Fuerzas Unidas in the northern central valley is the newest organizing effort that encompasses small cities, towns, and agricultural communities. Fuerzas Unidas was born in Stanislaus and San Joaquin Counties in 2018, and our organizing efforts are focused on Stockton, Lathrop, Modesto, Lodi, Manteca, and Tracy. Our founding members work primarily with Spanish-speaking families who have children or adult family members with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The organization was established to respond that only 20% of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities receive any public sector services. Among those who do receive services, families of color, immigrants, refugees, and the poor are receiving the least – far below what the law requires. The entities who decide whether you receive services have all been using policies and practices that deny the most vulnerable the equity and justice they deserve.
In 2021, we continue to organize with these leaders as they expand their power. We are expanding to build the leadership and structure to tackle other pressing issues that confront our region's most vulnerable populations. Among these priorities are education justice- disability rights, immigrant rights, and environmental justice.
Fuerzas Unidas is an affiliate of Gamaliel of California. Gamaliel of California is a statewide network of values-driven, regional organizations that transform communities and create systemic change through community organizing. We organize regional power organizations made up of institutional members connected through shared values, collective vision, disciplined organizing, and direct action to create a powerful platform for the new majority Californians to enter the public political arena and seek justice.