Close to 90 Justice United leaders joined gathered on Zoom Thursday night during our Countywide Leaders Meeting to hear progress reports from our issue campaigns and to shape and ratify a vision for making change in 2021. Progress reports from our active campaigns are listed below.
Campaign to Increase Teacher Diversity and Bi-Lingual Staff at Orange County Schools
Dr. Monique Felder, OCS Superintendent, and key OCS staff attended our meeting to report progress increasing teacher diversity and bi-lingual staff across the school district. A few key takeaways:
- hiring of African American teachers is increasing slowly, but steadily;
- bi-lingual staff, by raw numbers, has significantly increased from 2019-2020 to 2020-2021;
- funding for beginning teacher support programs has helped increase retention.
Campaign to Improve Conditions in Local Mobile Home Parks
Increasingly, Orange County mobile home parks are being purchased by out of town hedge funds and investment firms, who then raise the rent, charge outrageous fees and fines, and neglect infrastructure. Mobile home parks are the last, largest class of affordable housing left in the county.
With the support of Justice United, neighborhood leaders in three local mobile home parks have been able to hold the owners of their mobile home parks accountable to resolving substandard conditions and unfair treatment. See a chart here with updates on what we have accomplished together.
Leaders have committed to developing long term neighborhood associations to continue this work, are attending organizing training, and are working with Justice United in a new partnership with ROC USA to identify potential opportunities to buy their parks and run them as cooperatives.
2020 Individual Donor Campaign
Justice United exceeded our 2020 Individual Donor Campaign goals, raising $22,826 (goal = $20,000). The funds raised will support Justice United's general operating expenses incurred during the training and development of local leaders with the capacity to act effectively and address injustice across Orange County. Justice United will organize a 2021 Individual Donor Campaign in the late spring, early summer. More information about this will be available soon.