PEACE AND JUSTICE ACTION COMMITTEE
Building peace on a larger scale.
As an organization dedicated to building a just and nonviolent world, PJALS opposes the billions spent by the United States on war and protests the devastating impact of militarism on our national and local economies. We believe that all human, financial, and community costs of war are unacceptable. For all individuals to thrive, our country must commit to inclusive democracy and reject exploitation and violence in all forms.
PJALS members have led our region’s opposition of US militarism for 40 years! We stand together in spring rain, summer heat and smoke, and winter cold to tell the truth about the need to grow beyond militarism and stop our endless wars. We connect the dots between out-of-control military spending and cuts to lifeline programs for struggling families. We recognize and work to illuminate the deep connections between militarism, colonialism, structural and ideological white supremacy, Islamophobia, and antisemitism, both nationally and world-wide.
We have a commitment to develop our stand for peace and to redefine our international peace and human rights work in the context of recent volatile escalation of militarism, racism including anti-Muslim racism, and antisemitism. Our Peace and Justice Action Committee focuses on this commitment.
Ready to oppose militarism with us?
This committee meets on the 2nd Tuesday of every month, 5:30 pm via zoom. To join, email Union Carter at [email protected]
SHOWING UP FOR RACIAL JUSTICE COMMITTEE
Peace begins in justice.
PJALS is committed to racial justice. Our Showing Up for Racial Justice committee works closely with accountability partners who are leaders in communities oppressed by racism. Together we identify needs and campaigns to support in Spokane while educating white people about our collective role in maintaining systems of race-based violence and the potential to take a new role in dismantling them.
In our work for racial justice, our priorities are:
- We organize to end mass incarceration and racial disparities in our local criminal justice system, hold law enforcement accountable and end the death penalty in Washington
- We mobilize together for effective, restorative solutions driven by the experiences and needs of those impacted by the criminal justice system.
With our partners in the Spokane Immigrant Rights Coalition
- We support and protect immigrant communities.
- We sponsor the Undocumented Immigrant Legal Defense Fund to defray the unjust costs of deportation cases for immigrants.
Our SURJ group is not active at this time. We are in the process of rethinking and reinvisioning what this group will look like moving forward. If you have any questions, please contact Shar Lichty at [email protected].
YOUNG ACTIVIST LEADERS PROGRAM
The work for peace and justice starts early.
PJALS Young Activist Leaders Program (YALP) offers workshops for skill-building and political education. Participants explore social justice with other Spokane-area young people who value equality, human rights, economic justice, and peace.
The leadership development program is right for young people already active in or leading student groups, faith communities, and community groups, but also for folks still discovering activism. The workshops provides a gathering place for young people to ask questions, to educate each other, and to explore social justice work together, resulting in a vibrant network of friends committed to social justice.
Our Spring 2024 YALP session is now active! This session, we are focusing in on some key organizing education for young leaders.
Our topics include all these and more:
- Campaigns for Change: Planning and Coordinating
- How to Recruit and Mobilize
- Effective Meetings
- Event Planning
- Generating Media Coverage
- Public Speaking
- Nonviolence and Militarism
- Identity, Privilege, and Oppression
- LGBTQ+ Equality and Liberation
- Moving Racial Justice Campaigns
- Corporate Power: An Economic Reality Check
- Negotiating with People in Power
Learn more about YALP and how you can get involved by contacting our Youth Organizers at [email protected]
BUILDING ORGANIZING LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT (BOLD)
Let’s be BOLD together!
Spokane County is contested territory – we’re in struggle over who belongs, who’s worthy, who’s seen as a threat, and who deserves to be safe. Just barely under the surface, that’s all about race and class, two topics we’re conditioned to be silent about.
Together, we’re breaking the silence, diving in together, and reaching out to invite more people into community and coordinated action, because we know we can fight back and win! When we come together to reject racism and fear-mongering as weapons of the reactionary rich, we can make sure that our community and our country works for all of us, of every race and color.
Join the Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane in partnership with Spokane Community Against Racism (SCAR), Hispanic Business/Professional Association (HBPA), APIC, Spectrum Center Spokane, and others to learn how racism and economic injustice intertwine to oppress some people and fracture our community, while consolidating power in the hands of the reactionary rich.
Together we are taking BOLD action to challenge racism and poverty in Spokane County. Right now is a critical time to build united grassroots power — and we need your voice to be part of making it happen!
Learn more & Join now!
Our BOLD program runs in cycles or cohorts. Be sure to check out our BOLD page for announcements on upcoming cohorts, read through our BOLD FAQs for more information, and contact Union Carter at [email protected] if you are interested in joining BOLD.
Our organizing is founded in active nonviolence.
In the traditions of Mahatma Gandhi, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Dolores Huerta, Cesar Chavez, Dorothy Day, Utah Philips, and millions of people all over the world, our work for justice and peace is founded in the principles and practice of active nonviolence and nonviolent resistance. We understand that nonviolence is more than a refusal to engage in physical conflict, but additionally requires “a courageous confrontation of evil by the power of love.”
Our nonviolence guidelines are one way we put peace into action. As participants in PJALS actions, we agree to abide by and reflect upon these commitments:
- At all times, we will use our anger at injustice as a positive nonviolent force for change. Our attitude will be one of openness, friendliness, and respect toward all we encounter. We will convey this through words, symbols, and actions.
- We will refuse to return the assaults—verbal or physical—of those who oppose or disagree with us. We will protect those who oppose us from insults and attack.
- As participants in nonviolent events, we will follow the directions of designated coordinators. In case of serious disagreements, we will remove ourselves from the gatherings.
- We will refrain from insults and swearing. We will use no violence, verbal or physical, toward any person. We will not carry anything that could be construed as a weapon unless it is a personal health or accessibility tool.
- We will not run or use threatening motions. We will not damage any property. We will not bring or use alcohol or illegal drugs.
Learn more about our PJALS Peacekeeper Team, a group of training community peacekeepers who use nonviolent de-escalation to facilitate successful demonstrations.
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