After the rousing launch of our map of the Economy for the Common Good in Mendocino County on April 29 with Emily Kawano and Keith Taylor, we quickly began the process of capturing that energy and launching the whole project into the future. On May 19, over two dozen citizens dedicated to fulfilling the promise of the Economy for Our Common Good, gathered to outline all of the issues, projects and campaigns that need to be part of the new economy. These themes were then taken up by a larger public gathering on June 15 that covered many issues involved in Building the Economy for Our Common Good.
We began with a great communal singing of the Melanie DeMore song Lead with Love, which led into testimonials from organizations already on the map and a community-base media group aiming to be citizen-driven and worker-owned. From there we broke into three groups looking at:
- Issues around the availability and affordability of housing and the viability of establishing a Community Land Trust to ensure long-term affordable housing;
- Our natural commons and the state of restoration forestry, including pushing the County to enforce a publicly passed ordinance that “put a wrench in the longstanding timber-management practice” of using carcinogenic chemicals to kill hardwood trees. We also discussed how to support the County’s newly formed Climate Action Advisory Committee;
- Establishing co-ops and collectives in the County and organizing a regular media presence for presenting current news on our progress in Building the Economy for the Common Good in Mendocino County.
As we ere breaking up, one enthusiastic participant exclaimed, “this is the best meeting I have been at in years. We did not just talk, we came up with actions to do.”
Not in Mendocino County? Visit this page for information on the Grassroots Institute's solidarity economy mapping curriculum, and consider organizing to create a similar map where you live.