Grants in Action

Mothers in Charge, a Phoebus Criminal Justice Initiative grantee, held their second national conference in Philadelphia in May. This year’s conference brought anti-violence activists from all over the U.S. to Philadelphia to draw the connection between political activism and personal healing for relatives of gun crime victims.

Shortly after being selected for a Phoebus Criminal Justice Initiative grant in March, the Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity settled a lawsuit with Sunoco that pressured the company to voluntarily change its hiring policies to comply with Philadelphia’s “Ban the Box” law.

Parents United for Public Education mobilized parents to successfully resist the School District of Philadelphia’s plans to remove two elementary schools­, Edward T. Steel and Luis Muñoz Marín, from community control. During the campaign in May, parents collaborated with teachers and helped to redefine their common vision of public education.

Thanks to voter mobilization work conducted by Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild (POWER), Philadelphia passed a referendum in May to extend the city’s base wage of $10.88/hour to all workers on city contracts — a huge victory for more than 1,500 low-wage workers in the city.

In March, the Youth Art and Self-empowerment Project (YASP)’s film Stolen Dreams II won the award for best documentary at the Philadelphia Youth Media Collaborative’s Mashed Media Awards. Stolen Dreams II describes the problems facing youth incarcerated in adult jails. YASP is arranging more screenings of the film to support their campaign to overturn Act 33, which allows youth in Pennsylvania to be tried as adults.

Members of YASP pose with the award they received for their documentary about youth incarceration.