More is required of us
- When was the last time I spoke up to call out racial bias and racial disparities in funding during a meeting, instead of waiting for Black colleagues to do it? Do I value Black lives enough to start doing this, even when I feel afraid?
- Have I taken the time to read, attend workshops, watch films and educate myself on what I never learned in school about what Black people experience in this country and how I can be an ally and co-conspirator in advancing racial justice?
- Have I pushed my institution, and the funder/donor affinity groups I am a part of, to collect data on racial demographics of the leadership of our grantees? Or have I sat silently while the lack of data in philanthropy covers up persistent divestment from people of color-led work?
- Have I set aside my own discomfort and my own fear of saying the wrong thing or making a mistake to work hard for racial justice because I know that Black lives are more important than white comfort?
- Have I initiated conversations with white colleagues about racial justice and encouraged/supported them to advance racial justice in their work? Or have I avoided the topic because I don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable?
- Have I mounted a sustained challenge to grantmaking practices in my institution that have historically resulted in people of color-led organizations receiving the least amount of funding? Have I advocated for more grant funding for Black-led work, even if it means reducing grant dollars to white-led work to make this move towards equity possible?
- Have I spoken up to demand diversity in hiring practices and board/trustee recruitment to attract and retain Black candidates into decision making positions within my institution?
- Do I enable my white-led grantees to ignore racial injustice or do I require them to describe their work, or lack thereof, to advance racial justice in their proposals and then prioritize funding to those who demonstrate real solidarity with people of color?”
- Have I risked anything that matters to me in order to use my proximity to the levers of money and power to stand up for Black lives and move more funding to Black-led work?