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. 9 - 16, 2019.
Amplify Values In These Emerging Issues
Hold Firm on Our Values, End #TrumpShutdown
Last night on national television, President Trump tried to up the ante in his stalemate with Congressional Democrats over the proposed border wall. Trump repeated misinformation and unsubstantiated fear-mongering claims that he has used for years. As a result of the government funding impasse, federal programs have been shut down for 18 days, affecting millions of Americans, potentially including those receiving medical and food assistance. Our values must not be compromised when addressing these actions. The current moment provides us with even more opportunities to amplify our values of Community and Economic Security as effectively as possible.
- 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; 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; Center for American Progress' Effects of the Trump Shutdown on Federal Workers’ Paychecks: State-by-State Estimates and Missing Paychecks Due to Trump Shutdown Total $2 Billion Every Two Weeks
- Hashtags: #trumpshutdown #nobannowall #noborderwall
Stand Against SNAP Rule-Making on Reporting Requirements
At the end of December, the Trump administration proposed the SNAP rulemaking that imposes reporting requirements targeted unemployed and underemployed workers. The move sidesteps Congress after similar measures were removed from the final Farm Bill and endangers food assistance for nearly 755,000 Americans. 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; Center for American Progress’ The Farm Bill Compromise Represents a Major Victory for American Families
- Hashtag: #HandsOffSNAP
Upcoming Media Hooks & Events
Month of January
During Poverty Awareness Month, the Catholic community urges 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
Thursday, Jan. 10
On this day in 1957, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. convened 60 Black ministers in Atlanta for a meeting that resulted in the Founding of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). In 1968, the SCLC launched the Poor People's Campaign (which recently relaunched). In telling your story, we recommend leading with the values of Voice and Community.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Ten Tips for Putting Intersectionality into Practice; Improving Opportunity for Black Men and Boys - Messaging Guidance and Ten Lessons for Talking About Race, Racism and Racial Justice;
- Hashtags: #poorpeoplescampaign
In Washington, D.C., several labor unions are holding a rally to protest the continuing shutdown and resulting furloughs that are financially hurting 800,000 federal employees and families. The rally starts at AFL-CIO headquarters and marches to the White House.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Talking Border Issues Amidst the Government Shutdown
- Hashtags: #trumpshutdown #nobannowall #noborderwall
Friday, Jan. 11
Human Trafficking Awareness Day is an opportunity to draw more attention to forced labor, debt bondage, involuntary servitude and sex trafficking that affect thousands of men, women and children in the U.S. and around the world. Refer to the values of Voice, Economic Security, and Equality when discussing human trafficking.
- Messaging and communication tools: The Opportunity Agenda’s Sex Workers Rights, Workers Rights, & Human Trafficking; Freedom Network USA’s Rights-Based Approach to Combating Human Trafficking; Ethical Journalism Network’s Media and Trafficking in Human Beings Guidelines; Catholic Relief Services’ Turn on the Light;
- Hashtags: #HumanTraffickingAwarenessDay #humantrafficking
Wednesday, Jan. 16
One hundred years ago on this day, Prohibition was legalized when the Eighteenth 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