Building Community Power and Resisting Police Violence

"When Black people get free, everybody gets free." -- Alicia Garza, co-founder of #BlackLivesMatter 

This Community Engagement Tool was created to support the USF Speak Out and Listen In: A Teach-In On Building Community Power surrounding nationwide events related to the Ferguson and Staten Island grand jury decisions. Compiled by the Education Librarian.

Learning and Teaching about Ferguson

Bay Area Based Organizations

  • Alive and Free Violence prevention program founded at the Omega Boys Club-a nationally recognized youth development and violence prevention organization headquartered in San Francisco, CA. 
  • Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC) Grassroots organization working to address economic, social, and political impacts of anti-Arab racism. Our members have taken action around local issues such as San Francisco Police Department's use of force at protests, lack of religious accommodation in jails, and local immigration policies.
  • Black Lives Matter was created by queer Black women in 2012 after Trayvon Martin's murderer, George Zimmerman, was acquitted for his crime. Rooted in the experiences of Black people in this country who actively resist de-humanization, #BlackLivesMatter is a call to action and a response to the virulent anti-Black racism that permeates our society.
  • Black Organizing Project (BOP) is a Black member-led community organization working for racial, social, and economic justice through grassroots organizing and community-building in Oakland, California. BOP launched the Bettering Our School System campaign in October 2011, in response to the murder of 20-year old Raheim Brown by Oakland School Police Sgt. Barhin Bhatt.
  • Blackout Collective is a Black Direct Action collective that provides on the ground support, training, and the opportunity for deep space visioning. They organized the Blackout Black Friday action that shut down the West Oakland BART station as well as the shutdown of the Oakland Police Department.
  • Black Priorities Project (BPP) is a longterm organizing project of a Causa Justa :: Just Cause, an organization that builds solidarity between working class Black and Latino communities. BPP is building the leadership of Black workers, youth, seniors, and families to advance coordinated strategies around the region which improves conditions for Black people in the Bay area as a whole. 
  • Catalyst Project organizes, trains and mentors white people to take collective action to end racism, war and empire, and to support efforts to build power in working-class communities of color. In addition to offering organizational training and public programming, Catalyst offers the Anne Braden Anti-Racist Organizer Training Program, a four month intensive training for white social justice activists.
  • Community United Against Violence (CUAV) Founded in 1979 following the assassinations of Harvey Milk and George Moscone, as well as police attacks on LGBTQ people, CUAV works to build the power of LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer) communities to transform violence and oppression.
  • Critical Resistance - Oakland Chapter seeks to build an international movement to end the Prison Industrial Complex by challenging the belief that caging and controlling people makes us safe. 
  • Ella Baker Center offers smart solutions and uplifting alternatives to violence and incarceration. For over 17 years, we have formed unlikely coalitions and won positive change that breaks the cycle of disinvestment and incarceration in communities of color.
  • Justice for Alex Nieto gathers all information surrounding Alex Nieto's death at the hands of the SFPD, and provides ongoing updates.
  • National Lawyers Guild SF Bay Area Chapter supports the right of people to take to the streets in protest of structural racism and the killing of black people. NLG has maintained a legal hotline since the protests began (415-285-1011), has been sending legal observers to demonstrations, and has been dispatching NLG volunteer attorneys to defend arrestees in court and obtain their release from jail. 
  • People's Community Medics is a grassroots organization that teaches basic emergency first aid skills free of charge. PCM was founded in 2011 by two members of the Oscar Grant Committee, Sharena Thomas and Lesley Phillips, after learning of the refusal of the police to call an ambulance for 20 minutes for the fatally wounded Oscar Grant.
  • People United for a Better Life in Oakland (PUEBLO) PUEBLO's Campaign for Community Safety and Police Accountability (CCSPA) works to challenge the racism inherent in the city of Oakland's policing practices and fights to hold officers accountable to the community they serve by documenting and validating incidents of police misconduct and organizing community members to advocate for more responsive and accountable police practices.
  • Radical Brownies empowers young girls of color to step into their collective power, brilliance and leadership to make the world a more radical place.
  • RYSE Youth Center offers programming that strengthens young people's ability to successfully navigate the Juvenile Justice System and empowers them to be advocates for change.
  • San Franciscans for Police Accountability (SFPA) fights for police reform through policy advocacy and street activism.
  • School of Unity & Liberation (SOUL) is dedicated to building the skills of young women, young people of color, working class, and queer people as the next generation of leaders for the social justice movement.
  • Seeding Change - A Center for Asian American Movement Building is a grassroots organization focused on cultivating AAPI leadership towards social justice. Working with Black Live Matter, Seeding Change has co-hosted workshops on Black and Asian alliance building. 
  • TGI Justice Project is a group of transgender people inside and outside of prison creating a united family in the struggle for survival and freedom. They work in collaboration with others to forge a culture of resistance and resilience to strengthen us for the fight against imprisonment, police violence, racism, poverty, and societal pressures.
  • Youth Uprising envisions a healthy and economically robust East Oakland powered by the leadership of youth and young adults as well as improvements in systems and environments that impact them. YU offers programs in education, arts, health and civic engagement.

