January 28, 2013 / BY FANNA GAMAL Sundance winner "Fruitvale" examines last days of Oscar Grant

On Saturday, Bay Area filmmaker, Ryan Coogler accepted the U.S. Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award for U.S. dramatic film at the Sundance Festival, for his original work: Fruitvale. Fruitvale centers around the life and murder of Oscar Grant, the young father who was shot dead by a Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) police officer while lying facedown on an Oakland, CA train platform. 

The 2009 incident of police brutality was captured on camera for the world to see, BART officer Johannes Mehserle fired one round into Grant's back. Mehserle later claimed he thought he was firing his taser -- one of many unbelievable missteps that occurred that night at the Fruitvale BART station.

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January 24, 2013 / BY JAMAR HOOKS Sick New Yorkers still forced to work during flu epidemic

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is reporting that the current flu season has officially been designated an “epidemic.” Last year, only 4,400 New Yorkers were diagnosed with  “severe” flu cases, but this season, that number has already risen to 15,000 — an explosive 250% increase.

New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Nirav Shah has advised New Yorkers to stay away from those who are sick, but that's easier said than done. Right now, more than a million mostly Black, Latino and immigrant workers in New York City are forced to go to work with the flu every day, without the benefit of any paid time off to care for themselves. This poses a serious threat to the economic security of working families and puts the health of all New Yorkers at risk. 

Please join us to demand Speaker Quinn put away her political aspirations and bring the Paid Sick Time Act to a vote.

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January 22, 2013 / BY JAMAR HOOKS WATCH: Coalition demands justice for residents neglected by NYCHA during Sandy

Last week, NYC Council Progressive Caucus Members joined ColorOfChange and partners to demand NYCHA Chairman John Rhea provide full rent abatements for public housing residents. The coalition held a press conference prior to a NYC Council oversight hearing discussing the New York City Housing Authority's (NYCHA) emergency planning and management in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Chairman Rhea was a no-show at the hearing -- it's the second hearing he has missed on the issue this week, a clear message that he can't be bothered to hear the rightful claims of NYCHA's tax-paying residents.

Watch the clip from the press conference above and hear from NYCHA residents in their own words. After you watch, join us to demand Chairman Rhea immediately reimburse rent wrongly collected from storm-impacted NYCHA residents.

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January 21, 2013 / BY CAMPAIGN STAFF This Inauguration Day, help grow ColorofChange with 3 friends

The Rev. Dr. King had the revolutionary spirit to dream the best for our society. We want to celebrate that dream and continue to acknowledge all that it challenges us to do. That's why today, as we recognize both the life of Dr. King and the second inauguration of President Barack Obama, we're asking you to commit to help grow ColorOfChangeInvite 3 friends and we’ll send you a beautiful sticker commemorating this historic moment.

Like the great movement Dr. King helped lead, our strength comes from courageous members, like you. Can you help strengthen our collective voice by inviting new members to join ColorOfChange? 

 

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January 18, 2013 / BY CAMPAIGN STAFF Stop the NRA's attacks on the First Family

Today, ColorOfChange launched a campaign urging TV network executives to refuse to air the National Rifle Association's (NRA) deeply offensive ad attacking President Obama's family. The NRA's ad centers on its ill-conceived demand for armed officers or guards in every American school, then suggests that Sasha and Malia shouldn't get Secret Service protection unless the President defers to the NRA's agenda. Dragging the president's children into this fight is a troubling new low — even for the NRA's notoriously callous leadership.

The NRA offers no sustainable solutions to reduce gun violence in our communities. Its ad is solely intended to whip up anger and paranoia at the president and his family. Together we can make sure that TV executives understand that the NRA's indefensible attack ad has no place in our homes. Check out the ad for yourself, and then read the email we sent to our members below and be sure to take action here.

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January 17, 2013 / BY LYLA BUGARA Court ruling signals progress toward ending NYPD's Stop and Frisk

On January 8, Federal Judge Shira Scheindlin issued a ruling demanding an end to the use of Stop and Frisk outside of "Clean Halls" buildings in the Bronx. Operation Clean Halls permits police to patrol, interrogate, frisk, and arrest suspected "trespassers" in 16,000 private residential buildings disproportionately located in Black and brown communities. Judge Scheindlin's ruling orders the NYPD to stop performing trespass stops outside clean halls buildings in the Bronx unless officers have reasonable suspicion beyond a "hunch".

This is the first time a federal court has found a portion of Stop and Frisk to be unconstitutional, paving the way for further legal action. But Stop and Frisk won't go away by itself — we're ready to continue our efforts in 2013. Please join our campaign to demand an end to Stop and Frisk.

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January 15, 2013 / BY CHARLENE CARRUTHERS Oxygen Media officially cancels "All My Babies’ Mamas"

Yesterday, after multiple conversations with Oxygen Media, we received official confirmation that the network canceled production of the reality television show All My Babies' Mamas.

