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, Will, and Kankakee counties: basically zip codes 600 through 609. Our experience has been that this is far too large a territory for members to effectively participate through chapter-wide general membership meetings; consequently, we encourage the formation of branches and commissions. If there are none in your geographic area or in your area of interest, consider taking the intitiative in forming one. The members of the Executive Committee would be glad to help. For more information, also refer to our by-laws.