I AM 2018 Video Contest

Your voice can make a difference. We want YOU to join our movement for economic and racial justice and spread the word about the I AM 2018 campaign.

Led by The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) and The Church of God in Christ (COGIC), The I AM 2018 campaign commemorates the 50-year anniversary of a watershed moment in the fight for labor and civil rights.

In 1968 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. traveled to Memphis, Tennessee to join striking AFSCME sanitation workers who demanded fair wages and safe working conditions. The predominantly African American sanitation workers had labored for years under a plantation-like work environment and faced brutal discrimination, earned poverty wages, and toiled under unsafe working conditions. After two sanitation workers were crushed to death on the job, 1,300 of their union brothers went on strike to demand dignity and respect. Alongside community allies and members of the clergy, the sanitation workers marched in the streets for weeks, carrying placards asserted their humanity: “I AM A MAN.”

The sanitation strike embodied Dr. King’s belief that all labor has dignity, and that without economic justice there can be no racial justice. Less than 24 hours after delivering his iconic “Mountaintop Speech” to strikers and supporters at COGIC’s Mason Temple, he was gunned down on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel.

Today the fight for economic and racial justice continues. The I AM 2018 Campaign is as much a call to action as it is a commemoration. On April 2-4, 2018, AFSCME, the Church of God in Christ, alongside civil, human, and workers’ rights leaders and activists will gather in Memphis for a series of events and grassroots trainings honoring Dr. King’s legacy, and the courage and sacrifice of the sanitation workers. The events in Memphis will prepare and empower thousands of activists to create change in their own neighborhoods, and make our communities’ voices heard in the 2018 elections and beyond.

To learn more about the strike, visit: iam2018.org

Please download a flyer about this contest or continuing reading the details below:

Contest Overview:

The I AM 2018 Video Contest is looking for 30 – 60 second video submissions that succinctly and creatively connect the struggles of the past to those of the present. Videos should inspire a call to action to continue the fight for justice for all working people. There is a preference towards personal stories that illuminate how the legacy of Dr. King and the striking sanitation workers is still relevant today.

The winning videos will be used as part of the I AM 2018 campaign’s major online ad campaign initiative, reaching thousands of viewers across the country leading up to the April 2-4 events in Memphis. The winner will have the option to receive a $1,000 grant OR a trip to Memphis in April to participate in the I AM 2018 activities, with transportation and lodging expenses paid.

In the case of a group submission, the winning team will have the option of either: (a) receiving a $1,000 grant (shared among the group); OR (b) one representative from the winning team may attend the I AM 2018 activities, with transportation and lodging expenses paid for that one representative.

Winning videos will be judged by prominent industry professionals, including Hans Charles, cinematographer of Ava DuVernay’s Oscar nominated documentary, 13th; Dorian Parks, co-founder of Geeks of Color; and award-winning filmmakers Madeleine Hunt Erlich and Shahin Izadi.

Eligibility and Submission:


All entrants must be 18 years or older. All content submitted (including but not limited to music) must be original and/or have rights clearance. Submissions are free. All videos must be submitted no later than 11:59pm EST on March 9, 2018 on the Film Freeway website according to the submission guidelines on the Film Freeway site: filmfreeway.com/IAM2018VideoContest-1

Terms and Conditions:

By submitting a video, the filmmaker verifies that they have read and understood these rules and to the best of their knowledge, all statements in the film are true. AFSCME reserves the right to disqualify any submission. All accepted submissions may be screened and posted at AFSCME’s discretion. The filmmaker hereby indemnifies, defends, releases, discharges, and holds harmless AFSCME, its affiliated organizations, connected organizations, subordinate bodies, partners, officers, employees, agents, members, assignees and licensees (collectively, the “Released Parties”), from any and all liability or claims arising out of or in any way resulting from their submission or in any aspect or phase thereof. In addition, the filmmaker agrees to indemnify AFSCME and each of the Released Parties and to hold each of them harmless from any and all liability, claim, action, damage, expense, and loss of any kind (including outside attorney’s fees) caused by or arising out of AFSCME’s use of the submission. Without in any way limiting the foregoing, in no event shall the filmmaker have any right to seek injunctive or other equitable relief against any of the Released Parties.

Upon submission, the filmmaker grants to AFSCME, without charge, the rights necessary to use their submission (including, without limitation, in advertisements, promotions and publicity), in any and all media now known or hereafter devised, for any purpose, throughout the universe in perpetuity. The filmmaker also grants AFSCME the right to utilize images and/or biographical information of the filmmakers for promotional purposes and agrees to provide any additional images and/or biographical information as requested by AFSCME. By submitting, the filmmaker expressly acknowledges and agrees that they shall be bound by the terms of this agreement. AFSCME shall have the unrestricted right to edit submissions in any manner or form. Foreign language films must include English subtitles.

There is no limit on entries submitted per person. Group submissions are accepted, but if a group submission wins then transport and lodging expenses will be paid only for one representative from the group. By participating, you agree to be fully and unconditionally bound by these rules, and you represent and warrant that you meet the eligibility requirements and give AFSCME the rights to use your video in all promotional material.