Why an Organizing Collaborative?
OOC was formed around three basic ideas. First, that community, faith, labor and policy organizations must commit to a long-term permanent alliance, rather than coming together sporadically around the latest campaign, contract fight, or election. Second, that there is a need for innovation in the field of community organizing that addreses issues of scale, nimbleness, layered strategies, electoral capacity, and breadth of leadership development. And third, that we cannot build a progressive movement in this country without the Midwest. In order to be successful, it is imperative that we develop an economic and organizing agenda to address deindustrialization and the decades-long decline of urban cores in places like Ohio.
What is the Ohio Organizing Collaborative?
Formed in 2007 and led by organizer Kirk Noden, the Ohio Organizing Collaborative (OOC) is an innovative statewide organization that unites community organizing groups, labor unions, faith organizations, and policy institutes across Ohio. OOC consists of 18 member organizations with members in every major metropolitan area across the state. The vision of OOC is to organize everyday Ohioans to build a transformative base of power for the purpose of achieving social, racial and economic justice in Ohio. We carry out this mission by investing in a diverse portfolio of organizing methods, experimental strategies, non-partisan 501c3 electoral programs, leadership training, and integration with policy organizations. In just six years, OOC has become a significant force in shaping Ohio public policy. It has brought together tens of thousands of people across faith, labor, and neighborhood lines to collaborate on campaigns including criminal justice reform, workers’ rights, bank accountability, student debt, vacant properties, social determinants of health and access to care.