FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 13, 2016
BYP100 and NBJC Bring Black Youth to Capitol Hill to Demand Congress Build Black Futures
Washington, D.C. – Black youth organizers from across the nation will take BYP100’s economic justice policy platform, the Agenda to Build Black Futures, to Congress on September 14th where they meet with elected officials, rally with the public, and push for a transformative vision of policy that affirms Black lives and communities.
Led by BYP100 and the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC), the Build Black Futures Advocacy Day is the first national advocacy effort to enact Black policy and build Black power since the Vision for Black Lives policy platform was announced on August 1, 2016, and will coincide will the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s Annual Legislative Conference.
“We are here to demand accountability from those who choose to invest in the systems that are killing us,” said Charlene Carruthers, national director of BYP100. “Black liberation cannot be actualized until all Black people including Black women, Black queer and trans people, Black disabled and undocumented people live in safe and well-resourced communities with clean water, food security, housing security, income security, health care and reproductive autonomy–regardless of their income.”
Black women have the least wealth out of any racial or ethnic group, over a third of Black transgender people live below $10,000 a year, and because police in many states double as first responders to calls where a person is in mental health crises, disabled Black people are disproportionately killed by police.
“NBJC is honored to partner with BYP100 to educate elected officials on the comprehensive policy demands of the Movement for Black Lives policy platform,” said Isaiah Wilson, NBJC external affairs manager. “The platform unapologetically centers the lives of Black LGBTQ people and our families. Building Black-centered policy demands and Black political power as instructed in the platform are fundamental to achieving Black liberation.”
This year, two Black-centered grassroots policy agendas have been published– BYP100’s Agenda to Build Black Futures and the Movement for Black Lives’ (M4BL) Vision for Black Lives: Policy Demands for Black Power, Freedom, and Justice. Both of these documents outline a plan for addressing the systemic oppression historically and currently faced by Black communities, and outline core areas that would transform the social, political and economic conditions for Black people in America: ending mass criminalization and incarceration; reparations; honoring workers’ rights; community control, political power, divesting from and eliminating profit for punishment; valuing women’s paid and unpaid work; building queer and trans wealth; stabilizing and revitalizing Black communities; and building Black political power.
“All Black people deserve to live with dignity,” said Janae Bonsu, co-author of the Agenda to Build Black Futures and a member of M4BL’s policy table. We are committed to abolishing and transforming systems that dehumanize us by organizing in the streets, engaging in direct action against the state, and holding elected officials responsible to being responsive the needs of our people.”
BYP100 is an activist member-based organization of Black 18-35 year olds, dedicated to
creating justice and freedom for all Black people. We do our work through a Black queer