Why I Work with SURJ!

Last year on a SURJ phone bank, I had a conversation with a long distance truck driver from Kentucky. We spoke while he was on the road and connected initially over what basketball teams we liked, our families, and his horses back in Kentucky. I was calling about the ballot initiative in his state, where we were calling white working class voters to vote “no” to prevent a near-total abortion ban from being added to their state constitution. 

From the beginning of the call, he told me he didn’t have anything to vote for at all, did not believe in political change, and he was clear he was anti-abortion. But as I shared my own story and perspective about who would be impacted by a lack of access– poor people and rural people and people marginalized by our country’s healthcare system– we dug deeper into our conversation. 

I used the SURJ script and leaned on my training to find our way through a long conversation, validating him in what he shared, sharing my own experience, and gently drawing connections about abortion being a wedge issue so that those at the top can grab more power by dividing us. 

In the end, he said he would make it back to Kentucky in time and that he would vote “no” on Issue 2. 

“I’ll vote for you,” he said, after 55 minutes on the phone. 

Will you give a gift at the end of this year to make more conversations like this possible in 2024? 

I am a proud SURJ member since 2016. I have been trained as an organizer with SURJ and am now myself training others. It’s serious and important work with high stakes, but something I always try to communicate when I talk to friends and family about this work is how fun it is. There is so much joy and community in our phone banking spaces! 

And it’s joyful to be in a space undercutting white supremacy! That’s kind of the whole point.

SURJ is who I say yes to. It always has a place for me. Thank God I don’t have to face this moment alone.

Join me today to support this joyful, important work.

In community, 

Mary Biggs

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