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To date, SPARK has hosted over 70 LGBTQQ youth of color at 7 FYRE Media Justice Camps producing a variety of media resources covering issues from coming out, bullying, and sexual health to healthcare access, violence, and abortion. We hosted the first LGBTQQ youth of color reproductive justice conference in the Southeast, IGNITE, which provided 15 workshops to 85 LGBTQQ youth of color from 13 southern states, while Speak Justice Take Action has mobilized over 500 community members to the Georgia Capitol to advocate for sound reproductive health and rights policy.

Support our work by sponsoring the 3rd Annual SPARK A CHANGE! then come party with us in celebration of our communities on Friday, Dec 8, 2017 at the Elevator Factory. Get your tickets NOW!

See you there!

You’re Invited!

Join SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW! on Friday, DEC 8, 2017 at the Elevator factory for The Third Annual SPARK A CHANGE!


This community-centered event will feature delightful local bites, fantastic live music and performances, and a prize raffle. We will also be honoring our community youth leaders for exemplifying our vision of a world where all people are empowered, valued, and able to make liberatory decisions about their communities, families, and lives with our Vanguard of Change Award. This is sure to be an evening you won’t want to miss!

Get your tickets here!

 

Learn how you can support SPARK by becoming a sponsor.

We showed up, we showed out, and we showed LOVE.

HUGE THANKS for all who joined us yesterday at the Center for Civil and Human Rights for the In Our Own Voice Policy Brief on The State Of Black Women and Reproductive Justice. The event was a huge success and we left the gathering feeling inspired by the collective power in the room. A special thanks to our Atlanta partners, Sisterlove, Inc who moderated the event. If you missed the briefing, you can view a live recording here courtesy of Sisterlove and read the brief online.

Destigmatizing the A-Word: A Somos Sur & SPARK RJ NOW! Collab

Abortion is a controversial topic. Unfortunately, that controversy often translates to silence on the issue, especially within the Latino(x) community. Join SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW and Somos Sur Art Collective as we delve into this conversation head on this Thursday 10/19 from 7-9pm at Honey Bubble located at 798 Ponce De Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Image by Victoria Argañaraz, find more at borrachayamanecida.tumblr.com. We’ll be creating shirts with that stunning image, so be sure to attend and BRING YOUR OWN SHIRT.

Afterwards, you can wear your new shirt and catch SPARK tabling at MJQ with La Choloteca! Can’t wait to see you there!

RSVP on Facebook & share the event with your community!

SPARK OFF! BLACK GIRLS GATHER

A few weeks ago, we had the good fortune to attend For Harriet‘s Black Girls Gather event in Atlanta where we met members of our community and talked about our shared experiences and opinions on everything from impostor syndrome to celebrity love lives. Tune in to the latest episode of our podcast, SPARK OFF!, to hear what Team SPARK had to say about the event and hit us up on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook with your thoughts if you were there too!

SPARK A CHANGE!

We’re getting to that time of year again! There’s only a couple of months left until we throw down at our 3rd Annual fundraiser, SPARK A CHANGE!, taking place on Friday Dec 8th. We will also be celebrating our 10th Anniversary and invite you to join us in all of the merriment & jubilation that this joyous occasion brings. Stay tuned for more details and feel free to email Taylor, at Taylor@sparkrj.org, if you’d like to be one of the featured entertainers and artists this year!

Our Bodies, Our Lives, Our Voices

SisterLove, Inc, in partnership with Spark Reproductive Justice Now!, presents Our Bodies, Our Lives, Our Voices: A Policy Brief produced by In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda on The State of Black Women and Reproductive Justice.

This event will be held at the Center for Civil and Human Rights, located at 100 Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd., Atlanta, GA on Tuesday, October 31, 2017 from 9:00AM – 11:00AM.

Breakfast will be served at 9:00am followed by a panel discussion at 10:00am.

RSVP is required for admission, please reserve your place here.

SPARK’S DACA STATEMENT

SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW! vehemently opposes any presidential action that unfairly targets immigrants, disrupts families, and punishes children. The decision to rescind DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) is an affront to all aspects of social justice and human decency. Because of this decision, some 800,000 people will lose their jobs, be forced to halt their education, and be removed from the only home they have ever known.

Let us be clear that DACA, for all its allowances, was never an ideal protection for immigrant families and placed overly stringent eligibility criteria on its applicants. Among other rigorous requirements, DACA candidates must have entered the US before their 16th birthday, been under the age of 31 at the time of its enactment in 2012, and have not been convicted of a felony or serious misdemeanor. It is also worth noting that DACA was enacted after our elected representatives failed to pass the DREAM Act, which was a far more comprehensive bill that would have provided a pathway to permanent residency for undocumented immigrants, and has since been met with serious opposition from lawmakers across party lines. Meanwhile, even though DACA recipients have paid about $2 billion in state and local taxes, the program offers no real pathway to citizenship and effectively traps its recipients in a kind of indentured servitude. Furthermore, DACA grantees are not eligible for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act and cannot get Medicaid either, which means that they can only access health insurance through an employer, by being a spouse’s dependent, going to a community clinic or purchasing it on their own. Nonetheless, research shows that DACA increased the wages and labor force participation of DACA-eligible immigrants, reduced the number of undocumented immigrant households living in poverty, and increased the mental health outcomes for DACA-eligible immigrants and their children. These benefits come at a price, as recipients pay upwards of $495 in application fees, and are expected to renew their application every two years provided they remain in good standing.

As many have pointed out, this decision will be to the detriment of this country and to the 800,000 workers who have steadily paid into the American social security system. The president’s decision is ethically deplorable and his suggestion that the dissolution of DACA will create more jobs for underemployed Americans is a desperate attempt to drive a wedge between marginalized people and stunt the possibility of a cross-movement revolution. The truth of the matter is that 6 million jobs remain unfilled in the United States, a record high, despite DACA recipients being employed. In fact, experts say ending protections for DACA recipients would worsen the shortage of workers in the country. This comes as no surprise given the current administration’s track record, and it is also not a surprise that this decision exists as another attack from the Trump administration on the LGBTQ community, as nearly 75,000 individuals eligible for DACA identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bi- Sexual, Queer and/or Trans*. This decision falls in line with the Trump administration’s continued assault on people already living marginalized experiences in our country, specifically immigrants and communities of color. This blatant white supremacist act cannot be understated.

Time and time again, our elected officials speak to the concern for children, but where is that concern now that these children are of color? Why hold children responsible for a decision they themselves had no say in? Will they be singing the same tune come November 2018, when a total of 468 seats in the U.S. Congress (33 Senate seats and all 435 House seats) are up for election?

In these times of escalated racial animosity, homophobia, transphobia, and executive assaults on marginalized communities, we must work hard to ensure our fellow human beings are protected. SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW! stands in resistance and calls on everyone to speak out against bigotry from our elected officials.

We are here to stay.

Are You Committed To Building A Stronger Trans Community?

SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW! invites trans and non-binary people of color to join us in forming a Trans Leadership Initiative. This initiative will focus on creating community and social events specifically for and by trans PoC in the month of November, 2017. We encourage anyone interested to come – especially those looking to grow their organizing strengths and build a stronger trans community here in Atlanta.

ALL WHO ARE INTERESTED should fill out this form: bit.ly/SPARKTLI

The meeting will start at 3PM at Hodgepodge Coffee (720 Moreland Ave SE, Atlanta, GA 30316) on Sunday, Sept 24th. Parking is available and MARTA Bus #4 runs directly in front of the building.

Any questions? Email Taylor at taylor@sparkrj.org.