National Organizations

  • Black Lives Matter was created by queer Black women in 2012 after Trayvon Martin's murderer, George Zimmerman, was acquitted for his crime. Rooted in the experiences of Black people in this country who actively resist de-humanization, #BlackLivesMatter is a call to action and a response to the virulent anti-Black racism that permeates our society.
  • Black Organizing for Leadership and Dignity (BOLD) is a national training program developed through a collaboration between the Center for Third World Organizing (CTWO) and Social Justice Leadership. The program is designed to help rebuild Black (African-American, Caribbean, African, Afro-Latino) social justice infrastructure in order to organize Black communities more effectively and re-center Black leadership in the U.S. social justice movement. 
  • Color of Change is comprised of Black folks from every economic class, as well as those of every color who seek to help our voices be heard. Our members are united behind a simple, powerful pledge: we will do all we can to make sure all Americans are represented, served, and protected - regardless of race or class.
  • Critical Resistance seeks to build an international movement to end the Prison Industrial Complex by challenging the belief that caging and controlling people makes us safe. 
  • Dignity and Power Now is a grassroots organization based in Los Angeles that fights for the dignity and power of incarcerated people, their families, and communities. DPN has several projects including an activist coalition, an artist collective, a zine, a research and reporting group, a leadership institute, and even a reentry program inside a state prison.
  • Dream Defenders Founded in response to the killing of Trayvon Martin, the Dream Defenders are an organization directed by Black & Brown youth who confront systemic inequality by building collective power.
  • Freedom Side is a collective of young leaders of color, standing together at the front lines of the fight for racial justice.
  • Hands Up United (Ferguson, MO) is a coalition organizing against police violence and mass incarceration both in Ferguson and nationally.
  • INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence is a nation-wide network of radical feminists of color working to end violence against women, gender non-conforming, and trans people of color, and our communities. We support each other through direct action, critical dialogue, and grassroots organizing.
  • Millennial Activists United (Ferguson, MO) Founded by young black women in the midst of the Ferguson protests, MAU is committed to learning strategy and tactics from the generation before us while simultaneously carving our own millennial voice and style for the unique challenges of a so-called post-racial America.
  • Million Hoodies Established in March 2012 in response to the murder of Trayvon Martin, Million Hoodies is a national racial justice organization with 50,000 members working to protect and empower young people of color from racial profiling and senseless gun violence.
  • Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment (MORE) is part of multiple coalitions that are organizing in the aftermath of the killing of Michael Brown. MORE believes that Missouri is positioned at a unique intersection of social, economic, climate, and environmental injustice.
  • October 22nd Coalition has been mobilizing every year since 1996 for a National Day of Protest on October 22 as a powerful voice to expose the epidemic of police brutality.
  • Organization fro Black Struggle (St. Louis, MO) On the ground in Ferguson, OBS has been involved in police repression work for over three decades. OBS seeks to build a movement that fights for political empowerment, economic justice and the cultural dignity of the African-American community, especially the Black working class.
  • Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) is a national network of groups and individuals organizing white people for racial justice. Through community organizing, mobilizing, and education, SURJ moves white people to act as part of a multi-racial majority for justice with passion and accountability.
  • Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP) works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination or violence. SRLP provides legal services and engages in political education and organizing with incarcerated individuals to combat the isolation of our prison industrial complex.
  • Trans Women of Color Collective (TWOCC) is a national organizing collective led by trans women of color created to uplift the narratives, leadership, and lived experiences of trans and gender non conforming people of color.

Books

Videos

Community Based Alternatives to Policing and Prisons

Resources for Allies