The face of change has deep brown eyes and curly black hair. His name is Rodman, the son of Salvadoran immigrants who arrived in the United States in 1991, fleeing civil war. Only 21 years old, Rodman (pictured above, far right) grew up in Bayshore and grew up noticing differences between his neighborhood and surrounding communities.
Rodman knew he wanted to work to improve parks in disrepair, to fight for higher-quality education in local schools, and make Long Island a welcoming place for immigrant families like his own. But he didn’t know how.
This summer, Rodman was selected as part of LICET’S Movement Building Organizers program. With LICET’s training and support, Rodman registered dozens of new voters, educated hundreds of immigrant workers about their rights, and built real power for LICET and our allies’ efforts to win environmental justice at Roberto Clemente park, and to raise the minimum wage in New York State.
“I know I have a lot of experiences ahead, but I can honestly say it’s the best experience of my life,” Rodman said this week. “Each day after I went home I felt I had done something important and that I play an important part in changing my community”.
With your support, we're building even bigger for 2016. The Presidential and state elections will shape Long Island – and the country – for years to come. Can we count on you to invest in us to help make sure our communities win respect and dignity in 2016?
We have come a long way from the dark days of anti-immigrant violence on Long Island, but it's clear our work isn't done. We have big plans to build a new generation of leaders, reform policing on Long Island, win language access, and to increase the vote share of African-American, Latino, and immigrant communities.
Your support of $75 or more covers materials and training for more new leaders like Rodman; it also gets you a gorgeous LICET t-shirt! $50 pays for dinner at our next community workshop. Even $10 covers materials for one day of the street outreach that's an essential part of making working-class voters heard in November.
Thank you for being with us this year. In 2016, we have a chance to serve, educate, and mobilize our communities like never before – the stakes have never been higher, and we're ready to get to work, so invest in this effort now.
Over 100 canvassers and volunteers are out on the streets across Long Island – from Hempstead and Uniondale, to Farmingdale, Wyandanch, Brentwood, Patchogue, and beyond – knocking on doors to Get Out the Vote.
Many of these races will be extremely close, and we expect many people to be voting. Your vote could make the difference!
- Where is your local polling location? Find it at this link.
- How will you arrive to your local polling site? Will you walk, bike, or take the bus? If you need a ride, call us: 516-366-0259.
- When will you vote? Schedule ahead of time to avoid time conflicts.
- And find out who you will vote for, and why, by reviewing the Newsday Voter Guide for information on the candidates.
- If you encounter problems while voting, we're partnering with the New York Civil Liberties Union to provide an all-day Election Protection Hotline. Call us at: 631-316-8013.
It's crunch time. Over the past week, we have hosted candidates in the two most biggest elections on Long Island this fall – Suffolk County Executive and Nassau District Attorney – and mobilized nearly two hundred community members from both Counties to raise their issues to the candidates, and show that our communities are engaged and mobilized to vote in a big way on November 3rd.
If you missed either forum, you can check out photos from the Suffolk County Executive forum here, and from our Nassau Policing & Justice forum here. Both forums were part of our partnership with Long Island Wins and Noticia, Growing a Diverse Long Island which, since 2011, has been hosting candidate and issue forums in working-class communities of color, raising up the voices and issues that matter to our communities. With these events, we were joined by over 20 co-sponsoring organizations.
Thanks to all our partners, and especially to the candidates and community members who came out to raise up their voices and pledge to #Vote4Respect. With just days to go before Election Day, we're stronger than ever!
The killings last year of Eric Garner and Michael Brown sparked a national conversation about police violence and systemic racism in the criminal justice system. On Long Island, the killing of Kenny Lazo, the beating of Kyle Howell, and a variety of other cases have demonstrated that reform is needed here, as well. After a massive grassroots demonstration in Amityville last December, LICET has been proud to join the steering committee of Long Island United for Police Reform (LIPR), a coalition of local civil rights and grassroots organizations working to support victims of police violence and pursue systemic change across the Island.
Today, LICET is releasing two fact sheets we've produced for LIPR. The reports analyze the opportunities for reform in two key areas of policing on Long Island: collection of data on stops and summonses, and the regulation of body camera programs. As both Nassau and Suffolk Counties pursue police body camera programs – programs which may foster accountability, but also represent another form of community surveillance – and as advocates and community members struggle to tell a story about biased policing without publicly-available data to draw on, both of these issues must be priorities for local leaders.
Both reports draw on the work of the Center for Popular Democracy and PolicyLink in their Building Momentum from the Ground Up.