In times like these, we need each other. Join us for our first online Local Meeting of the year where we will discuss and vote on new resolutions, and figure out how to best organize in Los Angeles over the next few months in our new reality living during a global pandemic. Now more than ever is the time to come together, organize, and work together (even if remotely)! Come hang out with your fellow comrades online on Saturday, March 28th from 3-5pm.
As this will be our first ever online Local Meeting with us all using the application Zoom, please come armed with patience and good humor as we will be navigating the process for the first time together.
We recommend joining Zoom calls by computer or phone app because you will then be able to see other meeting attendees by webcam (it is not required to use a webcam and it can be turned off as well as your microphone muted if you prefer to just listen in). There is also the option of calling into Zoom meetings rather than joining by computer/phone app.
Here’s our quick how-to Zoom guide!
Per DSA-LA’s bylaws, “Local Meetings” occur three times per year and use a parlia modified version of Robert’s Rules, a parliamentary procedural rulebook to debate and vote on collective decisions about our political work. However, since Robert’s Rules are primarily intended to be used for in-person meetings and since this will be our first Local Meeting and first online-only meeting, we’ll be modifying Robert’s Rules so that the final votes on each resolution will happen after the meeting, via email. Here is a cheat sheet from our comrades at Boston DSA on Robert’s Rules, which will still be used for debating and potentially amending the resolutions during the meeting. During the meeting, we’ll be considering several political resolutions, which per our bylaws were agendized by being passed by DSA-LA’s issue-based committees, by a vote of DSA-LA’s Steering Committee, or by rank-and-file members gathering 25 signatures. Resolutions are written in two sections: “Whereas” clauses explain the rationale behind the resolution and expanding on the political stances of the chapter, and “resolved” clauses, which explain what actions would be taken by the chapter if the resolution is adopted. For guidance on writing political resolutions for future meetings, see this memo by our comrades in New Orleans DSA (note that the bottom section, “Resolutions Process” is not applicable to DSA-LA.
In order to vote you will need to be a member in good standing by the date of the Local meeting, so if you are not a member now is a great time to join DSA-LA.
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed at this moment, as the world suffers through a pandemic, the global economy careens towards crisis, and the billionaire class moves to preserve its wealth at the expense of workers. But crises create political openings, and there is enormous potential for us to win material victories for working people – so long as we come together and fight for them.
PROPOSAL TO JOIN COALITION ON IM/MIGRANT JUSTICE AS A FOUNDATIONAL MEMBER
WHEREAS: Los Angeles is the second largest im/migrant city in the United States, having a national and transnational impact on the fight for im/migrant rights and international solidarity.
WHEREAS: The activist wing of the im/migrant rights movement needs to be strengthened locally, independent of the non-profit and two capitalist political party machines, the Democrats and the Republicans.
WHEREAS: The DSA-LA Immigration Justice Committee has been coordinating and convening a monthly coalition meeting of Leftist activists and organizers, who worked on the October 12th March and Rally to Close the Camps.
THEREFORE, we propose the Democratic Socialists of America - Los Angeles joins as a foundational member of a new local Leftist coalition on Im/migrant justice united by anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist values centered around immigration rights and international solidarity.
ABOUT THE COALITION
Organizing Objectives Platform:
- Permanently abolish detention centers from existing in the Los Angeles region.
- Inform the Los Angeles community about crucial im/migrant rights legislation and political campaigns.
- Rebuild the Leftwing im/migrant rights movement in Los Angeles with and universal representation, such as full enfranchisement for undocumented members of the community.
- End the collaboration between local law enforcement and any federal immigration enforcement agencies.
Points of Unity:
- Close the Prison Camps! We believe all detention centers, public and private, must be abolished. They are dehumanizing extensions of the Prison Industrial Complex.
- Open the Borders! We believe in open borders for im/migrants, climate refugees, black migrants, and indigneous peoples.
- Abolish ICE! We believe all deportations and raids must be stopped.
- No Human is Illegal! We believe all im/migrants and undocumented people have the right to be at home and be at peace. Immigration relief must include amnesty, asylum, and citizenship.
- No Ban! No Wall! We believe in international solidarity. Travel bans and militarized borders are tools of white supremacy designed to ensure a precarious underclass of labor.
- An Injury to One is an Injury to All! We believe im/migrants have the right to organize in the workplace, and that the labor movement is strongest when workers of the world unite.
RESOLUTION TO ENDORSE “SCHOOLS AND COMMUNITIES FIRST”
WHEREAS, the “Schools and Communities First” ballot initiative, backed by a broad coalition of labor unions as well as progressive activist organizations, will be on the November 2020 California ballot; and WHEREAS, the initiative, in partially closing a Reagan “tax revolt” era loophole, would reclaim $12 billion in wealth from capitalist business interests for the public good in the form of funding public schools and other services; THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that DSA Los Angeles endorses the upcoming 2020 ballot initiative, “Schools and Communities First”; and BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that DSA Los Angeles shall devote significant chapter resources during the 2020 general election cycle, should that cycle not be disrupted, to campaign for the proposition, including direct voter contact, member-to-member contact, digital media, and educational events; and BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that DSA Los Angeles shall use this campaign to strengthen coalitional relationships with local unions, grassroots organizations, other California DSA chapters, and elected officials or candidates in support of the initiative, and shall incorporate the initiative into any candidate-focused campaigning that the chapter undertakes in 2020.
- Jack Suria Linares
- Tal L.
- Greg G.
- Greg Salwen
- Miguel C.
- Sergio D.
- Shaun Cullen
- Kenyon McFarlane
- Scott C.
- Alex Wi
- Omar A.
- Kyle G.
- Blake R.
- Julia S.
