Political Education as Anti-Racist Practice

A core question the Closing the Gaps Network (CTG) team has been holding over the past year and a half has been, How might we test and practice the work that we are expecting of public servants who take part in the CTG network? This has led us to shift our performance measures to track our own behavior change alongside network members’, among other shifts that we outlined in our Ending White Supremacy Culture series. Another significant part of this work has been challenging ourselves to practice anti-racist organizing, as we expect of network members, and to be grounded in political education with each other as an organizing tactic. 

In recent months, we have been hearing more and more inquiries about the topics we’ve been exploring as a team through this political education journey. As part of our commitment to learning in public, we are sharing some reflections and resources on this part of our work. We encourage you and your team to utilize them to deepen and align your own analysis, and to let your analysis-building transform your work. 

Credit to Hafizah Omar for developing the reading lists and discussion questions for the first three political education resources linked below. 

Political Education Topic 1: Political Organizing History & Practice

This session was grounded in our team’s commitment to practicing the anti-racist principle Understanding History. We learned about the Mississippi Freedom Struggle and Ella Baker’s organizing strategies, and through this learning we were given an example of how organizing, more than anything, is about building community and extending mutual support to each other. 

That learning was reinforced by an interview between Eve Ewing and Mariame Kaba, two Black women organizers who grounded their reflections in a critical power analysis. Because power dynamics are always present, Ewing and Kaba remind us, engaging with conflict and discomfort is essential to our ability to build collective power.

Storytelling was another topic that came up in our learning. Without deep relationships and a practice of transforming harm, we learn that shifting narratives can only do so much. We need each other. And we need each other in accountable, growth-oriented relationships.

Check out our Political Organizing History & Practice resource here for readings & discussion questions.

Political Education Topic 2: Policing & Carceral Systems

We cannot reckon with the history of race in U.S. cities without acknowledging the insidious nature of carceral systems. A culture of punishment is in the air we breathe in this country, and avoiding that reality does a disservice to racial equity work. 

Because carcerality is so commonplace in our lives, we had to start by getting clear on our definitions. What, exactly, is policing? The carceral system and prison industrial complex? What is reform versus abolition? We don’t all need to agree on strategies, but to work as a team, we need to be moving from a place of shared language and definitions. 

Carcerality shows up in our mainstream media and popular culture so much that imagining a world beyond it can feel impossible.

Another important element of this political education session was to find a balance between reckoning with history and reimagining the future. Carcerality shows up in our mainstream media and popular culture so much that imagining a world beyond it can feel impossible. Engaging with poetry and art helps us break out of the norms and gives our imaginations permission to run free. 

We didn’t land with a common analysis on the path forward, but we did come to common ground on what it is that we’re talking about when we discuss policing and carcerality. We also have a common set of tools and frameworks to reference when having complex conversations about how to move with a lens of transformative justice and healing rather than punishment. 

Check out our Policing & Carceral Systems resource here for readings & discussion questions.

Political Education Topic 3: Power Mapping

Learning about the history of organizing is key, but we also need tools to ground our practice. Power mapping is both a tool and a process. It helps us capture and align with each other on how power exists in an environment at a moment in time. The more we engage in this process, the more readily we can make an assessment of power dynamics in real time, trust each other to have a similar assessment, and move strategically based on that. 

Check out our Power Mapping resource here for a tool that can support your team’s process.

Political Education Topic 4: Emergent Strategy

Managing a network that centers the work of reckoning with history and transforming ourselves to transform our cities is highly adaptive work. Across the many cities we work with, dynamics are constantly shifting, and our work–like that of so many people and institutions’ work–is to meet the ever-evolving needs of local organizers and communities. Yet, most of us have been trained by academia and the nonprofit sector to think and work in very linear ways. We want to check off a list of tasks and see that change has occurred. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy. So we looked to adrienne maree brown’s Emergent Strategy to guide our growth in this area. 

Through reflection on this essential text, we acknowledged the importance of resisting urgency, slowing down (“birds coast when they can” is a phrase we remind each other of often now), and finding trust in ourselves and each other. We committed to being transparent with each other across hierarchy and power dynamics; as one team member said, “there is nothing inherently wrong with hierarchies, only when capitalism assigns different value to where one falls within a hierarchy.” So, how might we value each other — financially, emotionally, and otherwise — outside the norms of capitalism? How might we prioritize care for ourselves and each other, knowing from the “fractals” lesson that what we practice in micro-dynamics has a direct impact on macro-dynamics? 

how might we value each other — financially, emotionally, and otherwise — outside the norms of capitalism?

This was one of our richest conversations of the year, and there’s no way to summarize it as beautifully as adrienne maree brown lays it out in her best-selling book. So, dive in! 

Check out our Emergent Strategy resource here for suggested excerpts and discussion questions.

 

There are no “right” answers for how to do political education, but these four topics shifted our ability to collaborate as a team and we’ve found that the lessons we gleaned from them have been widely applicable to many kinds of work. We hope you find them useful. 

In conclusion, we’ll leave you with a compilation of haikus created by our team members, inspired by Emergent Strategy.

 

things aren’t stuck this way 

let me see that other you

take in the full me

 

it is still my breath

exhaling is not the same

as holding it in

 

open up, dear self

pause, breathe in wisdom; exhale

care, love. embrace we

 

if I should rise steady

and cannot too pull you forth, 

what heights could I reach?

 

to live is to love

love your neighbor as yourself

perfect love drives out fear

 

life’s meeting is love

of God, family, neighbor

interdependence

 

I practice making

a poem, a meal, a collage 

this is where I dream

 

Image credit: Melanie Cervantes, sourced from Just Seeds




Powered by WPeMatico

Ending White Supremacy Culture: Racial Equity as a Process

At Living Cities, at the core of our racial equity work and values is an underpinning belief that to truly achieve our mission and work we must be intentional about operating under values of racial equity at every level and at every step of the work. Embedding racial equity into an organizational culture requires intentional work every single day. On a personal level, it can require a lifetime of studying, learning and unlearning which can seem daunting. Rooted in these understandings, we’ve come to understand that racial equity is a process rather than an outcome that can be checked off a to-do list. We seek to move beyond the binary thinking that suggests there is an “end” or that some people are “on top” or “more successful” when it comes to racial equity.

