The Dangers of Disruption: Privatization is Not Progressive

The Dangers of Disruption: Privatization is Not Progressive

Session Type(s): Panel

Starts: Friday, Aug. 3 2:00 PM (Eastern)

Ends: Friday, Aug. 3 3:15 PM (Eastern)

Disruption has become a buzz word, especially in the tech and business sectors. Many innovations meant to ‘disrupt’ have made life easier for those who use the services. But there’s a downside to disruption and it can have a devastating effect on communities. AirBnb was meant to disrupt expensive hotels. It’s also driven an affordable housing crisis in places like New Orleans. Uber and ride sharing apps pay poverty wages. Charter schools have contributed to contributed to a rise in segregation. In the San Francisco Bay Area, there are private elite busses, which are used mostly by white people and are not handicapped accessible. Join us for an honest discussion about ways to screen for downsides as disruption happens and hear examples of how people have organized and fought back.


Sarah Jaffe


Sarah Jaffe is Labor editor at and has been covering the Occupy movement since the beginning. She’s written for The Nation, the American Prospect, Truthout, Bitch, and many other publications. Before coming to AlterNet, she was Web Director for GRITtv with Laura Flanders.

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Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson

‍Brandon began his career teaching at Jenner Academy in Cabrini-Green, then at Westinghouse College Prep. He later became an organizer with the Chicago Teachers Union, defending schools from privatization and expanding access to state funding. In 2018, Brandon was elected commissioner of the 1st District of Cook County, where he led efforts to pass the Just Housing Ordinance, prohibiting housing discrimination against formerly incarcerated people. He also collaborated with colleagues to secure legal representation for immigrants facing deportation and advance recognition of Indigenous Peoples’ Day. Brandon and his wife Stacie live in the Austin neighborhood, raising their children Owen, Ethan and Braedyn.

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Julian Vasquez Heilig

Julian Vasquez Heilig

Julian Vasquez Heilig is an award-winning researcher and teacher. He is currently a Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies and the Director of the Doctorate in Educational Leadership at California State Sacramento.

His work has been cited by the New York Times, Washington Post, Associated Press, USAToday, Education Week, Huffington Post and other print and electronic media outlets. He has also appeared on local and national radio and TV including PBS, NBC, NBCLatino, NPR, Univision, Al Jazeera and MSNBC.

He obtained his Ph.D. in Education Administration and Policy Analysis and a Masters in Sociology from Stanford University. He also holds a Masters of Higher Education and a Bachelor’s of History and Psychology from the University of Michigan Ann Arbor.

He blogs at Cloaking Inequity, consistently rated one of the top 50 education websites in the world by Teach100. Follow him on Twitter @ProfessorJVH.

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