- Andy P.
- Ryan Kelly
- Jordan E.
- Sean B.
- Chandler D.
- Carol N
- Erin O'Neal-Robinson
- Steve C.
- Ariadne L
- Daniel D.
- Meg W.
- Nicky M.
- haley p
- Michael Stenovec
Resolution to Fundraise and Match Chapter Funds for Street Watch
Whereas, Street Watch Los Angeles is an ongoing DSA Los Angeles project with the following goals:
- To provide support and resources to unhoused people
- To reduce harm inflicted by the state onto poor and unhoused people
- To support the political empowerment of poor and unhoused people
- To build a dedicated culture of awareness and resistance to daily acts of capitalist violence
- To decriminalize poverty and homelessness
- To increase public health infrastructure for the unhoused
- To connect housed and unhoused communities
- To build collective power; and
Whereas, through this work, DSA Street Watch organizers regularly come into contact with unhoused comrades who lack basic necessities such as tents, sleeping bags, blankets, food, and water -- often losing them in brutal sweeps conducted by LAPD and LA Sanitation teams, and have regularly been purchasing these items for our comrades out of our own pockets; and Whereas, with the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and the refusal of Los Angeles city council to suspend sweeps our unhoused comrades even more urgently need supplies; and Whereas, the DSA Los Angeles has already voted to allocate $700 in chapter funds and launch a temporary emergency fundraiser for COVID-19 Street Watch response; Therefore be it resolved that DSA Los Angeles will maintain and promote on social media on an ongoing basis a public-facing fundraiser and match $3000 in funds from the chapter treasury to purchase supplies for Street Watch distribution, with money overseen and distributed by DSA-LA treasurer reimbursement for tents, blankets, sleeping bags, food, water, handwashing stations, hand sanitizer, and phone chargers.
Resolution to Ratify Reclaim Our Homes Support and Allocate Chapter Funds
Whereas, DSA-LA over the past two weeks, approved by a Steering Committee vote, joined in coalition with ACCE, LACCLA, LATU, United Caltrans Tenants, and the Eastside Café, and the Reclaimers - unhoused or precariously housed tenants to support “Reclaim Our Homes”, a direct action occupying vacant properties owned by Caltrans in El Sereno, to draw attention to the fact that there is publicly owned vacant housing that could be used NOW and have established coalition decision making processes:
- to make decisions by consensus, and if that is not possible, decide things by 2/3 majority vote
- Each reclaimer having one vote, and each organization having 3 votes; and
Whereas, Reclaim Our Homes’ demands are that all publicly owned vacant property become housing now, that the state and the city make a massive investment in public housing, and that Caltrans negotiate with these tenants about these houses; and Whereas, DSA-LA members have supported by participating in planning meetings, arranging press for the action, managing the rapid response texting service, coordinating security shifts watching the houses, supplies and logistics. Our members took the lead in building a community garden behind the first house; Therefore be it resolved, that DSA Los Angeles will support Reclaim Our Homes by:
- Mobilizing members to pressure elected officials to respond to our demands
- Mobilizing members to take volunteer shifts guarding the reclaimed homes and dropping off supplies if and when those actions are safe
- Instructing the Steering Committee to allocate at least $150 and up to $1000 in chapter funds to help purchase supplies and provide other material support for the Reclaimers
Resolution to Support Chicano Moratorium 50th Anniversary Commemoration
WHEREAS, A broad coalition of Latinx activists, organizations and unions are organizing a 50th Anniversary Commemoration honoring the August 29, 1970 Chicano Moratorium. Beginning in 1969 and based in East Los Angeles, students, activists, and families with children joined together in a series of marches and rallies to highlight the Vietnam War as a civil rights issue, and to call attention to the disproportionate number of Mexican-American casualties.
The August 29th Moratorium was a seminal moment in the Chicano Movement, when some 30,000 mostly Chicano demonstrators marched against the Vietnam War protesting the disproportionate numbers of Chicanos drafted and being killed, police brutality, poor education, deportations and other injustices. Ruben Salazar, a progressive reporter for the L.A. Times was shot and killed by a tear gas canister fired by a Sheriff's Deputy.
WHEREAS, organizing for the 50th Anniversary Commemoration will provide opportunities for DSA-LA members to be included in a broad and unique organizing coalition and will be a forum in which to forge new relationships and engage meaningfully with other activists and organizations. THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that DSA-LA will actively endorse, promote and attend the Chicano Moratorium 50th Anniversary Commemoration and to do so will engage in volunteer recruitment and formation of an organizing team, including engaging in youth outreach to bring students and younger activists into the organizing efforts for the Commemoration.
Resolution to Support “JACKIE LACEY MUST GO” campaign
WHEREAS: Criminal justice reform advocates and other progressives find the record of LA County District Attorney Jackie Lacey deficient in many respects, including failure to prosecute law enforcement killings and abuses, continued seeking of death sentences, etc.; and Whereas, Black Lives Matter leadership welcomes DSA-LA support in opposing Lacey’s re-election as D.A.; and Whereas, it is beneficial to DSA-LA to work as an ally with grass-roots community groups toward shared goals, and it is beneficial to the Nithya and Bernie Sanders’ campaign to be linked with issues of concern to the black community; and Whereas DSA-LA passed an Organizing For All resolution at the last local convention, which tasks the chapter with developing a more diverse and inclusive membership; THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, we urge the Nithya and Bernie Working Groups, Agit-Prop and DSA-LA Steering Committee to devise collaborative operations for the general election, such as BERNIE YES! NITHYA YES! JACKIE NO! phone banking and social media agit prop to support justice reform BOTH on a national level with a Sanders administration and on a local level with a new less harmful district attorney.