The “Freedom Cities” Campaign: Resistance Through Progress at the Local Level

by Ronald Newman –

People Power Map

President Trump has already caused massive harm through his immigration policies. He has outlined, through executive orders issued his first week in office, a blueprint for a mass deportation machine, which will pull families apart and uproot hard-working, law-abiding individuals who have lived here for decades. The impact of this agenda is plastered in our newspapers daily, whether through the detention of a father of five U.S. citizen children who has only worked hard and obeyed the law since his arrival 15 years ago, or a domestic violence victim in Texas, who sought protection through our judicial system, but fell prey to Trump’s henchmen — apparently based on a tip provided by her abuser.

The Freedom Cities campaign will allow us to make American communities welcoming again.

Building on the work of countless groups around the country who have labored for years on these issues, and with the guidance of law enforcement leaders who are committed to smart policing and placing local communities first, we have developed model local policies that we hope to see adopted in every city and town nationwide. Instead of scrambling to react to each outrage that sees our neighbor hauled away to a privately run detention camp, we will systematically work to disable Trump’s deportation machine. Some of these model policies and rules are already on the books in certain places around the country, yet there are plenty of ways for most cities, towns, and counties to become more immigrant-friendly. And even once a community has adopted the full set of rules, activists will have additional opportunities to lend a hand on related issues or in neighboring communities.

During the March 11 event livestreamed from Miami, we provided a Freedom Cities Action Guide to the People Power team, which included a plan for activists to use in their local communities, along with useful strategic and tactical advice. This roadmap is meant to get people started, but the movement is yours. The United States has always been, and remains, what we make it.

So if you have not already joined the People Power team, the door is open. Sign up, receive the Action Guide, and take the first step in the plan. I have a hunch that a big group of people is waiting to tag team with you in your neighborhood.

Let’s do this.

 

Reprinted with permission from the ACLU