The beginning of a new era: UNE Action
It’s with great excitement that I announce that FRESC is transforming our approach to winning by building grassroots people power and developing members to lead the fight.
Where We’ve Been
For over a decade — 15 years — FRESC has been a strong and consistent voice on issues affecting low wage workers and their families. Focused on creating good jobs and strong communities for all people in metro-Denver, FRESC quickly established itself as an invaluable resource for public policy elevating working families, by advocating for living wage jobs, paid sick days and affordable housing.
FRESC has made important strides over the years, including:
- Playing a key partner role in the successful state minimum wage increase ballot initiative
- Advocating for RTD’s targeted hiring goals for the I-225 light rail construction jobs
- Passing Denver’s $150 million inclusionary housing ordinance to create affordable housing
- Passing of the 2014 Colorado wage theft bill
During the last three years, FRESC started investing in organizing and we found, that people power was the missing powerful ingredient that we needed to win. We started to engage the community in ways we hadn’t done before — not only did we knock on doors and ask people to get involved but also started asking them what they wanted rather than assuming the kind of change they wanted. This spurred us to change our organizational model to put community members at the helm.
Where We Are
Currently, in Colorado we have what seems to be a booming economy. We see our skyline decorated with cranes that indicate growth and ever increasing population. However for many of our neighbors, those cranes indicate ever rising rents, getting pushed out of their homes/communities and wages that haven’t kept up with the cost of living.
We see our neighbors getting deported and many have experienced police brutality. We see racial profiling killing our black and brown brothers, sisters and siblings and our faith communities harassed.
Despite these setbacks, we see our neighbors still envisioning strong, vibrant and thriving communities. They even commit to late night organizing meetings to fight for their vision. We see our neighbors sharing their stories and holding big corporations, elected officials and decision makers accountable. We see our neighbors who have everything to lose and still take the streets to rally for unity and dignity, because we see that our destinies are intertwined.
In a time when so many families struggle just to make ends meet and face open racial discrimination, the movement needs to focus more on organizing and developing leaders to build grassroots people power we need to build a new economy that works for everyone. We need to be truly United for a New Economy — UNE.
Where We’re Going
United for a New Economy Action (UNE Action) is a grassroots organization of everyday people working together to advance our values of respect, equity, human rights, people power and democracy as we advocate for local, state and national laws and policies that builds a new economy that works for everyone. Organizing families, youth, workers, seniors, unions, immigrants, communities of color, refugees and faith leaders, UNE Action will build power in their communities in a way that not only delivers important wins but transforms the entire future.
All of us at UNE Action are energized by our new direction and renewed commitment to building a member-led. If you share our vision, please join us and become a member to build the people power we need to build a new economy.
— Felicia Griffin, Executive Director