NAN Action Items from Convention 2013

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NAN Action Item:

NAN will build a movement against gun violence that includes partnering with other anti-violence organizations and hosting gun buyback programs, putting pressure on elected officials at all levels through our chapters, and focus on conflict resolution as a policy to limit violence of all types.

NAN will advocate to national and state elected leaders to support legislation that mandates background checks, bans automatic weapons and bans high capacity magazines.


NAN Action Item:

Voting rights are at the forefront of democracy. Without the ability to vote, people have no say in what happens within their communities. NAN will mobilize chapters around four key areas:

  1. Mobilization: NAN chapters will be responsible for mobilizing people within their communities to register to vote, vote during election periods and report out on any disenfranchising activities during election cycles; chapters should also focus on poll watching and poll working
  2. Legislation Advocacy: NAN Chapters will monitor legislation in their state and inform members of the community as well as contact, en masse, elected officials to voice the need for laws that protect or expand the right to vote
  3. Education: NAN Chapters will educate members of their communities about existing laws that restrict voting rights and help people continue to be enthusiastic and adamant about voting no matter what restrictions are placed on voting
  4. Vigilance: In 2012, NAN created a voter engagement tour around educating and empowering communities where new laws were passed including communities that had newly enacted voter ID requirements, new limited early voting times, and voter purges. Moving forward NAN will continue to monitor and resist new laws that are viewed as efforts to suppress the vote


NAN Action Item:

NAN has mobilized around the issue of immigration, specifically as it relates to racial profiling and will continue to fight against laws that propose that as an enforcement method. NAN will work with chaptersto create a public awareness campaign focused on how immigration affects the black community. We will also work to deepen our national relationships with partner organizations to expand the educational outreach and to identify ways we can address the backlog of people waiting to receive entry into the country. We encourage our members to call their representatives to encourage comprehensive reform that includes a pathway to citizenship. Finally, we will work with legislators to protect diversity and family visas as part of any federal legislation that is introduced.


NAN Action Item:

Black unemployment is high in part due to the fact that blacks are highly represented in the public sector and that area has not seen the same growth as the private sector in the rebuilding of the economy. Private sector companies need to be held accountable. NAN will produce an annual scorecard evaluating and addressing companies that are not practicing diversity or investing money in minority communities. We will target those corporations that receive proportionally high black consumer dollars, but who do not show any returns to the black community through employment, procurement, service contracts, or promotion at the executive and board levels. For companies that are taking advantage of the black community will face direct action campaigns including selective patronage.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will expand our young professionals work to highlight the many people who are giving back. We will also create a college division to bridge the gap between young professionals and our Youth Move. By creating a three tiered system focused on young people, Youth Move members will find mentors in the college division and the college division will find mentors within the Young Professionals. This will engage people at all levels and create a stronger focus on activism and community engagement. NAN will also be a resource center for young professionals who find limited options and glass ceilings who have nowhere else to go and we will intervene on their behalf. There must be a pipeline of talent within the corporate sector of young minority professionals who have an altruistic heart who can continue to give a hand up to the generations behind them.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will partner with groups on the panel to create a taskforce to address the issues identified, and link people to available resources (including but not limited to-attorneys and officials). Examples include, partnering with:

  1. National Fair Housing Alliance to:
    1. Prevent predatory lending practices, especially those targeting people of color through the church
    2. Develop solutions for the need to create affordable housing opportunities for people of color, especially in neighborhoods where gentrification is occurring
    3. Link individuals to attorneys who may be able to provide them with legal services regarding their housing & foreclosure concerns
  2. NYCHA to:
    1. a. Publicize their numerous programs geared towards moving people to economic viability, and sustainability. These programs include:
      1. Resident economic empowerment and sustainability program that works w/ families & residents around asset building, employment, and business development
      2. JOBS PLUS: Demonstration program put into fed budget-$ 75M grant expanding to public housing across the city
      3. Partnerships with the Dept. of Housing & Preservation by doubling production of new supportive housing, with an emphasis on housing for youth aging out of foster care


NAN Action Item:

NAN chapters will address black men and black boys with special committees. The committees will focus on the issues of fatherhood, conflict resolution, education and jobs. NAN will also continue to fight the high rate of incarceration of black males and criminal justice policies that target black men and boys like New York City’s Stop & Frisk policy.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will post link to website on its webpage urging people to visit the page and take advantage of all the ACA has to offer. Also remind folks that they from October 1st- March 31st to sign up for insurance. Urge Black men to sign up for insurance and see the doctor at least once a year if healthy and more if needed. Women should remind men in their lives to sign up for insurance and the FREE health screenings.


