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New Year's resolutions and solutions for activists: How to follow through

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Hopefully, everyone has practised some serious self-care this holiday season and is starting the year bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Haven't got a calender yet? Try Certain Days: Freedom for Political Prisoners.

2011 has given activists a lot to strive for and there's no better time to continue creating revolutions than at the beginning of a fresh new year. While others might be starting a new diet or breaking an old habit, it's up to activists to shape 2012 by strengthening their resolve to change the world. Here are a few ideas:

Resolution: Be more effective online.

How people find out about your campaign, your message and your protests is increasingly online. Having a solid presence is a good first step, but beyond that you have to keep communication alive and interact with other activists. The toolkit's software tools section is chock-full of technological tools with simple explanations to make organizing online easier.

Solution: Blogging, Petition online, TxT Mob, Audio editing in audacity

Resolution: Making my collective's website more secure.

It's too easy to throw a Wordpress up, slap a Gmail as the contact and run back to the long list of things you have to do to keep your campaign going. But your online organizing is just as important as anything you do in the real world. You never know who might be watching your group a little too closely. First Nation's activists have had their Facebook pages monitored and Gmail accounts are easily hacked.

Solution: Guide to Internet security, technological security for activists

Resolution: Creating a more inclusive movement.

Checking privilege is so essential within activist movements to create genuinely anti-racist, anti-sexist, and anti-homophobic spaces. At the same time, it's too easy for good intentions to allow some people to speak on the behalf of other groups they aren't a part of. An inclusive movement starts through establishing a safe space, where people can call out hateful/racist/sexist/transphobic/homophobic/ableist language/behaviour. All kinds of barriers can stop people from participating in your movement. Who can best identify some of the areas you need to address? Look to fellow activists, sex workers' unions, disability rights groups, indigenous organizations and other rabble-rousers to get some perspective.

Solutions: Including transwomen in women services, addressing accessibility, solidarity activism

Resolution: Learn more about Canadian activism.

So we all know about Stonewall, Roe v. Wade and the first amendment but what about Canadian milestones? Canadian activists have worked tirelessly to pave the way for modern movements. We can learn a lot from history: what worked, what didn't and how inclusion and collaboration between movements has evolved. Here are a few to get you started.

Solutions: We demand, Abortion Caravan, Toronto Bathhouse Raids, Oka Crisis, Winnipeg General Strike

Resolution: Keep up with alternative news.

Getting accurate news about issues that matter to you and your campaign can be tricky when the mainstream doesn't report it. The toolkit picked up on some of the stories that matter to you and turned them into useful background for activists. These tools will get you caught up on what you might have missed. Where better to start your resolution than here at rabble.ca?

Solutions: Attawapiskat, niqab bans, Moe Harkat

Another great resolution is to add an entry to the Activist Toolkit wiki! Not sure how? Check out the user's guide here.

Look forward to the return of the weekly roundup next week.

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