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Whittier Protest

After a three year battle Chicago education advocates won the passage of a new bill that will require increased transparency and accountability from the Chicago Public School authorities. Illinois State Bill 620 requires the city to create and publish annual, medium, and long term plans for capital investments in CPS facilities, with input from local school councils. CPS also must announce school closings and turnarounds each year by December 1, and have a transition plan to support students impacted by school changes.

Current and past Crossroads Fund grantees, including Blocks Together, the Whittier Parent Committee, and  Parents United for Responsible Education have been heavily invested in the struggle to pass this bill. They believe that the legislation will give communities advanced warning about school closures, turnarounds, and consolidations, allowing for crucial time to organize and propose alternatives. The transparency in facilities spending will also provide ammunition to groups like the Whittier Parent Committee, who maintain that CPS funding is spent unevenly, leaving schools in poor and minority neighborhoods under-funded, lacking critical resources like libraries and lunch rooms.

The passage of the bill is particularly impressive given the fact that it was repeatedly pronounced dead, as opposition by the new mayor left it stalled in committee for months on end. Its passage is a testament to the power of the grassroots and community organizations whose ongoing educational and organizing efforts built a broad base of supporters who continued to protest downtown and lobby their legislators in Springfield long after the pundits declared the bill a lost cause.

Thu, Jun 02, 2011

Our 2011 benefit was a success! Over 400 donors, activists, grantees and friends of Crossroads Fund gathered on Friday, April 1st at the Chicago Cultural Center to celebrate another year's work for social change. We were proud to honor the Whittier Parent Committee and Dr. Quentin Young with the Ron Sable Award for Activism and the Immigrant Youth Justice League with the Donald F. Erickson Synapses Award.

Couldn't make it to the event? You can still make a donation to support Crossroads Fund, or see what you missed in the photo galleries below

Crossroads Fund Supporters
Click for full gallery

Crossroads Fund Supporters

 

Award Ceremony and Recipients

Whittier Parent Committee, recipient of the Ron Sable Award for Activism
Click for full gallery

Whittier Parent Committee

Quentin Young, recipient of the Ron Sable Award for Activism
Click for full gallery

Laura McAlpine and Quentin Young

Immigrant Youth Justice League, recipient of the Donald F. Erickson Synapses Award
Click for full gallery

Immigrant Youth Justice League

Thanks to our 2011 Seeds of Change Host Committee!

Honoray Hosts,
2011 Seeds of Change

State Representative Barbara Flynn Currie
Congressman Danny Davis
State Representative Robyn Gabel
Representative Jesse L. Jackson, Jr.
Alderman Joseph A. Moore
Cook County Clerk David Orr
Representative Jan Schakowsky
Alderman Helen Shiller

 
Hosts, 2011 Seeds of Change

Ali Abunimah
David A. Ansell & Paula M. Grabler
Gary M. Arnold
Rev. Linnell Baker, Jr.
Consuella L. Brown
Evette M. Cardona & Mona Noriega
Inhe Choi
Ann Christophersen
Cathy J. Cohen & Beth E. Richie
Jenny Dale
Steven Feuerstein & Veva Silva
Karen S. & Michael J. Gallagher
Maggie Gibbs
Clare Golla
Norman J. & Linda L. Groetzinger
Tracie Hall
John Hassey
Neena Hemmady & Joy Wright
Jani  Hoft & Linda Wagner
Alie Kabba
Stephanie A. Kanter
Meagan M. Leary
Rebekah Levin
Rima Malhotra
Laura McAlpine
Omar McRoberts & Shelley Davis
Gina Medalle
Mary F. Morten & Willa J. Taylor
Nancy Fleck Myers
Andrew C. Plautz
Denise Poloyac
Barbara Ransby & Peter Sporn
Kyle Schafer
Margie Schaps
Dick Simpson
Shannon & Lauren Sullivan
Nell Taylor
Kandace Thomas
Jim Vondracek
Bob Weissbourd
Thomas J. Wilson


Seeds of Change

Mon, May 16, 2011

Campaign to End the Death Penalty Event

Crossroads Fund provided key support to the movement to end the death penalty in Illinois for more than 25 years, beginning with our first grant to the IL Coalition Against the Death Penalty in 1983. We understand that systems change takes time. We have invested in supporting the grassroots organizing, advocacy, and public education that made this victory possible. The bill signed today was won by a broad coalition of diverse groups, and we are proud to have funded more than a dozen organizations in the Chicago area involved in anti-death penalty, prisoners’ rights, and anti-police brutality work, including the IL Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty, People’s Law Office, the Campaign to End Police Torture and Brutality, and Citizens Alert.

We thank all of the groups whose work contributed to today’s historic victory.

Crossroads Fund gave the Illinois Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty its first foundation grant to work for a moratorium on executions, and supported us at a time when no one else was willing to fund the issue. – Jane Bohman, former director of the Illinois Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty.

Fri, May 06, 2011