Press Release: May Day Rally & March

Chicago is still a segregated but a new generation of activists are building unity across community lines, inspired by the election of Donald Trump, the persistent budget crisis in Illinois, the continued lack of police accountability, and the crisis of public education in Chicago, disproportionately impacting Black and Latinx youth.
Over 30 grassroots and labor organizations began meeting in November, 2016 on the south side of Chicago initially to vent frustration and then to map a response to the presidential election and ongoing problems faced by Chicago’s poor, Black and Brown and immigrant communities. Groups range from Black Youth Project 100, which has led massive street demonstrations against police violence, to Chicago Fight for 15, a campaign to get a living wage for fast food workers, to Organized Communities Against Deportations, which has been advocating for expanded sanctuary for Black and Brown communities. The Chicago Teacher’s Union, SEIU-Health, Black Lives Matter-Chicago, Arab American Action Network, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Desi Youth Rising, Inner-City Muslim Action Network, Pride Action Tank and others are involved.
The group’s most recently held a citywide teach-in which drew 600 people on April 4. On Monday, May 1, in honor of May Day, the R3 Coalition will rally outside the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center, Ogden and Roosevelt at 11:00 a.m. to protest the criminalization of young people of color, before marching to Union Park to join the Citywide May Day rally there. Organizers will be available for press interviews at 10:30 a.m. at the rally site. Speakers will include Karen Lewis of CTU and Charlene Carruthers, National Director of byp100.
Black, Latinx, Arab and Asian activists have been in the lead of this coalition and asserting their voices in the city’s political landscape with a greater degree of unity than we have seen in decades.
The R3 coalition is a part of the larger Beyond the Moment Coalition:, a multi-racial, multi-issue project of the Movement for Black Lives, which includes fifty organizations and actions in dozens of cities on May Day.
@R3CoalitionChi ‬@btmmayday
Adom Getachew or Damon Williams

April 4th Rally

Citywide Convening and Teach-in for 1,000 – A day of movement education
Looking Back, Not Going Back.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. died, April 4th 1968, fighting alongside sanitation workers in Memphis, Tennessee. When he was assassinated his unfinished agenda was the fight against poverty and the excesses of capitalism, and fighting for a world without war and empire, without borders and xenophobia. He was committed to leading a Poor People’s campaign in 1968 underscoring the inseparable connection between racial justice and economic justice.

After his death Coretta Scott King, a longtime peace and social justice activist in her own right, lent her efforts to LGBTQ struggles, marching in Atlanta’s Pride Parade before her death. On April 4th 2017 we invite organizers, activists, new and old, to organize teach-ins, town halls and discussions that explore the legacy of King’s struggle for racial and economic justice.

March 4th Teach-in

March 4th – Teach in for Organizers
This was an unprecedented gathering of 30+ Chicago organizations. The purpose of
the gathering was to learn about each other’s struggles and communities so that we can move forward from a position of strength and understanding. This first Spring of Resistance focuses on organizers and organizations teaching and learning from each other to create foundation for stronger unity going forward.

This was an extraordinary opportunity for 100 organizers, along with researchers and scholars working locally and nationally and on international struggles in South Africa and Palestine, to educate one another on critical issues that animate our movements and campaigns. This sharing and dialogue serves as basis for future collaborations, including but not limited to April 4th and May 1st.

Art-Making Event

On April 8th and 9th, 2017, artists came together to create art for the People’s Climate March on April 29 and the May Day March, May 1st.  Folks from the Peoples Climate March and the ACT collective we had an amazing citywide and cross movement art build in Chicago over the weekend. The art build produced 10 banners, 200 crossbar banners, 150 picket signs, and a parachute for the People’s Climate March on April 29 and the May Day March, May 1st.