Thank you to all of you who joined us for Families as Allies’ first community conversation last Friday. The goal of the conversation was for everyone to share their ideas about how we as an organization can help undo racism, fight discrimination, and support the civil rights of all.
We appreciate everyone’s openness and willingness to be vulnerable. One of the key things we learned was the importance of recognizing the trauma that racism causes and being aware of that trauma, not just in our outward support, but also in examining how we function as an organization.
We were struck as the conversation progressed by how important it is to look at implicit bias. It is easy to look at ourselves, especially if we are white, and reassure ourselves that we are doing okay on the racism front because we don’t have any thoughts that seem overtly racist to ourselves. We learned in our community conversation how much that perception can change by listening to the experiences of others, especially if we invite them to give us feedback about how we are coming across.
We don’t know exactly where this conversation will lead, but we do know that those who participated seemed to come away with a somewhat clearer vision of how we can begin to face together the longstanding inequities and injustices that racism causes.
We also know that anyone who wants to join us is welcome to be part of this community conversation. We are getting more feedback from those who participated and will then schedule our next meeting and share that opportunity with all of you.