With our Closing the Gaps Network, we’ve been exploring and deepening our understanding of what it looks like to practice racial equity as a process in our work. We believe that to do so, practitioners need to reflect on the person/role/system framework to deepen their analysis and thus further embed equity into their processes as they’re making decisions. Racial equity work is inherently about changing the culture of institutions therefore understanding process change is critical for success.

We hope this resource will allow readers to adapt our agenda to create space for you to reflect on your personal practice so that you can model what this daily person-and role-level work looks like as you support work that aims to close racial gaps in income and wealth. We hope this resource will allow you to adapt our agenda to enhance your own ability to see how racial equity is a practice and a process.

Credit to Shammara Wright, Alyssa Smaldino and Thiara Falcon for developing the agenda and discussion questions for this session on racial equity as a process. 

 

AGENDA

Purpose: Create space for participants to have space to reflect on their person-level work as organizers and leaders of teams trying to advance racial equity. Participants get a deeper sense of how the person/role/system framework can support and deepen their racial equity processes.

Total time: 60 mins

Check-In: Start with a check-in that grounds people in culture, humanity and/or creativity. We used the podcast below, but our check-in resource has more options for you to consider. (You can also come up with your own!) 

[5 mins] Listen to Sunstone Podcast SEASON 1, EP. 3, clip from 12:25 – 16:51)

Alicia Garza and Ai-Jen Poo discuss their early experiences in organizing in their podcast, Sunstorm. 

[10 mins] In pairs participants discuss..

Share a time when you worked with others towards change.

How did you participate in movement building?

How did you feel during that experience?

 

Leading Racial Equity as a Process

[10 mins] Review Living Cities, racial equity competency framework

[20 mins] Journal on your own..

To enact & lead REI practices & processes…

  • What competencies do you most need to develop? Your team? (reference LC competency framework)
  • What are you personally devoted to at P/R/S levels? (template – devotion chart)

[15 mins] Small group conversation:

What came up for you in your personal reflections?

What advice or support might you get from this group to stay devoted to your personal practice and your visions for your team?

 

This resource is a template that you can adapt to your organizational needs. We hope that it helps you build your practice of defying white supremacy culture. If it does, or if you want to learn more about anything we’re sharing, let us know by emailing racialequity@livingcities.org.

Illustration by Alicia Brown




Powered by WPeMatico

Just Say Black

I work in circles where we talk a lot about “people of color” (POC). We discuss what POC need to thrive economically, how to support POC with resources, and of course we interrogate how racism affects POC in the public sector, philanthropy and business. 

Internally, I roll my eyes every time I hear or read the term. Sometimes the speaker is actually referring to all people of color, but usually, they are just using it as a euphemism for “Black.”

Misidentifying Black people in narratives, upholds a system of power that inherently believes Blackness should be censored. Avoiding the word Black in storytelling perpetuates the idea that Black is bad, wrong, counter-culture, or negatively revolutionary.

Avoiding the word Black in storytelling perpetuates the idea that Black is bad, wrong, counter-culture, or negatively revolutionary.

Let me explain. 

Organizations habitually speak of negative Black statistics in one paragraph, and then in the following, say: “that is why we are supporting people of color.” Some companies mention the tragic deaths of Black folk like Trayvon Martin, Breonna Taylor and others to reference their organizational awakening, while at the same time say, “we are investing in people of color,” as if to insinuate organizational risk by investing solely in Black Americans. 

We want racial gaps to close, not realizing these gaps widen because we continue to misdiagnose the inequities prolonged in our everyday language. 

“Black” is an Evolving Term  

Black is not a bad word. Although, it used to be. Black people in the United States have been called a variation of terms – especially derogatory – evolving into other names, every few decades. Since race is a social construct, you can bet these terms were used to classify, misidentify and reassign the ever growing, and diverse population of the Black diaspora as a subclass. Post enslavement, Black people were systematically classified as nigger by U.S. systems that governed the daily lives of Black American citizens. In the late 19th century until the height of the Civil Rights movement, the word was reappropriated by Black people and Negro was widely used and accepted, as was Colored, which some say was the politically correct term at that time. Today, both terms are preserved in Black-led institutions such as the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the United Negro College Fund (UNCF). 

After the assassination of the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968, the rumbling of Black Power movements leaped into what became known as the era of Black pride–popularized by James Brown in his said-anthem Say it Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud, released in the same year. The grief and frustration of Dr. King’s murder and breaking point from enduring racism and systematic oppression, prompted Black people to start reclaiming their identity, adopting terms such as Afro-American, African-American, and unapologetically – Black.

There is a reason why people who are responsible for speaking on behalf of an organization – whether they are a c-suite leader or the social media manager – censor, whitewash and massage stories of Black liberation. Black has been politicized since the earliest enslaved people arrived in the United States. Before Black people could speak for themselves socially and politically in this country, white men and women spoke for them as their owners. The Black politicization practice translates into modern media when we see people being bothered by the meaning of Black Lives Matter usage to work solely on behalf of Black people. 

“Black” in Business: How Using White Representation Became Industry Practice/Standard

It is not only in name that Blackness has been historically marginalized. When Black people earned the right to vote, white people intimidated and even killed Black people to prevent them from having a political voice. The aftermath contributed to the narrative that anything Black was inferior, unworthy, and bad for white business. Historically, Black business owners hid behind white people who spoke on their behalf when acquiring property or accessing capital to grow their business. This strategy left many Black entrepreneurs uninsured. For example, the late S.B. Fuller, a Black business owner from Louisiana, hired white salesmen for his cosmetics company, purchased from another white man in 1947. By the mid 1960s, Fuller was a multimillionaire, employing more than 5,000 people, both Black and white, across 85 offices in 35 states. However, when white customers found out Fuller was Black, they boycotted the products, resulting in Fuller filing for bankruptcy. 

In more recent history, business owner and artist T.I. spoke of encouraging the late Nipsey Hussle to buy the shopping plaza of the flagship The Marathon Clothing Store in Los Angeles, where Nipsey was first a tenant. T.I. recalls coaching Nipsey to send someone else to purchase the plaza on his behalf when Nipsey’s initial brick and mortar acquisition efforts were denied (listen around 29:56). While the details of the race of the representative(s) is unclear, the mere fact that someone other than the owner was intentionally placed to close the deal, is problematic. Eight months later, Nipsey purchased the property. 

The practice of excluding and erasing Black people in business was a standard way of operating in the early 1900s. Variations of this legacy of Black exclusion show up in business  today.

