• Justice For Bodega Baby T
    On January 19th our Love Without Reason (LaRayia’s Bodega) Community was heart broken to discover 3 year old Talia Cook, (known to our community as Bodega Baby T) was brutally murdered while in the care of Loraine Washington who is free walking the streets of Downtown Los Angeles. We are demanding that the department of mental health bring resources to this case, by placing Loriane Washington in a facility for treatment. Since the event, the police had questioned her, received multiple stories from what happened to Talia, shortly afterward they released her. She is a mother of three, not only does this put her children at risk, it’s also putting people experiencing homelessness and the rest of society in jeopardy.
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    Created by LaRayia Gaston
  • Demand for the University of Washington Administration to Meet the Needs of Black Students on Campus
    The University of Washington prides itself on diversity which barely exist at the institution. After numerous conversations between President Ana Marie Cauce and the Black Student Union about our experiences and how we can better improve the diversity at this university, President Cauce has overlooked our experiences and refuses to take the actions necessary to making BIPOC students feel safe and welcome on campus. We have had enough. Thus Black Students will work together with faculty, allies and local activist to ensure that our demands are met. Below are brief descriptions of each demand: 1. BREAK ALL TIES WITH SPD. Both formal and informal in the form of contracts, agreements, and MOUs. We suggest taking the following steps: a. Immediately stop handing over people detained by UW Police Department to SPD custody b. Stop using SPD to respond to public safety needs, including referrals for welfare checks under the Safe Campus program. c. Stop using SPD for additional security for any events, including sporting events, concerts, and ceremonies. 2. DISARM AND DIVEST FROM UWPD. Arming UWPD officers is excessive and unnecessary. Black students are already traumatized by the violence perpetrated to Black individuals by the hands of police. Arming the UWPD only puts Black individuals in constant fear, worry and frankly more at risk. The use of police dogs must be banned. Many communities of color in the US associate police dogs with the terror of state violence. We need to divest from UWPD and reallocate those funds into our community 3. ALLOCATE FUNDS TO BLACK RSO’S AND THE AMERICAN ETHNIC STUDIES DEPARTMENT. Instead of spending a ridiculous amount of money on UWPD, the University of Washington should invest in departments/resources that cater to the needs of its black students. It should not be students' jobs to spend out of pocket money to make students more comfortable, and or raise money for scholarships for its students. There also needs to be an increase in funding for the AES departments. This would not only help students have more resources and to help expand their learning, but increase the pay for the faculty who work in those departments. 4. HIRE MORE BLACK FACULTY. According to the Diversity Metrics Data Book by the Board of Regents, as of 2018, 68% of faculty is white, while 1.7% is Black. This statistic is embarrassingly low for an institution that prides itself on diversity and equity. The demand for more Black faculty dates back to 1968, with the first year of the Black Student Union here at the University of Washington. Today, 52 years later, this demand has not only been ignored, but is still necessary with the growing population of the UW. The lack of representation of Black faculty not only prevents students from having role models who they can relate to, but it sends a subtle message that only white people are capable of teaching at a higher level, which is simply, untrue. 5. INCREASE THE DIVERSITY CREDIT REQUIREMENT AND MAKE AFRICAN STUDIES A MAJOR. The current diversity requirement for UW students is 5 credits. Again, for an institution that prides itself on diversity, this is embarrassingly low. One 5 credit class will not provide students with enough historical background to enter the world an anti-racist. Students must be exposed to the atrocities that have been committed upon Black and brown folks, and how these communities are impacted to this day. Finally, African Studies should not only be an option for a minor, but a major. It is unjust that there is a major for Asian Studies, European Studies, and Latin American Studies, but not African Studies. 6. REMOVE STATUES OF RACIST FIGURES. Statues in place at the University of Washington are preservers of our dark past. The George Washington statue, in particular, symbolizes a man who owned over 300 Black slaves and profited from their labor. This is not a history that should be glorified and celebrated as it perpetuates white supremacy and preserves its historical imposition. Thus, the George Washington Statue, along with all others that symbolize racist figures, should be removed from the University of Washington. 7. FUND AND EXPAND MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES FOR UW STUDENTS. Currently, the waiting time to talk to a mental therapist can be more than 3 consecutive weeks. For Black students, the detriment of such a long waiting time is exacerbated by the severe lack of Black therapists, who tend to understand and empathize with our experiences. It's been shown that Black students feel more comfortable talking with Black therapists as opposed to non-black ones; how can one Black therapist be enough for the population of Black students at UW and why should we have to wait for urgent mental issues? In addition, the students are limited from accessing mental health services as they are often costly and require insurance coverage, which may not be affordable for students. Thus, the University of Washington should expand and fund affordable services, along with hiring more Black therapists. #DownWithWashington #KeepThePressureOn #DisarmUWPD
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    Created by Black Student Union UW
  • Tell Pinterest: Pay your Black employees what you owe them!
