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March 2011 eNewsletter

Inside this issue: a look at the work that Latino communities are doing to get their voices heard; anti-racism trainer; Tema Okun, talks about her new book; and look at who has joined the Center!

Dear friend,

A lot has happened in the past month. It’s been harrowing to watch the transformation of governments, for better or worse, but it's important to remind ourselves that there are groups in our local communities creating change, like the organizations in our story “Latino Communities Take On the Legislature.” Recently, we had the chance to chat with Tema Okun, longtime anti-racist trainer about her new book. Check out the video clips from our conversation with Tema. We are also pleased to announce that we’re receiving help from a new intern.

In Solidarity,

Kelley sig





 Kelley Weigel, Executive Director


Latino Communities Taking On the Legislature


PLAN Election Day

Here we share some of the most inspiring stories of groups organizing on the frontlines of immigrant rights and racial justice in three states. The Center supports these groups by helping them to integrate racial justice into their organization.  The Center also trains community organizers on how to build effective movements with their members so that they can be empowered in their own communities.

- CAUSA continues to mobilize their members to travel to the capitol in Salem, Oregon to urge legislators on two issues that greatly affect the Latino community: the Driver’s License Restoration Act and the Tuition Equity Bill. Their efforts are slowly putting the pieces together in order to ensure that these measures will pass—and benefit all Oregonians. And groups in Washington and Nevada are mobilizing their Latino members to have their voices heard.

Read on...


Tema Okun on Dismantling Racism

Tema Okun

Tema Okun, longtime anti-racist trainer, was at Western States Center to chat about her new book, The Emperor Has No Clothes: Teaching about Race and Racism to People Who Don't Want to Know.

In our discussion, she talked about the three important things one must understand while doing anti-racism work. Watch this video to find out what Tema had to say about the fundamentals of dismantling racism. 

Tema also pointed to why our personal identities matter, yet we are not determined by them. (Video)


Look who joined the Western States Center team!


The Center is excited to welcome Diego Hernandez as our new intern.

"I came to the Center because I have seen the importance of working with all communities, especially communities of color and how issues revolving social, economic, queer, reproductive and environmental justice overlap and intersect one another," said Deigo.

Diego is our new Racial Justice Public Policy intern. Go to our staff page to read more about him. 


Sabbaticals for Organizers of Color

Application for the 2011 Alston Bannerman Sabbatical Fellowship is now open. Fellowships with a $25,000 award are given to long-time organizers of color who would benefit from the opportunity to step back, reflect and recharge.


Save the Date!


CSTI logo






Join us for CSTI on July 29-31, 2011 at Reed College, Portland, Oregon. More information to come!


Photo of the Month


Nancy at Poverty Action Rally









Nancy Haque, Building Political Power Director, was chanting, "Save Our State" at a rally with Statewide Poverty Action Network in Olympia, Washington.

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