Popular democracy is a powerful, participatory, and multi-voiced democracy. The Center for Popular Democracy (CPD) works to realize this vision of democracy in our mission, campaigns, and—increasingly—in the structure of our organization. In 2015, we grew in both size and impact. More than ever before, CPD became a uni ed network of community partners across the United States. Strong within each action, strike, canvass, and convening; stronger together as we recognize shared challenges and build shared strategies and momentum for change across regions.
In 2015, CPD, our sister organization CPD Action, and our state-based partner organizations harnessed the rising energy of this ‘movement moment’ and achieved high impact victories on a number of fronts. Our communities are facing incredible challenges: Our economy and its governing power structures continue to fail working families, hateful anti-immigrant rhetoric is on the rise, a housing crisis displaces and devalues working families— particularly families of color—and our public education system continues to be stripped of badly-needed resources.
- Our Fed Up Campaign pressured the Federal Reserve to establish an advisory council on the concerns of low-income communities, and brought 100 coalition members and economists to protest the annual policy meeting in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
- Workers, supported by CPD, our partners, and allies, organized to win minimum wage raises and guaranteed paid sick days in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Philadelphia.
- Maryland restored voting rights to 40,000 formerly incarcerated people following coalition efforts organized by CPD partner Maryland Communities United.
- After a three-year campaign by a coalition including CPD partners New York Communities for Change and Make the Road NY, New York City passed the historic Car Wash Accountability Act, offering new licensing and protections for workers.
- Our Fair Workweek Initiative’s policy research exposed unfair on-call scheduling and helped lead to six major national retail brands ending the practice.
- Minnesota joined Ohio in passing community schools legislation drafted by CPD policy staff.
These are just some of the highlights of the impact that CPD and our network have made for millions of workers, immigrants, communities of color, and disenfranchised voters across the country. In this report we o er greater breadth of detail on the success of our campaigns and initiatives across all of our issue areas. In 2016 and beyond, we will continue to collectively fight to achieve a resilient and just economy, a robust and responsive democracy, and true equity and opportunity.
Our network—made up of 43 organizations across 30 states; over 60 sta in New York City, Washington, D.C., and 10 cities across the country; our board of directors, representing leaders from our core partnerships; and our supporters who have helped us raise over $6.5 million in 2015 for our state partners—will continue to expand, launch new partnerships, and to be ever stronger, together.