The California Young Democrats (CYD) is the official youth sector of the California Democratic Party, comprised of progressive people ages 14-35. The California Young Democrats are committed to creating a unit of young voters who will continue to elect Democrats for years to come. By campaigning with one another, the Young Democrats have made momentous differences in races all over California. Young Democrats in California work everyday to promote social justice, peace and stability in the world, women’s rights, and as of this weekend, African American rights also with the introduction of its newly formed Black Caucus.
Courtney Driver, the 23-year-old elected vice chair of the organization said, “We saw a need to create the caucus because we felt that African American young Democrats were not well represented. Being involved with the national YDA (Young Democrats of America), you go to their conventions and you see the California delegation, you don’t really see very many African Americans, and it looks like there aren’t any, but that’s not true. So we are going to make sure we are seen and that we are relevant within CYD.”
Although the CYD Black Caucus was formed very recently, they already hold the position of the largest CYD Caucus with 40 members. “We used Facebook, word of mouth, just mainly through the Internet, that’s how we young people are communicating now. So that played a major part in getting the word out,” said Diver
In order to increase their membership the CYD Black Caucus is looking into appointing regional directors so they can reach out to African American youth all over the state and hopefully in the near future, hold events.
“The main goal of the CYD Black Caucus now is getting the young African American voters from 18-30 that came out to vote for Barack Obama during the presidential election to come out and get more involved with our state elections,” said Driver. ” We want to build the momentum back up and get them excited about electing other African American candidates that are within our state.
“Mainly, we wanted to create a space for us to be able to meet, discuss our issues and we want to work to get young Democrats out there helping young African American candidates get elected and that’s pretty much it right now. We don’t really have a plan. We’re in our beginning stages, but we are developing a platform of issues.”
Driver also said the caucus is happy to have the support of the adult Black Caucus whose chair, Darren Parker, has already reached out to them. They are going to follow in the general footsteps of the adult Black Caucus until they figure out a distinctive issue platform of their own.