Detroit Jews for Justice has two, multi-issue organizing teams led by volunteers, known as DJJ Leaders.
The thriving teams focuses on issues relating to economic justice, such as LGBTQ+ rights, worker rights, education, water rights, environmental justice, disability justice and housing.
The freedom team focuses on issues that alter the power structure and challenge institutionalized systems of oppression, such as police accountability, immigration rights, prison abolition, and combatting white supremacy, Islamophobia, anti-Black racism, and antisemitism.
How did we get here?
Back in early 2019, Detroit Jews for Justice embarked on a journey to rethink how we organize and started with the goal of developing a dynamic, agile, multi-issue campaign structure and process with multiple clear entry points that seeks to better empower leaders who will show up as respectful and productive partners in coalition.
After interviewing more than 40 DJJ Leaders, creating a new staff position, consulting our sister organizations JCA, JUFJ and JFREJ, collecting feedback from listening parties, aggregation of data and going through waves of iterations, reviews and feedbacks, we finally revealed the new campaign structure in July 2020, including two teams: the Thriving Team and the Freedom Team.
How does the new organizing structure with the Thriving Team and the Freedom Team fit within the current DJJ structure?
- Board of Trustees - The Board of Trustees helps create and develop the financial and procedural structure of the organization, support mission-alignment, and
- C.A.T. (Campaign Advisory Team) - The Campaign Advisory Team researches the organizing political ecosystem of Detroit and vets campaigns and partnerships for values alignment.
- Thriving Team - The thriving team directs the strategy and campaign work for all issues relating to economic justice.
- Freedom Team - The freedom team directs the strategy and campaigns for issues relating to anti-oppression work.
Cultural Organizing - We build power through cultural experiences and resource cultivation for the longevity of the organization. We do this via:
Cultural events, such as our annual Purim Extravaganza, Hanukkah party, and the Myra Wolfgang Awards
Social gatherings, such as the annual DJJ leader's picnic
How does DJJ decide what issues to work with?
A DJJ leader or community member brings a campaign suggestion to the Campaign Advisory Team (CAT). CAT then discusses the relevant points and players, then votes on whether or not to join the campaign. The campaign is then given over to the Thriving Team or the Freedom Team to create a strategy and plan of engagement.