Download our 2021 Athletes and Activism Olympic Watch Party Toolkit. Learn more about the history of Black activism, our demands to get the International Olympic Committee to stop silencing Black athletes, and host your own watch party.
Sha’Carri Richardson & Brianna Rollins-McNeal should be going to Tokyo. But the US Anti-Doping Agency is invoking archaic “war on drugs” rules to suspend both women for marijuana use--in a state where it's legal--putting their careers in jeopardy.
50k COC members spoke up and helped free Gwen Levi, a 76-year old grandmother and cancer survivor who was re-incarcerated after missing a phone call from her case manager. Let's free all elders on home confinement.
We are calling on corporate sponsors to stand up against the International Olympic Committee's Rule 50, which punishes athletes who raise their voice for change. We've come too far to tell Black athletes to “shut up and play.”
A year ago we persuaded 1,200 corporations to boycott advertising on Facebook for their failure to stop racism and white nationalist organizing on their platform. The company conducted a civil rights audit--but refuses to adopt most of the recommendations in it.
A year's passed since George Floyd was murdered and there are STILL charges on the books against him in Texas—for allegedly selling $10 worth of drugs. We are calling on the TX Board of Pardons & Paroles and Gov. Greg Abbott to posthumously pardon Floyd.
We need Congress to pass legislation addressing the impacts of slavery. With 190 co-sponsors and a vow to “study reparations,” there is unprecedented support for H.R. 40. The time to vote is now! Call your rep in Congress to move this bill forward.
We are calling on New York City Council members to immediately reallocate $1B of the NYPD’s $10B operational budget back to communities in NYC. Black New Yorkers shouldn't have to live in fear of the police.
Google was quick to issue statements of support for Black people following the murder of George Floyd, but their business practices tell a different story. They blocked ads tied to Black Lives Matter videos while allowing them for white nationalist groups.
America's police-driven approach to public safety is not working, esp. not for Black communities. For years, activists urged us to rethink how we keep communities safe. Now US Rep. Cori Bush introduced the People’s Response Act to protect people. Tell your Representative to cosponsor it.
For too long, Black people have been trapped in lifelong, impossible-to-repay student loans. With the pandemic, people are struggling just to make rent and stay afloat. Now's the time for our president to cancel student debt.
Tell your governor to say no. 34 states are introducing 81 new punitive anti-protest bills to try to roll back the people power that led to the biggest leap for racial justice in generations. We can't afford to go backwards now.
Gwen Levi is a 76-year old cancer survivor, grandmother, and Black woman. She is one of thousands who were deemed high risk for COVID-19, and released from prison in 2020 to finish their sentences at home. Recently, she was sent back to prison after missing a phone call from her case manager while attending a computer skills class. In just 4 days, 50k Color of Change members signed a petition calling for her release. Thanks to this public outcry, and the work of her legal team, Ms. Levi was just sent home on compassionate release – which means she is truly free and back with her family, including her 94-year old mother who she helps take care of. Meanwhile we continue to fight for clemency for the 4,000 elders under home confinement who risk being re-incarcerated on a technicality like Ms. Levi, or when the pandemic is declared over.
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Toyota Pulls Funding from Congressmembers Behind the Attack on Capitol
On January 6, 2021, hundreds of armed white nationalists burst through the doors of the Capitol while Congress was in session, threatening to kill people inside. In the wake of the insurrection, we called on dozens of corporations to stop funding crooked Congress members. We launched InsurrectionIncorporated.com, pressuring Toyota, Cigna, AT&T to stop donating to those undermining our democracy. After hundreds of Color Of Change PAC members called Toyota execs, Toyota agreed! Elected officials inciting the insurrection will NOT be allowed to hide behind their Congressional titles. And we continue to hold companies like Cigna, Intel, and JetBlue accountable for supporting those who voted against certifying the 2020 election results and are trying to disenfranchise Black voters today. This is how we protect democracy.
