Students for a Just and Stable Future works to build the the youth wing of the climate justice movement in Massachusetts and to empower our generation to effect lasting social change. We strive for a balance between organizing students and youth on our campuses and mobilizing off-campus together to assist our community partners’ campaigns. More on our philosophy and mission >>
We do our work through activities such as:
- Off-campus campaigns and action planning alongside other community organizations
- On-campus campaigns, like fossil fuel divestment
- Building a network between campuses
- Building strong relationships between student activists and community groups
- Our semi-annual climate justice convergences
- Hosting trainings and workshops on anti-oppression, principles of organizing, and more
Students for a Just and Stable Future functions as a network of campus climate justice groups across New England, currently concentrated in Massachusetts, focused on building the youth and student wing of the climate justice movement. We are run horizontally, meaning that everyone’s input is valued equally and all interested members are encouraged to come to leadership team meetings.
Campus base-building is at the heart of SJSF’s movement-building theory, and this sometimes involves running campaigns that revolve around the campus community or target campus administrations. Since the fall of 2012, SJSF has campaigned to divest college and university endowments from major coal, oil, and natural gas companies. In fall 2013, some SJSF campuses are launching campaigns to support the Boston public transit system by enrolling their universities and colleges in the UPASS system.
SJSF frequently works with the greater community on campaigns of state, regional, or national scope. We have a formal partnership with the fantastic Cambridge-based nonprofit organization Better Future Project and often work with their volunteer network, 350 Massachusetts. We are also actively working with the Public Transit, Public Good campaign run by the Green Justice Coalition.
DIRECT ACTION & CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE
Some of us have, at times, turned to civil disobedience as a tactic that can powerfully demonstrate the urgency of the climate crisis when other tactics have proved ineffective. SJSF members have been central to the planning of the following actions:
- July 2013: “Summer Heat: Shut Down Brayton Point!” action at the Brayton Point Coal and Gas Plant in Somerset, MA
- March 2013: “Funeral for Our Future” action against the Keystone XL pipeline in Transcanada’s Westborough, MA office
- January 2013: “Westborough 8” lock-in and glue-in against the Keystone XL pipeline in Transcanada’s Westborough, MA office
- November 2009: “The Leadership Campaign”, featuring six weeks of sleep-outs on the Boston Common in support of 100% clean electricity for Massachusetts
Climate Justice and Anti-Oppression
As our name suggests, we are a climate justice organization– reducing greenhouse gas emissions is not the sole focus of our group. We care deeply about equity and justice in our movement and the future for which we advocate.
For our campaigns and actions, this means that we explore and act upon the deeper economic and social roots of the climate crisis, and advocate to ensure just transitions for workers and communities currently dependent upon the fossil fuel economy.
In our internal processes, we attempt to create space and provide resources to facilitate conversation and reflection on how class and racial dynamics impact our movement, and how we can change movement culture to be more inclusive of youth from all racial and class backgrounds. We are imperfect, but we attempt to be anti-racist and anti-classist in our organizing.
Our Current Campaigns