This project aims to leverage the debt collection system as a tool for direct action and mutual aid. We buy defaulted debt for pennies on the dollar, just as debt collectors would, but instead of attempting to collect it, we abolish it. For every dollar of defaulted debt we buy, $20 of debt will be abolished. This program launches on Thursday November 15th with a live “telethon” event in NYC – The People’s Bailout – where the goal is to raise $50,000, every penny of which will go toward abolishing $1,000,000 of defaulted medical debt. (In general, you cannot buy the debt of individuals. Rather, you have to buy categories of debt either by geography–folks in a given zip code, for example–or by category–medical debt, credit card debt, etc.)
After we have purchased and successfully abolished this $1,000,000 worth of debt, those whose debt was abolished will be notified with a letter that explains:
(1) That their debt has been abolished, and how that was done
(2) How to contact credit agencies to make sure the debt cancellation is reflected in their credit score
(3) How they can pay some of the jubilee forward, to abolish others also in debt. This is the “rolling” aspect of the jubilee.
NEXT STEPS/HOW TO HELP:
‘Like’ the StrikeDebt Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Strike-Debt/244850825627699
Share the Rolling Jubilee event page: http://www.facebook.com/events/394920527248194/
Follow @StrikeDebt on Twitter (we’re almost at 1,000 followers!)
Consider loaning your twitter or FB account to for a once-a-day blast: http://donateyouraccount.com/StrikeDebt (choose ‘Gold’ level)
Once you’ve done that, make some buzz! Try to post a few times a day about the Jubilee. Every single post counts. Here are some sample posts: http://bit.ly/RJSampleTweets. Feel free to copy and paste, or customize to your own liking. Just make sure to include the website www.rollingjubilee.org, and the hashtags #PeoplesBailout and #RollingJubilee, if you can.
Email your friends and ask them to do all of the above, too. Here are some articles you can use to get the conversation going:
The telethon starts at 8pm eastern time, so 5pm here. It will be streaming live on the internet, (probably on rollingjubilee.org)
**Also, here in Oakland I’m
hoping going to host a livestream event at the Holdout Niebel-Proctor Library on the night of the telethon. We’d watch the telethon, and I have a box of Debt Resistors Operations Manuals to distribute, so we can start talking about debt as a broad platform for resistance and direct action, and maybe get a Strike Debt working group going. Please contact me if you’d like to help organize this event!
STAY TUNE FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT A LIVESTREAM PARTY!!
November 8th: Donation site goes up, promotional video is released, other announcements. We hope to use this day to test and build up our network. We will put up a site for our people to use to send targeted tweets to various celebrities during this time.
November 12th? New York Times article will be published around this day. Then the press embargo will be lifted.
November 15th: The telethon! Massive simultaneous twitter campaign to promote the live stream and our ongoing donation successes.