Black People are Woefully Underserved Under the People of Color Umbrella

The term people of color is unhelpfully nonspecific. BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) isn’t much better. It doesn’t always allow one to address the specific needs of the specific groups their organization is intending to serve. The experiences of the people lumped together are VASTLY different. And thus, may require a VASTLY different approach to properly serve them.

For example: 

An organization who serves local businesses in five U.S. cities submits their End-of-Year Report to the board and its funders. It is reported that business development and growth increased for businesses of color across all organizational size levels. As a result funding for the business initiative goes up. It is later revealed that while gains were made for people of color altogether, Black business growth decreased over time.

The term people of color can be inadvertently harmful to the population you’re intending to serve.  

The term people of color stems from women of color, an identifier birthed by 10 Black women. In 1977, these Black women created a Black women’s agenda for the National Women’s Conference, which had little to no inclusion of specific plans for Black women. When other ‘minority’ women got word of this agenda, they asked to be included in the Black women’s agenda, reorganizing it to fit ‘women of color.’ It was a political designation. Nothing more than that. Today, organizations use the word to show similarities of oppression among marginalized groups, rather than to identify individual needs that require collective support. 

With years of miscommunication about the root of oppression, it is common for media narratives centered in racial equity to mention the Black experience in a collective narrative with other groups. Often, when you see the word Black, the word ‘and’ will follow as if to make the message more palatable for the reader: Black and brown; Black and immigrant; Black and women-owned

…it is common for media narratives centered in racial equity to mention the Black experience in a collective narrative with other groups.

Colleagues, if you haven’t yet been informed, I’m here to tell you: It is lazy to use the term people of color without thinking and speaking to the disaggregation of the word when applicable. 

At a time when white supremacy is pervasive, we need authentic and deliberate unity among communities of color. This includes saying “Black” when you mean it, even if that excludes other people of color. See how my Asian American colleagues write about how their community can stand in solidarity with Black people towards Black liberation. The practice of specifying Black is the greatest strategy for solidarity.

Avoiding the term “Black” erases Black people. Black Americans need to be seen, acknowledged, understood, and humanized. To close racial gaps in wealth, income, health, education, and more, it is imperative to direct attention and explicit solutions to Black people in our work and in social movements. 

When in doubt, just say Black. 

 

 

“Humanize Black” Art by Destiny Darcel




Powered by WPeMatico

There is Only One Kevin Clayton…But We Need One in Every Company

This piece was developed with guidance and input from the Living Cities Narrative Change Working Group, a collective impact consortium composed of foundations, financial institutions and key partners working to harness market forces for economic inclusion by shifting corporate narratives about racial equity. 


Everyone saw it happening. In the final week of May 2020, COVID-19 continued to tear through the US, disproportionately devastating Black and Brown communities, highlighting hundreds of years of racial disparity and injustice. Protests raged against the murder of George Floyd and countless others. And people began to demand that corporate America join them in bringing an end to our nation’s long history of racial injustice.

Few American companies have interrogated how racism is baked into their business models and practices, and most have remained silent in previous moments of reckoning. But this time, the public made it clear that neutrality would be met with the same animosity as prejudice.

What followed was a scramble in corporate America to respond — the social media posts, the press releases, the donations, the hirings, the firings — as each company sought to suddenly answer questions that they had never once thought to ask themselves. People wanted companies to show not simply that they weren’t racist, but that they were affirmatively anti-racist. And for many companies, they struggled to quickly understand what exactly this meant. 

It was a time for fire drills.

But not for Kevin Clayton and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

While other companies were attempting to make diversity hires, cut checks, and create new partnerships overnight, the Cavs were getting things done. The Cavs joined with many of their longstanding partners in calling on Cleveland to declare racism a public health crisis. They held a townhall meeting with the Mayor and Chief of Police, who they have close working relationships with, to have a candid discussion about public safety and how to do law enforcement in a racially equitable way.  The Cavs recently joined with many of their longstanding partners in calling on Cleveland to declare racism a public health crisis. And, the week of Father’s Day, they used their substantial fan base to organize and host “A Time to Talk” series with the NAACP about Black men and mental health. More than 30,000 viewers participated.

Why was the Cavs organization able to move so quickly and so authentically? According to Kevin Clayton, their Vice President of Diversity, Inclusion & Community Engagement, they were built for this. Starting with owner Dan Gilbert, the Cavs have “do the right thing” as one of their business principles which is deeply embedded in their culture.  His advice to others taking point on D&I work: make sure your leadership, like his, not only wants to hire someone to do the job but supports them in getting the job done. He and his team treat this as a priority every day and not just when it leads the nightly news.

Diversity and inclusion work always needs to be tied to the bottom line…

Kevin learned early in his career that diversity and inclusion (D&I) work always needs to be tied to the bottom line. While working at Proctor & Gamble in his mid-twenties, his CEO, John Pepper, recognized the need to hire and support a more diverse team and better understand the diversity of their customer base to increase the company’s market share in the face of innovative international competitors. Kevin never forgot that connecting diversity to business objectives was the best way to get diversity prioritized. Speaking on this Clayton says, “I’ve always been able to build a business case for diversity. And I’m not talking about just a narrative that says ‘diversity of thought is good for our business’. I’m talking about a quantifiable business case that leveraging diversity and inclusion will increase revenue.” 

He got a first glimpse of the possibilities after visiting their training center. It was the pinnacle of modern technology and data. At each basket, cameras tracked different arm angles, how fast the ball was thrown, and the percentage of free throws each player made. By the time practice was done, the coaches had a report they could act on. With this obvious dedication to data and analytical power, Kevin was eager to see what information the Cavs had on their 22 million fans worldwide from a diversity perspective. He was met with blank stares. The only data they had is what the League gave them on season ticket holders, a small fraction of the fan base. When Kevin asked why the business didn’t have this critical data, he was told: no one ever asked for it. Well, now he was asking so that the company could better understand the business imperative of operating in ways that advance racial equity. 

He knows that the Cavs can’t increase the fan base without having a culture that is inclusive of everyone.  They can’t attract the talent they need without being trusted in the community. Clayton is perhaps the only person who has had a P&L directly tied to the diversity department, which he had when working at Russell Athletic. With the Cavaliers, he is currently finalizing a policy where all bonus eligible staff will have D&I results connected to their overall compensation package. 

