Throughout its 20+ year history, the Rural Organizing Project and its 50-some member groups have marched, occupied, strategized, written letters, made calls, organized vigils, visited their legislators, gotten arrested, and rallied in support of human dignity and democracy. The following stories highlight just a few of ROP’s key campaigns, events, and actions. Each story is a window into the victories, challenges, possibilities and pitfalls of grassroots, progressive organizing in rural and small towns.
In the summer of 2005, some 100 rural and small town Oregonians, from 30 of the state’s 36 counties, set aside a week of their lives to walk the 50 miles from Salem to Portland. The following is the story of The Walk for Truth Justice and Community: why it happened, how organizers pulled it off, what it accomplished, why it mattered, and what was learned along the way.