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My Role in a Social Change Ecosystem: A Mid-Year Check-In

In our lives and as part of movements and organizations, many of us play different roles in pursuit of equity, liberation, inclusion, and justice. Deepa Iyer, Senior Associate at Race Forward, shares a framework and guiding questions for both individuals and organizations to understand, assess and deepen our impact for social justice. Read more.

I’m Black and Queer and Trans-Non-Binary and This is How I Lead

With more than 10 years of experience in executive leadership, management, and social justice work, Bunny McKensie Mack explains how "we enter [the workforce] with a narrow idea of what it means to lead and what it means to be led" and shares guiding principles for leading in ways that unlearn and confront what we think and believe about worth, value, money, relationships, and labor. Read more.

Scholarships Available for Rail~volution

Held in September in Vancouver, Rail~volution is a national conference focused on building livable communities with transit. Scholarships are available to defray costs for travel, lodging and registration for nonprofit organizations, elected/appointed officials with constrained budgets, and community activists, especially those who identify as Black/Indigenous/Person of Color. Learn more.

Housing Choice Vouchers waiting lists to open

The Metropolitan Council Housing and Redevelopment Authority (Metro HRA), the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority, and the Saint Paul Public Housing Agency will be accepting online applications to get on the waiting list for the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program from June 12 to June 18. Learn more and share with your networks.

Funding: Capacity Building Initiative

Minnesota Housing’s Capacity Building Initiative provides funding to build organizational capacity, launch creative, housing-related projects and initiatives, and promote partnerships across Minnesota. The agency will provide up to $40,000 in one-time funding for one-year projects. Read more and apply by July 1.

Funding: Supporting Women in Environmental Justice

Eileen Fischer has launched a grant program that will award $200,000 annually in amounts ranging from $5,000 to $30,000 for projects that increase women’s participation in decision-making; train women and girls in climate change adaptation, mitigation and advocacy; and/or engage women in the sustainable economy. Read more and apply by June 14.

Webinar: Creating a Resilient Community

Emerging research reveals that communities experience trauma, or adverse experiences, just as individuals do. Join this webinar hosted by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to hear what approaches residents of the Cicero neighborhood in Chicago are taking to address trauma and build resilience in the community. Learn more and register.


Janiece Watts and Ben Passer, photo by Pollen

Energy Equity and Justice for All

In their first feature in the Wild & Precious World series on environmental justice, Pollen profiles the work of Janiece Watts and Ben Passer at Alliance member organization Fresh Energy: "On a personal level, the two couldn’t be more different, but they’re working in harmony. And alongside a broad coalition of justice and energy organizations, they’re working to change the conversation around energy in Minnesota." Read the story.

OUR Alliance: Louis King on the Power of Coalition Organizing

For Louis King, the power of the Alliance is simple. “Frankly, the name says it all: We come together and get things done.” In 2009, the President and CEO of Summit Academy OIC founded HIRE Minnesota, an initiative to end racial employment disparities and turn the state from worst to first in hiring people of color. Put simply, the Alliance helped him get that done by integrating expertise in organizing and community engagement. Read King's reflections and share your story to help us celebrate our 25th Anniversary!

Tenants in Northeast Minneapolis Building Mobilize to Keep their Homes

The Star Tribune reports on the successful efforts of Alliance member organization, HOME Line, to organize the tenants in Stonehouse Square Apartments and find a preservation buyer to ensure the continued acceptable of Section 8 and the maintenance of affordable rents for seniors and residents on fixed incomes. Read the article.

What Reparations for Slavery Might Look Like in 2019

In the early phase of the 2020 presidential campaign, the question of compensating black Americans for suffering under slavery and other forms of racial injustice has resurfaced. The New York Times looks at the numbers: how many people would get paid under the various proposals being floated, how much would they receive and at what cost to the Treasury. Read the full article.

Milwaukee County Declares Racism a Public Health Crisis. Will More Cities Follow Suit?

In what’s being touted as an important first step in addressing decades of race-based inequality, The Root reports on a resolution signed by Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele declaring racism a public health crisis. Read the full story.