He is also building an authentic relationship with the Cleveland community. Clayton grew up in Cleveland, playing basketball on courts that the Cavaliers had resurfaced, so he was already familiar with the basic community outreach the Cavs did. However, upon joining the team, he realized the Cavalier’s community engagement often featured their financial contributions. This made them a valued partner, but he wanted to make sure they were a trusted one as well that provides what the community needs. Speaking about all that’s gone on in 2020: “It wasn’t, ‘how do we write a check?’ For us, it was, ‘how do we strengthen what we have been doing and bring in our partners to help us shift our focus community-wise to where we are needed right now.’” 

Because of the D&I infrastructure that the Cavaliers had built, they were able to move with agility and efficacy. While other teams were struggling to approach the topic of race, the Cavaliers emerged as a leader among their peers.  This was crystallized when the NBA reached out to the Cavaliers to seek advice on what their teams should do to engage with and support the Movement for Black Lives. 

Clayton’s best advice to peer companies: don’t treat this as a moment that will go away. Treat it as the movement it is — one that has built up over years, and one in which corporations have the privilege and responsibility of playing a role. He encourages companies to do the internal work that’s needed and partner with community to identify and address systemic barriers that perpetuate racial inequities. 

Kevin’s phone is ringing off the hook, and he answers as best he can. But he is one person, and right now corporate America needs a growing team of Kevins to connect D&I to the everyday work of each organization and to build authentic relationships with the community. This is the only proven way to drive business forward towards a more inclusive future.




Powered by WPeMatico

Ben & Jerry’s Approach to Racial Equity: Reach for the Carrot, Don’t Just Avoid the Stick

This piece was developed with guidance and input from the Living Cities Narrative Change Working Group, a collective impact consortium composed of foundations, financial institutions and key partners working to harness market forces for economic inclusion by shifting corporate narratives about racial equity. 


Ben & Jerry’s is known for setting a high bar when it comes to corporate activism. The company hasn’t shied away from taking on the big issues in society, and it makes an effort to more fully embed its values into its business practices. 

It has cleaned up its supply chain, reduced its use of plastics and worked to minimize its carbon footprint as a dairy business. But when it came to racial equity, gaps persisted. For example, few Black people work at Ben & Jerry’s. As one successful Black franchisee said at the company’s annual meeting, “We’ve got to be 25% Black or it’s wack.” There were expectations for the company – and it needed to find a way to exceed those. It needed to focus on representation, power and culture change to address racial equity. 

This gap was not a surprise. As a corporate team, the company had studied systemic racism, conducted trainings on implicit bias and spent time with Reverend William Barber II learning about Moral Mondays. The point is, all the way up to the board level, Ben & Jerry’s knew this was a gap, yet it persisted year after year. 

Before the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and too many others in the summer of 2020, the company had committed to doing the hard work internally to finally align the company’s commitment to racial equity into how it operated as a company. It hired Race Forward to do an audit on how to advance equity inside the company, then hired Erika Bernabei and Theo Miller from Equity & Results to guide them in antiracist impact design and implementation – including a root cause analysis to ask the hard question: Why was racial equity not embedded Ben & Jerry’s business operations?

Ben & Jerry’s CEO Matthew McCarthy, company Global Social Mission Officer Dave Rapaport, along with Erika, shared more about what the company is now doing to make racial equity an essential part of the company’s culture. Six takeaways stand out. 

Start by understanding the root causes of why things are the way they are. This isn’t superficial work. With increasing frequency, friends reach out to Dave and ask him if he has something they can look at, a policy that will help them bring racial equity into their workplace. Dave is reluctant to do this. He says it’s not about a policy. It is about a deep understanding of what the underlying causes are that lead to inequities. Without this, companies only go for quick fixes, not the necessary holistic solutions. They say they will recruit better, which may bring in employees of color, but this won’t answer the question about why they don’t stay at a company and move up the ranks. He says, “We know that if you don’t get to the deep roots of the issue, you won’t really change, and you will fail. That’s our experience. If people are serious about racial equity, they need to commit to the long-term and deep work that is required.”

Be persistent, rigorous and patient. Ben & Jerry’s has been doing this internal work for more than a year and it will begin implementation in 2021. Erika, who co-leads the company through this work, points out that persistence is a critical strength when addressing market dominance or product innovation. But when it comes to doing racial equity work, businesses have a tough time doing the individual reflection required to be accountable. Frankly, it’s difficult work. Not because this self-reflection will lead companies to lose money, but because what is on the table can be perceived as interpersonal losses. Leaders have to acknowledge that they may not be fully responsible for racial inequities that persist in their company and in society, but they are accountable for ending them. Ben & Jerry’s has brought that rigor and spirit to the process and made this an internal priority. Erika and Theo’s team has had the attention of the full executive team not just for days, but for months. Ben & Jerry’s is committed to doing this work the right way, which takes time. There is pressure to see change, but while the murders in the summer of 2020 made the company feel intense urgency to overhaul the way it approaches racial equity within the business – it knows it has to do the deep work that will lead not only to changes in practices, but changes in culture and policy that will last.

Dave agrees: “If Ben & Jerry’s is purely about having more people of color on staff, we could have done things to try to increase numbers. But we know that the company has existed in a particular way for a long time, and we cannot shift our systems overnight. We could do band-aids if we wanted quick answers, but we want to understand the roots of the problems and address those. We want to have a culture that advances racial equity. The staff and executive team have to uncover these for ourselves with the help of outside guidance to check our blind spots, then come up with solutions. This challenges people’s attention spans. But we know we can’t change culture in 30 days and are committed to doing this right.”

Move toward the carrot, don’t just avoid the stick. Matthew strongly feels that, “At end of day, we humans do our best work toward carrots rather than away from sticks. Businesspeople trying to move away from looking bad or getting outed on Glassdoor isn’t a bad motivation, but it won’t sustain you. Believing these are the right things to do is a more sustainable motivation to move a team forward rather than fixing a problem or trying not to look bad.” He emphasizes that executives pursuing this work need to be ready for a lot of swings and misses. If the process isn’t filled with mistakes, and designed to create space for mistakes, it won’t get to the heart of what needs to happen. People have to face that we are part of the problem. Addressing this is filled with shame, and people avoid shame. It will feel painful. It’s difficult work, and executives need to prepare their teams to go through this. Done right, it is incredibly empowering. 