NAN Action Item:

NAN is asking that all chapters work in their states to duplicate the four points discussed by Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman.

  1. Pre –Trial Justice: address the unfair and unsafe system that leads to the disproportionate pre- bail jailing of minorities; need for bail reform; need to address the violation of due process with a balanced approach of preserving public safety with the preservation of civil liberties
  2. Wrongful Convictions: need to eliminate & discourage wrongful convictions that affect minorities;1 need for a creation of a DNA database; the use of false eyewitness identifications; Implementation of double-blind system of line ups conducted by police departments
  3. Juvenile Justice: The need for real rehabilitation & reform; Need to Change the age of criminal responsibility to age of 18;2 Need for Alternatives to Incarceration for young kids in their communities
  4. Lack of Representation: The need for indigent criminal defendants to receive representation; limiting the number of cases assigned to legal aid offices that provide legal representation to indigent clients
  5. 5. NAN will continue to concentrate on the following items as it related to race and the justice system:
    1. Racial Profiling Policies: Stop & Frisk in New York and any other policies introduced and/or implemented nationwide that target people by race
    2. Stand Your Ground Laws: NAN is part of the Second Chance on Shoot First Coalition and will continue to focus on limiting the introduction of new Stand Your Ground Laws and repeal of existing laws
    3. Police Brutality: NAN has led the way on creating accountability around police brutality and will continue to work in this area to ensure that minority communities are not mistreated by police

NAN has issued an action alert relating to the cases of Fisher v. University of Texas relating to equal opportunity/affirmative action policies; Shelby County, AL v. Holder relating to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act that protects states that have a history of disenfranchising minority voters to have any changes to their voting laws pre-approved by the Department of Justice; and finally Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action which will be heard September 2013 that deals with Michigan’s voter approved constitutional ban on race as a factor in deciding admission into colleges and universities. NAN is monitoring these cases and are asking that all chapters remain alert to act if the high court decides to remove Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act and/or decides that equal opportunity policies that create pathways for minority and disenfranchised communities to attend college are no longer needed. If Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act is removed, NAN will be advocating members of Congress to replace the legislation with something that protects voters in those states. If equal opportunity policies are removed, NAN will be ready to respond.

1 “2/3 of wrongful convictions are people of color.”
2 NYC is one of two states that charge 16 & 17 yr. olds as adults.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will continue to train chapters on how to respond to crises in their communities. Additionally, NAN chapters will work to have open dialogue with the local police forces so that as issues arise, there will be a point of contact on either side. Chapters should also work to get police engaged in the communities to create further understanding. Finally, chapters should use the three pronged approach below to deal with crisis situations.

  1. Legal-working with or against prosecutors;
  2. Political-working with elected officials to leverage political power;
  3. Communication-seek out sympathetic media folk to gain attention for the issue and control how the public is informed about the situation.

Secretary of Agriculture LaHood’s Remarks:

NAN Action Item:

NAN will continue its support of the SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program; formerly known as food stamps) Program through education and destigmatization.

NAN will publicize the following information about the Department of Agriculture:

  1. Cultural transformation: The Dept. has committed to being more inclusive of people of color:
    1. Hiring practices-ensuring the workforce at USDA reflects America;
    2. Investment into Minority and Women Owned Business
    3. Settling court cases(e.g. with Black Farmers & Native Americans)
  2. Programming in poor rural areas: Provides opportunity for people living in Georgia, Mississippi, and Arkansas among other states to sell produce in the aggregate leading to expanded economic opportunity.
  3. USDA Housing program: Provided $600,00 loans in housing for the past 4 years to people who may not be able to make a down payment; provide opportunities for poor people and families to own homes

NAN should continue to emphasize the need for jobs and decent housing for the poor.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will partner with the Department of Transportation (“DOT”) to:

