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benwerd

benwerd

benwerd

ben@benwerd.com

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Fairness Friday: Jackson Women's Health Organization

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week I’m donating to the Jackson Women’s Health Organization. Based in Jackson, Mississippi, JWHO provides important women’s health services to its community, including abortions. It is the clinic at the center of the current Supreme Court case that threatens to overturn Roe v Wade and rob 65 million women of their right to choose. It is also the only abortion clinic in the state of Mississippi.

It describes its mission as follows:

‌Jackson Women’s Health Organization (JWHO) offers affordable abortion care to women living in Mississippi and/or traveling to the state of Mississippi.

‌Our commitment is to provide confidential health care to women in a safe and professional environment. It is our conviction to respect a woman’s reproductive choices specifically regarding a woman’s right to control whether she wants to become a parent or not.

The clinic provides vital services for its community, and its fight will have a disproportionate effect on the human rights of women across America. There are few more important battles today.

I donated. If you have the means, please join me here.

 

Fairness Friday: Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week, I’m donating to the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance. Based in Scandia, MN, NAFSA supports Native communities nationally with advocacy, education, and networking as they revitalize their indigenous food systems.

It describes its mission as follows:

Through our efforts and programs, we bring stakeholders and communities together to advocate and support best practices and policies that enhance dynamic Native food systems, sustainable economic development, education, trade routes, stewardship, and multi-generational empowerment.

We work to put the farmers, wild-crafters, fishers, hunters, ranchers, and eaters at the center of decision-making on policies, strategies and natural resource management.

Its work includes collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants (vital work when many seeds are protected by intellectual property legislation that favors corporations) and culinary mentorship.

I donated. If you have the means, please join me here.

 

Fairness Friday: Justice for Greenwood

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week I’m donating to Justice for Greenwood. Based in Tulsa, OK, Justice for Greenwood “aims to revitalize the Greenwood Community and Diaspora through education, advocacy and direct services to lift the community out of poverty and to address the major areas of inequality and injustice directly caused by the Massacre such as: Health, Education, Real Estate, and Generational Wealth.”

I had the privilege of visiting the Greenwood District in Tulsa yesterday, including its historical center, Greenwood Rising. It was a profoundly affecting experience. The Tulsa Race Massacre was an act of violence against the Black community and Black success in 1921, but the violence continues today. The community rebounded after the massacre, but the city actively sought to destroy it through deliberate planning and eminent domain. Even today, the Black businesses present in the neighborhood are forced to rent from the city.

Justice for Greenwood’s work includes direct legal advocacy and support for descendants of the massacre, as well as the important work of capturing the oral history and genealogy. Mass graves have been uncovered around the city, and the known death toll keeps rising. Documenting this history is important, and the city resisted any effort here for decades. It wouldn’t have happened without strong advocacy.

I donated. If you have the means, please join me here.

I also donated to Greenwood Rising. It's an incredibly well-executed exercise in telling an important story that ends with a powerful call to action. You should visit if you can.

 

Fairness Friday: Trans Rights in the UK

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This Friday, I’ve chosen to donate to two organizations that support trans rights in the UK, where I grew up.

 

Gendered intelligence is “a registered charity that exists to increase understandings of gender diversity and improve trans people's quality of life.”.

Based in London, it describes its mission as follows:

Gendered Intelligence, established in 2008, is a registered charity that works to increase understandings of gender diversity and improve the lives of trans people.

Our vision is of a world where diverse gender expressions are visible and valued and where trans, non-binary, gender diverse and gender questioning people live healthy, safe and fulfilled lives.

We are a trans-led and trans-involving grass roots organisation with a wealth of lived experience, community connections of many kinds, and a depth and breadth of trans community knowledge that is second to none. The team has a variety of professional and academic specialisms and qualifications including training and facilitation, youth work, policy, the arts, and doctorates in trans related studies.

Its work includes professional services (including staff training work to help counsellors), youth and community support (including mentorship and therapy), and public engagement (providing much-needed trans perspectives).

I donated. If you have the means, please join me here.

 

Mermaids “has been supporting transgender, nonbinary and gender-diverse children, young people, and their families since 1995.”

Based in Leeds, it describes its mission as follows:

Mermaids supports transgender, nonbinary and gender-diverse children and young people until their 20th birthday, as well as their families and professionals involved in their care. We also currently offer web chat support to students up to the age of 25.

Transgender, nonbinary and gender-diverse children and teens need support and understanding, as well as the freedom to explore their gender identity. Whatever the outcome, Mermaids is committed to helping families navigate the challenges they may face.

Its services include a helpline, training on LGBTQIA+ inclusivity, local support groups, and equality and human rights law.

I donated. If you have the means, please join me here.

 

Fairness Friday: Rogue Retreat

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week I’m donating to Rogue Retreat. Based in Medford, OR, Rogue Retreat offers support and housing for the homeless in its local area, including a pioneering community of local homes. It describes its mission as follows:

Rogue Retreat provides affordable housing/shelter and case management to homeless individuals and families in Jackson and Josephine Counties, Oregon, to teach them the skills they need to live independently.

I was struck and moved to donate by this piece on police criticism of its facilities on NPR last year:

"It is just another enabling mechanism for the homeless, the transients and the displaced people here," [Police Chief] Johnson told the board in February 2019. "When you create something and enable people, you're going to attract more."

Johnson goes on to say that there’s another solution for people who are struggling with mental health and drug addiction: incarceration. I can’t imagine a more counter-productive, harmful attitude for someone in his position to have (color me disappointed but not surprised), which makes me even more appreciative of the work being done.