Don’t just say it is a priority, make it one. Dave says that a former staff person first led this work, but when that person left, it landed on his plate. This meant that for the first time, racial equity efforts at Ben & Jerry’s were spearheaded by a leadership team member. In his role as CEO, Matthew backed this as a priority. A global business, Ben & Jerry’s has many competing priorities, but Matthew never wavered when it came to putting time, energy and resources behind the racial equity work. “Progress requires looking backward and saying you could have done better,” he says. “Unless you are satisfied with how things are today, you need to be willing to embrace constructive dissatisfaction. Create the space for saying racial equity is a persistent gap. A huge one. We say we want to do something. We know we need to do something. But we aren’t making progress. This creates dissonance. It is different for people who don’t give a damn or think we are good where we are. We have to ask ourselves: Are we clueless or clued in but failing? Then live with that answer and do something about it.”

Realize that business is well-suited to do this work. Matthew says he originally thought this work was best done by human resources, a non-governmental organization or the government. But when he thought more about it, he realized business is better situated to expand economic opportunity, offer personal development and provide access to power. Businesses move faster than any other entity. He and Dave have enormous power as executives of a global company to use their energy to advance racial equity. 

The risk is not in doing comprehensive racial equity work, it is in not doing it. If companies are not doing something to solve injustice, the business is dead and coasting, and they just don’t know it. In a world of hyper-transparency, 15- to 20-year-olds are running the world and they will dictate which brands exist in 10 to 20 years. Not being involved in issues of top concern to them is dangerous. Boards of directors and shareholders should be asking what companies are doing to contribute positively to solving root causes of racial inequity. Leaders need to know that racial justice is going mainstream. What might seem fringe now will be how everyone does business in a blink. 

Matthew sums up both the urgency and the necessity of doing the racial equity justice work: “Everything that has transpired in the past three, six, 12 months – COVID, populism, racial injustice – all those things have shown the importance of doing this work. Sometimes when things go bad, these things get set aside. Everything that has happened has added giant logs to the fire of tackling this. What is so painful and beautiful about this moment is that you can’t turn away and not see it is all related to white supremacy. What I’d tell my peers is: If you want your business to be here in a decade, don’t ignore the urgency of addressing racial equity.”




Powered by WPeMatico

Prudential Sees Racial Equity as a Moral, Economic and Business Imperative

This piece was developed with guidance and input from the Living Cities Narrative Change Working Group, a collective impact consortium composed of foundations, financial institutions and key partners working to harness market forces for economic inclusion by shifting corporate narratives about racial equity. 


The racial reckoning that followed the murder of George Floyd got the attention of major corporations across America. It was clear that consumers pay attention to how businesses confront racism, and hundreds of companies responded with statements supporting racial equity. It became clear that diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is no longer just the right thing to do – it is now also a business imperative.

Some companies came to that realization earlier. Prudential Financial, Inc., acknowledges that it is still on a racial equity journey, but it committed to increasing Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) several years ago. Vice President of Social Responsibility and Partnerships at Prudential and President of the Prudential Foundation Shané Harris explains that this shift was spurred by a purpose-driven brand identity, changing demographics and market competition, not to mention internal leadership and organizing.

A few years ago, Prudential established a new business function called Inclusive Solutions that integrates community-facing teams such as Social Responsibility and Impact Investing with corporate Diversity & Inclusion and employee engagement teams.  The department, led by Lata Reddy, senior vice president at Prudential and chair of the Prudential Foundation, focuses on helping the company address societal challenges while also advancing commercial objectives through the lens of inclusive growth. It includes working intentionally with Prudential business leaders to come up with new approaches that address the emerging needs of increasingly diverse consumers, helping business leaders gain insights to reaching historically underserved communities, while evolving Prudential operating models and talent practices to ensure the company is living out its purpose.  The organizational design is intended to fully integrate Prudential’s purpose and a culture of inclusion into the company’s business practices. 

So as racial tensions have continued boiling up across the country, Prudential was well-positioned to respond in an authentic, meaningful way – and to deepen work it believes is both the right thing to do and the smart thing to do.

As it continues working toward racial equity, Prudential is building systems of accountability into the way it works that will propel the company forward and maintain momentum even when racial justice issues are not in the national spotlight. The company has embraced its purpose of financial security for all, addressing racial equity as a critical aspect of their brand: who it wants to be and how it wants to be known. 

As society expects more of brands – as companies acknowledge we have to move to a multi-stakeholder accountability model, not just accountability to our shareholders – this becomes a business priority,” Harris says. 

Although Prudential has traditionally provided financial solutions to an affluent customer base, it increasingly wants to reach the middle market. Like any business, Prudential seeks economic growth, but as the United States transforms into a race-plural society – with a majority of people of color by 2045 – Prudential recognizes the need to promote greater diversity, equity and inclusion throughout its business.

“How do you use the core business model to advance commercial goals but also really apply it to addressing complex social issues?” Shané says. “It is a business imperative that we have the right insights and that we are authentically engaging diverse communities.”

At the same time, Prudential has been making changes to help guide both the way it shapes business practices and the way it listens to employees. That includes better leveraging Prudential’s Business Resource Groups (BRG). Business Resource Groups (also known as Employee Resource Groups) are voluntary employee-led affinity groups managed under the auspices of Inclusive Solutions. These groups were established decades ago to intentionally create an inclusive culture that aligns with Prudential’s business strategy, which promotes inclusion and diversity both within the company and across the markets it serves. While Prudential’s BRGs have existed for more than 20 years, it was clear that a rapidly changing external environment and marketplace created a need and opportunity to elevate the work of BRGs to fully realize their potential.

In retrospect, Shané sees the reengagement of BRGs – including the Black Leadership Forum (BLF) – as one of the most instrumental steps Prudential took to create an authentically diverse culture. The BLF represents the company’s Black employees. Roughly 10 percent of the company’s 25,000 U.S.-based workforce is Black, and the BLF is about 1,600 employees strong. The BLF creates a platform for Black employees to talk openly about racial equity and encourage the company’s leadership to find ways to accelerate the development of a Black talent pipeline. BLF and other BRGs within Prudential are also effectively serving the role of “critical friends,” providing pressure from within the organization to constantly strive toward more inclusive culture and business practices, which has led to even greater internal changes in recent years. 

All of this was in place before the killing of George Floyd. 

“That was a real moment of acceleration for the BLF,” Shané says. “As the co-leader of the BLF, my counterpart and I put out a video within 24 hours of the tragedy, expressing our own personal reflections with genuine vulnerability – talking to the members of the BLF who were already stunned, hurt and weary from the outsized impact COVID-19 was having on Black and Latinx communities.”

