“It is not one person or group of people on the top who are going to make change.
It is grassroots activism, and that is what Rights & Democracy is doing.”
– US Sen. Bernie Sanders
Some exciting news that will help us build a truly independent, grassroots movement in Vermont.
A group of Rights & Democracy donors — Ben Cohen, Barbarina Heyerdahl, and Jerry Greenfield — will match dollar for dollar up to $25,000 in an effort to support RAD’s movement-building work during the 2018 legislative session and election cycle.
Your one-time contribution of $100, $250, or $500 will be doubled between now and the end of the year, and you’ll be helping RAD raise $50,000 to continue building our grassroots movement for political and social change.
In just two years, Rights & Democracy has gone from being a scrappy startup grassroots organization with a handful of key Vermont leaders and staff to a bi-state organization with 12,000 members and a vision to change the world.
Victories: Historic Rallies, Electoral Wins & Holding Politicians Accountable
The year began with the largest single demonstration in Vermont’s history – the Women’s March and Rally – which brought out 20,000 people to Montpelier, the state’s capital. RAD staff and leaders were instrumental in organizing this historic rally.
Our Labor Day celebrations with Bernie Sanders brought 1200 people to one event in Concord, NH and then another 500 people to a first-ever Labor Day rally in White River Junction, VT, just across the border from New Hampshire, and more than 750 people in Middlebury, VT.
Our members are running for political office – and winning, like City Councilor Ali Dieng in Burlington’s New North End – and we are helping to hold our elected officials accountable in both states as well as in Washington, DC. RAD leaders were instrumental in the series of direct actions in Washington DC this summer and fall that numerous, and disastrous, health care repeal bills offered by President Trump and the GOP-led Congress.
Our growth is thanks to a mix of savvy and dedicated staff organizers who–most importantly–work closely with powerful member leaders, numerous member volunteers, as well as members who take action by making calls, showing up to rallies – and donating money to RAD. Whether it’s a monthly sustaining donation or a direct annual contribution, or through our ActBlue account, RAD is building a network of member donors to help fuel lasting political change.
That’s why doubling your contribution between now and the year will help us reach more people and build a lasting grassroots movement for political and social change.
Rural Organizing: The New Path Forward
Founded as a multi-issue and multi-tactical grassroots organizing and movement building project in Vermont and New Hampshire, RAD is using as many tools as it can in the grassroots organizing toolbox to build a people-powered movement for political and economic transformation.
The failure of President Trump to make good on his campaign promises, and the stalling of the GOP’s congressional agenda—to date—is a huge testament to the power of grassroots organizing. More importantly, however, it provides us with a key lesson for how we can move forward to not only defend against Republican attacks on health care as well as the environment, public education, and the rights of workers, immigrants, women, communities of color and LGBTQ individuals but also offer an alternative political, economic, and social vision.
This summer RAD held events throughout the state to promote a people’s agenda that legislators can get behind when they return to Montpelier in January, and is a step toward helping rural communities rebuild political power.
Developing a “People’s Platform” is a way to unify different grassroots movements, and obviously, this is a tall order with major capacity needs that will not be built overnight, which is why we need your continued support. The Right has effectively funded this grassroots approach to changing public narratives and winning local offices - and with much success.
Our response needs to be as bold, as audacious, and as forward thinking as theirs — but with the intent on bringing people together, not dividing them.
So make your contribution of $25, $25, $100, $250 or $500 and it will be doubled between now and the end of the year. You’ll be supporting our formative grassroots organizing model that is poised to bring about lasting, forceful change in our communities.
Together We Win!
Jessica Early, Elise Greaves, Isaac Grimm, James Haslam, Nate LaGue, Katie McCarty, Emma Schoenberg, Shay Totten
AKA, Team Rights & Democracy VT
<– SAVE THE DATE! –>
DECEMBER 10: RIGHTS & DEMOCRACY'S ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP ASSEMBLY & CELEBRATION
WHEN: Sunday, December 10, 1-6PM
WHERE: Lebanon High School, 195 Hanover St., Lebanon, NH
FROM PROTEST TO POWER: ORGANIZING IN 2018 AND BEYOND: Join members of Rights & Democracy from across Vermont and New Hampshire for our annual membership assembly and celebration. We will celebrating RAD members for key victories in our states and DC this year and look to the movement organizing that lay ahead for us in 2018 and beyond, including our multi-issue People’s Platform for each state. If you are not a member of Rights & Democracy, but are interested in learning more about becoming one or if you have child care or accessibility or interpretation needs, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org