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03/2/2021 | Base-Building & Affiliates

Network Leaders Convene to Strategize for 2021 and Beyond

Last month, executive directors and key staff from more than 40 affiliates in the CPD/A network, along with several members of CPD/A staff, came together for a virtual convening to reflect on the challenges and victories from 2020, and to begin the work of planning our network strategy for 2021.

2020 was both a deeply painful year for our communities and an extremely important year for politics. When COVID-19 hit, CPD/A affiliates immediately adapted their organizing and support programs to address the most critical issues facing their members: fighting for eviction and rent moratoria, providing access to food and health services and direct cash assistance where needed, and working to support those hardest hit by the pandemic. Then, over the course of the summer after the murder of George Floyd, our network worked in solidarity with the Movement for Black Lives to lead and support more than 34 actions in cities across the country, calling on elected officials to defund the police and invest in Black communities.

And this was happening against the backdrop of a key moment in the electoral cycle. Our network kept its powerful gaze on the elections – affiliates helped register thousands of people to vote and hosted many events, text banks and phone banks to increase voter turnout, all while fighting to ensure that our communities had the ability to vote safely. And, as we now know, the 2020 primaries and general election experienced record turnout, particularly through early voting and vote by mail.

When we came together last month, we took a few moments to pause and reflect on the truly impressive achievements of our network in 2020. But then it became time to turn our attention to 2021. We talked through lessons from 2020, how to apply them moving forward, and the direction we should take with our work moving forward. We discussed CPD’s leadership transition that was announced in January, and the role that network affiliates will play in finding our next executive directors. We began to dig into our federal agenda and all that we hope to achieve during and after the first 100 days of the new administration. And we refocused on the next steps towards actualizing our strategic vision and building a base of one million people.  But most importantly, we took time to be in the same virtual space and build community with each other - an opportunity that feels more and more rare these days. We look forward to continuing to build the power of our network to realize our vision of a country where everyone has the freedom to thrive. Donate now to support our critical work ahead.