But instead of just keeping the video within the BLF, Prudential disseminated it across the company, which elicited about 200 comments from employees. Even though many employees – particularly white employees – were uncomfortable grappling with the larger issue of systemic racism, employees leaned into the discomfort and expressed the kind of solidarity that can be a precursor to authentic behavior change. 

“We shared a note with the company’s executive leadership teams and said, ‘This is how our employees are feeling. Take a look at this video. We need to respond,’” Shané says. That ultimately led the company’s CEO, Charles F. Lowrey, to listen deeply to employee input and engage BLF members in what Shané calls a reverse mentoring framework. 

As a result, she says, an all-employee event was led by the BLF less than a week later that kicked off a series of conversations across the company. 

“There were 106 meetings with senior leaders talking about what it really means to commit to racial equity – and what Prudential needs to do to examine and evolve its own culture,” Shané says. 

Prudential also started to reckon with the company’s full history, and recognized that work is needed throughout the company – not just through investments in Newark, NJ, where the company is headquartered.

The fact is that the company’s purpose-driven identity and 50-year commitment to Newark, where a majority of the population are people of color, is real, authentic and important.

As a Black woman raised in Newark, I understand that class doesn’t inoculate anyone from systemic racism,” Shané says.

That perspective helps drive Prudential’s holistic view of advancing racial equity, which includes not only Black staff but also the Newark community. 

Prudential made nine commitments at their last shareholder meeting to do more to embed racial equity in the company’s operation and business model going forward. These commitments fall into three categories: first and foremost, growing and nurturing diverse talent, particularly Black and Latinx talent; incorporating racial equity into the business strategy of every line of business; and expanding philanthropic giving and impact investing in the community and through policy to address barriers to racial equity.

“These kinds of changes can create discomfort and be hard for some people to grapple with,” Shané says. “We have to inspire people to move beyond this discomfort and lean into it.”

Since June, a Racial Equity Task Force has brought together representatives from all the company’s business lines to keep racial equity and inclusion top of mind, and to create an accountability measure for leaders to report on progress even as they examine the company’s legacy and the work that still needs to be done. With many decisions being made at the business line level, racial equity is now one of the metrics in the review of new business plans and budget decisions. Plus, there is transparent communication across all employee channels at least every two weeks.

Racial equity issues have always been critically important to address. Now, with much of the American public tuned in, she affirms the company is more committed to finding solutions than ever before.

“Companies have to confront this – they have to respond,” Shané says. “Because that’s what the external environment is demanding and it’s the right thing, and the smart thing, to do.”


This piece was developed with guidance and input from the Living Cities Narrative Change Working Group, a collective impact consortium composed of foundations, financial institutions and key partners working to harness market forces for economic inclusion by shifting corporate narratives about racial equity. 




Powered by WPeMatico

Collective Organizing Toward Narrative Change: An Interactive Timeline

Explore the timeline at the end of this post!

Over the past four years, we have lived through so many events that have sparked, challenged or reshaped national conversations about race. Donald Trump was elected after a campaign characterized by xenophobia and racism, and during his term the country experienced both an uptick in hate crimes and a resurgence of movements for racial justice. Colin Kaepernick began taking a knee during the national anthem in protest of police brutality and was forced out of the NFL. The murders of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd sparked global uprisings in solidarity with Black lives. The coronavirus pandemic swept the globe, exacerbating economic and racial inequality. And throughout, organizers have continued to push to change policies, practices, and powerful narratives that cause harm to communities of color and replace them with new narratives that advance safety and power. 

During this period, Living Cities has focused on narrative change as a strategy for advancing racial equity. The Narrative Change Working Group—a collaborative network of Living Cities member institutions, foundations, financial institutions and other partner organizations—was established in 2018 to explore and understand how systemic racism manifested in dominant narratives in the private sector. The Working Group was specifically interested in understanding beliefs that were held and perpetuated by corporate leaders, and how they could be challenged to push companies towards equitable practices. 

This work took place in the context of a long history of people of color organizing within the corporate sector to reshape narratives and policies. We learned from PolicyLink and FSG’s 2017 publication, The Competitive Advantage of Racial Equity, and W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s 2018 publication, The Business Case for Racial Equity, as well as the work of The Center for Economic Inclusion, JUST Capital, B Lab, Equity Matters,  Equity & Results, JIJ Communicationsand other working group members and partners.  And, the project was perpetually evolving in response to our shifting knowledge, and the many real-time examples of narrative change unfolding around us.

The project was perpetually evolving in response to our shifting knowledge, and the many real-time examples of narrative change unfolding around us.

This timeline highlights major milestones, but what was most impactful about the Working Group was how we worked together. Representing over 20 different institutions, we approached this work in the spirit of collective action in service of a shared goal, rather than competition. As a result, members remained open to following the inspiration of group members and trusted one another to carry different parts of the work forward as we learned more about what it would take to build towards narrative change. Each individual brought their own stories and perspectives to the collective. We invested in our relationships with one another, pushed our imagination of what was possible, and leveraged our personal and institutional power and networks to bring our ideas to life. 

All along, we were building personal racial equity competencies to inform our strategy. Several members of the working group attended Racial Equity Institute’s Groundwater training and the People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond’s Undoing Racism training to build a systemic analysis of racism. Working Group member Erika Bernabei, Principal at Equity & Results LLC, led the group through a workshop on anti-racist Results-Based Accountability (RBA)—a framework for defining success and having discussions about measurement and evaluation. The meetings were also designed to foster reflection, competency building and personal growth.

Together, working group members reached out to dozens of corporate leaders to reinforce the moral, economic and business imperative of racial equity and identify some leaders who were working to truly embed racial equity into their business model and operations. The working group gathered and shared stories reflecting a new narrative about the role of racial equity in corporate America, sharing their own experiences and institutional lessons along the way. The group recognized that infrastructure is needed to support those seeking to operationalize a new narrative about racial equity, supporting the development of A CEO Blueprint for Racial Equity, published by PolicyLink, FSG and JUST Capital, and a group of consultants advancing a new way of working with corporate clients that reflects deep racial equity competencies.

