What We Believe

At the heart of our work is a vision of radical, participatory, and inclusive democracy. We believe governing power should reside with diverse communities and workers. We believe social and political life can be organized around principles that recognize the intrinsic worth and value of all human beings. We believe we are stronger when everyone participates fully in our political, social and economic institutions, and when everyone enjoys the benefits of our shared prosperity. Further, we believe that creating this kind of inclusive, democratic society requires ongoing engagement on the part of diverse coalitions of groups in society, including and especially, leadership from communities of color.

Our work is informed by critical analysis of political, economic and cultural systems, with special attention to structures and practices that perpetuate historic injustices. At this moment we think it is critical to understand the rise of neoliberal political-economic regimes and the role of race and especially structural racism in shaping our institutions.

Our Core Work

GPP was founded and began working with social change groups in 1993. We saw a need to bridge the gap between those who were doing policy analysis and those who were doing base-building and organizing. As groups started incorporating our frameworks, we saw more clearly how organizing groups can get stuck on a treadmill of short-termism. We began to focus on the organizational structures and relationships that can move groups beyond fragmented work toward advancing more coherent political programs for transforming our society. Another way of describing our purpose is: helping to build a powerful progressive movement that is more than the sum of its parts, that has the power to promote a progressive agenda, and that moves a progressive worldview into state and national political discourses.

How We Approach Our Work

GPP weaves theory into practice by mining the best ideas from social and political sciences, as well as from history, including the histories of social movements. We apply these ideas to actual organizing—base-building, coalition-building, networking, campaign and electoral work. We evaluate groups’ experiences applying our frameworks, which leads to further refinement, new ideas and new applications.

Our programs are designed to help organizations link their short-term organizing and campaign work with their mission and with the fundamental questions of economic and political democracy and racial and environmental justice in our society. We work with groups that are committed to shifting resources and priorities towards a long-term strategy. We believe that a set of long-term goals for social transformation can change how groups work day-to-day.

We undertake long-term work with specific organizations. We have found that activists and leaders appreciate the concepts related to power, worldview, and strategy. However, though they like these ideas and want to adopt them, it is hard to change organizational priorities, practices, and culture. So we work closely with organizations over time, helping them change internal cultures in order to achieve more strategic practices.


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Grassroots Policy Project
Grassroots Policy Project13 hours ago
The method to his madness....
Grassroots Policy Project
Grassroots Policy Project2 days ago
During a staff call this week, we were talking about how both the practice of separating families and the dehumanizing rhetoric around it leads to mass trauma that we'll have to work hard to address, as we struggle for more humane immigration policies.
Grassroots Policy Project
Grassroots Policy Project2 days ago
Sharing the following report from George Goehl about the Father's Day actions at the Texas border to stand with immigrants dealing with family separation. Lots of groups were involved. They give me hope in these dark times:

The movement against the Trump administration’s hateful anti-immigrant agenda is growing. Wednesday’s Executive Order to no longer separate families before detention would not have happened without thousands rising up. People’s Action is proud to join this wave of resistance.

But Trump’s order is misleading: it simply gives families an indefinite jail sentence. Children will continue to be in prisons. It does nothing to reunite as many as 4,000 children already ripped from their parents as a result of his “zero tolerance” policy.

For Father’s Day, a delegation of People’s Action members went to McAllen, Texas to join a vigil at the Ursula Border Processing Center with our allies at National Domestic Workers Alliance, We Belong Together, La Union del Pueblo Entero (LUPE), Fuerza del Valle, United We Dream, and others.

People’s Action was represented by Illinois People's Action, Down Home North Carolina, Citizen Action of Wisconsin, and Colorado People’s Action, with many fathers making the trek on incredibly short notice.

When we arrived, detained children who had been separated from their families were being moved in and out of the area on planes and buses. I wrote an article about my relationship with my daughter and how even brief separations are hard, let alone what is happening to migrant families.

Leaders of La Union del Pueblo Entero (LUPE) and Fuerza del Valle, an affiliate of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, briefed us on the conditions along the border and described a militarized zone that is a constant fact of life for people in the region, yet rarely makes national headlines. I’d encourage all of us to think about how we can support these organizations.

The Marguerite Casey Foundation has an amazing history of funding work in the region and provides support to both of these important organizations. LUPE and Fuerza del Valle are doing the work, day in and day out, and they showed up in big ways as host organizations.

Father’s Day was filled with rage and heartbreak. In one of the day’s most powerful moments, twelve-year old Leah from We Belong Together spoke about living in fear of her parents being deported. We Belong Together has focused on the issue of family separation since 2010. This is a reminder that long-term investments in people and work results in organizations in place to respond to moments such as this.

The Marguerite Casey Foundation has a amazing history of funding work in the region and provides support to both of these amazing organizations. They are doing the work, day in and day out, and then asked to show up big as host organizations in moments such as these.

This Father’s Day was filled with both rage and heartbreak. In one of the most powerful moments, twelve-year old Leah from We Belong Together spoke about living in fear of her undocumented parents being deported and losing her sister who used to be a dreamer with DACA. We Belong Together has focused specifically on the issue of family separation since 2010 - another reminder that long-term investment in people and work are a good thing to do.

Leah and former HUD Secretary Julian Castro led a small delegation to the front doors of the Ursula Border Processing Center. Leah left stuffed animals, Father’s Day cards, and messages for the kids outside the locked door.

Other children, including my daughter Addie (in the photo below), gathered to support her. Addie has been sad and agitated about what is happening to her fellow children. When a bus full of separated children left the center, hundreds of us waved and chanted support with tears streaming down our faces.

We are energized by the smart and courageous actions of our allies at the Fair Immigration Reform Movement and Center for Community Change organized Wednesday on the House Floor. As we’ve come to expect, and hopefully not take for granted, Casa de Maryland played a leading role, once again taking their proximity to DC as a big responsibility. I hope we all remember the weight of that responsibility and Casa de Maryland’s and FIRM’s consistency in showing up in the most critical moments.

We all need to follow their lead and continue to show up. A big next step is Saturday June 30th in Washington DC. Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, the National Domestic Workers Alliance, MoveOn, and others have called for big mobilizations in Washington, DC and across the country on that day. MoveOn has once again brought the power of its membership and online platform to bear for the broader effort. You can find June 30th events in well over 100 cities here. If there’s not an event planned in your city, then you can organize one.

Donald Trump’s most recent shift was a reaction to rising pressure. We should double down on what’s working. See you in the streets on June 30th, if not before.



P.S. During an interview yesterday, on All In with Chris Hayes (MSNBC), our own Tim Wilkins shared exclusive footage of detained children being transported on major commercial airlines. View the footage and read more on this story at OurFuture.org.