Our mission is to establish democratic socialism as a political force in the United States and around the world by training and mobilizing socialist activists to participate in a vibrant and diverse socialist organization at both the local and the national level. DSA both educates the public about democratic socialist values and policies and builds progressive coalitions to win victories that move the U.S. and the world toward social democracy. In the near term, democratic socialists struggle for reforms that shift power and resources away from corporate elites and put them in the hands of ordinary citizens. In the long term, democratic socialists fight for a world in which all people share equally in the governing of the economic, political and cultural institutions and relationships that shape their lives.
Chicago DSA is affiliated with the national Democratic Socialists of America but is separately incorporated. Anyone paying national membership dues in the Chicago area is automatically a member of the Chicago DSA local. Chicago DSA is incorporated as an Illinois non-profit corporation and, like DSA nationally, has 501c4 status from the IRS. This means we are tax exempt but contributions are not tax deductible. It also means our electoral participation is limited in much the same way as participation by labor unions is limited.
Chicago DSA covers Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties: basically zip codes 600 through 609. As this is far too large a territory for members to effectively participate through chapter-wide general membership meetings, members are encouraged to form branches and commissions.
Current Chicago DSA branches:
- City of Chicago DSA (Northside Branch)
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/City-of-Chicago-Democratic-Socialists-of-America-1552834828264784/
- Email: email@example.com
- City of Chicago DSA (Oak Park Branch)
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GOPDSA/
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- City of Chicago DSA (Southside Branch)
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Chicagodsa/
- Email: email@example.com
General membership meetings are held four times a year, at least, including an annual Membership Convention in June. Any interested person may attend these meetings but only members in good standing may vote.
The Executive Committee usually meets the second Saturday of each month at 12:30 pm, usually at the Chicago DSA office but sometimes elsewhere. The Chicago DSA Executive Committee is made up of officers and duly elected representatives of any “branches” or “commissions”. Every DSA member is welcome to attend (and speak at) Executive Committee meetings.
Chicago DSA has an office irregularly staffed by volunteers. When no one is in the office, a telephone answering machine will take a message of modest length. Someone will get back to you as soon as possible.