There is still a long way to go to change narratives to build safety and power for people of color in the workplace, and the organizing must – and will — continue. During one of our Working Group meetings, we collectively reflected on what an equitable and just workplace might look and feel like. Members imagined open, colorful, and light-filled workspaces with people who reflect the community at every level. We described colleagues who take joy in knowing one another fully and authentically. We saw workplaces grounded in the spirit of abundance and where everyone’s needs were met with pay and opportunity. And the work of these companies would meet the needs of diverse communities.in ways that are broadly supportive of racial equity. This is the vision we are dreaming of and collectively building towards.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the narrative change working group and whose contributions led us through this journey.  Members (with the organizations they represented on the working group) and Living Cities staff supporting this group included: Aifuwa Ehigiator (Deutsche Bank), Alison Omens (JUST Capital), Amber Randolph (Deutsche Bank), Ben Hecht (Living Cities), Betsy Krebs (JPB Foundation), Carina Wong (Gates Foundation),  Catalina Caro (JUST Capital), Christine Jacobs (Kresge Foundation), Dennis White (MetLife Foundation), Dwayne Proctor (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation), Graham Macmillan (Ford Foundation), Ene Afufu (Living Cities), Erika Bernabei (Equity & Results), F. Javier Torres (Surdna Foundation), Geri Yang Johnson (Wells Fargo), Jana Holt (Morgan Stanley), Jeff Johnson (JIJ Communications), Jennifer Riordan (Wells Fargo), Jessica Fontaine (Living Cities), Joan Springs (Living Cities), Joanna Carrasco (Living Cities), Jocelyn Corbett (B Lab), Joe Scantlebury (W.K. Kellogg Foundation), John Kimble (Deutsche Bank), Josh Kirschenbaum (PolicyLink), Julie Bosland (Living Cities), Julie Nelson (Race Forward), Julienne Kaleta (Living Cities), Kerry Sullivan (Bank of America), Kristen Grimm (Spitfire Strategies), Lisa Talma (Deutsche Bank), Mahlet Getachew (PolicyLink), Mark Harris (JPB Foundation), Megan McGlinchey (Living Cities), Mekaelia Davis (Prudential), Michael McAfee (PolicyLink), Na Eng (McKnight Foundation), Norris West (Annie E. Casey Foundation), Owen Stone (Living Cities), Rachel Korberg (Rockefeller Foundation), Santiago Carrillo (Living Cities), Shammara Wright (Living Cities), Shane Harris (Prudential), Sloane Kali Faye (B Lab), Tawanna Black (Center for Economic Inclusion), Thomas Houston (Living Cities), and Yusuf George (JUST Capital).

This piece was also developed with Ene Afufu.




Powered by WPeMatico

Building an Ecosystem of Support for Local Governments to Advance Racial Equity

As residents are demanding racial justice and city leaders increasingly recognize that racial equity is integral to all of their priorities, it has never been more important that local leaders have an intentional ecosystem of support to meet their full range of needs, from data and research to training and policy support. 

In late 2018, Living Cities and four other national groups — Race Forward/The Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE); PolicyLink; NLC/ Race, Equity and Leadership (REAL); and ICMA — recognized our shared focus on advancing racial equity in and through local government and committed to better understanding each other’s areas of expertise to strengthen the overall ecosystem.  While most of us already had bilateral relationships with the others, they were inefficient for information exchange and did not allow us to think together about what it would take to reach our shared goal using the resources, expertise, people power, and extended networks of all of our organizations.  

After meeting in early 2019, we quickly recognized that the scale of our aspirations required field-level collaboration; together, we could go broader and deeper by leveraging each other’s strengths and could avoid confusion and duplication among local leaders seeking support from national groups.  We also wanted to challenge the idea that organizations working towards similar goals are in competition with one another, whether for grant dollars or the attention of city leaders. The result: a commitment to working together – regularly and intentionally — to build the field of practice of national organizations supporting racial equity in cities.  

Recognizing that progress on building an ecosystem is only possible at the speed of trust, we invested time in getting to know one another – as people and as institutions – so that we could share honestly and vulnerably. We know that until we can name what we don’t know or what is not working as hoped, we cannot actually transform how we work with cities as a group.

The first phase of this effort has been to understand and work to our strengths, sharing information and filling in each other’s gaps by working with different audiences or addressing different needs. For example, we recognized that we each have different audiences we’re reaching. NLC’s membership is primarily elected officials, while ICMA works with city managers and Living Cities has deeper relationships with mayoral chiefs of staff and city staff who work on procurement, business support and wealth building. GARE is a membership network of local government jurisdictions making a commitment to advancing racial equity across the breadth and depth of their organization and often works with internal racial equity “sparkplugs” who are racial equity leaders within city government, while PolicyLink has worked to bridge internal and external organizers for policy change. This has led to different role-alike groups for these different types of leaders, and at times, collaborative efforts, such as a jointly led cohort of local chief equity officers. In spring of 2020, all five groups were working to have a presence at the GARE annual conference, co-scheduling other convenings at this conference to make it easier for city teams to attend and work together. While COVID-19 caused the conference to be cancelled, we have continued to support each other as speakers and participants for our virtual conferences.

Moving forward, the partners are starting to think and act as a field. The group is seeking to align around some common frameworks, values, tools and metrics. For example, GARE’s normalize, operationalize, organize, visualize framework resonated with the group. Similarly, the PolicyLink/USC Equity Atlas and Racial Equity Index can be used across organizations. The group also is exploring how to shift the expectations of city governments so that racial equity is seen as a core piece of both how they operate and the results the city prioritizes, through everything from societal narratives to strong community accountability relationships.

Finally, just as it is important for our five organizations to deepen our work together, we need to continue to seek to understand, collaborate with and leverage the unique strengths of other players in the broader ecosystem, building a national movement to make it an expectation that cities make racial equity central to both how they operate and to what end – and together support them to live up to these expectations. The ecosystem map below offers a sampling of the other players advancing racial equity in and through local governments across this country.  




Powered by WPeMatico

Ending White Supremacy Culture: Honoring the Labor that Got Us Here

Living Cities has learned that to do racial equity work with authenticity, we have to embrace a new way of working. It has to start with us, at the level of individual staff and project teams. As we set about creating a new network to advance anti-racist practices in local government, we are seeking to intentionally defy the norms set by white supremacy culture through our process. Through a series of resources, we are sharing the ways we are practicing antidotes to white supremacy culture so that we can continue to learn as we support your capacity to also design work in defiance of white supremacy culture.

Explore the rest of the series, including an introduction around ending white supremacy culture, and resources for reckoning with history, cultivating an abundance mindset, and naming what we mean when we say community.


