Global Black Caucus



  • madrid_gbc_2017.jpg

    Pictured above: GBC Members at DA EMEA Conference in Madrid. From Left to Right Cuthbert Telesford-Denmark, Elizabeth Bond-Spain, Nicole Pearson-Spain, Angela Fobbs-GBC Chair-Germany, Ronda Zelezny-Green-UK, Christina Skovsgaard-Norway, Patricia Hamzahee-UK, Second Row. Adrienne Johnson-UK, Erica Smith-France, Shari Temple-Germany.

     

    Welcome and thank you for visiting the Democrats Abroad Global Black Caucus page.

     

    For a quick-to-use list of our contact links and ideas for action, go here.

    The Democrats Abroad Global Black Caucus (GBC) is made up of DA members of all ethnicities from around the world who are willing and able to advocate on issues important to Black Americans within the United States of America and those living abroad. All DA members are eligible to join the GBC. We advocate for laws, policies, and programs that improve the lives of Black Americans and educate all people on the humanity of Black people.

    People of visible African descent have been in what we now know as the United States of America since 1619, long before many ethnic groups who are now considered to be White. Black Americans were essential to building America. Without Black people, the greatness of America would not be possible. Today, Black Americans are in all walks of life and are 13.3% of the American population[1]. By 2060, the projected black population in the United States will be 74.5 million, with a predicted median black wealth as of 2053 of zero and a current median White wealth of $116,000.

    According to the Voter Participation Center, from 2012 to 2016, Black voter turnout dropped by 4.7% overall[2]. Black voter turnout is essential for Democratic election victories. Therefore, it is necessary for Democrats to identify and focus on those issues close to the hearts of African Americans and other minority voters.  In general, voters do not turn out unless they feel included, listened to, and excited. It is important that Democrats Abroad have a caucus that directly addresses the issues of Black Americans. Thus, the Global Black Caucus will produce and disseminate political content which bears witness to the ever-unfolding international history of the Black American reality. Black Lives Matter!

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    [1] “QuickFacts.” U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts Selected: UNITED STATES, United States Census Bureau, 1 July 2016, www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/PST045216.

    [2] Fraga, Bernard L., et al. “Analysis | Why Did Trump Win? More Whites - and Fewer Blacks - Actually Voted.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 8 May 2017, www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/05/08/why-did-trump-win-more-whites-and-fewer-blacks-than-normal-actually-voted/?utm_term=.c54e479ea009&wpisrc=nl_politics&wpmm=1.

     

    The purpose of the Global Black Caucus is to provide a forum for all DA members to better understand the issues and concerns affecting Black Americans, to help eliminate unconscious bias within the DA membership and in America, to help engage with Black voters living abroad and ensure that their needs are met within the DA community, and, where needed, to advocate for reforms to political issues. We encourage and facilitate Black Americans abroad to engage, become informed, and exercise their voting franchise. 

    Mission Statement

    • To support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic[1]
    • To support the goals and ideals of the Democratic Party and Democrats Abroad
    • To encourage voting in every eligible U.S. election by as many Black Americans abroad and Black Caucus members as possible
    • To advocate on issues of concern to Black Americans
    • To be a voice for U.S. citizens living abroad
    • To support campaigns of Democratic candidates aligned with our interests running for elected office in the U.S.
    • To work with other teams within DA to further our joint goals.

     


    [1] In these times where assaults on the constitutional rights are routinely taking place and there are many forces who are actively working to call a constitutional convention and change our rights, it is important that every American defend our constitution not just those who work for the government.

    DA Global Black Caucus Leadership:

    Angela Fobbs
    | Global Black Caucus Chair; Communications Coordinator, Germany and GWC;
    Adrianne George
    | 2016-2020 Democrats Abroad DNC Member
    Adrienne Johnson
    | Chair, UK Black Caucus; Founding Member, Global Black Caucus Steering Committee; UK - Executive Committee (past); UK - Communications Committee; UK - Film Committee;
    Karen Lee
    | Fundraising Chair, Global Black Caucus Steering Team
    See all Leaders

    News

    Member Stories: Howard Hemsley

     

    I came home from work and instead of the usual puddle of piss in my doorway, there was a dead rat. It was the size of a cat and laid in state on a white paper plate; a message from the dealers, steerers, and lookouts who sat on stoops and lounged in tenement doorways on First Street; a drug supermarket where cars with Jersey plates and dudes in ragged sneakers came to cop. It was the eighties.

