Often, community change starts with a single “aha moment.” Soon, that first idea is connected to another and another still. Then, in a flash, ideas unite to become people-powered action. That’s the case with “Hate Has No Home Here,” a global campaign that uses a clear and positive message to take on offensive and intolerant public discourse and behavior against people who are considered different – because of ethnicity, race, gender identity, age or other factors.
The campaign was launched in 2016 as a colorful sign, suitable for printing on standard-sized office paper, and for hanging on one’s window or door. Reading “Hate has no home here” (HHNHH), the sign informs and neighbors agree; tens of thousands of HHNHH posters have been printed for free distribution, requests for artwork have been fielded from countries around the world and there are more than 30 project leaders advancing the work nationally.
HHNHH relies on the proximity of people – on neighbors agreeing to agree on a value for their blocks and neighborhood. That is how the idea began – with neighborly conversations which led to peace ribbons and welcome signs and, now, HHNHH signs. Here, HHNHH co-founder Carmen Rodriguez shares insights about how On the Table sparked the campaign’s origins.
“My personal journey to this point included a commitment to civic engagement which developed, in part, as a result of my first On the Table experience. A neighbor invited me to dinner with friends to talk about our community, what we liked, what we hoped would change, etc. That neighbor was Jeanne Olson, one of the founders of Hate Has No Home Here. At the end of the conversation, she asked each of us what we were committed to doing, specifically what we would do to change the things we thought needed changing. That conversation was in 2014…. What I took away from that conversation was that all the little ideas incubating behind the closed doors of my neighbors’ homes might be just good enough to make things better for our community if we acted upon them.”
The Hate Has No Home Here Project promotes just and inclusive communities by encouraging neighbors to declare their homes, schools, businesses, and places of worship to be safe places where everyone is welcome and valued.