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Given the current pushback on responsible climate policy at the federal level, innovative state and local actions will be critical if we are to achieve a just transition to a sustainable economy. The Institute for Policy Studies surveyed the array of measures that can accelerate the rapid transition from fossil fuels to clean and efficient alternatives in an equitable fashion, and in this study, they focus in on one strategy: Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). RPS require utilities to provide a growing share of electricity from solar and wind energy, and are a particularly promising policy option. This report is the first of an Institute for Policy Studies series highlighting some of the most promising actions taken by state and local governments, identifying best practices for policy design, and sharing lessons for movement building and advocacy.
This document includes a sample of resolution language along with a list of links to resolutions that have been passed in cities across the country.
This document includes eight tips on how to write an op-ed in addition to a sample op-ed written by Dr. Maha Hilal.
This toolkit is designed to help strengthen the sanctuary and refugee rights movements by providing a platform to look at and strengthen sanctuary campaigns and policies through an anti-war lens. The goal is to highlight the role of the U.S.’ actions in producing migration; the multiple systems of oppression, both in home countries and in the United States that impact refugees and immigrants; and the challenge of working to support refugees, asylum seekers and immigrants in the context of on-going parallel threats to the safety and security of other vulnerable people, particularly in Indigenous and Black American communities. This toolkit includes several resources, including articles and discussion questions on migration, articles on U.S. militarism domestically and abroad, film suggestions related to refugees and immigrants, a guide to getting a sanctuary resolution passed in your city, outreach language including sample op-eds and press releases, and lastly, a list of relevant immigration/refugee/anti-war organizations.
Agricultural cooperatives are a promising area of economic opportunity for African American women in the rural South, who face some of the sharpest disparities in economic advancement. By increasing the local availability of quality food, these businesses also have the potential to improve health indicators in a region marked by disproportionately high rates of obesity, diabetes, and other related problems. Yet prevailing economic development models in these states are heavily skewed toward subsidizing large companies that offer few benefits for rural African American women. This report analyzes challenges that African American women face in the South as well as the shortcomings of current economic development models that contribute to such challenges. In addition to this, the report analyzes agricultural co-ops, looking at a case study involving an African American farm co-op in Mississippi. Lastly, this report offers policy recommendations on how to support co-ops throughout the rural South.
Given the current pushback on responsible climate policy at the federal level, innovative state and local action will be critical if we are to achieve a just transition to a sustainable economy. The Institute for Policy Studies is surveying the array of state and local measures that can accelerate the just transition from an extractive, fossil fueled economy to a clean, regenerative economy. In this study, the Institute for Policy Studies focuses on one set of policies: energy efficiency in residential, commercial, and public buildings. This report examines state and local policies that reduce energy demand by making homes and commercial and government buildings and common household, commercial, and industrial appliances more energy efficient, and requiring electric and gas utilities to provide energy efficiency as a service to their customers, thereby reducing energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions.
Black people in Portland have been the most impacted by gentrification and displacement since 2000. The serial forced displacement of low income and communities of color in the name of New Urbanism - urban renewal of historically divested urban cores - is a public health crisis and a key problem in Portland. Given the magnitude of these issues in Portland, healing will require creative and innovative solutions to redress and reverse the deleterious effects. Reconnecting Black People to the geographic Heart of the Community in N/NE Portland provides a fortuitous opportunity to do just that. The Right 2 Root Campaign of the Community RE/Construction 3.0 Initiative is an effort to identify solutions and help community members achieve parity with other successful culturally-specific neighborhood stabilization and community development initiatives in Portland. Specifically, this campaign aims to help people of color reclaim their communities, improve health and education outcomes, increase access to affordable housing and economic development opportunities, and generate long-term asset development with the help of the community. This report documents the community planning process of this campaign.
The path to prison often begins in childhood and in schools segregated by race and class. Over the past 40 years, American schools with high Black and brown student populations in low-income and poor communities have come to resemble prisons more than places of learning. Behaviors typical of children and adolescents have been rendered criminal by harsh disciplinary policies, mandated suspensions and expulsions, and increased law enforcement presence in U.S. schools. Students of color, LGBTQ+ students, students from low- income households, and students with disabilities are routinely pushed out of schools and into criminal legal systems by these policies and the assumptions that undergird them. This report explores the underreported side of school safety: the dangers of punitive school punishment, pushout, and referrals to law enforcement, and the origins of these disciplinary policies, who they target, what is at risk, and what can be done in order to facilitate safe schools that treat the whole child, with attention to social and emotional development.
The criminalization of immigration through policies such as the “Zero Tolerance” policy has swelled the numbers of people in U.S. detention centers. Recent reports have exposed the inhumane conditions in these centers, including those that have caused dozens of deaths. Many people have contested the very existence of these detention centers, given these abysmal conditions, and have called for investigation and a total reassessment of the mass detention of asylum seekers and immigrants. When faced with this criticism, one of the main defenses of government officials in states and counties where the centers are located is that they make economic sense. The centers, it is argued, bring revenue and jobs to areas that need them. This IPS report punctures this myth by looking into a large immigrant detention center in rural New Mexico run by CoreCivic, one of the largest private corporations running prisons and detention centers. The authors find that the economic and jobs arguments are grossly overstated for multiple reasons.