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Campaign Nonviolence National Conference Call-Oct. 2015

Posted by Ryan Hall

On October 15th, we held our final national conference call for 2015 to share about the Campaign Nonviolence Week of Actions in September and to share our CNV Next Steps.  Below you will find the notes from the Thursday call.

Campaign Nonviolence National Organizing Conference Call
October 15, 2015, 5pm Pacific/ 8pm Eastern (60 minutes)

Listen to the call here.

Facilitator: Ryan Hall
Maestro coordinator: Ryan Hall
Notetaker: Ryan Hall


  • Welcome (Ryan Hall)
  • Centering (Ryan Hall)
    • We can change the world if we do it nonviolently.  If we can just show people how they can organize nonviolently, we can’t fail.  Nonviolence has never failed when it’s been tried. – Cesar Chavez
  • Roll Call (Ryan Hall): Organizers from 15 different states joined the call.

CNV Updates:

  • CNV Action Reviews/Reflections (Rivera Sun and Ryan Hall)
    • Ryan reported the excitement of seeing all the events get reported after the week of actions.  In particular he recalled the peace singers in the San Francisco Bay area, hundreds marched in Wilmington, DE against gun violence, 15 were arrested in Washington, DC at the White House, Tampa, FL protested against drones while also having our own Kit Evans-Ford lead a nonviolence training, organizers in Georgia printed up little books of peace that they distributed throughout their neighborhood, Boise Idaho had week-long events against the death penalty, nuclear waste, support of climate healing, in Bangor Maine they held an End Violence Together Rally, Little Rock, Arkansas held a week of events including painting a peace mural, we also heard Napa, CA may have a possible panel discussion on nonviolence as a result of their actions.  
    • Rivera who runs social media for Campaign Nonviolence, reported that she saw some new things this year over last year.  She noticed that many more groups were identifying with CNV and making the theme of their action specifically about the Campaign Nonviolence goals. She also saw a deepening of relationships among different groups by connecting with an array of organizations within their community.  People really stepped up to the idea of connecting the dots this year as well.  She also saw a lot of actions with kids which she felt was very hopeful for the future.
  • CNV Next Steps (Ken Butigan)
    • Ken spoke about CNV’s plans for 2016, which includes:
    • 1.Taking Action September 2016: Campaign Nonviolence will march for justice, peace and environmental healing throughout the US and around the world September 18-25, 2016, including the International Day of Peace, September 21. Save the date! Visit our CNV Actions page here!
    • 2. Nonviolent Cities: Imagine Nonviolent Los Angeles. Nonviolent New York City. Or Nonviolent Kabul.  What would it take to foster a nonviolent city where you live? Campaign Nonviolence calls on communities everywhere to imagine what their nonviolent city would entail; to identify what would be involved in achieving this; and to take concrete steps toward this long-term goal. The Nonviolent Cities Project is a great platform for connecting the dots and nurturing a culture of peace and nonviolence.  Click here to learn more!
    • 3. Thousand Trainings Project: Nonviolence education is key to long-term change by spreading the tools of nonviolent transformation and by training both advocates for change and the larger society. Working with training organizations—and long-time nonviolence trainers—we will identify and organize at least 1,000 trainings and workshops for nonviolent change over the next year.  We call on every local group to host, organize or lead a nonviolence training in 2016. Click here to learn more!
    • 4. Building a Movement of Movements: Connect the dots between issues and movements to create people power for change! Meet with other organizers and members of organizations, campaigns and movements in your city, area or region at least twice for relationship building and to explore the ways to mutually support, connect, synergize and maximize the impact of your collective efforts. Click here to learn more!
    • 5. Resources for Peaceful Change: To build the capacity of this movement, Campaign Nonviolence offers numerous resources to support your organizing for nonviolent change, including new books, workshops, social media, and many tools on the CNV website for mainstreaming nonviolence, connecting the dots between issues and movements, building your campaign, and taking training.  Click here to learn more!
    • 6. Building CNV: Take the Campaign Nonviolence Pledge. Organize or join a local CNV affinity group. Become a CNV Promoter. Take the CNV Vow of Nonviolence. Click here to learn more!

Large Group Discussion: (Ryan Hall facilitated)
Organizers reported on their actions during CNV Week.

  • Jerry in Santa Monica, CA: Jerry has been on a liquid only fast since May 6, 2015 against nuclear weapons.  He is planning on ending his fast after 6 months on November 6, 2015, one year before the 2016 elections in order to promote nonviolence among all the candidates.  He also said they recently held a John Lennon Peace Day in Hollywood that included the city council and Mayor of LA.  They will also hold an anti-gun violence rally soon as well.  
  • Arthur in Idaho: Arthur said several events happen throughout the year from March through November hosted by many different groups.  He asked how to help build the movement of movements and wants to find ways of connecting with the various groups throughout Idaho to persuade each of them to do an action during the CNV Week in 2016. Rivera thanked Arthur for this question and said there is an art to doing this, and suggested talking with her more later.  Briefly she suggested that he simply go to their meetings and start supporting them, that way they get to know him and can find ways to build relationships into the next year.  John Dear also suggested that it really often comes down to just starting a conversation with these others groups. John also suggested using our CNV brochures to pass around everywhere he goes.Ken Butigan also suggested pursuing the idea of a Nonviolent City/State.  Ken encouraged folks to help people catch the vision of what that would look like. See Idaho’s report here.
  • Tom in Buffalo,NY: This is their second year organizing an event. Tom reported that they formed a coalition in Western NY for Nonviolent Advocates, for their action they had 85 co-sponsors, 8 participating organizations.  They held a walk for nonviolence and a peace festival. They also had an interfaith/intercultural event with about 100 people.  TV stations held various interviews about the event as well.  He reported that it can be a challenge to get some groups to support and participate, but they hope to continue to build on what they have done for next year. Tom was grateful for CNV and said that CNV is the initiative for all this work they have been doing.  See Tom’s report in Buffalo here.
  • Rusty in Amarillo, TX with the High Plains Circle of Nonviolence:  His group has been organizing with the Afghan Peace Volunteers and their ENOUGH Campaign.  Rusty told them that he could bring a letter from them to his Congressman about abolishing war in Afghanistan. See Rusty’s report here.
  • Rivera in Taos, NM: They had a workshop on Climate Change and held up signs for peace on a local street corner.  They also got covered in their local newspaper.  She was encouraged by the support of people driving by and from their local chief of police.  See the Taos report here.
  • Wally in Honolulu, HI: Wally reported that they were able to connect actions among the various islands in Hawaii this year.  He also said he found new organizers in Hawaii from watching what was posted on the CNV blog. See the list of reports from Hawaii here.

Final Comment: Thoughts on this past year and going forward (John Dear)

  • John spoke about the importance of what we are all trying to do to end violence.  He was excited by what we all accomplished this year, including the CNV Conference.  He encouraged people to celebrate what we’ve done together and encouraged people to continue to get people to sign the CNV pledge.  He suggested people use our brochures, read his book on The Nonviolent Life and help support CNV financially.  He also let folks know that he welcomes invitations for him to speak in their area this coming year.  

Closing: Ryan Hall – Sign the Campaign Nonviolence Pledge if you haven’t done so yet!

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