It doesn’t get more real than this.
A global pandemic, sustained violence against Black lives, brazen attacks by white supremacists, climate catastrophe, and pervasive economic injustice are evidence that our systems are failing us.
We can choose to be together differently. And we can start now.
We can engage one another and our communities with mutual care.
We can reimagine collective systems where we are all safe and well.
We can build the kind of governance we know is possible.
This is how #WeGovern.
Our actions add up to the world we’re building. Join us in committing to these agreements as a path toward what’s possible.
Sign on Now!
Governance is the process by which people determine the norms and rules that guide people’s everyday life and behavior, including:
- How we choose to live together,
- How we choose to recognize and uphold each other’s well-being and freedom,
- How we choose to use our resources together,
- How we choose to build systems and structures that reflect our shared values, and
- How we choose to care for the land, which provides us everything we need.
Our systems are failing all of us. Indeed, they were never built to serve many of us, especially Black, Indigenous, queer, and trans people, immigrants and refugees, those with disabilities, elders, and young people who are saying–and have been saying for generations–that we all deserve better.
The world we envision is only possible if we operate from mutual care, based on the beliefs that:
- The well-being, dignity, respect, and agency of the most vulnerable are indicators of the success of a community and its governance.
- Each generation shares in the responsibility for the care and well-being of generations before and after, our elders and our children.
- All beings are connected, including Mother Earth.
We govern together
- Each person sees every other person as a fellow human being with the same value, rights, and worth as themselves.
- All human beings have inherent value, even when they cause harm and are not yet able to hold themselves accountable.
- We honor the presence of everyone, and ensure all labor is seen, valued, and recognized.
- All people have the right, opportunity, responsibility, and authority to participate in governance.
- Our governance is decentralized so that decisions are made in and with community.
We keep each other safe
- We keep ourselves safe, and we hold ourselves and each other accountable.
- Our health and safety arise from mutual care, a just society, and the interruption of violence before it harms others.
- We end cycles of harm and violence by using care in seeking justice with those who have been harmed.
- We mend our past and current wrongs, so that the reconciliation between people can create a more harmonious and thriving future.
We thrive together
- We share our resources in consistent, fair, and just ways.
- We strive for the well-being of all people as the foundation for a thriving community.
- People have what they need and share what they have–adequate and nutritious food, housing, quality education, reliable healthcare, meaningful work, and time with family and friends.
- We affirm that the earth sustains us, and that the natural world has rights.
- Lands, waters, natural resources are part of our collective cultural heritage, and we steward them for all beings and future generations.
These principles were collaboratively written by healers, leaders, artists, and storytellers across the United States, most of whom are queer, transgender, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color.
Emanuel Brown, Kassamira Carter-Howard, Malia Collins, Denisha Craig, ML Daniel, Raven Dickerson, Sanu Dieng, Doris Dupuy, Tannia Esparza, Alexis Flanagan, Edward Heisler, Mimi Ho, Kristiana Huitrón, Lola Ibrahim, Ariel Jacobson, Emmanuelle Klossou, Tracy Kunkler, Jennifer Lentfer, Kate McCord, Rebeka Ndosi, Klarissa Oh, Farzana Safiullah, Aparna Shah, Nan Stoops, Adiel Suarez-Murias, Aimee Thompson, Karen Tronsgard-Scott, Quentin Walcott, LaToya Wesley