Organize!

In our Organize! columns we explore various lessons in organizing strategies and tactics, going beyond the outside story of a campaign to look at how it worked or what lessons it might have to teach us.

San Francisco Housing Activists Win Land and Shift the Debate

On May 11, 2004, homeless people in San Francisco scored a victory by convincing the city’s Board of Supervisors to set aside 15 city-owned...

Living Wage Lives in L.A.

It was 1996, and an economic Godzilla loomed over Los Angeles, coming to crush the city's precarious prosperity. That, at least, was the way...

Organize! A media campaign on the value of affordable housing

Advocates for affordable housing and a high-powered public relations firm make an unlikely team, at first glance. But that’s exactly who teamed up over...

Organizing with the State on Your Side

In California, municipalities are required by law to plan for their fair share of affordable housing. Has this put housing advocates out of a...

Tenant Organizing Wins One-for-One Replacement

In 1996, a small group of highly organized residents of North Beach public housing in San Francisco began to raise questions about the fate...

Public Land Should be Used for Public Good

When a vacant lot in Oakland was close to becoming the home of a 24-story, market-rate development, local activists worked together to prevent it from happening.

Make Your Nonprofit a Media Empire

Using soap operas and talk shows to mix entertainment with financial education

No Place for Us

The low-income students living in Irvine Meadows West, a historic trailer park at the University of California, Irvine, received more than a liberal arts...

Oakland Campaign Puts Kids First

Low-income youth and youth of color are often first to feel the effects of shrinking local human service budgets. In Oakland, California – across...

Housing Advocates Track Indoor Environmental Hazards to Spur Improvements

When the community health promoters of San Diego’s Environmental Health Coalition (EHC) say they’re doing pollution testing, many people probably imagine samples from the...

Not Another Parking Lot

Fight City Hall - and WIN! It took almost a year, but solid strategic planning and tenacious grassroots organizing paid off for affordable housing activists...

“No Evictions. We Won’t Move!”

"This land is too valuable to permit poor people to park on it."  -Justin Herman, former executive director of the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency, 1970 The...
St. Louis mayoral candidates gather for a forum led by the Social Policy & Electoral Accountability Collaborative.

Injecting Racial Equity into an Election Cycle in St. Louis

A group of 10 St. Louis organizations joined together to encourage mayoral candidates to address racial equity and make it a focal point in an election.

A Matter of Trust

Although a March 2007 Zogby International poll found that affordable housing was an important election issue, most elected officials have yet to place creating...

Economic Rights are Human Rights

Families with nowhere else to go often wind up staying at a modest row house on a side street off Kensington Avenue, a downtrodden,...

Tenderloin Senior Organizing Project

"It's hard to do this – I was scared," said Robin King, one of the younger women living in a building organized by the...

Big Island Organizing

An organizing drive in Hawaii has forced the hand of America's largest bank, achieving a breakthrough that has slashed foreclosures.

Vertical Integration

When Vickie Stapleton’s landlord announced his intention to terminate his project-based Section 8 contract with HUD last year, she got nervous. “A lot of...

Fighting for Worker's Rights in Maine

Years of alleged wage, immigration, safety, and civil rights violations, environmental sanctions, and other infractions at the DeCoster egg farm in Turner, Maine, have...
A woman in a red Cause Justa/Just Cause T-shirt holds a hand-lettered sign reading "Black and Brown for Tenant Protections Now"

Black and Brown Tenant Solidarity in Oakland

Last October, Oakland, Calif., passed a Tenant Protection Ordinance. This strong measure defending tenants against the kinds of landlord harassment that often take place...