Democracy Schools: Where the Power of our Movement Meets the Challenges of our Democracy
This weekend, we kicked off round two of the Democracy Schools — our innovative program to empower and strengthen our membership in advance of the 2018 elections. We are doing these trainings all over the state — from rural Humboldt county to the Central Valley to the urban cores of San Francisco and Los Angeles. This program will provide caregivers with the tools they need to create change in their neighborhoods and communities, and hold their elected officials accountable.
Our first trainings of 2018, were conducted last Saturday in Fresno County, in the center of California’s agricultural Central Valley. Over 50 caregivers showed up early Saturday morning with a burning passion, drive, and desire to strengthen their skills and create lasting, effective change not only for themselves, but for all Californians.
Our Executive Vice President, Arnulfo De La Cruz, kicked off the training by reminding the caregivers in the room that “there’s too many people in power, who don’t represent working people, and the only way we can change that is if we participate”
Today’s Democracy School also included the use of the latest technology to show attendees new systems for better community organizing, and electoral strategies. Graduates of Democracy School will become Democracy Captains in their community. These captains will then be assigned to work with other long term care providers directly in their neighborhood. This statewide network of trained caregivers will be the backbone of our political program not only in 2018, but for decades to come. Our goal is to have more than 250 captains in strategic neighborhoods throughout the state, ready to talk to other caregivers about how they can create change working together.
We pioneered our Democracy Schools program last year and due to exceptional demand we have expanded the offerings for 2018.
The labor movement has been under attack this year, and working people face unprecedented challenges on all fronts.
Efforts to take away healthcare from millions of Americans, roll back the right to organize in our workplaces, and the slashing of federal funding for crucial programs that help create more socio-economic opportunities for our members. An attack on working people is an attack on the broader movement towards justice and equality.
Through efforts like our Democracy Schools we are demonstrating our commitment to empowering our members to create real and lasting change. Together We Rise!