about our chapter

Cleveland DSA is the local chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America, organizing throughout the Cleveland, OH metropolitan area. As an organization and as individual members, Cleveland DSA is building progressive movements for social change while establishing an openly democratic socialist presence in local politics in Cleveland and throughout Northeast Ohio. We work locally and regionally, along with DSA Chapters in Akron, Portage Co, and Columbus.

At the root of our socialism is a profound commitment to democracy, as means and end. We are activists committed to democracy as not simply one of our political values but our means of restructuring society. Our vision is of a society in which people have a real voice in the choices and relationships that affect the entirety of our lives. We call this vision democratic socialism — a vision of a more free, democratic and humane society.

DSA fights for reforms today that will weaken the power of corporations and increase the power of working people. For example, we support reforms that:

  • Decrease the influence of money in politics
  • Empower ordinary people in workplaces and the economy
  • Restructure gender and cultural relationships to be more equitable

We also advocate for fundamental system change. While reforming our existing system is critical to the livelihoods of so many people, we continue to work on projects that represent fundamental and systematic change on the local level, including:

  • Promoting Democracy in the workplace, through new models of worker relations, worker-owned cooperatives, solidarity with existing local labor unions, and exploring new models of organizing like Worker Centers.
  • Strengthening and democratizing publicly operated institutions, like insuring access to public transportation, encouraging the development of postal banks, and supporting community ownership and control of utilities and institutions that serve the public.
  • Working with local, state, and national politicians and campaigns on a variety of issues that reflect our principles of greater participation, democracy, and reforms based in our critique of capitalism.

DSA is proud of our long history as a “multi-tendency” organization, and we include and welcome diverse views and analysis. We do not presume to have answers to every question, instead we debate amongst ourselves and engage in serious discussions with other individuals and organizations. DSA encourages members to grow as organizers and activists, and we provide opportunities for training locally and nationally. We adhere to a policy of giving everyone a voice, and encouraging everyone to “step up, step back” and join in the conversation. We hope you’ll join us and add your voice, experience and enthusiasm to our work.

Now is a time when progressive voices are growing in American politics and around the world. It is also a time when our current economic system is breaking to reveal how much it benefits a privileged few at the expense of the vast majority. It’s time for us to discuss these underlying economic realities. Capitalism has outlived its usefulness.

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