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Aug 2021
Issue 28

Commons News

These times keep on throwing challenges our way, just as many of us are feeling the least able to respond with energy and creativity. The struggle is real but so is the persistence and resilience folks are mustering at this time. 

Here's some reminders about morale building, getting back on track after setbacks and division, and just generally getting by in lockdown. If your people are reeling from the IPCC report remember the Climate Anxiety and Grief resources.

Some questions for you: If you are planning to campaign during the Australian federal election, what are your plans to navigate Covid-19? Have you done planning for different scenarios around restrictions? Is there anything your organisation has figured out that could be helpful to others? Please reply to this email with your ideas or to schedule a conversation with Holly Hammond. 

Keep on keeping on! 
Holly, Antje, Iain and the whole Commons crew 

Campaign Case Studies

The Commons Library now hosts 88 case studies so you can learn from past struggles. New additions include Marriage EqualityNoonkanbah union action for land rights (1979) and Greenpeace action to ban CFCs (1980s-90s). 
The Commons Librarians can also research and write your organisation's case studies for ongoing learning. Contact us to discuss options.

Tips for Lockdown Life

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues lockdowns are a part of life - challenging, tiring, and crucial for our collective health. So what can we do to navigate these times, looking after ourselves and each other? Here's some tips from people living in lockdown. You can have your own say via the survey. If you have longer tips to share, such as innovations from your organisation, get in touch

Passing the Message Stick

The words we use matter! This report gathers research and recommendations about the messages that work to promote First Nations justice.
Read an excerpt on the Commons - but make sure you visit the interactive Passing the Message Stick site for the full experience and all of the insights. 

Transformative Justice 

"Transformative justice describes a systems approach to identifying root causes of conflict and responding to these as a community - including developing various harm-reduction processes to interpersonal violence within communities at the grassroots level rather than relying on punishment, incarceration, or policing." - Ejeris Dixon & Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha 

The movement for Black Lives (US) and against Black Deaths in Custody (Australia) has put defunding police and prison abolition firmly on the agenda. Many people have also been working to find responses to harm and oppressive behaviour (within social movements and in the broader society) that align with our values and vision for the future. 

Two new resources on the Commons Library relate to these important themes: 
"I want to invite us to get excellent at being in conflict… [to] generate small pockets of movements so irresistibly accountable that people come running towards us, expecting that they will be welcomed, flawed and whole, by a community committed to growth” - adrienne maree brown 

Thanks to ET Smith, Commons volunteer, for contributing these two resources. Do you have additions? Or reflections on this question: How are social change movements within Australia incorporating transformative justice approaches? We want to hear from you!
The Commons pays respects to the traditional owners of the land in which we operate and wherever this site is accessed. We recognise the central importance of struggles for Indigenous self-determination and justice within the broad project of creating a progressive future.
Image Credits
Marriage Equality Rally, Adelaide, 16 September 2017. Jenny Scott / Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)
Passing The Message Stick is led by Dr Jackie Huggins AM, Larissa Baldwin and Karrina Nolan, supported by GetUp, Original Power and Australian Progress. 
Daffodil Illustration credit: Naomi Ushiyama
We Will Not Cancel Us, adrienne maree brown
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