Working Together Across Movement

The spring of 2012 marked a pivotal moment for cross-movement collaboration, the NAACP announced their public support for marriage equality. Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Rea Carey, said of the announcement:

“This is truly a historic moment as the NAACP — the nation’s oldest civil rights organization — takes an official and unequivocal stand for marriage equality….

Just a few months ago, NAACP President Ben Jealous stood before 3,000 LGBT rights activists…and spoke powerfully and poignantly about the ties of conscience and courage that bind us.

….We are proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with the NAACP working together on the many issues that affect all of our lives. Whether it be fair access to education and jobs, an end to voter suppression and racial profiling, the right to love and be who we are free of discrimination — these issues affect all of us, our families and our country.”

Jump to June 2013, a year from the NAACP’s public support, and years of “behind the scenes” collaboration between the Task Force and many other progressive organizations, including NAACP. DOMA is repealed.

This is no isolated incident. Working across movement to achieve meaningful successes is an emerging strategy and pattern seen in many recent progressive victories.

Benjamin Jealous, President of the NAACP; Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force; Mary Kay Henry, President of the SEIU; Sarita Gupta, Executive Director of Jobs with Justice; Arlene Holt Baker, Executive Vice President of the AFL-CIO

Benjamin Jealous, President of the NAACP; Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force; Mary Kay Henry, President of the SEIU; Sarita Gupta, Executive Director of Jobs with Justice; Arlene Holt Baker, Executive Vice President of the AFL-CIO

The same month as the DOMA repeal, Politico wrote on the metamorphosis of the environmental movement as it shifted to becoming a major proponent of the path to citizenship in the United States. A powerful moment in which the likes of Sierra club and Greenpeace not only stood to support immigration reform, but advocated for the protection and equality of an underserved people of the U.S.. As seen in the relationship between Task Force and NAACP, securing justice for our earth and our people is not achieved in addressing disparate pieces, but together, tending to the whole system.

Now, a week from the victory of the “nuclear” senate, collaboration, trust, and tending to the whole system have succeeded again. A government that consistently fails to lead because of a vindictive minority of legislators is now on the path to reformation partly due, according to a recent Huffington Post article, to “…a coalition of progressive groups, called Fix the Senate Now…” motivated by, “… the blocking of nominees for agency posts and judicial positions represented a breakdown of democracy.” These groups coalesce for a more effective government that serves us all, and ultimately the issue areas each group represents.

Infographic from Fix the Senate Now

Infographic from Fix the Senate Now

Fix the Senate Now  is a diverse group comprised of the familiar names highlighted above. This coalition and their success marks, yet again, the winning strategy for change. We are engaging hearts and minds, shifting our behaviors to collaborate and trust, and transforming the external structures that dare to tackle all that is possible. And we’re doing it together, one victory at a time.

Posted in Leaders, News & Announcements, Partners Tagged with: , , , , ,