Kevin Zeese, Washington DC Journey for Justice 2000

Introduction to Bottoms Up: A Guide to Grassroots Organizing


Published online in 2001, Bottoms
Up: A Guide to Grassroots Organizing was written by November Coalition's staff, updated through the years by drawing from experiences of hundreds of community volunteers. Bottoms Up is a comprehensive, step-by-step guide to creating the social change you want. It's free to you and available on the internet.

You’re probably reading this because you want to change unfair drug laws, be part of that "reform movement" you've heard about, but are unsure how to begin. Many readers have a loved one incarcerated and want to channel anger or frustration into positive action to change bad laws. You are joining an active network of family, friends, and concerned citizens advocating for prisoners of the war on drugs.

You don't need experience in organizing to take action now. If you're motivated to make changes, and to work with others who feel the way you do, this guide offers "tools" to help you become an effective leader in the fight against drug war injustice.

Tampa Bay, Journey for Justice 2003
David Correa's family, Journey for Justice: Tampa, FL 2003
Events can be a public forum, a neighborhood planning meeting, vigil, march, meeting with officials, a media interview, church presentation, informal discussion group, or a potluck, to name some specific examples. Show a provocative documentary and have a discussion -- we have films available.

Your group might be new, your organizing skills limited, but you want to end drug war injustice and bring needed reform to prisons and the criminal justice system. To make the job easier, we have included suggestions, checklists and supplies for each type of event. It doesn't matter whether you're a beginner or seasoned activist, organizers are coached to be creative.


Meet some of our members