Starting an Anti Racist Action Chapter: The Beginners Guide

.::Getting Started::.

Had enough? Tired of racism, sexism and homophobia hurting people in your community? Want to do something about it? Consider starting an Anti-Racist Action chapter!

Starting an ARA chapter can seem intimidating at first, and while it can be a lot of work, it’s fun and worthwhile, and much easier than it might seem.

Just follow these steps:

  • STEP ONE – Read our Points of Unity..
  • All ARA members and chapters MUST agree with everything we say in the Points of Unity.

    If you’re in full agreement with it, move on to Step Two.

    If you don’t agree with everything you read in the Points of Unity, that means that ARA is not really the movement for you. But don’t let that stop you from fighting against hate! Consider finding another movement that reflects your viewpoints better, or start your own!

  • STEP TWO – Get in touch with the ARA chapter nearest to you.
  • Click here for a list of chapters. If there isn’t an ARA chapter in your area already, your nearest chapter will be able to help you get one started. Even if the nearest chapter is far away, don’t get discouraged. It won’t take long before you find people nearby who want to help out, and an established ARA chapter can help you do that.

  • STEP THREE – Open an email account, PO Box, and voice mail.
  • You don’t need all of them, but the more ways people can contact you, the faster you’ll grow. At the very least, however, you should have an email address, which are cheap (usually free) and easy to acquire.

  • STEP FOUR – Get the word out.
  • Download some flyers from the ARA Network website, and print them out with your local contact
    information on them. Take them door-to-door, to local punk or hip hop shows, to concerts or community events. You also might
    want to try making or buying t-shirts, buttons or patches to sell or give away to
    get the ARA name out around town. Be sure to get in contact with local punk bands, emcees and dj’s to see if they’re willing to show their
    support for ARA. Eventually, you might even want to start organizing your own anti-racist shows and events.

    You also might want to set up a website, too. It doesn’t have to be fancy, We here at the network can assist you with something that has basic contact information about your chapter, what projects you’re working on, and upcoming events. You can get your own domain name, or you can use a
    subdomain of ours (eg:

  • STEP FIVE – Get organized.
  • When you have enough people interested, start an email list so people can keep informed about what’s going on both in your community and around the world. Eventually, you’ll want to start having regular meetings (twice a month, or once a week if people can make it) to start coordinating activities.

  • STEP SIX – Find an issue that’s important to your community, and take action!
  • Maybe you have a problem with police brutality in your town, and want to start a copwatch program. Maybe the radical anti-choicers have been
    harassing the local clinic, or maybe there’s a racist or anti-immigrant group organizing and causing trouble, and you want to organize to oppose
    them. Whatever the issue is, don’t be afraid to speak up, you’ll be amazed at how many people will be glad you did.

    And if you have questions, don’t hesitate to ask other ARA members or chapters for help or advice. Some of us have been doing this for over a
    decade, and we’re always willing to help.

    In the end, you’re going to want to start small and then build up. Things take time, and if you stick with it, it can be really fun and rewarding. You’ll travel a lot, meet some really interesting people, and learn lots of new things.

  • Have Fun, Stay Young, and Smash the Fash!