I donated. If you have the means, I encourage you to do the same.

 

Fairness Friday: the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week I’m donating to the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women. Based in Albuquerque, CSVANW advocates for social change in the communities it supports to prevent violence against Native women and children.

It describes its mission as follows:

Organized in 1996 by three founding Native women, Peggy Bird (Kewa), Darlene Correa (Laguna Pueblo) and Genne James (Navajo), the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women (CSVANW) was created to provide support to other Native advocates working in domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, stalking and sex trafficking in New Mexico’s tribal communities. Their single goal: to eliminate violence against Native women and children.

[…] CSVANW is an award winning organization at the forefront to a dynamic approach to the tribal domestic and sexual violence fields that is demonstrating the most effective, creative and innovative ways to address and prevent the cycle of violence within tribal communities.

Its activities include training, technical assistance, advocacy, and direct support. It also sits on statewide taskforces in order to further its justice objectives.

I donated. If you have the means, I encourage you to join me here.

 

Fairness Friday: The Transgender Law Center

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week I’m donating to the Transgender Law Center. Based in Oakland, the Transgender Law Center provides support and advocacy for trans and gender non-conforming people nationwide.

It describes its mission as follows:

Transgender Law Center (TLC) is the largest national trans-led organization advocating for a world in which all people are free to define themselves and their futures. Grounded in legal expertise and committed to racial justice, TLC employs a variety of community-driven strategies to keep transgender and gender nonconforming people alive, thriving, and fighting for liberation.

Founded in 2002, Transgender Law Center (TLC) has grown into the largest trans-specific, trans-led organization in the United States. Our advocacy and precedent-setting litigation victories—in areas including employment, prison conditions, education, immigration, and healthcare—protect and advance the rights of transgender and gender nonconforming people across the country. Through our organizing and movement-building programs, TLC assists, informs, and empowers thousands of individual community members a year and builds towards a long-term, national, trans-led movement for liberation.

Its services include legal support and advocacy, support for Black trans women in the South and Midwest, and support for transgender people living with HIV.

I donated. If you have the means, I encourage you to join me here.

 

Fairness Friday: La Casa de las Madres

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week I'm donating to La Casa de las Madres. Based in San Francisco, La Casa de las Madres provides a shelter and support for women and children who are victims of domestic violence.

It describes its mission as follows:

La Casa de las Madres acts boldly to create a community where violence against women and children is not tolerated. We envision a society in which all individuals and families have equal access to basic resources and asset-building opportunities.  We envision a future where safety and respect in intimate relationships are the norm.

To achieve this future, La Casa offers a continuum of comprehensive and empowering services to women, teens, and children exposed to and at risk of abuse.  We provide access, tools and support—clinical and peer-based—that strengthen their ability to affect change and break the cycle of violence.

Its services include phone support and an emergency shelter, as well as support centers across nine locations.

I donated. If you have the means, I encourage you to join me here.

 

Fairness Friday: helping migrants at the border in Del Rio, TX

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

Like many people, I was appalled by the pictures of horse-bound border patrol agents corralling Haitian immigrants in Del Rio, Texas. Although the horse patrols have been suspended, that's far from the point: we don't treat people who are seeking a new life in America like they're people at all.

This week I'm donating to organizations that provide help and advocate for their rights.

The Val Verde Border Humanitarian Coalition is "a group of local citizens and agencies that have united to develop an efficient way to transition refugees to their destinations upon release of federal custody through a unified and coordinated effort."

Because refugees often just arrive with little more than the clothes on their back, the coalition feeds them, provides clothing, medical care, and transportation. And recently, they've been doing it in huge numbers.

You can join me in donating here.

The South Texas Pro Bono Asylum Representation Project "empowers immigrants through high-quality legal education, representation, and connections to services. ProBAR serves immigrants in the Rio Grande Valley border region with a particular focus on the legal needs of adults and unaccompanied children in federal custody."

"Founded in 1989 in response to the overwhelming need for pro bono legal representation of Central American asylum-seekers detained in South Texas, ProBAR has a long history of providing critical legal services to people at risk of deportation."

You can join me in donating here.

RAICES Texas is "a nonprofit agency that promotes justice by providing free and low-cost legal services to underserved immigrant children, families, and refugees. With legal services, social programs, bond assistance, and an advocacy team focused on changing the narrative around immigration in this country, RAICES is operating on the national frontlines of the fight for immigration rights. [It defends] the rights of immigrants and refugees, empower individuals, families, and communities, and advocate for liberty and justice."

Most recently, it joined forces with the ACLU, Oxfam, and other justice organizations to challenge Title 42 expulsions in federal court. It won a preliminary injunction, but the Biden administration has committed to ongoing expulsions. These must be stopped.

You can join me in donating here.

 

 

Fairness Friday: People’s Programs

I’m posting Fairness Fridays: a new community social justice organization each week. I donate to each featured organization. If you feel so inclined, please join me.

This week I’m donating to People’s Programs. Based in Oakland, People's Programs is a grassroots community organization that serves the people of Oakland and is dedicated to “the unification and liberation of Afrikans across the diaspora”.

Its programs include People’s Breakfast, a free breakfast program for Oakland’s houseless community, a health clinic, bail and legal support, a grocery program, and more. Modern inequality and generational injustices mean that organizations like People’s Programs are crucial lifelines for many people.

I donated. If you have the means, I encourage you to join me here. I also donated a tent from their tent drive wishlist.