Detroit People’s Platform, Reclaiming Martin Luther King for Detroit

Written by Aaron Handelsman Below is a speech given by Aaron Handelsman, on behalf of the Detroit People’s Platform, during the 29th Annual Martin Luther King Day Symposium at the University of Michigan’s Detroit Center. Detroit People’s Platform is a membership organization that was birthed through the labor of several hundred people across Detroit who recognized the need to amplify […]

Donations Remind that Crises in Detroit Continue

Written by Sean Thomas-Breitfeld Last week, two Muslim groups donated $100,000 to help Detroit residents whose accounts are past-due with the city’s water department. The announcement from the two organizations – The Michigan Muslim Community Council and Islamic Relief USA – focused on the act of charity as an expression of their faith, and the money will certainly help […]

Looking Back to 1965, Looking Ahead to 2015

Written by Sean Thomas-Breitfeld This weekend, the movie Selma opens nationwide. The film’s release doesn’t just launch the latest awards-season buzz; it connects directly to the movement moment we’re in, and kicks off a year where we’ll be marking several 50-year milestones that harken back to the movements of the 1960s. The actual history of movements is always […]

Blame and Forgiveness

Written by Frances Kunreuther It is striking to me that in all the tension and cacophony we are experiencing here in New York City and around the country – from the Grand Jury’s decision not to indict the police involved in the deaths of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and so many other young men of […]

Reflections on the Penas for the Common Good

Written by Alicia Lueras Maldonado As the year comes to an end, it’s a good time to reflect on the past year and think about the work ahead of us. Our last Peña for the Common Good was the perfect opportunity to gather our thoughts and share ideas and reflections about the common good, and […]

Detroit: The City vs The State – Another Round

Written by Frances Kunreuther Residents must be gaining some power in Detroit. Because each time they start to organize something, the state tries to intervene to usurp their gains. This time it is the Community Benefits Agreement ordinance. The Detroit People’s Platform introduced the need for a Community Benefits Agreement ordinance to ensure that developers – who are […]

Lessons from Detroit

Written by Sean Thomas-Breitfeld Many commentators have taken to calling Detroit the canary in the coal mine, as a warning to other cities facing de-industrialization, unemployment and other “urban” woes. But in this era of the city’s bankruptcy “crisis” and supposed comeback, what we see from Detroit is a warning about the cost of transferring governing power to […]

Understanding “Hong Kong People!”

Written by Tina Law Growing up, my dad often introduced himself as being “Hong Kong people.” The first thing he wanted you to know was his name; the second thing was that he was from Hong Kong. Being from Hong Kong was an enormous source of pride for him, and he frequently spoke about the […]

Update from the 3rd Peña for the Common Good

Written by Alicia Lueras Maldonado As we sat in the community room behind the St. Martin’s Coffee Shop on the corner of Lomas and 2nd Street listening to Mark Allison, former Executive Director of the Supportive Housing Coalition of New Mexico, give a bit of history on the building I was filled with hope and possibilities. It was […]

Reflection on Movement Leadership

Most of the time, we talk here about the leadership of organizations related to age, race, gender, style, outcomes, and social change. We think about leadership pipelines and transitions, and what structures help people lead with the most impact. But in the midst of the funeral for Michael Brown in Ferguson and the Staten Island […]

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