Black, Native and brown communities face structural barriers to accessing housing, education, health, employment, wealth and justice all the time. Racial and ethnic inequalities are always present in society but the role of structural racism is to legitimize the process that gives privilege and power to white people at the expense of communities of color.
The continued presence of disparities in our communities and our view of society where we see our neighbors as ‘the other’ normalize processes of exclusion, and the unequal access to opportunities in practice and policies as a standard.
As we work to understand how these four levels of racism fit together, and our responsibility for generating equity, let’s explore John Powell’s idea of belonging as an equalizer and an opportunity to work on a new narrative about people and communities. To co-create this new normal, we will need four things: agency, power, love and responsibility. We need these things to build bridges, to connect and to see each other as equals.
Take a moment to reflect on the stories and narratives around you:
- What are the practices and policies that these narratives promote?
- How are these stories advancing inclusive spaces and racial justice?
- Are these stories and narratives uplifting those who are marginalized?
Review the stories below. What do you feel inspired to do to work towards racial equity?
- This Community Conversation by Dilza Gonzales is a minute-long description of the conversation that changed her life.
- Read these 12 short stories on taking actions in a community for inspiration.