The network's decision comes after over 45,000 ColorofChange members signed a petition demanding the show be canceled. The voices of our members coupled with the outrage of Black folks across the country sent a clear message -- inflammatory portrayals of Black families for corporate profit is unacceptable

We're going to continue to work towards a cultural shift in how our stories are portrayed in the media, make sure you and your friends  join us in this fight

 

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January 14, 2013 / BY AIMÉE CASTENELL Maryland poised for death penalty repeal in 2013

Last Wednesday, the Maryland General Assembly began its 2013 session. One major issue that the General Assembly may take on this session is a bill to repeal the death penalty. It's been a long road for advocates of a repeal. In 10 of the last 12 General Assembly sessions, bills have been introduced to repeal the death penalty but have not made it to a full vote. This year members in both chambers are expecting the bill will reach the floor for a full vote.

Proponents of overturning Maryland's draconian death penalty law appear to be within one or two votes of gaining enough political clout to push repeal through the State Senate where previous efforts have failed in years past.

Please join us in demanding that the Maryland General Assembly support the repeal of the death penalty.

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January 11, 2013 / BY FANNA GAMAL Tell Oxygen and its advertisers: Don't exploit Black families

VICTORY UPDATE: On January 14th, after 45,000 ColorOfChange members raised their voices, Oxygen Media confirmed the cancellation of the reality T.V. show "All My Babies Mamas."

Today, ColorofChange.org launched a new campaign calling on Oxygen Media and its advertisers to put an end to the dehumanizing reality show "All My Babies' Mamas." The show is set to feature Atlanta rapper Shawty Lo and his eleven children by ten different women. The clip above gives you a glimpse at some of the show's content. 

In an effort to block media images that perpetuate narrow and exploitative portrayals of Black families, we are demanding that NBC Universal CEO Steven B. Burke, Oxygen Media President Jason Klarman and Oxygen Media Senior Vice President of Development Cori Abraham cancel production of the show immediately. Oxygen's audience deserves better. 

Read the email we sent to our members and join our campaign.

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January 09, 2013 / BY CAMPAIGN STAFF Rashad Robinson: "We understand that the NRA doesn't do its work alone"

ColorOfChange Executive Director Rashad Robinson appeared on Current TV's The War Room Friday to discuss our campaign urging ALEC's corporate funders to take a stand against profit-driven gun violence. Thanks to ALEC's deep, decades-long relationship with the NRA, a hard push to enact "model" bills designed to expand the gun market — at any cost — has long been a cornerstone of ALEC's legislative agenda.

ALEC is the driving force behind the infamous "gun show loophole" widely discussed in the 1990s, more accurately described as a private sale loophole. In over 30 states, the loophole permits anyone who isn't a licensed firearms dealer to sell an unlimited number of guns with no criminal background check or mental health check — and with no real liability for making sales to straw purchasers engaged in gun trafficking. Unsurprisingly, ALEC's loophole now drives 40% of all gun sales in the United States.

ALEC's work to ensure that as many people purchase as many guns as possible, knowing that more guns mean more homicide, is why we're demanding that corporations cut ties with the American Legislative Exchange Council. Watch the video above and join our campaign.

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January 07, 2013 / BY CAMPAIGN STAFF House passes $9.7b for Sandy relief, NYCHA residents still wait

On Friday, the House responded to Republican fury and provided $9.7 billion to cover insurance claims filed by individuals whose homes were damaged or destroyed by Superstorm Sandy. Officials from New York and New Jersey pushed hard for the legislation and many responded with outrage when Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) adjourned the previous Congress without taking up the $60.4 billion aid bill that the Senate had passed.

It seems that Congress has responded to the pressure to deliver relief for Sandy victims. But some of the most vulnerable citizens of New York City still await much-needed action from the New York City Housing Authority.

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January 04, 2013 / BY JOHNNY MATHIAS Tell ALEC's corporate funders to stop sanctioning profit-driven gun violence

For decades, the NRA and ALEC have worked hand in glove to pass legislation designed to increase gun sales — regardless of the human cost. In the wake of the shooting tragedy in Newtown, the NRA has unabashedly called for even more guns in our communities, recommitting itself to blocking commonsense efforts to reduce gun violence.

That's why today ColorOfChange launched a campaign highlighting ALEC's relationship with the NRA and renewing our call to ALEC's corporate funders to cut ties with the group. It's time these corporations draw the line: continuing to fund ALEC helps push NRA-drafted gun access laws that devastate our communities, and elevates gun industry profits over human lives.

Check out the email we sent to ColorOfChange members today, and join us here.

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January 04, 2013 / BY LYLA BUGARA Remembering Oscar Grant, the struggle against police violence continues

This past New Year's Day marked 4 years since Oscar Grant, a 22-year-old Oakland resident and father, was brutally killed by BART police officer Johannes Mesherle. Grant was unarmed, restrained, and laying face down on the train platform when Mesherle shot him. Even though the racist murder was caught on video and broadcast around the world, Mesherle served a relatively light sentence of 11 months in an L.A. County jail. National outrage spurned massive organizing, including 20,000 ColorOfChange members who signed a petition expressing their discontent at the case's handling.

Communities of color — disproportionately young Black males — have long-experienced the kind of systemic police violence seen in the Grant case. Throughout 2012 we've seen that police Stop & Frisks create encounters where racial bias and police overreach collide and can quickly turn violent

Moving into 2013 and remembering Oscar Grant, Remarley Graham, Alan Blueford, and the countless others who didn't make national headlines, the importance of fighting police violence could not be more clear.

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