Displaced, Even Without Moving

In a commentary for Next City John Joe Schlichtman, associate professor at DePaul University and author of Gentrifier, reveals four ways discussions around displacement need to be redefined to capture the full scope of potential harm on impacted communities. Read the full story.

Having a Library or Cafe Down the Block Could Change Your Life

City Lab shares the highlights from a new study that finds, even controlling for demographics like race and income, living close to public amenities—from parks to grocery stores—increases trust, decreases loneliness, and restores faith in local government. Read more.


National Housing Week Of Action Garden Party

Saturday, June 1, 1-4pm
Join Alliance member organization Community Stabilization Project as they celebrate affordable housing with residents, elected officials, and investors, with opportunities to share renters stories and learn more about Xcel & CenterPoint programs to reduce energy bills.


Ramadan Community Dinner

Saturday, June 1, 8-10pm
Ramadan is considered the holiest month of the year for Muslims and includes fasting during the sunlit hours as a means of learning self-control, gratitude, and compassion for those less fortunate. Join Alliance member organization West Side Community Organization for a Ramadan Community Dinner hosted by Yasmin Muridi, and in partnership with WSCO and West Side IWWOC.


Slow Roll 2019 Kick-Off from UROC

Monday, June 3, 6:30-8:30pm
In partnership with Alliance member organizations, like Major Taylor Bicycling Club of Minnesota, Slow Roll is a bicycle ride for people of all ages and abilities that takes a unique route through the city, focused on neighborhoods that we are so proud of but may be underrepresented in the cycling conversation or the home of historically oppressed communities.


We're 100% Social: Snacks, Drinks & End-of-Session Update

Monday, June 3, 5-8pm
Join members of the 100 Percent Campaign, including Alliance member organization Sierra Club North Star Chapter, to celebrate and reflect on what renewable energy advocates helped to make happen during the 2019 state legislative session!
RSVP for the Alliance 25th Anniversary Celebration on Thurs, Sept 26, from 5 - 7:30 pm at the Hook & Ladder in Minneapolis! 

Public Hearing on St. Paul Pedestrian Plan

Wednesday, June 5, 3:30pm
The Saint Paul Planning City Council will hold a public hearing on the draft Saint Paul Pedestrian Plan on June 5, 2019. Please share your thoughts about the plan with the City Council. This is the final opportunity to provide comments on the plan.


Pollen Live | A Wild & Precious World

Tuesday, June 11, 6:30-9:30pm
Pollen Live will be the capstone of a three-story series exploring different aspects of the environmental justice movement — the ongoing work to not only heal what ails our planet, but to do so in a way that centers the communities most impacted by environmental challenges, big and small. This event will spotlight the work of Janiece Watts and Ben Passer of Alliance member organization Fresh Energy.


Stonewall at 50

Friday, June 14, 6-9pm
Join Telling Queer History for a free evening of readings, performances, and gallery conversations exploring LGBTQ+ identities and reflecting on the significance of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. Co-curated by poet, politician, and transgender rights activist Andrea Jenkins.


Actualizing Equity: Securing Strong Community Benefits

Friday, June 21, 11:30am-1:30pm
In St. Paul, the construction of Allianz Field has raised concerns about the impact of the soccer stadium on affordable housing, small businesses and the communities of color that have long called the area home. Join city officials and community leaders as we discuss and envision how to create and implement effective and innovative community benefit agreements for large-scale developments.



The Alliance

Policy Advocate
Coalition Organizer

Move MN

Communications and Fundraising Coordinator

Center for Urban and Regional Affairs

Research Associate

Twin Cities Media Alliance

Editor, Twin Cities Daily Planet

Organizers in Action

Minneapolis and St. Paul are part of the All-In Cities Anti-Displacement Policy Network — a network of local elected leaders, staff, and community based organizations from 10 cities across the country with the mission of preventing displacement. Last week, the Alliance and member organizations Hope Community, Frogtown Neighborhood Association and West Side Community Organization, along with elected officials, hosted community forums in St. Paul and Minneapolis to share what we’ve learned through the ADPN process and get ideas from residents about how to prevent involuntary displacement. Stay tuned for more report-outs in coming weeks!
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