This edition of The Opportunity Agenda's weekly action alert system offers tools and tips for using breaking news to frame and advance economic opportunity and racial justice solutions between Jan. 16 - 23, 2019.
Amplify Values In These Emerging Issues
Push Congress to Enforce Judge’s Decision to Block Citizenship Question
Yesterday Judge Jesse Furman ruled that the Trump administration violated the law by adding a citizenship question to the 2020 Census. Furman said the process was based on ‘acts and statements of officials with something to hide’ and should be removed because it will reduce participation by immigrants and people of color. The Leadership Conference assets that it’s now “up to Congress to step in to remove the question and lift any cloud of uncertainty that will hang over final census preparations if the issue remains tied up in the courts.” Discuss the decision with your audiences by citing the values of Community, Economic Opportunity and Voice.
Focus on the Real Impact of the #TrumpShutdown
Our country is now facing the longest government shutdown in U.S. history, affecting millions of Americans, potentially including those receiving medical, food and housing assistance. The Department of Agriculture (USDA) took steps to ensure that 38 million SNAP recipients get food assistance through February but it is unclear what will happen in March. Congress must quickly reopen the government to avoid hardship for these families. We need to continue to amplify our values of Community and Economic Security.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Talking Border Issues Amidst the Government Shutdown and 5 Tips for Talking About Border Communities Without Talking about a Wall; Spotlight on Poverty's What the Shutdown Means for Federal Benefits for Low-Income Americans; Center on Budget and Policy Priorities’ Millions Face Cut in SNAP Food Assistance if Government Shutdown Continues; Food Research and Action Center’s Government Shutdown Threatens National Emergency for Millions of Hungry Households; Campaign for Housing and Community Development Funding’s Impacts of Government Shutdown on Affordable Housing Programs; National Low Income Housing Coalition’s Update on the Shutdown’s Impact on Housing and How to Take Action
- Hashtags: #trumpshutdown #nobannowall #noborderwall
Stand with Los Angeles Teachers
This week, 35,000 teachers in the Los Angeles School District when on strike for better pay, smaller classes and more support. Discuss the strike citing the values of Economic Security, Voice and Community.
- Messaging and communication tools: United Teachers of Los Angeles’ demands; The Opportunity Agenda’s Ten Tips for Talking About Janus v. AFSCME Council 31
- Hashtags: #UTLAStrong #WeAreLA #red4ed
Keep An Eye on: SNAP Rule-Making
The Trump administration proposed SNAP rulemaking that imposes reporting requirements targeted unemployed and underemployed workers. Once the rule is posted in the Federal Register, there will be 60 days for the public to comment. Be sure to refer to the values of Community and Economic Security when talking about this rulemaking.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Talking about Economic Justice; The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities’ Trump SNAP Proposal Would Cost Many of Nation’s Poorest Their Food Aid
- Hashtag: #HandsOffSNAP
Upcoming Media Hooks & Events
Month of January
It’s Poverty Awareness Month and Catholic organizations are encouraging Americans to “take up Pope Francis' challenge to live in solidarity with the poor.” Use this month to discuss poverty with your audiences and cite the values of Community and Economic Opportunity.
- Messaging tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Shifting the Narrative on Poverty and A Window of Opportunity II: Analysis Public Opinion on Poverty; Campaign for Human Development’s Online calendar of daily ways to learn about poverty (also en Español); Poverty USA’s interactive quiz
- Hashtag: #PovertyAwarenessMonth
Wednesday, Jan. 16
One hundred years ago on this day, Prohibition was legalized when the 18th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, outlawing “intoxicating liquors.” The ban came into effect in 1920 and lasted for 13 years until it was reversed by the 21st amendment. Today, we view this period as a wasteful, punitive and ill-conceived intrusion on the lives of Americans. Current discussions about criminal justice reform and drug policy demonstrate that our nation is moving towards more effective and humane ways of dealing with addiction harm reduction. Use this anniversary to discuss how far our nation has come in upholding the values of Redemption and Community.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Americans Support Prevention, Rehabilitation and Reintegration and Eliminate the Criminalization of Public Health Issues; The Drug Policy Alliance’s About the Drug War; Center for American Progress’ Ending the War on Drugs; PBS and Ken Burns’ Prohibition documentary
- Hashtags: #Prohibition100 #18thAmendment #harmreduction #nomoredrugwar
At 1pm ET, the National Congress of American Indians will present findings from its research on get-out-the-count census messages that resonate with hard to count communities. The briefing is part of a series convened by the Funders Census Initiative. Register here.