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Color Of Change Helps Athlete & Activist Gwen Berry Attract New Sponsors
All of Gwen Berry’s corporate sponsors dropped her after she boldly raised her fist in protest at the 2019 Pan American Games. Time and again, we’ve seen Black athletes unfairly punished for using their voice to stand up for justice. Color Of Change stepped in to sponsor Berry. We were also part of a successful campaign to get the U.S. Olympic Committee to reverse course and allow athletes to wear armbands, raise their fists, or kneel on the podium to express their political beliefs. Now we’ve persuaded AirBNB and Puma to sponsor Berry as well, which means she’ll have the proper support to succeed going into the Tokyo Olympics. In addition, we continue to demand that the International Olympic Committee drop Rule 50, and calling on major athletic companies like Nike to join us.
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Color Of Change helps people respond effectively to injustice in the world around us. As a national online force driven by 7 million members, we move decision makers in corporations and government to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people, and all people. Until justice is real.
The Chauvin trial was Minnesota’s first criminal case to be televised and livestreamed. Racial justice activists believe this is a key step towards accountability from our legal system – letting people see how a criminal trial works and the arguments used to undermine justice and blame Black victims. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson, who tweeted his analysis of each day’s proceedings, agrees. “We oftentimes just see the trial and we don’t have any video of the killing.” This time, “we saw the crime, and now we’re seeing the trial.” It’s especially important, he says, for the public to see arguments “being made on behalf of police officers… laws that incentivize police to kill us without accountability.”
Color Of Change Vice President Arisha Hatch writes about how Biden’s backslide on student debt forgiveness is a major step backwards in fulfilling the pledges he made to Black voters during his campaign. “Student loan debt is not just a national economic issue—it is also a racial justice issue at its core.” Between the racial wealth gap, predatory lending practices, and Black families’ limited access to bank loans, Black students just don’t have the same access to high quality education. Color Of Change just released a survey that shows 84% of Black voters support eliminating student debt. 40% want Biden to make sure any student admitted to public college can finish without taking on loans.
The guilty verdict against Derek Chauvin for murdering George Floyd is just the beginning of a long journey for officials to step up and enact real solutions that change the conditions Black people face at the hands of police, and move us towards true justice and reinvestment in our communities. Color Of Change is running campaigns to support the Department of Justice’s investigation into the Minneapolis Police Department’s practices, to fund non-policing public safety programs, and end qualified immunity once and for all.
Three years after Frances McDormand mentioned the idea of an inclusion rider in her 2018 Oscars acceptance speech, a reimagined version has been launched. Color Of Change’s #ChangeHollywood joined Pearl Street Films and Endeavor Content to release an updated version. The new ‘n improved rider focuses on inclusive hiring, hiring targets, and resources to increase representation of women and people of color throughout Hollywood. All the tools are available at www.inclusionrider.org. COC President Rashad Robinson says, “So far, few executives, studios, productions and agencies in Hollywood have actually backed up their statements about racial equity with action. These crucial resources will help raise the industry’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility.”
A charter amendment to replace the Minneapolis Police Department is one step closer to going before voters in November. Yes 4 Minneapolis, a coalition of 20+ racial justice and community activist groups including Color Of Change, delivered 20,000 signatures to officials at City Hall. Their proposed amendment would replace the police department with a new Department of Public Safety and shift authority over police from the mayor to the City Council. They city is under pressure to overhaul policing since George Floyd was killed by Derek Chauvin in May 2020. Antonio Williams said he had spoken with many Minneapolis residents who experienced brutality, injustice and indifference at the hands of city police. “Give us a chance, give us a choice to choose something new that works for all people.”
After George Floyd, many Democratic voters and politicians found themselves getting a crash course in racial inequality. Biden, who was responsible for the 1994 crime bill that spurred mass incarceration, is now vowing to make confronting systemic racism and uplift Black people a tenet of his administration. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson is quoted in this New York Times’ article on how Biden is evolving with the country when it comes to race and justice. “Biden is actually being Biden by being inside of all of the ways in which the current landscape is sending him messages. That is good, but I don’t want to be classifying this as some sort of out-front radical leadership. That would really not represent everything that could be possible if we leaned in more.” There’s still so much at stake from overhauling policing and investing in public safety to student loan forgiveness.