Dear Friends & Allies,
Dear Friends & Allies, Please join us in a groundbreaking fight to eliminate poverty and secure economic human rights for everyone. A society of abundance would make this possible. The labor-replacing microchip could make abundance possible, yet corporations are focused on creating an atmosphere of austerity for everyone except their own key managers. WEAP is raising funds and mobilizing support to raise awareness of the dangers of a growing corporate dictatorship, and to bring a new and much more positive vision of the future to everyone struggling to achieve a better life.
The Women’s Economic Agenda Project (WEAP) continued in 2014 to raise community and activist awareness about recent corporate successes in pushing more workers out of the economy by attacking democracy itself, and by preaching austerity while privatizing – and profitizing – everything in sight. WEAP ended the year with a 7-day Michigan Speakers Tour that brought key leaders from Michigan to warn that Californians must fight against their own Emergency Manager systems and other tools of corporate dictatorship like those in Michigan, all aimed at stripping away the rights of poor and working people.The corporate drive to control public and civic institutions, creating in effect a government controlled by corporations, is perhaps most advanced in Michigan, where the human right to water is shut off to the poor and Emergency Managers are appointed to strip local elected officials of their power in low-income and minority areas. But its successes are being copied elsewhere.Our vision of social and economic justice for all looks forward to what could happen if the microchips that keep steadily destroying jobs were put into the service of creating abundance for everyone, instead of record corporate profits.WEAP has never had the money to make our mission easy. We need funds to continue this path-breaking visionary work. WEAP’s 33-year history of being influential and successful comes from our focus on thinking strategically about how to advance economic security and justice. We hope you will support our work and our vision, and help us give people a glimpse of the better future we are all fighting for.Your financial assistance will directly support the education and leadership development of poor working class communities. Please support this important work by clicking on the Donate button on our home page!
This past year we’ve seen increasing attacks on our economic human rights and basic democracy. The state of Michigan is proving an example of what’s coming to your State. Corporations preach austerity while millions of dollars are flooded into “development,” technology companies and real estate firms make a killing, raising the rents and displacing poor and working class families. Corporations created the economic crash by creating fraudulent debt deals. They were bailed out dollar for dollar, while cities and workers are left to pay back the debt. We’ve seen an increase in police force and criminalization of poor communities. It’s clear that the time is now for building a movement and fighting for our collective rights.
An important aspect of WEAP’s Methodology is to build the leadership and awareness among our community. We do this by documenting the testimonies of women and low-wage workers about the toll of austerity on their lives. Here we are reminded about the importance of gathering the stories of the poor, women, workers and all. Our Methodology also centers on facilitating educational trainings proceeding from our Resolutions of Action (ROA) that are designed to address key issues we are facing and develop a class analysis. Some of the themes we addressed this year include austerity, environmental rights, living wage, housing, gentrification, privatization and corporate dictatorship and the need for economic democracy.
Here are some of the highlights of our work in 2014:
- Hosted 15 Educational Trainings including Round Table discussions, Teach In Dialogues, Train the Trainer Sessions, People’s Tribune Trainings and our “Michigan Speakers Tour” with over 600 people informed about the Michigan experience.
- Provided customized trainings to low wage workers and leaders from SEIU on the importance of developing unity and fighting for collective rights
- Developed Solidarity Statements with local allies such as Our Walmart, Lift Up Oakland and Just Cause/Causa Justa & SEIU 1021.
- Lead workshops and served as speakers at conferences and community events including the National Strategy Conference for Healthcare Now, UC Berkeley’s Poverty and Homelessness Symposium, Oakland’s Refund and Rebuild Oakland Housing and Economic Justice Forum, American Sociological Association: A Hard Times Convention
- Produced Publications and educational tools such as Fact Sheets and articles featured on WEAP’s website and in the People’s Tribune and additional alternative press.
- Recruited 15 new volunteers from multiple colleges and organizations including UC Berkeley, St. Mary’s College and Diablo Valley College
• Strengthened new and existing partnerships and built solidarity with 15 local organizations