Pink Action Principles
CODEPINK Mission Statement:
CODEPINK is a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end U.S. funded wars and occupations, to challenge militarism globally, and to redirect our resources into health care, education, green jobs and other life-affirming activities.
The following are suggested local group agreements for you to discuss, adapt as needed, and agree to at your first meeting.
We will keep the following agreements present in our organizing:
1. Nonviolence: We are committed to peace, which means both when executing our action(s) AND within our internal structure and relationships.
2. Clear Goals: We will define CODEPINK's unique niche in our community (creative protest, cultivating women's voices, etc.) and set attainable goals for local projects that will further CODEPINK's peace mission.
3. Communication, Respect, and Integrity: We avow to not let disagreements, hurt feelings, or disappointments, get in the way of our important peace work, and will instead view these challenges as opportunities to practice peaceful and productive communication with each other. We will keep our criticisms concise, specific, constructive and focused on future improvement.
4. Responsibility and Teamwork: We work as a team, with activists willing to bottom-line, coordinate, and facilitate actions. We won't let all the responsibility repeatedly fall on one person, and we will not allow ourselves to assume all the responsibility for an action—instead we'll delegate tasks, take on organizing roles, and rotate our leadership positions. We agree to be responsible for something only when we're 100% sure we are going to do it.
5. Diversity and Tolerance: We embrace feminist principals of cooperation, problem-solving, critical thinking, compassion, analysis and processing. We will speak up against racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, classism, ageism, and other forms of oppression and prejudice. We will work towards a deeper understanding of our own power and privileges, and seek to cultivate a diverse local group with connections to the array of social justice groups in our cities. We highly recommend that every activist read this piece about recognizing privilege, entitled "Unpacking the Invisible Backpack": www.uakron.edu/centers/conflict/docs/whitepriv.pdf
7. Appreciation and Caring: We will support each other to take risks and take on key roles in organizing actions, and cultivate a spirit of sustainable activism to prevent burnout. Support may include delegating work into small portions, providing childcare or encouraging mothers to bring their children to meetings and actions, taking on realizable projects, providing new activist trainings, and modeling healthy civic engagement and personal time. We will build a culture of appreciation, thanking and valuing all the work that people put into our actions and local group, awarding pink badges of courage, and acknowledging donations, cosponsors, and support.
8. Messaging: We will work to make the messages on our banners, flyers, and public statements clear and potent. We will do everything possible to ensure positive media coverage -- for example, doing press releases, press calls, press liaison at events, talking points for participants, media trainings for group, etc.
9. Global Community: CODEPINK's work to end the war in Iraq is created by over 250 local groups in the US, and over a dozen international groups. The solidarity between CODEPINK sisters in the US and overseas strengthens our work. International pressure and raising awareness globally about US militarization is integral to ending the Iraq war. We will ensure that our campaigns can, when possible, speak to domestic and global tactics for ending the war.
10. Long Term Vision: We are in this for the long haul—we know that the US occupation of Iraq will not end until all the troops come home and successful rebuilding of Iraq has begun, as well as the healing of the returning soldiers and the Iraqi people. In the words of CODEPINK Cofounder Medea Benjamin, “Activism is good for our health and spirits—it keeps us engaged, active, upbeat, and passionate. It's no fun being depressed alone. Ending war may take a long time, and we can use that time to inspire ourselves and each other with positive, creative actions that embody the world we want to see!”
These are suggested agreements that local groups are invited to adapt or choose to use as they see fit. If you have suggestions for additional or revised agreements, please email your thoughts to locals[at]codepinkalert.org.