Engage2012, hosted by the Women of Color Policy Network at the New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service on December 8-9, 2011, was an event addressing key issues impacting marginalized communities at both the local and national level. Fission Strategy’s own Cheryl Contee was a featured panelist, joining people of color policy experts and social change advocates working on a variety of relevant issues such as immigration, racial justice, economic security, LGBTQ rights, and reproductive and environmental justice. These policy experts, practitioners, stakeholders, and members of the NYU community joined together with the intention of better understanding how to work across various minority communities in order to identify common policy goals, strengthen coalitions, and eventually develop a multi-issue framework that addresses structural and institutional inequalities in American society.
Cheryl, well known as a co-founder of the award-winning Black political blog Jack and Jill Politics, spoke about innovative ways to engage audience through social media and promoted the event with realtime #Engage2012 Tweets. The panel was moderated by Sheryl Huggins Salomon, Managing Editor of The Root. Cornell Belcher, President of Brilliant Corners Research and Strategy and Obama lead pollster helped to anchor the event, releasing new research on the motivations of minority voters. Other featured panelists included Susan Herman, president of the ACLU; Avis Jones-DeWeever, Executive Director of the National Council of Negro Women; Anika Rahman, President and CEO of the Ms. Foundation for Women; Rashad Robinson, the Executive Director of Color of Change; Linda Sarsour, Director of the Arab American Association of New York; Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force; and Miriam Yeung, Executive Director of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum.
Tweets from Cheryl about the event included:
“#engage2012 @rashadrobinson msg to corps supporting ALEC : “you can’t come to our communities for money & then take away our vote”
“11 of the 34 states passing voter ID laws are 2/3rd of electoral votes. Voter suppression on the march sez @votolatino at #engage2012”
“#engage2012 Cornell Belcher’s new research shows that despite tough times for black & latino voters, enthusiasm for election is rising”
For more information on the Engage2012 event, read the Women of Color Policy Network’s blog here.