It has been almost three weeks since our lives fundamentally changed. 350PDX has changed too, and we’ve tried to quickly adapt to this moment. Here’s our plan.
- Look after the community
The health and economic wellbeing of our volunteers, our supporters, and the wider Portland community is our number one priority. To combat the fear, uncertainty, and hardship that many are going through, we’ve been creating and sharing COVID-19 resources, mutual aid efforts, facilitating community organizing, and checking in with our volunteers and supporters. We’ve also jumped into new coalitions working on developing and passing policies like a rent / evictions / mortgage / sweeps moratorium, as we can’t have climate justice without economic and social justice (read more about the Just Transition here).
- Seize the moment
In moments of crisis, progressive policies can take an evolutionary leap forward. Ideas that were dismissed as too radical just a week ago are starting to seem like the only reasonable path to get out of this crisis and prevent future ones. An economic crisis with unprecedented unemployment is what sparked the original New Deal. Now a Green New Deal to create millions of clean energy jobs may be our best route back to economic stability, paired with other policies like Medicare For All, and a People’s Bailout to help people get through this pandemic. For 350PDX, that looks like building new coalitions and creating climate solutions that are also pandemic solutions. So we’re seizing this moment, because if we don’t, then corporations and rightwing politicians will.
We’re also seizing this online moment, by making our actions more accessible online (see our new actions page), and pivoting Earth Day to be a massive three days of digital actions (more on that very soon!).
- Prepare for the future
When the lockdowns end and in-person actions and events are allowed again, we will be ready. We are using this time to do the things that we are often too busy to do – deep strategic planning; creating and running trainings for ourselves and volunteers; growing our digital organizing capacity.
We wanted to keep you all in the loop about what we’re thinking. These plans will surely change as the situation changes, but we will try our best to be doing the most compassionate and strategic job we can.
Here’s your 350PDX weekly update.
Our biggest priority right now is making sure folks in the 350PDX community can get the support they need. Please use the request support form if you would like food and other supplies delivered to you, and the offer support form if you would like to volunteer to help. It is being run by an all-volunteer grassroots network that has sprung up to provide mutual aid across the city.
Dineen has just given the resources page a big update (Thanks Dineen!) so check it out for the full list of resources for self care, community care, tackling bias/xenophobia, and organizing during this time. Take a look here.
This is the best guide we’ve seen on navigating our confusing system right now, from emergency funds, unemployment advice, and info on those $1,200 checks. The ‘Supporting The Most Vulnerable’ section on page 2 will also be interesting to those of you itching to help out in person.
With over 3,000 members already, this support group is to help coordinate mutual aid in the Portland region during COVID-19. It provides the latest in local news, opportunities to support workers, online community events, and a place to ask for help.
Let us know what other support would be useful! Also let us know if you know of other resources we should be sharing on this newsletter! Email email@example.com.
The stimulus package has been passed, but with only $1,200 going to each person, roughly equivalent to 1-2 weeks wages, it’s not going to be enough to get us through this crisis, and emerge on the other side in a better position to tackle our economic, health and climate crises. Join us today to demand a #PeoplesBailout and #PeopleNotPolluters!
Call your Representative and make your voice heard. More info here.
A large group of climate and social policy experts, part of the national Stop the Money Pipeline coalition, are urging Congress to rebuild the economy with a Green Stimulus. They tell Congress eight policy options to shape the debate. You can help boost this letter by signing on. Read the letter on Medium, or jump right to signing.
350.org just released this new short (49 page) book specifically about organizing online during this pandemic. Whether you’re leading online groups (and that could be 350PDX teams, or through your work, or your book club that has transitioned online, or even big family chats) or whether you’re just attending online meetings, the info in the short book is really useful to know.
What Climate Grief Taught Me About the Coronavirus – by the great climate justice essayist of our time, Mary Annaïs Heglar
The Coronavirus Is a Fast-Motion Climate Crisis
Social Movements in Times of Pandemic: Another World Is Needed
Activism in the Time of COVID-19 (KBOO radio show from Barbara Bernstein about climate activism)
How to Beat Coronavirus Capitalism – video recording of last weeks’ teach-in with Naomi Klein, Astra Taylor, and Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
Right now having a focus on justice, equity, diversity and inclusion (JEDI) is more important than ever. The climate crisis goes on, and we need to keep focus on our campaigns. But going back to the reason we fight for climate justice – that we want to end the suffering, oppression and secure a bright future for all – means that we cannot ignore the current health and economic crises. Ensuring that justice and equity permeate through every aspect of our organization is the focus of the JEDI committee. Apply to join here!
(P.S. we forgot to ask for names and emails two weeks ago, so two people signed up but we don’t know who you are! If this is you then please let me know or fill in the form again! Thanks! – Chris)
- Wet’suwet’en Webinar and Fundraiser
Sun Apr 5, 2:00PM – 4:00PM @ Online (link here)Amidst a global pandemic, the Wet’suwet’en are still bravely fighting to stop the Coastal GasLink pipeline from destroying their unceded, traditional territories in Northern B.C. Tune in for this fantastic webinar and fundraiser on Sunday at 2 pm to hear from Rose Henry, a member of the Tla’amin Nation in B.C., Kanahus Manuel, co-founder of the Tiny House Warriors, and the Indigenous Youth Land Defenders. More info on the Facebook event here.
- Weekly WildChat: Community Resistance to Jordan Cove LNG
Tues Apr 7, 5:00PM – 6:00PM @ OnlineOur partners at Cascadia Wildlands are hosting this great webinar where you can join an in-dept discussion about resistance to the Jordan Cove LNG project, directly from those fighting the project on the ground. Panelists: Ka’ila Farrel-Smith, a Klamath Modoc artist and anti-pipeline activist; Deb Evans, an impacted landowner; and Gabe Scott, member of the legal team fighting the project. Register for the call here, and share on Facebook here.
- Youth-Led Earth Day
Wed Apr 22 @ OnlineBetween youth organizers across the City, OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon, 350PDX, SunrisePDX, and APANO, we now have a plan for Earth Day in Portland! A livestream rally highlighting the YouthPass campaign, with speakers, panelists, and performances plus non-virtual actions people can take. Those at the Virtual Rally on the 22nd will be encouraged to come back and take virtual action with us the following day for the “digital take-over” of Chase Banks across the city. More info to come.
- “Digital Take-Over” of Chase Banks
Thurs Apr 23 @ OnlineDigital take-overs of every Chase branch in the City will be accomplished by leaving educational reviews en mass for every branch. Google map, Yelp, and many other review sites also let you post photos with your review, so people can also create protest signs at home and take selfies with them to go with their review. Our ST$P-PDX coalition (350PDX, Greenpeace, Sunrise, Extinction Rebellion, Raging Grannies, Stop Fracked Gas, Portland Youth Climate Council, Columbia Riverkeeper, etc.) will support people with a toolkit and everything needed to publicize! Fill out this form to get involved in the planning (e.g., writing sample reviews, media plan, art ideas, etc)!
Thank you all for the work that you do, stay safe, and we’re all in this together,
Ashley, Chris, Chuck, Dineen, Lucy – the 350PDX staff