    Last week, Pinterest CEO, Ben Silbermann, released a statement expressing solidarity with his Black staff in light of the recent protests against the police brutality our community is facing, and committed to taking action to support them, saying that “our Black employees matter.” The problem? Under Silbermann’s watch, Pinterest has not only underpaid its Black employees, but it has retaliated against those willing to take a stand against them with racist threats, intimidation, and harassment. And when one white employee went as far as to doxx a Black co-worker for speaking up, the company failed to do enough to protect her. While it’s easy to appreciate the wave of corporations, brands, and celebrities who are seeing the importance of publicly affirming their stance against racism, Pinterest needs to do much more than issue a statement to meaningfully support Black people. Company values or statements mean nothing unless they’re backed up by the leadership, the payroll, and the operations. If he really believes his Black employees matter, Ben Silbermann owes his current and former Black staff an apology, an independent third party evaluation of employee pay by race and gender, and a commitment to giving them the back pay they are owed. Five years ago, “Black lives matter” was a controversial statement. Today, though structural white supremacy and racism persist, the leadership and political power of Black people have made the cost of failing to affirm this truth too high even for corporations like Pinterest to ignore. But we’ve seen how easily companies jump from diversity & inclusion messaging to underpaying their own Black workers, discriminating against Black customers, and harming Black users and community members. Pinterest is no exception. Ben Silbermann simply cannot claim to care about his Black staff without expecting us to examine the ways his actions contradict his words. Corporations that have anti-Blackness built into their business models need to follow up their statements against racism with concrete action. In this moment we are publicly interrogating the harms Black people face from the institutions like the police that claim to keep us safe. But the fact is that plenty of corporations also bear responsibility for violence, harm, and discrimination against Black people, whether they carry it out, enable it, or profit from it. We deserve more than lip service from the companies that rely on us as workers, creators, and cultural ambassadors. Tell Ben Silbermann to put his money where his mouth is. Tell Pinterest to issue an apology, hire an independent third party to evaluate employee pay by race and gender, and give its Black employees the back pay they are owed immediately.
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    Created by Concerned Staff
  • Starbucks: Allow your employees to wear #BlackLivesMatter attire
    Starbucks allows and encourages employees to wear attire that promotes LGBTQ rights. Starbucks even hands such attire out to employees. It's hypocritical for your company to explicitly forbid employees from wearing attire that proclaims that Black Lives Matter. In the aftermath of George Floyd's murder, it's important for Starbucks to be unequivocal in its support of Black Lives. That's why Starbucks must update its dress code policy. Starbucks must allow its employees to wear buttons, pins, and other attire that proclaims that Black Lives Matter.
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    Created by Bhavik Lathia
  • After the smoke clears... Arrest Juan DelaCruz for the senseless murder of Pamela Turner
    Because I too suffer with mental health issues and have been beaten by the police and plenty of counterparts on many horrific occasions, because of me failing to take my medication and becoming manic; so this could have been me, but only for the Grace of God. Her story resonates with me through and through, and come to find out, there's many others who've met a terrible demise like Pamela, due to police officers not being properly trained to deal with the mentally ill.
