United for Peace and Justice participated in the Left Forum 2016

Exactly one month ago, United for Peace and Justice participated in the Left Forum 2016 in New York City. The Left Forum is one of the largest gatherings of radicals and leftists in theUnited States, with thousands of participants and hundreds of workshops, panels, and plenaries.


Last year, the UFPJ coordinating committee decided to represent our network at the Left Forum 2015 by tabling. We had been too preoccupied with organizing for the Peace and Planet conference, march, and rally to adequately organize any panels, but we did support and promote the panels of our member groups. We tabled all three days, between the Jacobin Magazine and US Labor Against War.

This year, UFPJ focused more energy on workshop and panel planning, and promotion for the Left Forum. Our goal was to connect with more UFPJ activists, to provide important peace movement and anti-war analysis at the Left Forum, and to inspire challenging discussions that would influence our strategy and future actions.
We partnered with Peace Action NY, American Friends Service Committee, and the US Peace Council and co-hosted 3 workshops (see video of each below). Both Jackie Cabasso and Terry Rockefeller, UFPJ’s co-conveners were in attendance, as well as Matt De Vlieger, UFPJ’s part-time staff. We also flew-in George Martin, former UFPJ Co-Chair to participate in our events.

Through the three workshops (not including others we attended) we engaged about eighty-five attendees of the Left Forum. Hundreds of others have already viewed video of our panels’ online live-stream on Facebook.

Another dozen or so people joined the small social meet-and-greet we planned at a nearby lounge to connect with other Peace Movement activists and organizers.

We also met dozens of people who identify as members of UFPJ in conversation between panels, and at the many tables in the conference center lobby.

Overall, it was a meaningful experience for us to connect in person, in one place, with other peace movement leaders and movers to assess the state of our movement and discuss plans for our shared future. It was also made clear to us how necessary it is to have UFPJ as a reasoned and experienced body in a broader Leftist gathering.

You can view video of some of the discussions we hadand read background info below.

Thanks to those of you who participated and donated online makes this peace-work possible. Please donate here, to keep our program going in this time of need.