It is possible to make a difference

I have worked on issues of police brutality, mass incarceration, the School-to-Prison Pipeline, climate change, food justice, gentrification, the education gap, immigration, sovereignty rights, gender equality, racism, and basic human rights for all human beings. Much of this work has been done in formal settings with school administrations, city officials, county officials, and the state legislature. The rest of the work has been done through and with the community itself in a non-formal manner, much of which has been direct action and the exercise of our First Amendment Right to protest and exercise free speech to affect change. After nearly a year of protest and public meetings concerning police brutality and mass incarceration, I was instrumental in the drafting and passing of Resolution 31614, “zero use of detention for youth in Seattle” in September of 2015. I was also instrumental in pulling together the concerns and complaints of students from three University of Washington campuses and staging the largest demonstration in nearly thirty years on the Seattle campus that led to the formation of the Race and Equity Initiative. Both of these victorious objectives share very similar characteristics, namely, accountability to the impacted communities, and working with members through the entire process. This garnered broad community support for the issues with which we were contenting. In addition, as a result of our dedication, strategy, and relationship building we were able to win the confidence and support of administrators and politicians in positions of power who were sympathetic to our concerns.

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