Spinal Column: November 8, 2019

New Props to Make Your Action POP! 

Thanks to the dedicated work of our volunteer Backbone Builder's Guild, we have a number of new beautiful images to share. 

What can you use for your actions and campaigns?

Some folks in Tucson ordered one of our Banner Toolkits and created a compelling banner for the Climate Strike.  You too can get yours - available on a sliding scale HERE.

Check out our Imagery Library and let us know what props and messaging you need to make your actions vibrant and media savvy! 

Our Solidarity Brigade Network is growing and active.  Our next Organizing Call for Artful Activists - and those who want to utilize Backbone props for their actions - is next week, Tuesday November 12th, 5pm (pacific)/8pm (eastern).  RSVP for the call here.

If you missed the fun short video highlighting a week of Backbone Actions, check it out here! We are deeply grateful for the many activists working with Backbone and for donors who support this work - together, you make beautiful, compelling actions happen, to shift culture and get policymakers' attention. 

Backbone Awards

In September Backbone Campaign had a beautiful Gala and Awards Ceremony.  In addition to raising money for Solutionary Rail, we presented six Backbone Awards.  We have renewed this program as our movement needs now, more than ever, to recognize change agents who are making a difference and to show our gratitude for their commitment and effective work.

Congratulations to the 2019 Backbone Award Winners:

  • Dr David McLanahan - Lifetime Achievement
  • Michelle Seidelman - Protecting the Sacred
  • Alessandra Mondolfi - Virtuosic Artful Activism
  • Phil Ateto - Free Speech Champion
  • US Representative Pramila Jayapal - Our Champion, Leading with Vision
  • Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson - Our First Line of Defense

Thank you to everyone who came out to the event, who donated, contributed a silent auction item, and volunteered.  

Solutionary Rail

Solutionary Rail is building momentum, and we are working for a decarbonized energy and transportation future. 

Anyone can be a Solutionary Rail Ambassador and significantly help with outreach.  Check out our Toolkit for tabling materials, talking points for a Letter to the Editor (writing one for your local paper would be a huge help in raising awareness and getting the attention of policymakers.)

A useful tool we've been developing are RailBites - bite-sized pieces of information you can share with busy policymakers, to help educate them on aspects of Solutionary Rail. Download and share these 1 pagers on:

Huge thanks to Mary Paterson who has taken the lead on creating the RailBites series. Now we need your help to get them out!  Sign up here to be part of the RailBites Communications Team.

In case you missed it, Bill sat down with Glen Anderson for an in depth interview on the latest developments of Solutionary Rail, what we've learned from our allies, and how this project fits into a Green New Deal.  


The 2020 Census is reaching out to not-for-profits like the Backbone Campaign to recruit workers nationwide.  From a Recruiter:

The U.S. Census Bureau is hiring thousands of workers for the upcoming decentennial 2020 census.  Activists like those working for Backbone Campaign and who know the importance of the data to be gathered will be a great resource, and will be able to make good money with the temporary jobs being offered. Wages for Census Takers in King County range from $20.50 per hour plus mileage, and higher. Although most of the jobs will take place in late winter and early spring 2020, the requirement for background checks and the possibility of jobs being filled before then make it advisable to apply as soon as possible.

More info and to apply is HERE or call 1-855-JOB-2020 (1-855-562-2020). Spread the word!

Upcoming Locally

This weekend - Saturday at 7pm, for those in Vashon Island area, join us at, "Tangled: Why Your Hair Matters to Society," presented by UW Professor Anu Taranath.

From twists and tapers to braids and buns, what’s on top of our head and how it is received by others often reflects society’s standards of beauty and desirability. Using song, video, poetry, and imagery, this interactive presentation encourages us to examine our cultural conceptions of gender, class, and race. Why, for example, is one kind of hair or hair style understood as “better” than another? Who says so? What are the consequences of sporting an unruly do, and how has that changed over the years?

Join professor Anu Taranath to untangle the meaning of hair and better understand the stories we tell about beauty, bias, and belonging.

Learn more and reserve your free ticket HERE.

Next weekend, November 16th, in Olympia WA is the Western Washington Fellowship of Reconciliation Retreat, "Facing Climate and Nuclear Catastrophes", featuring keynote speaker Dahr Jamail.  (Dahr was a recipient of the Backbone Award in 2005 for his reporting on the Iraq War.)

All welcome. Backbone's ED Bill Moyer will be presenting in the afternoon (at 3pm) on Solutionary Rail. 

More Info, and to Register can be found by clicking HERE.