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When people go to prison, their absence often devastates families. But parents across the country have been galvanized by their children’s ordeals not only to advocate for their own children’s freedom, but to band together to challenge and change the policies that have taken their children away. One thing unites them all—they’re not waiting for someone else to make the changes needed to stop the destruction of mass incarceration. They’re going to do it themselves.
For the last several decades, the focus of our education system as shifted from civics to job training, and we have all paid a steep cost. Nobody will make us be citizens. But if we truly care about preserving our democracy for future generations, we need to bring back civic education.
Each of us lives with multiple identities that shape our experience of the world and how we are perceived. In my case, oppression and privilege intersect. It's not always easy to examine our privilege, but I have seen firsthand the danger of failing to see complex intersecting identities.
Since the Founding Fathers, we have not had any vertical innovation in democracy. We have run elections, voted and governed pretty much the same way for two centuries. But society has changed so much, so why hasn’t democracy changed with it?
We must find a place where we can acknowledge and uplift our differences. At the vigil New York, I saw acutely that the only way we can do this is by coming together, speaking with one another, listening to each other, and by holding space for our pain, grief, confusion, and pride.
The tragedy at Pulse, Orlando, is another reminder of the risks I, and so many of us, face just for being who we are. It is another reminder of how far we still have to go to truly achieve equality so that none of us have to live in fear. There's a lot of work to be done, but we know that by working together across divides we can truly make a difference.
The mass shooting at Pulse in Orlando has shaken the country and we are still grieving the lives that were lost. This tragedy has also had a disproportionate impact on LGBT people of color, who were targeted that night and who are too often the victims of hate crimes. This time, it was on a scale that the country couldn’t ignore.
Racism comes not only in the form of ugly words and actions, but in silence and in complacency. This is why it isn’t enough to raise our kids to simply not be racist. We have to foster anti-racism.
One way to approach reproductive health inequality is the Sojourner Syndrome: an intersectional approach that examines how racism, classism and gender operate in the lives of Black women produce increased risk of miscarriage, stillbirth and infant mortality. Here is one woman's story and how we can approach this issue to make real change.
What is civic engagement?  People solving problems and making the country work better. According to author Brian Aull, effective engagement is built on service, learning, and community. Here are three real-world examples of civic engagement that demonstrate these virtues.

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Listen to how Text, Talk Act, is taking the pain we have experienced around mental health and turning it into a healing process. The talk around mental health is personal, powerful, and raw, and...

Dialogue to Change

Our ultimate goal is to create positive community change that includes everyone, and we believe that our tools, advice, and resources will help foster that kind of change. Whether you’re grappling with a divisive community issue, or simply want to include residents’ voices in city government, the dialogue to change program can help community members take action and make their voice heard.