Feb. 9, 2017 By Hannah Wulkan
A local activist group is looking to educate those looking to get politically involved on the most effective ways to create change.
Advocacy group LIC Opposition is hosting a workshop at 6:30 p.m. on Monday at M. Wells Steakhouse to help organize the grassroots groups that have begun cropping up since President Donald Trump’s inauguration last month, and encourage others to get involved.
The workshop will focus on the best ways to affect change, and will be run by Brent O’Leary, who worked as part of the Democratic National Committee for several years and currently heads up the Hunters Point Civic Association.
“A citizen democracy movement is forming of people wanting to be involved, to make the political process work, to get elected officials to act appropriately, and to protect the values that we feel are important,” O’Leary said, explaining he has seen at least six or seven local groups form recently, and he hopes to help them figure out the best way to move forward without duplicating the work of another group.
O’Leary will begin the workshop by speaking on how the legislative process works through elected officials and how legislation is passed, to give the groups an idea of the best way to influence the process.
The workshop will then open up to a larger discussion, allowing participants to ask O’Leary questions based on his experience, and to encourage interaction and discussion among the participants.
Though O’Leary said that the groups likely overlap on issues that they are concerned with, but would take different approaches to fixing them. Some would take a more “boots on the ground” approach by calling their representatives, going to town halls and protesting, while others would likely seek to fundraise for specific candidates and look towards the midterm elections in 2018 to get their candidates in to office.
“We’re really trying to fix a broken political process and to restore our government to the people and help get citizen democracy moving again, so hopefully people can move forward and connect with elected officials, assert influence, and help fix a broken system,” O’Leary said.