, the result is political gridlock in state and national political institutions. Every issue has become grounds for an ideological battle, and ultimately answers to our many challenges aren’t being brought about by political leadership. Trying to win meaningful change in the legislative arena has meant battling through this gridlock.
No viable US anti-war movement:
Despite increasing international militarism and the US’s role in international destabilization, the US anti-war movement continues to shrink and hasn’t managed to build long-term power from its peaks in the early 2000’s.
You can find a description of the process that led us to these conclusions here.
If we're going to develop a strategy of how we want to change the world, we should have some common understandings about what the current state of the world actually is. As progressives, radicals, or revolutionaries, many in our organization have similar, broad understandings of the state of the current moment. We hope that through this initial conversation, we can develop some real depth to our collective understanding of political, social, and economic moment that we are currently living. We also hope to identify some trends that we either hope to reverse or that may serve as opportunities for our political tendency.
Key Themes to Address:
- Economic inequality
- Climate Crisis
- Racial inequality and race relations
- War and imperialism
- State of the Left - locally, regionally, nationally, internationally
- State of Rochester and New York State
- Who is the opposition?
Suggested Readings and Videos:
We know that for us to have a real commitment to this conversation, we also need to commit ourselves to on-going learning. We hope that these writings and videos are not the end of the list, but the beginning. Share with us through the discussions your suggestions for readings!
On the importance of strategy:
On Economic Inequality:
On the State of the Left:
The State of the Right:
Meetings that will discuss the plan:
- Metro Justice Annual Meeting, January 30th: Introduction to process and small group discussions.
- Fireside Chat with President Young. March 8th, 6pm.
- February and March Council meetings. Notes of strategic planning discussion will be posted.
- Workshop on Wealth Inequality. March 22nd, 5pm.
- Conclusions will be posted as we arrive at them! By March 31st, this will include the written statement of Metro Justice's Analysis of the Moment.
- This conversation has concluded and it's written summary can be found here.
In 2016, Metro Justice will be going through an intensive Strategic Planning Process. There are many great opportunities that lie in front of us as an organization, but only through a clear vision and strategy will we be able to take advantage of those opportunities and move our communities forward towards genuine economic, racial, and social justice. This page is your first stop in understanding how the strategic planning process will move forward and how you can participate in those conversations as a member of Metro Justice.
Goals of our Strategic Planning Process:
The responsibility of the Strategic Planning Committee is to inspire Metro Justice’s membership and leadership in the strategic planning process and to elicit their involvement in events and discussions.
The outcomes of this process will be (clearly identified and written down):
Understanding of the political/economical/social moment, giving the organization a common outlook for developing priorities in the next 1-10 years
Articulated vision of how MJ cultivates transformational change
Identify a few major areas of focus for Metro Justice where we should direct our energy to build the organization
Identify the skills, resources and perspectives that we bring to the table to create the change we want to see. Clarify how we should relate to other groups locally, regionally and nationally
Establish clear institutional structures necessary to effectively meet our goals, including staff structure and a plan for methods to grow and sustain membership.
Introduction to the Strategic Planning Process:
The development of a long-term strategic plan will have several major topics that drive specific portions of the conversation (listed below) to build upon one another. Each topic will last between 1 and 2 months and will include several components. As the topic’s time period comes to an end, the strategic planning committee will write a document on the conclusion of the that topic to help inform the conversation for the next topic.
The components of the conversation are meant to engage members, leaders, staff, and allies in each topic of the process. The components will include:
Suggested Readings for members, leaders, and staff.
Small group meetings and presentations to help deepen specific parts of the conversation.
Online forum for comment and conversation about readings and presentation. [Join Facebook Group here.]
Outside speaker to provide their analysis in larger events and small group meetings.
Focus groups for specific groups of members and allies
Written conclusion to use for the next topic.
Calendar of Major Themes:
Follow each link below for a thorough explanation of each month's activities.
- Analysis of the moment (February-March) Concluded.
- Theory of change (April-July) Concluded.
- Role of Metro Justice (August-September)
- Capacity and structures necessary to achieve our goals (October-November)
- Writing and finalizing long-term strategic plan and timeline (November-December)
Strategic Planning Committee Members:
- Denise Young, President
- Jake Allen, Council-member
- Emily Hartnett-Liefter, member
- Colin O'Malley, staff
- Robert Hoggard, staff
- Elizabeth Nicolas, ally