CCJ recently hosted the Grassroots Organizing Summit with Mountain Watershed Association in Mount Pleasant, PA. Community organizers, frontline community members from the tri-state region attended along with allies in the gulf coast and native communities resisting fossil fuels for many years. The weekend was spent learning and growing alongside other Grassroots Organizers from around the region. We built relationships, trust, and learned the importance of grounding our strategies in racial justice through a workshop from the Catalyst Project. The Catalyst Project helps to build powerful multiracial movements that can win collective liberation.
This gathering was crucial in these racially-charged times in which we live and work. It is important to recognize our privileges and ensure we are inclusive of everyone's lived experiences From an economic workshop, we learned that the owning and professional classes, which hold 89% of the wealth in the United States, are predominately white. While the poor and working class have the highest amount of people of color there are also many white folks too and more people than the wealthier classes who are controlling our government and economy. By working together across race, we have the power to redefine our economy, communities, and democracy.
Hopefully, through dedication, awareness and advocacy we can grow and change the dynamic between white people and people of color. We all live under the same stars and stripes, and they shouldn’t mean different things to different people. This gathering is the first of many we will need to have to shift our economy away from fossil fuels and plastics to one where all people are respected and have the ability to thrive.