This is a challenging time for advocates of racial justice and democracy. We’ve seen racism once again violently displayed through police brutality. We’ve all been reminded of the many lives that have ended without the outrage they deserved; those deaths that weren’t filmed and are mourned quietly by friends, families, and communities. We have also been reminded that anti-Black violence has been perpetuated in a myriad of ways in every sphere of life and that verbal, professional, physical, and emotional violence continues to be part of the every-day experience of Black Americans. This violence, of course, is playing out against a backdrop of a virus that has ravaged Black and Brown communities, exploiting the health conditions that have arisen from unequal investments and disinvestments in healthcare and the social determinants of health.
Despite the massive shift in consciousness and public dialogue the Black Lives Matter movement has affected over the past seven years, it’s challenging to feel hopeful when it seems so little has changed.
But, it’s not a time for hopelessness. It’s not a time to dwell on the actions and words of a leader who seems to have no limit when it comes to cruelty and incompetence. It’s time to fight in the big and small ways we each can, in our personal, professional, political, and spiritual lives.
The members of the Food Equity Council have always and will continue to stand against systemic racism in the many ways it presents; whether through police brutality against Black people, disinvestment in communities of color, or an inequitable food system that privileges those who currently and historically have controlled resources.
However, the Food Equity Council has never been just about sweeping statements; we have always been about action and building community. We have been careful to cultivate our collective voice and these words don’t reflect the dynamic and diverse community that makes this work possible.
We encourage White people, as well as those who don’t bear the weight of a white supremacist society, to show up as allies to combat racism and build anti-racist families and communities. We encourage Black, Indigenous, and People of Color to share what they have been experiencing, what is giving them hope, and where they see space to improve. We will compile resources as a collective effort to learn, grow, and act for a more just and equitable world. If you have resources you would like to share, please contact the Food Equity Council at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We hope the Food Equity Council can continue to be a community of support and a place our members can go to have both challenging and affirming conversations. We hope we can encourage each other to grow and provide a salve for the deep pain so many of us are currently feeling.
Sydney Daigle, Food Equity Council Director
Food Equity Council Members