The Third U.S. Social Forum: Coming to a Philadelphia and a Place Near You!

Sat, 2013-12-28 14:37

Philadelphia to Host One of Multiple Sites of Third U.S. Social Forum

The U.S. Social Forum’s National Planning Committee announced that Philadelphia will be one of the multiple sites of convergence in the third U.S. Social Forum. This is part of an effort to develop a “new type” of social forum to better achieve the work of movement building from local to global levels. We’re seeking to move beyond convergence towards greater cohesion in our work for social transformation.

In the coming months, additional sites in other regions of the United States will be announced, and these sites emerge from ongoing work to build People’s Movement Assemblies and strengthen social movements around the country.

What will USSF 3 look like?

USSF 3 will be unlike any social forum previously held in the U.S. The next forum will be “polycentric” or multi-sited to enable greater participation and representation across diverse regions of the country. Each polycentric USSF site will hold spaces for strategy discussions, political education, People’s Movement Assemblies, local actions, arts and culture, community building, healing and collective empowerment. All sites will be linked through shared communication, technology and goals with the aim of building powerful movement responses and solutions to the crises in our local, national and global communities. National working groups will support the work of helping build movement capacity and skills in each of the sites and regions.

Philadelphia is the first of multiple polycentric sites to be selected. Other sites will be identified in 2014. Grassroots activists and movement organizations may participate in activities at any or all of the USSF locations. The participation, activities and outcomes from each polycentric site will contribute to the overall national USSF process that will culminate in a national People’s Movement Assembly in 2016. This assembly will build on conversations, networks, and analyses developed throughout the USSF process.

The USSF process has been supporting People's Movement Assemblies (PMAs) across the U.S. since the 2nd USSF in Detroit, and organizers have continued building this model as we move towards a 3rd U.S. Social Forum. In 2014 communities and organizations across the nation are using the PMA and Social Forum processes to learn from, build on and strengthen the powerful local, regional and national struggles and strategies taking place in almost every U.S. region (See past USSF Newsletters for various reports on PMAs). 

We must declare what we want our world to look like and we must start planning the path to get there. The USSF provides spaces to learn from each other’s experiences and struggles, share our analysis of the problems our communities face, build relationships, and align with our international brothers and sisters to strategize how to reclaim our world.

The U.S. Social Forum process creates a crucial space for social movement convergence, analysis, and the development of our collective strategies for building on-going action toward critical social transformation. A Social Forum of a new type is developing in the U.S. Enormous efforts are unfolding across fronts of struggle to build a cohesive national movement that is both necessary and possible in this history that we all live and struggle within. 2014 will be key to this vital movement and all of us are a part of its success. We need you and your organizations to build a powerful movement for social transformation. Here’s how to get involved.