Local, National and Global

Social justice campaigns have been mounted at the local, national, and international levels. The movement to end the practice of slavery in the United States included local abolitionist societies in northern towns and cities, the New England Anti-Slavery Society, the American Anti-Slavery Society, and other regional and national groups, and the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), formed in 1909, sought to protect African American lives and civil rights, and organized local branches and state and regional conferences. The NAACP’s efforts to gain the passage of federal anti-lynching legislation became a major (though unsuccessful) social justice campaign from the 1920s to the 1950s. The disfranchisement of African Americans in the southern states led to social justice campaigns that developed into the Civil Rights Movement and brought about the desegregation of public accommodations in 1964 and the passage of the major voting rights legislation in 1965. The civil rights campaigns in the post-World War II era were bolstered by the United States becoming in the leading capitalist nation in the “First World” that sought to challenge the Soviet Union, China, and other communist nations making up the “Second World” for influence and alliances with the developing nations of the “Third World.” In the past and currently local and national social justice campaigns in the United States often benefited from international support.    



  • Balto, Simon Ezra. “’Occupied Territory’: Police Repression and Black Resistance in Postwar Milwaukee, 1950–1968.” Journal of African American History 98 (Spring 2013): 229-52.
  • Johnson, Karl E. “Police-Black Community Relations in Postwar Philadelphia: Race and Criminalization in Urban Social Spaces.” Journal of African American History 89, no. 2 (2004): 118-134.

Links- Projects

  • The Innocence Project

“The Innocence Project, founded in 1992 by Peter Neufeld and Barry Scheck at Cardozo School of Law, exonerates the wrongly convicted through DNA testing and reforms the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice.” https://innocenceproject.org/

  • The Action Network “Find group working on issues you care about.” 
  • The Sentencing Project

“Promotes effective and humane responses to crime that minimize imprisonment and criminalization of youth and adults by promoting racial, ethnic, economic, and gender justice.” https://www.sentencingproject.org/

  • Prison Policy Initiative

“The non-profit, non-partisan Prison Policy Initiative produces cutting edge research to expose the broader harm of mass criminalization, and then sparks advocacy campaigns to create a more just society.” https://www.prisonpolicy.org/

Links- Related Organizations

“Critical Resistance seeks to build an international movement to end the Prison Industrial Complex by challenging the belief that caging and controlling people makes us safe.” http://criticalresistance.org/ 

“At Grassroots Leadership, we believe no one should profit from the imprisonment of human beings.” https://grassrootsleadership.org/

Our communities deserve bold shifts in economic policy in order to acquire the resources needed to build healthy lives, strong families, and communities. The Agenda to Build Black Futures is a call for change.


  • John Lewis: Good Trouble

“An intimate account of legendary U.S. Representative John Lewis’ life, legacy and more than 60 years of extraordinary activism…” https://www.johnlewisgoodtrouble.com/