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    Created by Paulette Williams Picture
  • Approve S.O.S. Stimulus Grants for Micro Businesses
    Our tax dollars should be used to support churches, local restaurants, bodegas, barbershops, hair salons, dine-in restaurants, retail stores, Uber Drivers, and independent contractors who struggle....not "small businesses" that are publicly traded and have access to investors and big bank loans. This bill is for the business that watched as Shake Shack received millions, and felt defeated. Seventy-five percent (75%) of the Saving Our Streets (S.O.S.) Act would be used to provide grants worth up to $250,000 dollars to historically under-represented who are socially and economically left out - businesses owned by people of color, the formerly incarcerated, low-income, women. These are the business owners that banks denied, the business owners who can't call up the Senior Vice President of a major financial institution and ask for a "favor." Additionally, tiny businesses that have fewer than 10 employees (less than 20 employees if you're in an underserved community) AND have less $1 million in business revenue. This is NOT for publicly traded companies or hedge funds. They got access to their share. The SOS bill was set up for businesses that cannot compete with Ruth Chris, Potbelly, the Lakers - who benefited from programs like the Payment Protection Program. When you sign this petition, you are fighting for the self-employed, the Uber Drive, the FIverr contractor, the hair salon, the barber shop, the soul food spot....you are fighting for the side hustler who has to fight with their employer just to get fair pay. You are fighting for the businesses who fight to SERVE YOU every day. Press: "Sen. Kamala Harris and Rep. Ayanna Pressley have a $125 billion plan to help the smallest businesses" https://www.vox.com/2020/5/6/21249161/kamala-harris-ayanna-pressley-small-businesses-plan Kezia M. Williams CEO, The Black upStart www.instagram.com/theblackupstart www.theblackupstart.com Partners Supporing the S.O.S. Act NAACP National Urban League Black Economic Forum Main Street Alliance
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    Created by Kezia Williams Picture
  • Seize the Masks-- Save Our Nurses & CNA's!
    Our frontline healthcare providers will within weeks be forced to choose between saving their own lives and doing their jobs, because of the government's failure to prepare for this pandemic by buying enough equipment--especially masks. The vast majority of these jobs are held by women, people of color, or recent immigrants. I know I am not the only mother who cannot sleep nights worrying about a loved one who is a health care worker. In my home city of new Haven, our first Covid-19 casualty was of course a Black man who worked at a health care facility serving the community. As a result of the bans on essential travel, I do not know when I will again see my own daughter, who is putting herself through nursing school while caring for patients in Boston. I pray she will not save others only to end up sick herself.
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    Created by Jen Vickery Picture
  • Demand that Zoom immediately create a solution to protect its users from racist cyber attacks!
    I'm a Black, first-generation college graduate from the Southside of Chicago, who worked diligently to get to March 26th - the day I would finally get to defend my dissertation and earn my doctorate of education degree from California State University, Long Beach. Due to the social distancing during the Coronavirus pandemic, my university transitioned to Zoom Video Conferencing for these types of presentations. The chair of my committee made the introductions and I started presenting. I spent the first 10 minutes gliding through my presentation. It was truly a moment I felt ready for. As I ended the historical analysis section on Black oppression within the American education system, I noticed a red mark on my computer. For a brief second I thought someone else was sharing their screen at the same time as mine, but then more red marks appeared. Soon, more marks were made to create the shape of a penis. I stopped my presentation and asked my zoom facilitator if they could remove the marks. Seconds later, the letters N-I-G-G-E-R were written on the screen followed by pictures and videos of pornography. Like everyone else, I was shocked. My university’s technology personnel and college department members began to scramble. They were trying to figure out what was going on and how to take the cyberattacker out of the Zoom meeting. Minutes later, I along with my committee members, began to apologize to the audience members for what has happened. I then continued with the presentation as if nothing had happened. After I was done with my presentation and my committee said congratulations, "Dr. Dennis Johnson," I said thank you but I couldn’t enjoy the moment. Truth be told, no matter how much I brushed it off, my moment had been taken and there was nothing I could do about to get it back. On one of my most remarkable moments of my life, I was called a "nigger". My mother, grandmother, sister, spouse and many others were shown images of pornography. On Zoom’s website, the only help offered is an article on "How to Keep the Party Crashers from Crashing Your Zoom Event". That is a slap in the face to me. I've never been to a party where I was called a Nigger. These are racist cyber attacks; not innocent party crashers just stopping by to say hey. I never want anyone to experience what happened to me. Unfortunately, this is not the first time this has happened. Over the past few weeks, Black people have been targeted disproportionately on Zoom by trolls who have yelled “nigger” during children’s storytimes and professor’s open office hours. The University of Southern California even issued an email to professors warning them that Zoom classes had been disrupted by “racist and vile language.” It’s time for Zoom to create a real solution to this problem! Ruha Benjamin, an associate professor of African American studies at Princeton University, who has also experienced Zoombombing, has publicly called on Zoom to change its default setting to “off” for screen sharing to limit the potential for Zoombombing, which I support. Other solutions we propose include: 1. Upon entering a Zoom meeting, Zoom should post a message saying that it does not condone discriminatory and other unlawful acts, and that those who display such behavior will be banned from using its services. 2. Hire a Chief Diversity Officer to mitigate issues of discrimination and inequity on Zoom’s platform. 3. Add technology that auto-detects and flags those who post discriminatory language and images, and have them removed. Relying on individuals to fully understand the software’s platform demonstrates Zoom’s unwillingness to simply create a systemic change to protect its users, instead of relying on the user to protect themselves against these cyber attacks. 4. Revise the Zoom guide on preventing “party crashers.” What was done to us was not the act of someone crashing a party, but a direct racist attack on who we are as people of color, and this has to be named. They posted those images and wrote the N-word while I was giving a historical analysis of Black people in the United States. Therefore, Zoom needs to be more intentional with its language. It’s not a party crasher, it’s a racist/ discriminatory person(s) displaying unlawful behavior via the internet, that should be held accountable. 5. A formal apology to myself and those who have become victims to a trend that Zoom has failed to publicly acknowledge and address accordingly. Sign my petition to demand that Zoom immediately finds a solution to prevent classrooms, organizations, POC, especially Black people from being attacked on its platform! - Dr. Dennis L. Johnson, Jr.
