Students for a Just and Stable Future is a student-led, volunteer network leading the way towards bold solutions to the climate crisis. We see a stable climate as essential for a world that is not only biologically diverse, but also able to supply enough quantities of food and water for the entire human race, keeping conflict, poverty, disease, malnutrition, and displacement at bay. Our mission is to ensure a just and stable future for ourselves and future generations through bold and meaningful campaign efforts. We work closely with our community partner, Better Future Project.
PHILOSOPHY & THEORY OF CHANGE
In the strong tradition of some of the most powerful social movements of the past, we are committed to nonviolence as the most moral and effective principle we can use to fight immoral systems of oppression, injustice, and the destruction of our planet as we know it. Students for a Just and Stable Future endorses actions and tactics that are purely non-violent, as we believe that the means we employ to work toward the future we envision must be in line with our end goals.
Students for a Just and Stable Future functions as a network of campus climate justice groups across New England focused on building the youth and student wing of the climate justice movement. We are run horizontally, meaning that everyone’s input is valued equally and all interested members are encouraged to come to leadership team meetings.
Campus base-building is at the heart of SJSF’s movement-building theory, and this sometimes involves running campaigns that revolve around the campus community or target campus administrations. Since the fall of 2012, SJSF has campaigned to divest college and university endowments from major coal, oil, and natural gas companies. In fall 2013, some SJSF campuses are launching campaigns to support the Boston public transit system by enrolling their universities and colleges in the UPASS system.
SJSF frequently works with the greater community on campaigns of state, regional, or national scope. We have a formal partnership with the fantastic Cambridge-based nonprofit organization Better Future Project and often work with their volunteer network, 350 Massachusetts. We are also actively working with the Public Transit, Public Good campaign run by the Green Justice Coalition.
DIRECT ACTION & CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE
Some of us have, at times, turned to civil disobedience as a tactic that can powerfully demonstrate the urgency of the climate crisis when other tactics have proved ineffective. SJSF members have been central to the planning of the following actions:
- November 2009: “The Leadership Campaign”, featuring six weeks of sleep-outs on the Boston Common in support of 100% clean electricity for Massachusetts
- January 2013: “Westborough 8” lock-in and glue-in against the Keystone XL pipeline in Transcanada’s Westborough, MA office
- March 2013: “Funeral for Our Future” action against the Keystone XL pipeline in Transcanada’s Westborough, MA office
- July 2013: “Summer Heat: Shut Down Brayton Point!” action at the Brayton Point Coal and Gas Plant in Somerset, MA
REGIONAL CONVERGENCES & RETREATS
SJSF hosts regular retreats and convergences for student climate justice organizers across New England to build relationships, share and learn skills, attend workshops, and grow the movement. Our next major convergence will be held in mid-November of 2013 – keep on the lookout for updates!
We historically organized Climate Summer, a bike-centered organizing program for students and youth. The program is now housed by Better Future Project, although we continue to work with Climate Summer participants and support the program.
In summer 2013, SJSF organized the Climate Justice Hub, where six SJSFers worked to build a stronger and more inclusive climate justice movement by empowering young leaders, exploring intersectionality, strengthening community, and prioritizing arts, narrative, and culture.