A quick April roundup before our updates for May:
We had essays in two new publications last month. The first was in the Advocate, and challenged the widespread notion that the recent election of Chicago’s first Black lesbian mayor, Lori Lightfoot—a corporate lawyer and federal prosecutor—was a victory for Black queer Chicagoans. The second was printed in the Chicago Reader, and reflected on the key successes of the #NoCopAcademy campaign. As youth- and community-led movements make headway in mainstreaming fights against austerity and militarization, holding newly-elected officials accountable, and demanding the redistribution of our city’s resources, we encourage you to keep supporting grassroots abolitionist organizing in Chicago and elsewhere.
We also led a Linking Anti-Blackness and Anti-Immigration workshop on April 16th as part of the Demilitarization School. The three-day summit, hosted by American Friends Service Committee and the War Resisters League, brought together youth leaders from across Chicago, uniting global struggles for justice through the framework of demilitarization. It was inspiring!
On Saturday, May 18th we’ll be teaching a bilingual Linking Anti-Blackness and Anti-Immigration workshop for Organized Communities Against Deportations’ monthly asamblea comunitaria, affirming Black and Brown solidarity in resisting the policing of all our communities. OCAD played a major role in the successful battle to permanently end Cook County’s racist gang database. Their work is indispensable, and it’s a joy to support them and their members!
We’re returning on Friday, May 17th to the Brighton Park Neighborhood Council’s Annual Youth Summit, teaching a new workshop for Black and Brown students on the school-to-prison pipeline. BPNC boasts some of the baddest youth organizers in the city, was a key endorsing org of the #NoCopAcademy campaign, and works hard for poor, worker, immigrant, and youth power. If we like how this new workshop goes, we may add it to our permanent roster!
On that note, we’re taking a break from vogue instruction, and so have removed Intro to Voguing and Vogue and the Prison Industrial Complex from our roster of workshops. Feel free to reach out and ask, based on the needs of your group, what we are available to teach, but be prepared that our voguing workshops may be off the table.