DSA has accomplished amazing things in the past year. Our chapter experienced a huge membership surge, built new branches, working groups, and caucuses; and established itself as a formidable political force in New York City. Our citywide priority campaigns have given us the opportunity to build our organizing capacity and develop skilled leaders by focusing on winnable fights for tenants rights and healthcare justice. Our electoral campaigns for Khader El-Yateem and Jabari Brisport proved that New Yorkers are ready to vote for socialists and that DSA’s support is critical. We developed important relationships by standing in solidarity with B&H Workers and are developing new strategies to transform our unions. We’re fighting to keep ICE out of courts, and played a part in getting NYS to divest from fossil fuels!

The most pressing question facing us now is how we make these gains sustainable. For the first time in recent memory, our membership numbers are declining. The Bernie and Trump bumps presented an incredible opportunity to invigorate DSA, but we need to find new ways to continue attracting members. We’ve made extraordinary progress in a short period of time, but to achieve the ambitious goals we’ve set we must develop a holistic plan for recruitment and retention, as well as an organizational infrastructure that can support the massive growth we hope to continue to achieve.

We believe that NYC-DSA can become an enduring center of socialist power in New York City by providing our members the foundation for a lifetime of struggle. NYC-DSA should be a space for people to come together, learn and grow as socialists, create community, and organize winning campaigns that build working class power. By deepening our roots in our communities, prioritizing base building and recruitment, developing a strong onboarding program, making political education and organizing trainings widely available, and giving every member opportunities to participate in the power analyses that shape our campaigns, we can create a sustainable organization prepared for the fights ahead.

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