Community Safety Resources & Poems in Support of Shared Action
What we need now is what we've been needing this year and what we've been gathering and making together for many years. Split This Rock's team compiled the resources we've collected from social movements and communities to address the pandemic, uprisings in defense of Black lives, and white supremacist violence. As we prepare for community care, from now to January 20 and beyond, we know our folks will continue to face multiple crises at global, national, and local levels.
We offer these resources in support of anyone seeking personal grounding or working on long-term community safety or emergency plans. These can be used by individuals, friends, pods, families, organizations, classrooms, or communities.
Community Safety Resources: Read, Act, & Connect
Read: Understanding where we are and how we got here
For a projection of contested election scenarios from before November 4, read or listen to "The Election That Could Break America" at The Atlantic's website. Organizers nationwide cautioned us to be ready for rightwing backlash after the election. Please take care of yourself and the folks you're in community with. For background and responses, here is a statement from Chicago organizations, written by Lifted Voices and Black Lives Matter Chicago.
Defund and Abolish: What does it mean to defund police and fund care for people?
Learn more about reform, defunding, and abolition on Critical Resistance's website. Critical Resistance is a national, member-based organization, founded in 1997, that has been led by Black scholars and activists including Angela Davis, Ruth Wilson Gilmore, and others.
Act: Resources and Tools for safety planning and mutual aid
We know there are many ways to support struggles for liberation, and we prioritize disability justice. We recommend this guide: 26 Ways to Be in the Struggle Beyond the Streets, shared by Ejeris Dixon, co-editor with Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha of Beyond Survival: Strategies and Stories from the Transformative Justice Movement. Practice making events, education, and organizing accessible using guides from BE HEARD DC. Accessibility guides are available in graphic and plain text versions of English, Spanish, and ASL format using the links in this plain text Accessibility Guide.
Emergency Planning for Yourself & Your Folks:
Find a decision tree checklist for preparing for multiple emergencies in the still-relevant community-created "Safety Checklist for November" document. Read and listen to "Planning for Disaster: A Writing Exercise" from Kelly Hayes' Movement Memos podcast. The episode is available online and has a transcript, available at the Truthout website.
Long-term Community Safety Planning:
For a collection of security and safety practices built by years of learning in the streets from Black, Indigenous, and People of Color movements within the U.S., check out Get in Formation at the Vision Change Win website. As you think about how your skills and capacity fit into community work, consider using Building Movement's Social Change Ecosystem Map.
COVID-19 Safety Guides:
Review information from poet and virologist Joseph Osmundson for negotiating safe practices with your household, family, or pod with the Quaranpod checklist. Find practical information for assessing and reducing risk from Covid-19 at the CovidStraightTalk website.
Online Safety: Learn about and improve your digital security with videos and graphics from Equality Lab's digital security resources website.
Connect: Organizations in DC and near you
Mutual Aid Groups:
For a community-based guide for creating neighborhood mutual aid support in your building, on your block, or in your town, check out this mutual aid pod-building document created by Rebel Sidney Black. Whether you can offer support or need it, local food banks and mutual aid funds will be lifelines for millions of people in the coming months. Refer to this article for DC-area mutual aid groups. To find a food bank in the DC area or near you, visit Feeding America's website.
Take Action to #DefendDC from white supremacist violence:
Join DC residents and organizations calling for Hotels to cancel their reservations and offer paid leave to their staff. Find contact information for businesses, CEOs, and local government officials on the Don't Host Hate resource guide.
Poems in Support of Shared Action
Split This Rock staff offer poem categories in support of public action, grieving, organizing, teaching, or words to start a meeting. In The Quarry, Split This Rock's social justice poetry database, you can find poems by content and author identity.
As the country continues through political, health, and economic crisis while also contending with a persistent and long history of state-sanctioned violence and oppression, we encourage those who visit The Quarry to read and listen to poems on the following themes, tuning in especially to the voices of people of color, LGBTQ people, disabled people, and other people marginalized by society:
- Body / Body Image
- Civic Participation
- Disability Themes
- Gender / Gender Identity / Gender Expression / Sexism
- Globalization / Imperialism
- Health / Health Care / Illness
- Police Brutality / Profiling
- Race / Ethnicity / Racism
- Social Movements / Resistance
Share the Poems Widely and Please Give Credit
We encourage you to use and share these poems widely and ask only that you credit the author and name Split This Rock’s The Quarry: A Social Justice Poetry Database as the source. Please also include a direct link to the database for any reposting of poems. Poets retain all rights to their work. If you want to share a poem from Split This Rock's website for commerical use or republication, please reach out to the poet directly.
Do you have a resource to share? Send a message with a shareable link to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have virtual events you'd like to share with the Split This Rock network in the Poem of the Week email newsletter, send us the information via our brief Newsletter Updates Request Form.
If the online form is not accessible to you, please contact us at email@example.com for an alternate method of submission.