The media has decided the climate catastrophe in Puerto Rico is hardly worth covering. Environmental crises in low-income Black and Latinx communities are often downplayed or overlooked by TV news. But people are going through so much. Demand cable news give the crisis in Puerto Rico full credible coverage.
In Oklahoma, pregnant women are facing felony charges for using prescribed medical marijuana during pregnancy. Even though their babies are born healthy, they're facing possible life sentences. Black, Brown, and poor women bear the brunt of this criminalization.
Demand publishers like McGraw Hill commit to never erase Black history from their learning materials! In March, Florida passed a bill to censor conversations about slavery, racism, and oppression. Then the Dpmt of Ed rejected math textbooks with ethnically diverse names and facts about Black mathematicians. Our children deserve better!
Incarcerated people and their loved ones deserve to stay connected. But prison telecom companies charge as much as $1 a minute for calls, exploiting Black families. The Martha Wright Act would regulate how much prisons and jails can charge for calls home. Fax your rep through our site.
A Tech Transparency Project report shows Facebook is aiding the growth of hate groups on its platform, and may be helping white supremacists identify targets for violence. Let's make Facebook end paid ads for hate groups; ban groups on their “Dangerous Organizations” list; and have Mark Zuckerberg meet with racial justice leaders.
More than 1,000 people have been killed by police this past year. The latest is Jayland Walker, a 25-year-old Black man brutally executed by police in Akron, Ohio. He was shot 60x during a routine traffic stop. Help us as we join Jayland's family in demanding accountability for his senseless death.
All eyes are on Georgia’s runoff elections where the fate of the Senate hangs in the balance. After poll workers–many of whom are Black women–were harassed, Color Of Change launched a campaign with UltraViolet. Together we demanded Facebook shut down the right-wing groups targeting poll workers, reminding execs that online harassment leads to real-world violence. Some poll workers received death threats; one even found a noose outside his home with his name on it. Recently Facebook announced poll workers will now be included in their Protect Program, given extra safety and privacy protections. Poll workers defend our democracy; they should never have to live in fear. The fight is not over as the move came only after immense pressure from Color Of Change and partners. We continue to press Facebook to stop putting Black lives and votes at risk.
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Tampa’s District Attorney Drops Bogus Charges Against COC & BLM Organizers
This summer, Tampa's Police Department systematically tried to intimidate and harass Black activists. On August 22, the sheriff violently arrested a Color Of Change organizer in her home and arrested 3 other organizers – all on trumped-up, bogus charges. This was clearly meant to instill fear in activists fighting for racial justice. These tactics are not unique to Tampa. We’ve seen local police and federal agents target protesters in Portland, New York, Chicago, and St. Louis too. 50,000 Color Of Change members joined our campaign to drop the prosecution of the protesters and fire the police chief. Less than 2 weeks later, the Hillsborough State Attorney dropped the charges. We hope it sends a signal to Tampa police that there will be consequences for harassing and intimidating Black protesters.
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Google Blocks Proud Boys’ Website & Online Store
We were all horrified when, on live TV during the presidential debates, President Trump told the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by” instead of condemning white nationalists. But Color Of Change’s work to pressure tech companies to take responsibility for how their platforms are used is having an impact. Google quickly moved to get a Google Cloud Services customer to remove the Proud Boys' site and online store – effectively cutting off the hate group from new money and potential members. They also worked with us when news broke about the Wolverine Watchmen, the group plotting to kidnap Michigan Governor Whitmer. We cannot let domestic terrorists build power online. It’s time for tech companies to create systems to proactively root out racist, extremist behavior on their platforms, instead of waiting for groups like Color Of Change to call them out.
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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.
In the Ahmaud Arbery case, justice arrived despite a rigged jury selection process: 11 of the 12 jurors were white, and that was no accident. During jury selection, the defense dismissed 11 of 12 potential Black jurors. When the prosecution challenged these dismissals, the judge acknowledged that they were likely rooted in racism but refused to do anything about it. Over and over, we see the same thing, and the problem is not with the judges or lawyers — but the law. Scott Roberts, Color Of Change’s Sr Director of Criminal Justice Campaigns points to the case of Judge Olu Stevens in 2016, who threw out an all-white jury on racial grounds. “He recognized that discrimination was happening, … and he was suspended for 90 days.” In addition, “If you’re barred from registering to vote, then you’re barred from juries by default. Given that our criminal justice system is so racially biased, … this is a vicious cycle.”
The New York Times dives into America’s evolution with language and the new terms coming into play in the movement for racial justice and gender inclusion. For those pushing for changes in society, words matter — and not just in the ways you’d think. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson explains how the way we articulate ideas helps us understand who’s to blame for the current imbalances of power and where the real solutions lie. “Saying something like, ‘Black people are less likely to get a loan from the bank,’ instead of saying, ‘Banks are less likely to give loans to Black people,’ might feel like it’s just me wording it differently,” he explains. “But ‘Black people are less likely to get a loan from the bank’ makes people ask themselves, ‘What’s wrong with Black people? Let’s get them financial literacy programs.’ The other way is saying, ‘What’s wrong with the banks?’”
A Minneapolis ballot initiative, which would have removed a requirement for a minimum number of MPD officers, was defeated when 56% voted against installing a new Department of Public Safety with a more holistic vision that relies less on cops with guns. Still many advocates in the “defund” movement see just how much progress has been made. Momentum for similar efforts continue to build in Washington D.C., Austin, and Los Angeles. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson says social movements can take years to create sweeping change, and this one has pushed a major shift in the conversation in a short time.“I couldn’t imagine a ballot measure like this even being on the ballot three years ago,” he said. “Movements lose until they win.” A Star Tribune analysis found the strongest support among younger voters, around the University of Minnesota, and near where George Floyd was killed. Opposition was strong in wealthy areas, and the city’s largely Black north side, where people expressed fears about violent crime.
Black users say they got blocked on Facebook all the time, sometimes even for just discussing racism, whereas open violent threats against them go unpunished. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson says the failure to kick Trump off Facebook before the insurrection is indicative of how Facebook sweeps violent, racist threats under the table all the time. Leading up to January 6, Robinson called Mark Zuckerberg to challenge the company’s decision. “Zuckerberg dismissed concerns that Trump’s post would whip up vigilantism against Black community and insisted the post was staying up to warn the public of the threat of military force,” according to Robinson. History, of course, has shown otherwise.
The world reacts to Facebook’s name change to Meta, as people across the world debate the triumphs and failures in creating safeguards for emerging social media technologies, and confronting the limits of corporate greed and the blindspots of corporate culture. The company’s detractors say a name change that nods toward the “metaverse” isn’t enough. Critics include Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson, who told lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, that the new name is“exactly what you should name a company that needs to be broken up.” Many other lawmakers and advocates are quoted as well.
Politico talks about the latest report from Color of Change and watchdog group LittleSis exposing the corporations that contribute to police foundations. The report shows Bank of America, AT&T, Target, Verizon, Walmart, Starbucks, Uber, Delta Airlines, and major sports teams all give to police foundations — funneling money for special equipment and programs that target Black and Brown communities. Now Color Of Change are members are stepping up to urge companies to divest from police foundations across the country. The full report can be found at https://policefoundations.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/Police-Report-2021_10_05_FINALV3.pdf