As we near the end of 2023 and we start preparing for the new year, we have exciting accomplishments and stories to highlight and next steps to share with you. Over the next week we will take a look back at 2023 and share our 2024 goals!
You can continue to support our efforts by donating today and helping us reach our fundraising goal.
Building Community Power through Grassroots Organizing
This year, we made it our goal to create more presence in South LA and opportunities for our community to get involved. We hosted over 100 engagement opportunities including personal visits, house meetings, and policy action meetings. Thanks to the dedication and support of our amazing community, SCOPE had a remarkable 25% increase in membership from this year alone.
Empowering South Central Youth
This year, our first-ever cohort of Youth Leaders (18-24 YO) participated in our organizing program, where they learned the fundamentals of organizing and gained insight into the City’s political landscape. They hit the ground running by talking to their neighbors regarding their concerns about the lack of tree canopies in our neighborhoods. We believe it’s important community members have access to shade, cooling, and other benefits of trees in our neighborhoods.
Integrated Voter Engagement Strategy
This year, more than 25,740 South LA residents took action after we engaged them at their doors through our Civic Engagement Programs. We talked to them about a variety of issues, including, Council District 8 resident priorities, the Inglewood Oil Drilling Phase Out Plan, and Housing Equity and Homelessness Prevention. Through our engagement strategy, we were able to directly connect four thousand community members to housing resources with Esperanza Community Housing in collaboration with Mayor Bass and We Are CA.
Celebrating Climate Resiliency in South Los Angeles
SCOPE hosted multiple events for Climate Justice Month in April, including our Annual Earth Day. Our purpose was to engage over 250 residents on our policy platform and share with the South LA community the work being done for climate equity across our various campaigns. We celebrated the grassroots organizing wins of South LA residents ending neighborhood oil drilling, ending utility shutoffs, and bringing millions of dollars to transform their communities.
It was important to host these events because South LA is the second most polluted in the Country. Redlining, historical disinvestment, and racist policies have left our communities vulnerable to toxic air and very few green spaces. SCOPE members and South Central residents want to reimagine a future free of pollution and rising costs of utilities. Climate Justice Month is about uplifting the multiple crises our communities are facing and advancing our vision for the future which includes clean air, parks, and good jobs. Mark your calendars for next year’s Earth Day Celebration on April 20, 2024.
South LA fights for Utility Justice
This year, SCOPE continued the fight for a human right to water and power for all South LA residents. In June, SCOPE with the RePower LA Coalition advanced a policy to protect all LADWP customers from utility shutoffs during the National Weather Service’s extreme heat and cold alerts. South LA resident and small business owner Gloria Salinas gave a critical public testimony to the LADWP Board of Commissioners in support of the policy, emphasizing the need for stronger shutoff protections, more recognition of heat impacts in South LA due to stifling concrete and lack of green spaces, and a clear communications plan. This win builds on the November 2022 motion to discontinue shutoffs for customers in low-income assistance programs permanently.
In addition to winning material benefits for our community, SCOPE also participated in LADWP’s LA100 Equity Strategies Steering Committee to help identify priorities, guide analyses, and develop recommendations for an equitable transition to 100% clean energy in Los Angeles. This two-year-long process has been important to uplift the harms that our utility system has inflicted on BIPOC and low-income communities and ensure South LA residents can lead and benefit from the clean energy transition.
Healthy Homes for South Los Angeles
SCOPE, along with other Environmental Justice, Labor, and Housing groups, launched the Los Angeles for Resilient and Healthy Homes (LARHH) Coalition this year. LARHH believes that the path to a healthier and more resilient Los Angeles involves the elimination of carbon dioxide emissions, starting with our homes. As the city of Los Angeles moves towards mandating new clean energy standards for residential buildings, LARHH is committed to ensuring these policies:
- Benefit communities of color and low-income communities, which have historically borne the brunt of environmental pollution and climate change.
- Protect tenants from adverse effects such as increased rents, evictions, displacement, or the loss of rent-controlled housing.
- Create family-sustaining union jobs, prioritize local and targeted hiring, and foster the development of skilled workers in the climate sector.
We will be hosting four community workshops around the impact of Building Decarbonization on South LA communities in early 2024. Stay tuned for more information on how you can advocate for healthier homes and stronger tenant protections.
SCOPE’s Water Academy
This year, the South LA Water Academy has flourished under the leadership of SCOPE community members. Participants have engaged in shared learning on where we get our water, envisioning a water-resilient future for South LA, and surveying our neighbors on these issues. Next year will see continued education on topics that members are interested in, resource sharing for the broader community, and leadership development.
Thank you for your incredible support this year. With your help, we’ve achieved remarkable progress in community organizing. Looking ahead to the new year, we’re excited about the possibilities. Your continued support makes it all possible. Wishing you a joyful holiday season!