Once a year, we gather to celebrate the work we’ve accomplished together and look back at the successes and challenges we faced. This year, we celebrated virtually at our annual meeting on Tuesday, November 9th.
As we reflect on this year, we are so proud of how you've helped us keep the beautiful connections between West Side neighbors strong. Together, we have lived up to our mission to build collective power and advance justice and racial equity in our neighborhood.
When neighbors can afford to stay in their homes, all of us benefit. That’s why we engaged with thousands of neighbors across the West Side to mobilize for housing justice, and succeeded in passing rent stabilization as part of the Housing Equity Now St. Paul coalition. We also fought for the legal right to organize renters in Minnesota, and won! All the while, West Side tenant leaders joined us to organize their buildings and advocate for safe and dignified housing.
Above: WSCO staff and volunteers canvass a West Side apartment building to get out the vote in October 2021.
When you say our neighborhood should reflect our identity, we hear you. In 2021, our West Side Scorecard team engaged with 9 major developments to represent West Sider’s interests and fight displacement. We invested in small local businesses, supported new public art, and organized community visioning for the future of WSCO’s lot on 76 Baker Street East.
Above: Jesús Ramírez holds a land acknowledgement ceremony at the opening of WSCO's event, My Beloved Community, in June 2021. This event brought neighbors together to envision future development possibilities at 76 Baker St. East.
Health & Environmental Justice
This year, we organized for renewable energy by holding a public forum on solar power and racial justice, advocating to local elected officials, and connecting West Siders to solar cooperatives. We crafted a summer series centering local Black, Indigenous, and People of color healers and artists. We strengthened community connections through sharing free seeds, crafts, marigolds, and veggies.
Above: Neighbors gather for a community forum on Racial Justice and Solar Power in July 2021.
We believe that life-affirming public safety starts with deepening our relationships as neighbors through community care. In 2021, that meant creating spaces for you to connect, mourn, organize, and celebrate in many beautiful ways: youth open mics, the Black, Indigenous, and Women of Color circle, Men of Color circle, Día de Los Muertos, and the West Side's first ever Juneteenth celebration. You joined us to hold our representatives accountable and worked with us to share alternative resources to keep each other safe.
Above: WSCO staff, board members, and community leaders at the Juneteenth celebration in Parque Castillo.