- Messaging and communication tools: Funders Census Initiative’s recordings and slides from past discussions; The Opportunity Agenda’s Census Data: A Fair and Accurate Count
- Hashtag: #Census2020 #SaveTheCensus
At 3pm ET, The Leadership Conference will host a stakeholder call with representatives from the New York Attorney General’s office, and other organizations to discuss the decision in the multi-state lawsuit to remove the citizenship question from the 2020 Census. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and discuss next steps. Click here before 2pm to register for the call and receive call-in information. See tools above.
Friday, Jan. 18
Across the U.S. and Canada today, Indigenous people are standing together to bring awareness to the injustices affecting their communities.The largest march will be held in Washington, D.C. Use these events to talk about racial and economic justice for Native Americans and cite the values of Voice, Community, and Economic Security.
- Messaging and communication tools: Indigenous People’s Movement’s Why I March; The Opportunity Agenda’s Standing Rock, Ferguson or Mexican Border, ‘We Are All Related’; U.S. Department of Arts and Culture's #HonorNativeLand: A Guide and Call for Acknowledgement; National Congress of American Indians' Proud to Be Campaign; Reclaiming Native Truths’ Changing the Narrative about Native Americans; IllumiNative’s The false narratives, invisibility, and the erasure of Native peoples must end
- Hashtags: #IPMDC19 #IndigenousPeoplesMarch #IndigenousRights #JusticdForAll
Saturday, Jan. 19
The Women’s March returns for its third iteration. The main march will be in Washington with hundreds of regional marches across the country. It’s a great opportunity to talk about the intersection of gender, economic opportunity, and racial justice. Be sure to refer to the values of Community and Economic Security.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Ten Tips for Putting Intersectionality into Practice; Women’s March principles;
- Hashtags: #WomensWave #IMarchFor #WomensMarch2019
Monday, Jan. 21
Today we celebrate the birthday and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. This federal holiday is a great opportunity to talk about the ongoing struggle for racial justice in the United States by citing the values of Equality, Community and Economic Security.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Ten Lessons for Talking About Race; Talking About Race and The First Step Act and What He Means to Me: Dr. King’s Legacy; International Documentary Association's Documentaries to Watch: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
- Hashtags: #MLKDay
Tuesday, Jan. 22
It’s the second annual National Day of Racial Healing, an opportunity for people, organizations and communities across the United States to “call for racial healing, bring people together in their common humanity and take collective action to create a more just and equitable world.” Cite the values of Community, Equality and Economic Security on this day.
Wednesday, Jan. 23
Today is the birthday of Edward Verne Roberts, who was a pioneering advocate for people with disabilities. Many consider him the “father of independent living,” and his wheelchair is displayed in the Smithsonian Museum because of his work. Use the anniversary to discuss how imposing work reporting requirements on Medicaid recipients will hurt people with disabilities. Use the values of Equality and Economic Mobility.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Opportunity Impact Statement - Expanding the American Dream; 99% Invisible podcast’s Curb Cuts; The Center for American Progress' Beyond the ADA - Introducing the Disability Justice Initiative at Center for American Progress; The Trump Budget’s Attack on People with Disabilities and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' Trump’s Budget Director Gets Social Security Disability Insurance Wrong
- Hashtags: #ADA #SaveMedicaid
At 1pm ET, the Arab American Institute will present findings of its research on get-out-the-count messages that resonate with hard to count communities. The briefing is part of a series convened by the Funders Census Initiative. Register here.