Black Lives Matter
June 04, 2020 | Written By: Rochelle Davis
By Rochelle Davis, President + CEO
Over the past few months, our country has seen people in Black and Latinx communities die from COVID-19 at a higher rate than those in white neighborhoods, and over the past few days, people across the country have protested police killings of Black people. I have never been more aware of my privilege and more driven to use it to work for racial justice.
This moment is painful and complicated, but some things are not complicated. I know that Black lives matter, that Black children matter and that Black futures matter.
I founded Healthy Schools Campaign on the belief that all students deserve access to healthy school environments where they can learn and thrive. Racism is a public health issue, and we cannot achieve our vision without dismantling the institutional and systemic racism at the core of our country and public school system.
While the past few months have laid bare racial injustices, they have also shown us that our country has the resources to invest in communities when pressed. We have the opportunity now to focus on rebuilding better, and racial equity needs to be at the core of those discussions—and those investments.
The difficult work begins now. Healthy Schools Campaign is committed to showing up and being part of this important movement to dismantle racism. We will follow the lead of our Black partners and other leaders of color and amplify their voices and calls to action. As CEO of Healthy Schools Campaign, I am also recommitting to looking inwardly, confronting my own internal biases and doing the work to ensure that Healthy Schools Campaign functions as an antiracist organization—both internally and externally.
As a start, we will double down on our commitment to hiring and promoting team members of color, create more space for ongoing conversations about how to be anti-racist at all levels of the organization and continue to build a board that represents the Black and Latinx communities where we focus most of our work.
We will continue to focus on the needs of schools whose students are affected by health inequities, particularly in Black and Latinx communities and other communities of color, and bring a racial equity focus to all of our program and policy design and communications efforts.
Now is not the time for a quick fix, but it is the time for immediate action to address the deeply rooted racism in our country. We are asking you to join us in this commitment.
Anti-Racism Organizations and Resources
An Antiracist Reading List by Ibram X. Kendi (New York Times)
Campaign Zero: An organization offering resources around research-based policy solutions to end police brutality in America.
Reclaim the Block: A Minneapolis-based organization aiming to move money from the police department into other areas of the city’s budget that promote community health and safety.
List of Bail Funds for Protestors Across the Country
My Block, My Hood, My City: A Chicago-based organization providing underprivileged youth with an awareness of the world and opportunities beyond their neighborhood. They are also collecting funds to help repair South Side businesses damaged.
Race Forward: An organization advancing racial justice offering resources, tools and trainings.
Anti-Racism Resources for Parents + Schools
Say Their Names: A toolkit to help foster productive conversations about race and civil disobedience (Chicago Public Schools)
Reflecting on George Floyd’s Death and Police Violence Towards Black Americans (Facing History)
Facing Ferguson: News Literacy in a Digital Age (Facing History)
EmbraceRace Resources: EmbraceRace is an organization dedicated to providing spaces and resources to help parents raise kids who think critically about racial inequity.
Talking About Race (National Museum of African American History & Culture)
Talking Race With Young Children (NPR)
Talking to children after racial incidents (University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education)