16 years after Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana, Ida struck, leaving thousands of people stranded and facing more than a month in their homes without power. We're calling on hotels to house hurricane survivors for free. Moments like these show which companies really care about Black lives.
On August 13, Kayla Bolden partnered with Twitch on “Stand Up To Cancer,” an event to raise money for cancer research. Twice, 400 bots dropped in and bombarded Kayla with racist slurs. And Twitch did nothing to stop it. It's time for Twitch to do better.
For too long, Black people have been trapped in lifelong, impossible-to-repay student loans. The Chair of the House Committee on Education has a responsibility to “build an America where everyone can succeed.” Tell him it's time to eliminate student debt.
Join us in calling on Congress to pass the Break the Cycle of Violence Act, which includes $5B for gun violence prevention. Poverty produces violence, and over-policing Black communities only increases violence. It's time to try something new.
Police unions are one of our biggest roadblocks to reform. SB 710 would require prosecutors who've taken donations from police unions to recuse themselves from cases involving cops. It's a crucial step towards real justice.
Last summer, Google pledged its support for Black people. Instead, they've blocked companies from using “Black Lives Matter” to tag videos while allowing ads on content tagged "White Power” or “White Lives Matter.” This is heinous. It's time for an audit of how Google's policies and practices affect Black people.
In Pasco County, Florida we're fighting to protect Black and Brown students from police surveillance. Help us shut down programs targeting children and stop law enforcement from accessing student info without consent.
Police officers in Nassau County, Long Island can now sue people for harassment without proof -- retaliation for last year’s protests, and an attempt to silence those who speak out against racial injustice. But we won’t be silenced. Let's stop this bill before it's signed into law.
50,000 Color Of Change 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 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.
Olympian Gwen Berry says her actions are often misunderstood. Berry believes her intentions are misunderstood. By raising her fist or turning around during the national anthem, she says, “I’m not saying I’m not proud to represent America. If anything, I am being extremely American by stating my rights. By exercising my constitutional right to say, I believe in freedom and justice for us all. I am protesting for America to be good for everybody. And just not for the elite or the white supreme.” After the 2019 Pan American Games, Berry lost her sponsors – and the majority of her salary – for speaking out. Recently, with help from Color of Change, Berry got a $15,000 sponsorship from Puma.
Gwen Berry has a track record of speaking out on injustice. Two summers ago, after winning gold at the 2019 Pan-American Games in Peru, she raised a fist on the podium and was slapped with a yearlong probation for violating international rules that prohibit protests inside stadiums and during ceremonies. It cost Berry her sponsors, including Nike. Color of Change eventually stepped in, pressuring companies to support Berry so she could continue being a professional athlete. Puma recently backed her with a $15,000 paycheck, equipment and apparel, and a campaign called “She Moves Us.” When this year’s Olympic track and field trials kicked off, she greeted the crowd with a raised fist and a t-shirt reading “athlete activist.”
Robert L. Johnson, America’s first Black billionaire, is calling on the federal government to pay reparations, saying over the last 200 years, “Black folks have been denied $13-15 trillion of wealth.” He urged lawmakers to pass a decades-old bill that would set the stage for reparations, HR 40, which would create a commission to study and develop proposals for reparations for descendants of slaves. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson is quoted. “HR 40, when it’s passed, will not actually provide reparations for anyone, but what it will do is move us on the road to be more truthful and in direct conversation about what happened. We’re also seeing local communities have these conversations.”
As part of #ChangeMusic, Color of Change has partnered with Diverse Representation to launch the Black Music Executives Pipeline Program. The program will help record labels, publishers, video production companies, streaming services and touring companies to quickly identify and hire Black executive. The idea is to bridge the gap between the high number of Black artists in the industry and disproportionately low number of Black executives representing them. Color Of Change’s interim Chief Marketing & Storytelling Officer Amity Paye is quoted. “The Black Music Executives Pipeline Program is a crucial step in the ongoing fight to end the music industry’s decades-long history of discrimination and exclusion of Black professionals.”
Columnist Jonathan Capeheart sat down with Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson – who he calls “a civil rights leader you should be paying more attention to” – for Pride month. Rashad calls what’s happening now “a deep cultural shift in America” and explains what it is means that racial justice has become a majoritarian issue in America. “It was racial justice that moved people to the streets, moved people to action, led to upticks in voter registration. You saw white folks in a Starbucks taking out their cellphones and filming a police interaction because of our engagement.” He talks about how to transform the presence of Black people into real power, and what cues we can follow from the LGBTQ movement.
Four years into his experiment with reforming Philadelphia criminal justice, Larry Krasner overwhelmingly won his primary race for reelection as district attorney. Since 2017, Krasner has become a symbol of the movement to elect reform-minded prosecutors. But his reforms also sparked a serious backlash – making him a target for law enforcement groups and prominent Republicans. Scott Roberts, Color Of Change’s senior director of criminal justice campaigns, is quoted. “With all the noise that goes on, the attacks, we know that the agenda is still very popular. People want to see these prosecutors’ offices being focused on bringing down incarceration rates, and holding police accountable. And they’re actually looking for other solutions for violence, they’re not willing to buy into the narrative that they hear from police unions and conservative politicians.”