What an amazing year this has been!
Everywhere we turn, communities are standing up for a new vision to build community power and reshape regional economies that transform the lives of workers and communities. Around the Beltline in Atlanta, the Ports in LA and Oakland, Dearborn Street in Seattle, The Hill in Pittsburgh, Disneyland (the happiest place on earth!), and numerous other campaigns across our Partnership, we are raising expectations and improving standards in communities long-neglected in the name of growth and development. Innovative organizing and research connecting workplace and community issues - Secure Jobs, Secure Communities in Boston, Rebuilding the American Dream in Denver, Build Oakland for Everyone, LIVE 2007 in Silicon Valley - expose the economic chasm in our new economy and point us down the high road toward a new middle class in this country.
It has been absolutely eye-opening, and not just a little exhausting, keeping up with you all this year. The Partnership staff have been playing a game of national catch-up as our partners and allies charge forward on campaigns raising the standards for new development, moving high road public policy, and blocking low road growth in major metro areas across the country.
With new organizations in Pittsburgh, Newark, Phoenix and Syracuse, established organizations in Seattle, Milwaukee and Denver, and an emerging coalition in San Bernardino/Riverside, we have been on overdrive supporting the growth of our movement. Couple this with the ongoing support that our Community Benefits Law Center and Research and Communications team provide to hot campaigns across the country, and it is hard not to feel that this movement is growing faster than any of us could have predicted when the Partnership launched its national program in 2006. Interest in our collective work is building in new cities and regions, and we have high hopes that our collective success is both contagious and sustainable on a grand scale.
This newsletter highlights the victories and campaigns of Partner organizations from 2007 and gives us a taste of what's to come. In 2008, in addition to nurturing the expansion of our national base, we hope to deepen capacity in core organizing, community benefits and new policy capacities. Together, we will strategize greening the new economy with job quality and community stability in mind. We will deepen our understanding of land use tools and decision-making processes as levers for equity in the development process. We will continue our work to use regulation and organizing to redirect growing industries in the new economy. We will develop year-round civic engagement models as the nation ponders its future direction. And we will continue to realize the dream of building a national movement, rooted in cities and communities, with the power to reshape local economies that deliver real benefits to workers and communities.
As we pause to enjoy our families and friends, may you have loving and restful holidays. And may the New Year find us all well rested and ready to charge forward to secure a just future for our communities and our country.
Partnership Executive Director