Each year our Board of Directors votes on an issue advocacy and organizing agenda at our annual planning retreat. Our FY 2020 (July 1, 2019 – June 30, 2020) issue priorities include:
School Police Accountability:
We believe that school police, in their current form, lend themselves more to the school-to-prison pipeline than to the improvement of school climate.
– Monitor the implementation and results from the annual school police report card. We developed the school police report card after talking with over 200 students to get feedback on what should be included.
– Facilitate discussions with students around the report card and some of the results that are of concern to us. So far, we have facilitated focus groups with over 1,000 of our peers at Baltimore City High Schools. Make recommendations and demands for changes in school police/student relationships and practices.
– Inform students of their rights.
-Coordinate youth-led training for school police officers around relationship building, disability awareness and implicit bias.
– Continue to build our base and host bi-monthly school police round tables with our peers and other advocates and activists.
We believe that schools can only be improved with consistent youth voice and organizing.
– Organize Climate Clubs in high schools and middle schools to identify school climate issues and influence those who have the power to make change.
Disability Awareness and Inclusion:
We believe that anyone who works with and interacts with youth should have the skills and motivation to include youth of all abilities.
– We have broadened our view about inclusion and disabilities. We work to ensure that youth with disabilities and their interests are represented in all that we do and now after receiving disability awareness training, we lead disability awareness training for others.
We believe that every young person has a right to stable, safe and comfortable housing.
– We are working to support the YES Drop-in Center in their advocacy efforts.
– We have provided technical support to the Mayor’s Homeless Services Program, Youth Action Board in organizational and issue advocacy development.
We believe that youth go through a lot of hardships and need support.
– We are committed to getting training for our Board of Directors around trauma and healing and in turn training our peers. We will identify opportunities to make policy and practice recommendations around mental health.