The core philosophical pillars of our IPO represent areas where we believe massive change can and must occur to make our city more equitable
Housing is a human right. Letting corporate developers treat our neighborhoods as a sandbox takes that right away from Chicagoans. We aim to dramatically expand the housing affordability that has allowed multiracial working class communities in the 48th Ward to flourish. Residents (particularly those of Color) are being priced out of the neighborhood at an alarming rate by predatory developers and landlords, and we believe that Chicagoans deserve to live without fear of displacement. Therefore, we support the construction and preservation of low-income housing throughout the ward, an inclusive zoning process, and lifting the state ban on rent control. We will fight the forces that cause gentrification and displacement, including the demolition of low-income housing and the flat deconversions that deplete the city's housing stock. We also aim to shift the city's tax burden off homeowners and onto LaSalle Street and speculators.
We support a robust, equitable, and fully funded public education system for our neighborhood's children. Kids deserve to go to schools staffed with nurses, social workers, librarians, special education assistants, and other professionals necessary to a school's functioning. We support the removal of police from public schools and recommend replacing them with restorative justice coordinators, counselors, and social workers. Teachers and support staff deserve a competitive living wage, funding, and resources to help them do their jobs, and a welcoming work environment. We stand in solidarity with the Chicago Teachers Union and local school councils that hold Chicago Public Schools accountable, and support the creation of a fully elected school board independent of the mayor’s office. We also support free, universal childcare for all parents, full student debt cancellation, and free four-year public college.
We renounce the unchecked violence and terror that the Chicago Police Department, the criminal legal system, and the carceral state have imposed on Black and Latinx communities for decades. In solidarity with other community organizing calling for #NoCopAcademy, we oppose the $95 million police academy being built on the West Side. We also oppose the expansion of video surveillance and the criminalization of fare evasion on the CTA. To curb the police state, we support the creation of an independent Civilian Police Accountability Council (CPAC), removing CPD from CPS, and defunding CPD in favor of reopening mental health clinics and expanding necessary social services in the 48th Ward and across the city, with the ultimate goal of abolishing the police and reimagining public safety as a community. To these ends, we fully support Black Lives Matter Chicago’s list of 10 demands. We also oppose the existence of ICE and the Department of Homeland Security, and want to abolish ICE by ending all internal immigration enforcement and border control. We oppose ICE raids, random searches, and profiling of citizens, and we believe in sanctuary spaces, know-your-rights training, and the opening of our borders to immigrants and all refugees.
We support unionization and strong labor protections for all workers, including the undocumented. We believe all workers would benefit from a living wage that includes a living formulation, anti-discrimination, and anti-wage theft policies, a crackdown on union busting, and a federal jobs guarantee. All workers should be able to enjoy the fruits of their labor, and that necessarily involves greater taxation of corporations and the wealthy, expansion of the social safety net, a living wage, and ridding politics of super PAC money.
We know that the climate crisis is not only imminent — it’s already here. There is evidence of climate change in the city, from the permanent loss of beaches in Rogers Park to catastrophic flooding in neighborhoods. To make our communities more resilient, we support the passage of the Green New Deal, which will decarbonize transportation and power generation, invest in green energy sources, and create 20 million new jobs in the process. We also believe that local efforts must be made to support environmental justice, such as closing factories that pollute our air, water, and soil, and disproportionately sicken Black, Latinx, and other affected Chicagoans on the South and West sides. We stand in solidarity with environmental justice organizations that have been leading this charge.
We support the full self-determination and inclusion of people with disabilities. While this includes government protections and funding, it also includes efforts, such as mutual aid, that are independent of the government and the nonprofit-industrial complex. We support the construction of affordable and accessible housing in our ward and efforts to make existing housing units accessible. We hold that all businesses and public spaces should be fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act and that the associated cost is no longer an excuse, as this Act has been law for over thirty years. Employers must provide workplace accommodations for disabled workers and should receive regular training on these provisions. We support an increase of accessible public transportation in the city, which includes updating existing inaccessible train stops and the expansion of train lines to the south and southwest sides. In our schools, special education and related services must be fully funded and reshaped under the leadership of disabled people, including disabled youth. We recognize that disabled people disproportionately experience police brutality and incarceration and thus demand the formation of mental health crisis teams that are independent of the police. In all of these efforts we want to center the voices of and follow the leadership of multiply oppressed disabled people, who have often been left behind in the historically single-issue disability rights movement.
We will support and run working-class leftist candidates at all levels of government who advocate for the multiracial working class of Chicago. We will use the full power of our organization to elect grassroots candidates who understand the corrupting force of capitalism and have a vision for a better city. We oppose voter disenfranchisement (particularly in relation to communities of Color and incarcerated people), gerrymandering, and the influence of super PACs, billionaires, and corporate donations on elections. We will not support any candidate who takes money from real estate developers, the Fraternal Order of the Police, or corporate interest groups.