    There were drugs on the block when I moved there five years before after serving every day of a three-year sentence at Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary for the minor crime of passing bad checks and the major crime of being a smart-ass New York ni****r. Drugs on the block did not matter. What mattered was my ground floor loft, a former hippie belt factory more than twice the size of the railroad apartments upstairs. The rent was two-fifty a month and there was no heat, electricity, or plumbing when I moved in. A broken toilet in the middle of the floor was all that remained. With my overtime, I could make it a dream apartment. My arrogance had gotten me a job at a bigtime Wall Street law firm, where I worked sixty, seventy, sometimes eighty hours a week on deals worth billions. Every day I locked horns with biggety Harvard and Yale lawyers who decided I was a revolutionary.

    After five years I knew my neighbors well enough to nod hello. My front door opened to the sidewalk and I did not have to enter the building with the weekend one-night stands from gay bars in the West Village.

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    Black Caucus Country Leader Position Description

    What a country committee leader does:

    The Caucus Chair of issues concerning African Americans and to promote MLK Day, Black History Month in February and Women's History Month in March.

    • Work with your country committee
    • Disseminate information to members
    • Coordinate caucus-related events in your country
    • Periodically report to the global caucus steering committee
    • Finding ways to add diversity to non-caucus events
    • Establishing working committees on legislative or policy issues
    • Running and attending meetings
    • Other duties as required

     

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    Upcoming Events

    Tuesday, August 11, 2020 at 01:00 PM Eastern Time (US & Canada) · 81 rsvps
    Zoom - Virtual Forum

    Historians' POV: Women's Suffrage, Civil Rights & the Value of the Vote featuring Nikki Brown and Alison Parker

    The movements for suffrage and equal rights based on gender and on race intersected, overlapped and sometimes faced off throughout American history. Understanding when, how, and why is critical to ensuring these rights are protected. The histories of the U.S. women’s suffrage and civil rights movements also stimulate a timely conversation on the value of the vote today. 

    The GWC AND GBC invite you to join in conversation with two esteemed historians and writers, Dr. Alison M. Parker and Dr. Nikki Brown . They will explore the contested struggle for voting rights in the past and present in their opening remarks and will then respond to questions and comments from the audience.  

    ABOUT OUR GUESTS:

    Alison M. Parker is Chair & Richards Professor of American History at the University of Delaware. She has research and teaching interests in women’s and gender history, African American history, and legal history. In 2017-2018, Parker was an Andrew W. Mellon Advanced Fellow at the James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference at Emory University. Her book, Unceasing Militant: The Life of Mary Church Terrell is forthcoming (December 2020) from the University of North Carolina Press, in its John Hope Franklin Series in African American History and Culture. Among other publications, Parker is the author of two monographs, Articulating Rights: Nineteenth-Century American Women on Race, Reform, and the State (2010) and Purifying America: Women, Cultural Reform, and Pro-Censorship Activism, 1873-1933 (1997). She also serves as the founding editor of the Gender and Race in American History book series for the University of Rochester Press. As Chair of the History Department at the University of Delaware, Parker is committed to helping to build a coalition of students, faculty, and staff promoting a wide-ranging anti-racism agenda.

     

    Nikki Brown Nikki Brown has been teaching American and African American history since 1999.  She majored in History at Oberlin College, and she earned a PhD in History from Yale University in 2001.  Her book, Private Politics and Public Voices:  Black Women’s Activism from World War I to the New Deal (Indiana University Press) won the Letitia Woods Brown Award for Best Book in African American Women’s in History in 2006.  The major themes in Dr. Brown’s work are around gender, race, identity, representation, and politics.  Dr. Brown is also a professional photographer, and has recently completed a photography project on African American men in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.  She is currently working on a book about Louisiana’s Civil Rights Movement.  Dr. Brown travels often to Turkey, where she taught Civil Rights history and American Women’s history in 2014 for one semester and 2018-2019 for the academic year, as a Senior Lecturer with the Fulbright/CIES Program. She is also preparing an oral history of the Afro-Turks, the African descendants of slaves in the Ottoman Empire.

