Comm/Unity is a national network of communicators anchored by the Immigrant Defense Project. We are committed to dismantling criminalization in word and in deed. We seek to create a new “common sense” in which no human being is seen as disposable.
Our goal is to end harmful and criminalizing narratives through a series of resources, strategic messaging trainings and opinion research. By empowering immigrant rights organizations, supporting social justice communicators, and providing educational materials for journalists, we believe that the power of words -paired with action – can fulfill our vision for change.
Jon Rodney, Narrative Strategy Director
Based at the Immigrant Defense Project, Jon convenes the Comm/Unity network. In collaboration with Comm/Unity’s partners and directly affected community leaders, Jon works to expand narrative opportunities to humanize all immigrants, especially people with convictions. He provides strategic advice and framing support to campaigns challenging the criminalization of immigrants at the local, state, and national levels, and has placed stories in the UK Guardian, NPR, The San Francisco Chronicle, La Opinión, National Univisión and Telemundo news broadcasts, and scores of other outlets. Jon has also helped shape or advise on approximately a dozen public opinion research projects, working to incorporate key findings into messaging recommendations. He is an experienced trainer. Prior to joining IDP, Jon helped develop and execute communications strategy for key state legislation in California as well as strong local “Sanctuary” policies. He has also supported many deportation defense campaigns for people with past arrests or convictions.Tony, Jon’s chihuahua, maintains an extensive network of reporter relationships.
Zakiya Scott, Chief Training Strategy Consultant
Zakiya is a Southern Black queer writer and editor, youth advocate, and communications strategist who believes in the transformative power of storytelling to uproot racist systems, transform culture, and ultimately change the world. With roots in North Carolina’s community newspapers and radio programs, she moved to Oakland to fuse her passion for writing and storytelling with her desire to realize more justice and empathy. She found herself in a familial community as a communications and media intern at the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights. Zakiya went on to work at Fenton, where she provided media relations, messaging and strategic communications support to grassroots nonprofits and foundations within the firm’s social justice practice. Most recently, she worked at Blackbird to further the communications strategies of the Movement for Black Lives—a coalition of more than 50 organizations committed to fighting for Black liberation and community, institutional, cultural, and systems transformation.
Comm/Unity is a national network anchored by the Immigrant Defense Project and includes more than a dozen strategic network partners including:
- American Friends Service Committee
- Black Alliance for Just Immigration
- Detention Watch Network
- Freedom to Thrive (formerly Enlace)
- Grassroots Leadership
- Immigrant Defense Project
- Immigrant Justice Network
- Immigrant Legal Resource Center
- Just Futures Law
- LatinoJustice PRLDEF
- National Day Laborer Organizing Network
- National Immigration Law Center
- National Immigration Project of National Lawyer’s Guild
- Southeast Asian Resource Action Center
- United We Dream