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Christian Cooper should not have to fear for his life on a walk through the park. Breonna Taylor should be alive. Ahmaud Arbery should still be with us. George Floyd’s life should not have been taken by police, and they all deserve justice

In a recent article titled “The Unmattering of Black Lives”, Kimberlé Crenshaw (originator of the theory of intersectional oppression) links the deaths of Black Americans at the hands of law enforcement to the effects of the ongoing coronavirus national emergency in Black communities. She writes, “... this unmattering of Black lives lost through state violence is the sacrifice of Black Americans via the stealth victimization of our bodies through radical disparities of health and wealth. We are witnessing yet again the disproportionate deaths suffered in Black communities in the face of the raging Covid-19 pandemic.” 

As the tragically high COVID-19 death toll in the United States tops 100,000, we continue to address both the systemic inequities -- and the human impact. Race Forward is responding.

The Government Alliance on Race and Equity has organized a guidebook and convened rapid response meetings for the hundreds of its jurisdictions with the purpose of centering racial equity in their response to the emergency. Their work has included everything from setting up Emergency Operations Centers to maintaining racial equity priorities in budget and budget discussions. Given the urgency, and the weak federal response, GARE’s work is increasingly central to addressing the crisis.

The team at Colorlines was one of the first of any news outlets to highlight race explicit coverage of the Coronavirus emergency, the effects of which are disproportionately impacting communities of color. Colorlines continues to cover testing efforts, mass incarceration, growing unemployment inequity, and more, and provide ways for its readers to take action in this moment.

The Colorlines team has also been working to produce opinion pieces highlighting the experiences, views, and demands of communities that are being hit hard by the effects of the global pandemic. Here are three of Colorlines’ newest op-ed articles:  

We Don’t Need to Return to Normal—We Need a New Normal 

“Those who have been disproportionately affected by this crisis, whether due to racial and ethnic health disparities, poverty, or those who are working on the front lines right now and suffering physically and emotionally know firsthand the changes we need.”

‘Please Help Us’: Those on the Inside Are in Grave Danger 

“During this unprecedented moment in history, we must demand the release of all detained and incarcerated people. As one detained immigrant at Stewart said: “Please, have mercy for us who are here locked up and who cannot do absolutely anything.”

Mass Rent Strikes Demonstrate That Housing Has Always Been a Racial Justice Issue

“We are all supposed to stay home, but that’s not possible in a society structured to make it impossible to keep a roof over our heads.”

Please encourage a friend, or family member to subscribe to Colorlines’ weekly newsletter to receive more race-explicit reporting on the Coronavirus emergency and so much more. Have a professional contact or a former colleague interested in learning about racial equity in this moment? Invite them to one of our Building Racial Equity Trainings on June 16th or 24th. You can also forward them this link to our other training dates

Check out our latest below!

photo of Cathy Albisa

Cathy Albisa Joins Race Forward  

Welcoming our new Vice President of Institutional and Sectoral Change  

Race Forward is excited to welcome Cathy Albisa as our new Vice President of Institutional and Sectoral Change. In her role, Cathy will be providing strategic leadership in planning and executing the work of Race Forward and our Government Alliance on Race & Equity (GARE) programs. 

“It is humbling to step into a role supporting the extraordinary work of this staff and our members to transform government and other institutions for the public interest through racial equity, especially in this moment where the strength of our institutions is so central to our fight for multiracial democracy. There is no better time to fight for racial equity than in the wake of this pandemic that has laid bare the inequities that plague every corner of our social fabric, leading to needless loss of lives and livelihoods in communities at the frontlines of injustice.” 

To learn more about Cathy’s work prior to Race Forward, read our press release.

photo of Rep. Deb Haaland on a gold and white background

[Video] Colorlines' #MyFeminismLooksLike

Congresswoman Deb Haaland and other leaders celebrate feminists of color

Colorlines has launched #MyFeminismLooksLike, a digital series that explores the complexity of intersectionality, challenges the historical narrative of feminism, celebrates feminists and people of color who have shaped the women’s rights movement and provides activists of color a platform to reflect on the past, present and future of the feminist movement.

Congresswoman Deb Haaland joined Colorlines in a remote video interview to discuss the importance of living our values, fighting for equality, and leaving a ladder behind us for others, saying: “as one of the first Native American women elected to Congress, I know it's my job to make sure I'm not the last."

Additional interviews include conversations with Jamilah King, Dolores Huerta, Desiree Adaway, Maritza Perez, and more. 

Join in on the conversation on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, by using the hashtag #MyFeminismLooksLike.

Staff Picks

Credit: Charlene Carruthers


During these trying times, it's important to share the small things that keep us going. In this edition, we hear from our Director of Strategic Innovations, Terry Keleher.  

“A recent book I’ve read is "Unapologetic: A Black, Queer, and Feminist Mandate for Radical Movements,” by Charlene Carruthers, who was the founding director of Black Youth Project 100 (BYP100). There’s all kinds of wisdom packed between the pages, which include what she believes are the three collective commitments critical to the regeneration of our movement. The commitments include building many strong leaders, healing justice as a core organizing value, and combating liberalism with a principled struggle.”

What are you listening to, watching, reading and learning? Tell us on Twitter or Facebook.

In solidarity,

Team Race Forward




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