The Coalition for Economic Justice unites our member labor, faith, and community organizations and activist with allies and resources to win campaigns that promote economic justice for all through building strong, diverse, sustainable communities.
CEJ imagines a Buffalo and Western New York region where good jobs, healthy communities, and engaged residents are the norm.
Over the coming years, CEJ will help to transform our local economy by winning campaigns and spearheading movement-building projects to build an inclusive middle class. We will advance economic justice by building power to raise standards for workers and communities while deepening partnerships, especially with organizations based in communities of color. As a result, low-income and working class communities will achieve real pathways into jobs that sustain their families.
CEJ’s theory of social change is grounded in the following core beliefs:
1. Organizing Builds Power – Economic justice is based upon sustainable structural change, which entails base-building and leadership development among the people experiencing injustice. Worker organizing improves working conditions and workers rights; Community organizing increases the potential of self-determination; and faith-based organizing engages religious groups to find shared values of faith with justice and equality.
2. Solidarity – Economic justice requires labor, community, and faith groups to unite in action in order to win struggles that could not be won separately. We’re there for one another’s fights, and build long-lasting relationships rooted in the belief that fights against oppression are inherently bound together.
3. Movement Building – Economic justice is not about short-term wins, but must entail continued work in developing long-term shared visions and values among labor, faith, and community partners in Western New York and across the state.
4. Equality – Economic justice also means equality for all on and off the job. Racism, sexism, classism, ableism, and all other forms of discrimination must be constantly challenged to ensure equal opportunities in workplaces and communities.
5. Sustainability – Economic justice seeks the overall well-being of workers, which requires a hazard-free workplace and also a healthy and sustainable environment to return home to. Individual and community health is dependent upon good jobs which allow for stewardship of the environment.