  1. Publicize job openings and other information on the NAN website: ( the Secretary said he was willing to commit on this partnership) Specifically, DOT would provide the job openings to NAN who will post on their website and disseminate to churches
  2. Invite DOT to meetings: Secretary LaHood said DOT would attend any meetings they were invited to attend
  3. Publicize that DOT has opportunities for Minority and Women owned Business; provides jobs across the country-using stimulus funds, in 2 years created & funded 65, 000 jobs & 15 projects building bridges, etc.
  4. Inform the public that DOT is committed to providing transportation alternatives for communities where folks can’t afford cars but need transportation. These initiatives also lead to jobs for the communities served


NAN Action Item:

NAN members should reach out to Congress to tell them not to decrease FHA funding.
NAN chapters should direct people within their communities to HUD who have had housing issues; connect people with the free counseling services that HUD provides to help people save their homes/wealth.
NAN will continue to work with HUD to bring FHA loans available in our communities.
NAN will also work with HUD to bring info to communities & congressional districts.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will help in the process of helping deliver news that affects our communities
NAN will help in Media Training Class with George Curry – Important for activist to understand how the media works – developing our stories
NAN will continue to support and sustain black press- community and activist need to utilize black press and sustain with advertising
In the wake of the attacks on civil rights that it’s imperative that we work with media to help craft the narrate because it’s being rewritten with mainstream media


NAN Action Item:

NAN & EBA will partner with Department of Education on initiatives that affect our communities within education.
NAN & EBA will tour and partner nationally in different communities nation-wide, high schools & college campuses.

NAN Chapters should evaluate the availability of schools to be open beyond school day hours; to become educational enrichment areas/community centers.
NAN Chapters should promote literacy within their communities beginning at infancy and lasting throughout life.

NAN Chapters will focus on creating relationships with their state government to keep educational funding high and prevent cuts to education as opposed to prison.
NAN will hold DOE and state governments accountable to communities.
NAN Chapters will focus on partnering with STEM organizations and making STEM opportunities widely known.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will partner with EBA to continue the higher education awareness and dropout prevention initiative aimed at urban high school students with the purpose of increasing the pursuit of post-secondary education.

NAN will partner with EBA to focus on college success and ensuring that students who enter college also graduate.

NAN will partner with EBA and other community organizations /community leaders and organizations to expose students and parents to college planning, admissions, financial aid, and other pertinent information related to higher education.

Labor Panel: Combating New Laws and the Future of Unions

NAN Action Item:

NAN will work with unions to intervene on behalf of working people and ensure they are protected; via NAN chapters, we will work on getting people paid sick days, increasing the minimum wage and protecting workers rights
NAN will advocate with labor to have Senate Reform so that the National Labor Relations Board can have empty seats filled

NAN chapters will educate the community on the labor movement and worker’s rights
NAN will continue to support unions and NAN member within unions in fights (e.g., Cablevision, postal workers, Verizon, car washes, etc.)


NAN Action Item:

NAN will launch its Justice Partner initiative in churches nation-wide that will participate in Justice Sundays one Sunday a month.
Justice Sunday in churches nation-wide will collect a justice offering and mobilize church member to become involved within their communities and overall NAN


NAN Action Item:

NAN will engage people behind the scenes to ensure that black stories are being told and that people out in front (the stars) are put in positions where they can be more socially engaged.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will create an economic development division in each chapter as well as have national focus on it. The division will give people tools and information they need to create or build wealth. It will teach people financial literacy.


NAN Action Item:

NAN Youth Move will continue to focus on gun violence and will monitor the activities of gun lobbies including the NRA.
NAN Youth Move will continue to grow its member and wants to launch their 2nd annual Youth Move Leadership Conference in Atlanta, GA.


NAN Action Item:

NAN will continue to work with telecommunication companies to find ways that communities of color adopt broadband at higher rates. NAN chapters will offer community courses on technology and its uses including setting up email accounts, Microsoft Windows applications, how to search for jobs and community services. NAN will also work with companies and organizations to support products and services that make life easier including Comcast Internet Essentials that offers computers and internet service at deeply discounted prices and Verizon Wireless’ health and technology innovations. Finally, NAN will evaluate partnerships that allow for more minorities to be involved in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields. There are many jobs in these fields and this is another way for minorities to see unemployment numbers drop.