Welcome to Project Canary!

The extreme and misguided decisions politicians make have real life repercussions. As our leaders send legislation such as bathroom bills, twenty week abortion bans and more into action, people’s lives are impacted. They claim to be protecting people, but often those whose lives are negatively impacted by these policies don’t have the privilege of telling their story. Project Canary honors the experience above the rhetoric by connecting people to each other through their individual untold stories.

Two Ways You Can Participate:

Share Your Story:
We invite you, as a person living under our current legislation, to share your personal story of injustice.  Stories will be posted anonymously.

Create Objects:
You can create small objects inspired by the collected stories. Craft objects have been formed by human hands for millennia as a vehicle to tell stories and serve a function in society.

In addition you can organize a work day and make objects as a group.

Stamp the objects you make with the story’s number and place them for strangers to find in strategic public places.  Our first drop was during during National Clay Week’s Social Engagement and Community Outreach day on October 14, 2016. Our next official drop will take place during the Inauguration Day, January 20, 2017.  Each object will come with a Project Canary Tag directing the finder to this website, with instructions for entering the story number, so that the finder can read the story that inspired the object. The finder can read other stories in the database and should they choose, they can leave their own story. Lastly, we ask the finder to report their find on social media using the hashtags #projectcanary #projectcanaryfind #sociallyengagedcraftcollective and by tagging us on Facebook and Instagram.

Note on Project Title:

Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote at length, and in the starkest and most personal terms, about what it means to be policed in America when you are black or brown.  In the final section of her dissent in Utah v. Strieff—a Fourth Amendment case that probed whether the existence of an outstanding arrest warrant could serve as retroactive justification for an otherwise illegal police stop she said, “We must not pretend that the countless people who are routinely targeted by police are “isolated.” They are the canaries in the coal mine whose deaths, civil and literal, warn us that no one can breathe in this atmosphere. They are the ones who recognize that unlawful police stops corrode all our civil liberties and threaten all our lives. Until their voices matter too, our justice system will continue to be anything but.”

In this project we are applying Justice Sotomayers metaphor of a canary in a coal mine to also include gender, immigration status, reproductive justice, and other human injustices in addition to racial inequity.  The goal is to empower those whose voice is often unheard, making politics real.

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