September-October, 2018

Amnesty International is built on the idea that people coming together against injustice can be a game-changer! The sum of each of our actions creates a powerful force that has proven to be effective in igniting positive social change.

When our colleague Taner Kilic, the Honorary Chair of Amnesty Turkey, was imprisoned for his work defending human rights, you fought for his release. When we learned of how children were being separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, we shared an outrage and named this cruel act as nothing short of torture. Earlier this year when we exposed Twitter’s negligence in preventing online violence and abuse against women, you helped to spotlight the issue – check out this video from last week of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey being question by Members of Congress for Twitter’s failure to protect women from such abuse. Throughout 2018-2019, we will continue to advocate for the rights of refugee and asylum seekers and this month we will launch our national campaign to End Gun Violence in the US.
Amnesty International’s new Secretary General, Kumi Naidoo, recently said, “the idea that instead of getting used to the horrors in the world, we can refuse to conform to them, and instead stand for radical change. We must be a movement of creatively maladjusted people, seeking alternatives to the oppression and injustice we see around us, and fighting for real change. Let’s be maladjusted to gender and racial discrimination, to the stripping of humanity from refugees, to hatred in the name of religion, to walls and fences and untrammelled state and corporate violence.”
With these words in mind I invite you to use this guide to learn about the issues, take action, and grow a human rights movement in your community by getting others involved. The actions outlined come with educational and advocacy tools. We want to hear from you, so please fill out this Feedback Form and share your stories of activism and interest with us so we can collect these stories and support you in your activism journey.

  1. Review this guide with your group to become familiar with AIUSA’s key campaigns and programs, which all groups are asked to work on.
  2. Use the Key Activism Dates and Take Action sections for each human rights issue to help you build your spring activism calendar.
  3. Complete the form at the bottom of this page to let us know what you’re working on. We’ll make sure you have resources for each area and update you when new information or tools are available.
  4. Get creative! The Activism Guide provides you with the basics, but we hope you’ll use it to put your stamp on our work. Let us know your plans for the spring or if you need any ideas or support.
Important Calendar Dates: Opportunities for Action
Sep 1-November 12
Sep 11 – Oct 9
Sep 12
Sep 24-Sep 30
Sep 26
Sep 31
Oct 1
Oct 10
Oct 20-Nov 10
Picture This Poster Contest
ActivismX Campus Competition
End Gun Violence Report Release & Campaign Launch
Banned Books Week
Membership call Regional Conferences
Write4Rights sign-up opens!
National Coming Out Day
World Day Against the Death Penalty
Regional Conference Season! Click here for more information on dates, locations, program, important deadlines for early bird registration, subsidies, and Action Alley!

Banned Books 2018
Refugee Rights Campaign
End Gun Violence Campaign
End Rape Against Native Women
Free Alejandra

Banned Books 2018

Each year during Banned Books Week the American Library Association (ALA) calls attention to books that have been challenged in US Libraries. At the same time Amnesty International groups draw attention to people around the world who have been imprisoned, threatened, or murdered because of what they write or publish or because of their work in the publishing and media industries. This year Amnesty International focuses its attention on 13 new high priority cases selected from hundreds of related cases worldwide and continues to acknowledge and conduct action on cases from previous years. Click here for the BBW Packet

Download BBW Packet

Refugee Rights Campaign

Across the country on school campuses and in municipalities, activists are taking action by passing local “IWelcome Resolutions.” These resolutions are sweeping the country and we will work with you to get your community on the map! The Longer Table initiative provides action ideas and information on how to access additional resources. Check out the Longer Table Toolkit here!

Download Longertable Toolkit

End Gun Violence Campaign

Amnesty International USA has just published a new report calling gun violence a human rights crisis. The U.S. is failing to restrict access to guns to those most at risk of mis-using them, and failing to take effective steps to reduce gun violence. Our elected officials need to act to protect our human rights. Amnesty International USA is joining millions of people in the United States to demand real change – and we’re asking our supporters to join us. Educate yourself and your community about these issues using our End Gun Violence Toolkit, and take action on crucial and urgent legislative battles happening at the state level in Illinois, Ohio, and Michigan.

Download EGV Toolkit

End Rape Against Native Women: Demand post-rape care now!

1 in 3 Native women will be raped during her lifetime; many will then struggle to access a basic rape kit.
ALL survivors deserve access to post-rape care, but despite gains made by the Indian Health Service (IHS), the federal agency responsible for providing Native health care, IHS is failing to ensure that every Native survivor has access to this critical care and essential piece of evidence needed for those who pursue justice through trial. AI is calling on the Indian Health Service to:

  1. Provide survivors of sexual violence access to adequate and timely sexual assault forensic examinations
  2. Ensure that all Native American and Alaska Native women are receiving adequate and consistent care following rape or sexual violence
  3. Track services provided to survivors of sexual assault to ensure accountability and justice
  4. Ensure that sexual assault protocols are actually being implemented across Indian Health Service centers
Take Action
  1. Email Indian Health Service (IHS) asking them to guarantee Native women’s access to post-rape care
  2. Contact your elected representatives about this issue and demand that the Indian Affairs Committee and Indian, Insular, and Alaskan Native Affairs subcommittee conduct oversight
  3. Tweet at IHS Chief Medical Officer Dr. Michael Teodt @mtoedt asking him where the rape kits are and asking what IHS is doing to ensure all women have post-rape care
  4. For more information please contact [email protected]


Alejandra fought for trans rights for more than a decade in El Salvador. She was forced to flee after repeated attacks and extortion by a criminal gang, as well as abuses by the Salvadoran military. Alejandra was sexually assaulted by both the gang and military personnel because of her transgender identity. But instead of offering her safety and a chance to rebuild her life, the U.S. government is holding her in detention without adequate medical care that she needs as a person living with HIV.

Alejandra is now stuck at the Cibola detention center in New Mexico, waiting for an immigration judge’s decision on her asylum claim. She should be free — not behind bars. Join us in demanding that ICE release her on parole — so she can reunite with her niece, who is living in the U.S. and has already won her asylum claim. Click here for the complete Pride 2018 Toolkit and take action!
Download Pride Toolkit

Activist Group Sign Up
  • Please tell us what issues your group will participate in this spring. We’ll share updates and new resources for the areas you choose, and make sure you have the tools and materials you need for each action.

  • (i.e. Franklin High School; Local Group 1101)