CITIZEN ACTION: REVIEWING THE YEAR OF 2017

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REVIEWING THE YEAR OF 2017

People are flocking to Citizen Action of Wisconsin groups across the state because they have a proven strategy for making Wisconsin a progressive state again.

Here is what has been accomplished in 2017.

Cutting-Edge Local Organizing Statewide: Citizen Action’s new Organizing Cooperatives (Co-ops) are rapidly spreading across Wisconsin in the places that we need to shift the balance of power. We have built 6 Organizing Co-ops across Wisconsin which give us a large deeply engaged membership and a truly state-wide reach. This includes the Northcentral Organizing Co-op in Marathon County and bordering counties.

Member Ownership of Social Change: Each Citizen Action Organizing Co-op fully funds a talented professional organizer who is from the region where they work and has the local knowledge to succeed. Because their salary is paid by local members, not out-of-state foundations, they answer only to members, not the whims of rich donors. Our professional organizer is Joel Lewis of Wausau.

Leading the Resistance: The only way to turn things around is for progressives in every corner of our state to pull together to fight back harder than ever. Citizen Action is leading the successful resistance in Wisconsin against Donald Trump and Paul Ryan’s dangerous plans to force millions of people off health care. We also were one of the leaders in the public fight to resist Scott Walker’s $3 billion giveaway to Foxconn.

Winning Victories under Difficult Circumstances: Citizen Action was a lead plaintiff in the federal lawsuit which found Scott Walker’s early voting restrictions to be unconstitutional racial discrimination. As a result of the victory, a record 685,000 Wisconsinites voted early in 2016 and cities across the state are expanding early voting locations and hours for 2018. Our court case is ongoing so there may be more victories to come.

Bold Vision: Fighting back is not enough. Progressives can only become a majority if we stand for something much bigger. That’s why Citizen Action is working on long-term plans for social and economic transformation. We are launching a strategy next year to create a Wisconsin economy where everyone who wants a living wage job can get one, where racial inequality is eliminated, and where carbon pollution is reduced to the level necessary to prevent a climate genocide. We also developed the BadgerCare Public Option Bill with progressive champions in the Legislature, which is a step towards guaranteeing health care as a fundamental human right.

Ending Child Poverty: Citizen Action is launching a new strategy with religious groups and children’s advocates to cut child poverty in half and racial disparities in half in ten years. This exciting new campaign launched just before Christmas.

Cutting-Edge Communication: Citizen Action is a leader in developing new message frames and narratives that are needed to pull the state in a progressive direction. We are very good at generating positive media coverage, netting over 800 television, radio, and newspaper stories each year. We also are exploiting new media. Our popular Battleground Wisconsin podcast and radio show has over 35,000 listens per year and many more on the air waves.

Challenging the Right-Wing Media Monopoly: Citizen Action’s Radio-Active project, which was created by our Organizing Co-op members in Milwaukee, is a full-time strategy to challenge right-wing talk show lies, pressure media corporations for balance on the airwaves, and explore progressive ownership of radio stations.

For progressives, we all do better when we all do better. We must all pull together.

These are the kind of big bold strategies we need to turn things around, but we can’t do it without your help!