R3 AGAINST WHITE SUPREMACY

Press Statement/ Date: August 18, 2017

Contact person: Barbara Ransby

R3 Contact email: ResistReimagineRebuild@gmail.com

Chicago’s R3 Coalition will hold Rally at Site of White Supremacy in Bronzeville    

Saturday, August 19th at 12noon          

Stephen A. Douglas Tomb and Monument, 636 E. 35th

Chicago’s social justice community stands in solidarity with the people of Charlottesville. One week ago we witnessed a violent rampage by white supremacists through the campus of University of Virginia and the streets of Charlottesville prompted by the planned removal of a statue paying tribute to the Confederate leader, Robert E. Lee. The terror left one young woman dead and scores injured. These forces have been given encouragement by the racist and xenophobic remarks of the 45th President of the United States.

As a continuation of the protests organized by other groups last weekend, the R3 Coalition (Resist. Reimagine. Rebuild), a progressive coalition of 32 groups, will hold a rally at the controversial Douglas Tomb, 636 E. 35th Street. Douglas was a 19th century Illinois politician who lobbied for the expansion of slavery while owning a 3000 acre cotton plantation in Lawrence County Mississippi with over 123 enslaved people. After garnered great wealth from his family’s human chattel he then provided the initial land endowment to start the University of Chicago, which the university continues to benefit from today.

Students at the University of Chicago have been lobbying the school’s administration to initiate a plan for reparations, as other universities that benefitted from slavery have done. For all these reasons, R3 felt that Stephen A. Douglas’ Tomb and monument in the African American neighborhood of Bronzeville was an appropriate site for our rally against white supremacy and to stand in solidarity with Charlottesville. Slavery was not a benign institution but a bloody system rooted in greed and white supremacy. We live with its brutal legacy. This current political climate has animated that fact.  While we cannot erase America’s racist history we can work together to build a better future. Saturday’s action is a part of a national day of action against white supremacy called by the national MAJORITY coalition and the Movement for Black Lives.

Speakers include:

Guy Emerson Mount and Caine Jordan, Reparations at UChicago (RAUC)

Lesley Williams, Jewish Voice for Peace

Kofi Ademola, Black Lives Matter Chicago

Adom Getachew, Black Youth Project 100 and R3

Ashley Bruce, Fight for $15

Genoveva Ramirez, Organized Communities Against Deportations

R3 COALITION-CHI JOINS OTHERS IN DEMANDING THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL INVEST IN PUBLIC EDUCATION IN CHICAGO

PRESS STATEMENT July 20, 2017

Contact: Barbara Ransby, barbara.ransby@gmail.com

NEW SOCIAL JUSTICE COALITION JOINS OTHERS IN DEMANDING THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL INVEST IN PUBLIC EDUCATION IN CHICAGO

The R3 (Resist. Reimagine. Rebuild) Coalition, formed in November of 2016, includes 32 Chicago area grassroots, anti-racist, labor and immigration rights organizations. We came together to forge a shared agenda to fight for social justice in Chicago. Today we lend our support to the Grassroots Education Movement (GEM) and others in making the demand that the City of Chicago make educating our children a priority. We have seen resources go to gentrification schemes and tax breaks for the wealthy, even under the guise of a more progressive agenda. This has to stop.

Today Chicago principals will learn what funds their schools will receive. At the same time, the governor continues to resist giving Chicago Public Schools (CPS) the resources it needs and deserves. What we know is that much more needs to be done to rebuild and reinvigorate our neighborhood schools, and that should be a top priority along with spending on public services for the families of those students. In the wake of systematic disinvestment over many years, our schools are hurting, which means our children are hurting. Our communities still have not fully recovered from the unprecedented closing of 50 schools by the Mayor. This action disproportionately impacted Black and Latinx students in working class neighborhoods throughout Chicago. Our children deserve better. We demand better for them.

Whatever issues we are focused on in our work, public education matters to all of us directly or indirectly. R3 pledges its support to our friends, neighbors and fellow activists on the frontlines of this struggle. We call on the Mayor and City Council to allocate necessary funds to our neighborhood schools and we stand solidly with our dedicated public school teachers who make a difference in the lives of this City’s young people every day.

Press Release: May Day Rally & March

MAY DAY WILL LOOK A BIT DIFFERENT IN CHICAGO THIS YEAR AS NEW COALITION, Resist. Reimagine. Rebuild. (R3) TAKES TO THE STREETS
 
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: http://www.beyondthemoment.org, 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
resistreimaginerebuild@gmail.com

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.