Our beloved Metro DC chapter of the DSA doesn't just cover the District of Columbia, but the entire D.C. metro area. To extend and deepen the strength of our movement, democratic socialists in Virginia and Maryland are forming branches of the chapter to focus on local issues. The local branches, while still under the umbrella of the Metro DC chapter, give current members opportunities to get involved in their own neighborhoods, help recruit new members, and bring our vision to bear on a wider range of issues.
The Northern Virginia branch met for the first time in June. The branch covers the Old Dominion from Loudoun County in the west to Prince William County in the south, and plans to meet throughout the area to reach as broad an audience as possible. DSA NOVA aims to reproduce the national's multi-tendency approach, with members expressing interest in antifascism, affordable housing, transit, immigration, labor and healthcare issues in the area and reaching out to progressive groups that would make natural allies. At the last meeting, the branch decided to make Medicare for All its focus, and plans to push Virginia lawmakers to support single-payer healthcare. Find DSA NOVA on Twitter at @dsa_nova, or join our Google group at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Montgomery County's new branch is also coming off the heels of a successful meeting. Members plan to contribute to the Fight for $15 campaign and lobby for free community college. With candidates running on both platforms in 2018's county council and county executive elections - including ones affiliated with DSA and Our Revolution - these issues are likely to be in the local spotlight. A grassroots campaign is especially well suited to Montgomery County because of its public financing for local elections.