Progressive Activists Take Over Detroit for Three Day Convention

For Immediate Release:
Tuesday, July 30, 2019 

Media Contact:
Inaru Melendez, imelendez@populardemocracy.org, 413-331-9530

Progressive Activists Take Over Detroit for Three Day Convention
1,500 organizers convened in Detroit for Center for Popular Democracy People’s Convention

DETROIT -- Detroit Action (formally Good Jobs Now) welcomed 1,500 activists and local elected officials from across the country to Detroit as a part of the Center For Popular Democracy’s People’s Convention. From July 25-27, the Center for Popular Democracy network came together to adopt a federal platform and outline what it will take to build  a progressive framework for 2020 and beyond. 

The People’s Convention included community leaders from more than 50 grassroots organizations in 131 cities and 34 states, plus Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia, to question presidential candidates, ratify a federal platform outlining the networks progressive agenda for 2020, and merge art, music and activism in a march to fight corporate power. 

Participants questioned presidential candidates Senator Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and Secretary Castro on a range of issues important to their communities and the core priorities of the network as outlined in the federal agenda, including, immigration, housing, voter justice, policing in schools, and fiscal accountability, among others.

The gathering included the ratification of a network-wide federal platform that, for the first time, leverages the state and local power of the Center for Popular Democracy network into a combined issue-based platform for federal advocacy. The federal agenda was unanimously approved by the network. It includes visionary policies and principles designed to stop the extraction of wealth and the silencing of our democracy, redress historic policy decisions that were developed to maintain and reinforce structural inequality, and guarantee fundamental human rights and social goods. You can read the full platform here.

Ana María Archila co-executive director of the Center for Popular Democracy stated: “We held a powerful convention in Detroit to launch our federal platform that will be the foundation of our work heading into 2020. Over 1,400 grassroots leaders from 34 states and Puerto Rico worked to outline and ratify a platform that speaks about a vision of a country where we are all included and free to thrive. Our platform affirms our commitment to fight for a country where immigrants and communities of color don't have to live in constant fear of detentions, deportations and mass incarceration; where every community has affordable housing, good jobs and great schools; a country where we hall have health care, and we make a commitment to care for each other and our planet. And after ratifying out platform, we marched to join our brothers and sisters of Detroit Action in bringing the spirit of struggle to the streets of Detroit."

The members made a bold statement to challenge wealth and power in this country by marching in a symbolic path to collective liberation from the Cobo Center, stopping to takeover the Quicken Loans lobby, and culminating at the Spirit of Detroit Plaza. Supported by local organizations including SEIU, Detroit People’s Platform, and Michigan Liberation, progressive activists swarmed downtown Detroit to highlight the spectrum of progressive issues they champion. 


Photo Credit: Make the Road New York

In a moment of solidarity, Representative Rashida Tlaib (D-MI 13th District) addressed the network of organizers and activists, sharing her pride in the city of Detroit as the birthplace of organized labor. Her speech centered on the Justice For All Civil Rights Act, her most recent legislation that would expand civil rights protections to cover discriminatory impacts. She nodded to the importance of building community to make sure Congress represents the true interest of the people, stating: “I don’t work for [House] leadership. I work for the people of the 13th District.” She encouraged members to remind Congress that “you don’t tell us what to do, what is bold and radical. We tell you what we need. You work for us.”


Photo Credit: Lia Weintraub for CPD/A

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www.populardemocracy.org
The Center for Popular Democracy is a national network of more than 50 community organizations dedicated to achieving racial and economic justice through local grassroots organizing. CPD trains and supports leadership, staff, and members to grow base-building organizations to scale and leverage that strength to win cutting-edge policy victories at the federal, state and local level.

cpdaction.org
Center for Popular Democracy Action is a national network of more than 50 community organizations dedicated to achieving racial and economic justice through local grassroots organizing. CPD trains and supports leadership, staff, and members to grow base-building organizations to scale and leverage that strength to win cutting-edge policy victories at the federal, state and local level.