     

    If you have questions for the panelists, you can send them in advance to womenscaucus@democratsabroad.org.

     

    Location

    Local Event Start Time

    Vancouver, Canada

    10:00 PDT

    Minneapolis, USA

    12:00 CDT

    Washington DC, USA

    13:00 EDT

    London, United Kingdom

    18:00 BST

    Frankfurt, Germany

    19:00 CEST

    Nairobi, Kenya

    20:00 EAT

    Dubai, United Arab Emirates

    21:00 GST

    Bangkok, Thailand

    22:00 ICT

    Beijing, China

    23:00 CST

     

    Sunday, August 23, 2020 at 09:00 AM Eastern Time (US & Canada) · 31 rsvps
    Online

    Capturing the Flag Documentary Film Screening

    Capturing The Flag is an urgent cautionary tale that documents what’s in store for the fast-approaching election of 2020, and a close-up look of American democracy at its most vulnerable point. Through the intimate experiences of the film’s citizen volunteers, we are inspired to vote, to help someone else to vote, and to get involved in the growing non-partisan efforts to protect our fragile democracy. The shocking voter suppression we see unfold in real-time in Capturing The Flag is proliferating across the country, as those who control local elections have been emboldened to rewrite access to the ballot box along partisan lines. With verité footage of Barack Obama and Reverend Dr. William Barber II, the film is also a powerful call to arms for what we all can and need to do in the ongoing battle for voting rights.

     

    After the film, we will have a Q&A with the producers, DA GOTV, and Angela Fobbs, GBC Chair.

    About the Producers

    Laverne Berry and Steve Miller have worked as volunteer Voter Protection lawyers in each of the past three presidential elections (2008 and 2016 in North Carolina, 2102 in Virginia) and during the 2018 midterms in North Carolina.  Most recently, they did this work during the re-do election in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District in September 2019, after the original results were thrown out for absentee ballot fraud.    They have spoken about voter suppression and their experiences as voter protection poll observers at universities and community groups around the US, including at the Kennedy School at Harvard and at TEDx events. 

    • Laverne is an entertainment and media business affairs attorney representing independent film and television producers, directors, production companies, distribution companies, authors, and media companies. Drawing on eighteen years as a television producer and distribution executive before becoming a lawyer, Laverne understands both the business and legal sides of the media marketplace. She acted as Executive Producer for Perfectly Normal For The Silent Truth and Me. She was the Co-Executive Producer for Emmy-nominated Chely Wright: Wish Me Away, and The Lady in Question is Charles Busch. Laverne also has been involved in Alternative Dispute Resolution for 25 years. She is a member of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Dispute Panel, American Arbitration Association (AAA) Commercial Arbitration Panel, and Mediation Panel. Laverne has been named a New York Metro Area Super Lawyer for eight years by Thompson Reuters; and was included in the New York Metro Super Lawyers supplement to The New York Times newspaper, The Top Women Attorneys in New York, 2014- 2020.

     

    • Steve is a consultant in international media and education, with over 25 years of experience developing and managing a broad range of media businesses and educational and social justice projects. Steve spent ten years at Sesame Workshop, the producer of Sesame Street, where he ran their international division. He then served as a member of the senior management team that ran the Walt Disney Company’s global publishing division for seven years, with responsibility for strategic planning and business development. Most recently he was Senior Vice President, Government and Corporate Relations and Business Development for the UK-based Study Group, an international education company.  Currently, advises clients on a wide range of international projects and partnerships and is a special advisor to the renowned Cambodian film director Rithy Panh’s Bophana Audiovisual Center in Phnom Penh. Steve was a member of the Board of Cambodian Living Arts, an NGO in Cambodia, from 2012 through 2017. He was a founding Board member of BAFTA-New York (the New York chapter of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts) and is one of the voters for the annual BAFTA Film Awards. He has also served on the Boards of Lambda Legal Defense and The Hetrick-Martin Institute. He has been a member of DA – Italy for over a decade and is a member of the LGBTQ+ Caucus. 

    Ticket cost: While there is no donation required to attend, we hope you’ll consider a donation of $5 - or more - and help reach hundreds of potential voters!  Even if you can't join the Webinar, you can show your support by clicking HERE and making a donation for this event. 

    Please RSVP for this event. The link to the online event will be sent a day before the event.