As a collective of philanthropic and financial institutions, Living Cities’ decision-making processes for distributing resources have historically mirrored traditional philanthropy. A rigorous, time-consuming application process opens; the initiative’s target audience spends time pulling together application materials, proving their worthiness; we convene a selection committee; the committee makes choices based in part on the quality of application materials and in part on their personal relationships. Even as we began planning a network designed to undo racism and test different ways of shifting our practices, it took a global pandemic to make us pause, assess our process, and release. 

When we paused, we felt the weight of the process overwhelming us. If we are overwhelmed by our own process, we wondered, what must it feel like to be on the side of applicants? 

When we assessed, we saw patterns in the choices we had made as an organization. Our board members’ relationships had often been prioritized due to power dynamics, and we’d found ourselves in debates about which cities are “good” or “bad” or “better” at solving challenges that are highly complex and don’t have clear right and wrong answers. 

When we released traditional norms, we felt a sense of relief. It doesn’t have to be this way. And if it’s not this way, how might it be? That is when we turned to our values. We are steadfast in our belief that this work has to be grounded in values and anti-racist principles. 

One of our network values is We Honor the Labor that Got Us Here. To our team, this means understanding what it takes to push institutional change, to recognize people in the cities that we’ve worked with who are doing that in their institutions, and to honor the ways that those people have helped us push change internally at Living Cities as we learned from their work. This value became a guidepost as we reshaped our processes. 

We took stock of and spent time in our relationships. We felt the grief of the loss that people in our network were experiencing; we sat with the discomfort of being compelled to work despite this grief. We realized that, given the reality of Covid-19’s scope and impact, the uprisings for racial justice in cities around the country, the upcoming national election, and so many other unknowns, we had to do things differently. After a three-month outreach process, where we spoke to people in about 20 cities with whom we’ve worked in deep partnership in the past, we realized that launching a time-consuming application process did not make sense. Now is the time to lean into the relationships we have and to work together to deepen our collective competencies and capacities to be able to contribute to the movement in meaningful ways. 

This shift is deeply connected to our belief that racial equity is a process as much as an outcome. We seek to move beyond the binary thinking that suggests there is an “end” or that some cities are “on top” or “more successful” when it comes to racial equity. We are interested in investing in people within city agencies and departments who are willing to take on transformational racial equity work, including reckoning with history and the present. Ultimately, we invited six cities–Albuquerque, NM; Austin, TX; Memphis, TN; Minneapolis, MN; Rochester, NY; and Saint Paul, MN–into our inaugural Year of Reckoning cohort based on our intention to honor the labor of people who have been organizing and pushing for racial equity in their cities, and who have also pushed Living Cities through our decades of work together. These cities have been part of many Living Cities past initiatives such as The Integration Initiative, Racial Equity Here, City Accelerator, and Equipt to Innovate

Each of the cities in the Year of Reckoning have organized cross-departmental teams of 6-10 people. Over the next year, we will be sharing stories of their work and uplifting the labor of all team members. To learn more about each of the Year of Reckoning city leads, see their profiles, which we’ve been highlighting on social media: here, here, and here

When it came to identifying partners to work with, we wanted to apply the same intentionality around honoring the labor of people who have gotten us here. 

  • Third Space Action Lab (TSAL) was co-founded by one of the earliest anti-racism organizers at Living Cities, Evelyn Burnett. Without her and other Black women who have organized internally, Living Cities would not be where we are. We seek to honor her past labor at Living Cities and at the City of Cleveland by engaging TSAL as cohort lead for the Year of Reckoning, a role that enables them to shape the culture and approach of the Year of Reckoning experience. Learn more from Evelyn in this IG Live she hosted on our platform.
  • The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond (PISAB) has deeply shaped Living Cities’ anti-racism work by delivering the Undoing Racism training to all of our staff at least once, and to most of our board members and partners. We knew without a doubt that their approach and commitment to anti-racist organizing principles would be central to the analysis-building efforts of our Year of Reckoning cohort. Learn more about PISAB’s impact in this reflection on our blog.
  • The Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE) has been a partner on Living Cities’ racial equity journey since we launched Racial Equity Here in 2016. GARE and PolicyLink are central to the Year of Reckoning experience as technical assistance providers supporting cities to operationalize their racial equity analysis. Learn more about our partnership with GARE on our blog.
  • Black Womxn Flourish has influenced our internal culture work to center a pro-Black vision, and is now playing a central role in advising us on how to design the Year of Reckoning experience in a way that centers the wellbeing of Black womxn. Learn more from Black Womxn Flourish in this IG Live they hosted on our platform.
  • Gumbo Media has supported Living Cities in centering humanity in our work through the creation of their magazine and other artistic products. They are building on this work to curate storytelling in Year of Reckoning cities and design our curriculum with a pro-Black lens. Learn more from Gumbo Media in this IG Live they joined on our platform.

Collectively, these and more partners shape the distinct culture and value of the Year of Reckoning.

How might you practice this value in your work?

First we recommend you take stock of your relationships. Who is doing the work in a way that aligns with your values? How might you deepen your most values-aligned relationships, and either commit to moving your other relationships toward deeper values alignment, or shedding where necessary?

Once you’ve assessed whose labor you want to honor and who you want to continue building with, bring those people together. We started designing the Year of Reckoning by bringing our partners from PISAB and GARE together, and then we furthered our co-design work with TSAL in sessions facilitated by Black Womxn Flourish. There is truly no substitute for stepping back and taking time to reckon with your personal and organizational histories, and reimagine the work ahead together.

Once energy starts to build around new strategies, step back and ask: who has been doing this work? How might you engage them, or at least honor them for that work and ensure you are not duplicating efforts?

With a solid team of partners at your side, it may be more possible to cultivate courage to break from traditional practices. Whether that’s relieving folks of lengthy application processes like it was for us, or another way of practicing the antidotes to white supremacy culture, work together to ground your processes in trust and care for each other’s time and experiences. From a place of deep trust and reciprocity, your work and its impacts can ripple far beyond any one organization. 

 

Image credit: Kim Dinh, sourced from JustSeeds




Powered by WPeMatico

ILSR’s On-Farm Composting & Compost Use Webinar Series

This webinar series features experts from across the industry and covers the ins and outs of on-farm composting and compost use, including setting up a composting area on your farm, integrating composting into your farming business, developing composting recipes, sourcing feedstocks, interpreting a compost test report, and understanding the different benefits of and uses for compost on the farm.… Read More

Powered by WPeMatico