Chicago is over the moon to host this year’s Copa in May. And we have some very important things to talk about.
In order to build towards justice, we must be able to address injustices. In the US the only avenues we are offered to address injustice is through state structured systems or flimsy and often toxic call-outs. Left Wing has always called itself a community, and it’s time we discuss what that means. As a community we have the responsibility to hold ourselves and each other to better standards. No one is disposable. Of course, this type of work requires much conversation, and that is a process we hope to start this year at XicagoCopa2018.
This Platica will be done in collaboration with some educators from a group called Alternatives, and is taking the form of a workshop on Community Accountability, Transformative Justice, and Restorative Justice.***
The basic structure for the workshop is:
- A break down of the cultural roots and history of Community Accountability, Transformative Justice, and Restorative Justice
- Some group exercises
- Break out groups
In our break out groups we will discuss if and how we’d like to use these techniques at Left Wing.
***For those who are unfamiliar with the terms:
Transformative justice – Transformative justice [is] a liberatory approach to violence…[which] seeks safety and accountability without relying on alienation, punishment, or State or systemic violence, including incarceration or policing.
Community accountability – Community accountability is a community-based strategy, rather than a police/prison-based strategy, to address violence within our communities.
Definitions from: What are Community Accountability & Transformative Justice?
In preparation of this conversation we have written a survey to gauge some of the ways we use the word community, what brings us to this space, and what our responsibility to each other is.
Some prompts to think about going into this are
- What does it mean to be a community?
- How does this community respond to harm?
- What does accountability mean to us?
This conversation will be hard. This work is deep, painful, and crucial. Please know that the subject matter is potentially triggering, as many of us come to the table carrying hurts. So be kind to yourself, and take your needs seriously. Trust that no one enters this type of work without deep care for the community, and we do it because we care about each other. And also know that we are so excited to share this important work with you, and then play a butt-load of soccer afterwards! <3
If you have any more questions please feel free to email them directly to me, mey lee, @ email@example.com.
Further reading on Community Accountability:
Bay Area Transformative Justice Collective Values, Principles and Practices
Prison Culture: Transformative Justice
Taking Risks: Implementing Grassroots Community Accountability Strategies
Bay Area Transformative Justice Collective Resources