DSM SURJ News & Action, 8/23/2020

Welcome to our new bi-weekly Sunday newsletter!

A New TV Show From SURJ: The Get Together

“It’s time to make a choice. Everything we want for our lives, our families, and our communities depends on us joining with Black folks to say police violence and racism must end.” –Beth Howard and the Southern Crossroads Team

Friends, join us Mon 8/24 for the launch of “The Get Together” — a new online TV show where we talk about race and racism today and what it has to do with white people’s struggle to keep food on the table and pay their bills! Co-host Evelyn is a single mama from a small town in North Carolina and Chanelle is a former sex worker and the daughter of a poor teenage mom. Both of them came from families that know what it’s like not to have enough.

Tune in Mon 8/24 at 7PM for our first LIVE episode:
White Women On Defunding the Police
Facebook.com/ShowingUpForRacial Justice

Last week we posted a statement called “White Women for Defunding the Police” and it became our most popular post ever. Inspired by that, the first episode of The Get Together will feature a conversation between white women from poor and working class families sharing their personal stories about how they came to distrust law enforcement, what “defunding the police” really means, and why they feel it’s important as white women to speak up about police violence against folks of color. We’ll be streaming live on our Facebook page and posting the episode to YouTube after.

In solidarity, Chanelle Gallant
The Get Together is a project of Showing Up for Racial Justice.





Holding our elected officials accountable for advancing racial and economic justice is one of the most important things we can do as citizens. Unfortunately, the Des Moines City Council often holds meetings during the workday, guided by an agenda that is not widely accessible in advance. And let’s not even talk about all the Zoom difficulties.

But fear not–DSM SURJ’s Noah Beacom is on the case! Noah attends the Council meetings so YOU don’t have to, and recaps the portions that are relevant to racial justice. Follow his Des Moines City Council Watch blog today and empower yourself to engage substantively with your councilperson.  Not sure who your councilperson is? Look ’em up.





This summer’s book club wrapped up 8/21 with James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time. Thanks to all who could join in the discussion in June on Ibram Kendi’s How to Be An Antiracist, and July’s Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Kendi and Jason Reynolds. It’s been a wonderful season of reading and conversation!

Learn more about Book Club here.





SURJ’s Action and Advocacy in Schools Work Group aims to build relationships with teachers, administration, and school board members and encourage anti-racist practices and policies in our schools.

Three specific action steps have been outlined:
1) develop a plan for an anti-racist education podcast
2) research racist and anti-racist policies in local schools
3) identify/form equity teams at local schools 

Come to the 9/20 meeting if you want to join in these efforts!





As much as we love emailing you, seeing your face is pretty great. If you are interested in attending periodic DSM SURJ public meetings, please take a moment by 9/1 to let us know when you are available. We will take all feedback into consideration. 

Thank you for reading!

Please stay in touch with us and reach out at any time to dsmsurj@gmail.com

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