If you’re like most people, you’ve had a mix of emotions since Election Day. Some combination of “Nooooo,” “Aaaaaaaaugh,” and “Ok, let’s get to work” seems to sum up a lot of what I’ve been hearing.

It may seem like we face problems of unfathomable dimensions in a sharply divided political climate, but here’s an important reminder: Most solutions are local in dimension and practical in nature. Across the political spectrum, communities want to look around and see thriving local farms, vibrant small businesses, good workplaces, and stable housing. It hardly feels political, because it’s just practical!

The election results prompted a good deal of reflection at Sustainable Economies Law Center, and now we are more driven than ever to make our vision of more just and resilient local economies a reality across the country. If we search for the root of extremism, racism, and other -isms exaggerated in our recent election, I believe we would find feelings of powerlessness and fear. The Law Center’s work gets to that root by building power at the community level and creating stable local economies that provide for people in the long-term. We are:

1. Localizing livelihoods: We work to give everyone control over their own livelihoods. In 2017, our Law Center will work to legalize homemade meal businesses and small compost enterprises. We are also helping protect small businesses across the U.S. by supporting their conversion to worker cooperatives as aging owners retire.

2. Creating permanent housing, farmland, and energy: In our quest for stable futures, many people are drawn to the concept of “permanence.” While nothing is truly permanent, the Law Center is using innovative legal structures to protect important community assets – housing, farmland, and renewable energy – to ensure that everyone has access in the long-term.

3. Bringing our money home: The Law Center is helping channel that money out of extractive Wall Street investments and into local enterprises, farms, and housing. We are advocating for policies and supporting new community-based financial organizations to make this possible.

4. Building power for everyone: We want every person to have power to shape their own workplaces, neighborhoods, and communities. The Law Center is spreading models and resources for workplace democracy and we are training everyday people to shape public policy. True democracy means that everyone is a policymaker!

This is a pivotal moment in history. When things seem to fall apart, people are also motivated to come together. You have supported our vision in the past. Will you help us deepen our work across the country by making another contribution today? Our work is only possible with your support!

We need to raise $20,000 this December to close a budget shortfall and continue our work in 2017. If every one of our supporters gave $3.60 right now, we’d reach our goal!


Photo by chrisyakimov

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