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    Created by Dr. Dennis Johnson Picture
  • ITS BIGGER THAN GM!!!!
    On September 15th at 11:59PM more than 45,000 United Auto Workers (UAW) in 10 states went on strike. No state feels the brunt of this more than Michigan, the American auto capital. And as we know, black union workers always end up with the shortest end of the stick. The UAW went on strike to demand that GM increase wages, offer wage progression for new hires, improve healthcare and prescription drug benefits, and provide better overall job security. GM's current CEO, Mary Barra, makes $22 million dollars a year while GM’s temporary employees who have been there more than 4 years, get paid less than $16 dollars an hour. GM's announcement on September 17th to cut the healthcare coverage of of any UAW worker on strike is just one of its latest scare tactics to prevent workers from exercising their basic human rights: demanding better pay. It is our right to protest and this problem is bigger than GM. Those workers on strike are only being paid $250 a week. No one person can live off $250 dollars a week let alone someone with a family. Stand with UAW workers in Michigan and demand that the Vice President of General Motors North America Labor Relations Scott Sandefur support the workers that supported GM during the bail out by providing healthcare coverage! Sign the petition today!
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    Created by Latiana Fisher
  • Tell Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) to Dump Trump
    “Send her back! Send her back! Send her back!” These are the words that the crowd at Trump’s most recent Make America Great Again rally started screaming after Trump denigrated Congresswoman Ilhan Omar yet again with racist, Islamophobic rhetoric. The President of the United States not only continues to abuse the authority of his office to brutalize Black migrants across the country, but he is intentionally targeting one of the few Black politicians of immigrant experience brave enough to take a public stance against his vicious, dehumanizing policies. And by hosting his next upcoming rally at U.S. Bank Arena, AEG is giving him the stadium he needs to do exactly that. Two years into his presidency, we know Trump’s script. When he is challenged, he responds predictably -- tweeting attacks at his opposition that rely on blatant lies and organizing rallies where he can spew the kind of racist language that has empowered his base to carry out acts of violence against Black people across the country. When Trump tweeted that the four Congresswomen of color known as “the squad” should “go back to their countries” he knew what he was doing. As some of the only public representatives willing to call Trump out for the injustices he is carrying out, organizing rallies that rely on racist and xenophobic logic is part of a larger strategy. By galvanizing his base around hate, he intends to undermine the voices of the many people who share his opposition’s values of justice, fairness, and equality for all. Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) has the ability to say no to Trump. In January 2017, Dan Beckerman told his employees that "both diversity and sustainability are two of the core values that we here at AEG live every day and are wholly committed to fostering in our workplace and throughout the world." Yet, he is willing to profit from rallies that are based on normalizing racist attacks on our neighborhoods and families. By hosting his rally, U.S. Bank has demonstrated that they are on board with Trump’s message -- and that they believe Black people have no place or home in this country. With 2020 fast approaching, the least that we should be demanding of the corporations that serve us is that they divest from hate. Join me in demanding that they do the right thing and dump Trump now.
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    Created by Elyse Marin
  • Tell Enterprise to Stand Up to Trump!
    Last week, the Trump administration announced plans for its latest attack on the migrant community -- unconstitutional ICE raids that would begin on Sunday, July 14, in at least 10 major cities across the country. Since he has taken office, Trump has enacted brutal, dehumanizing policies that have separated families at the border, prosecuted and deported people en masse and without due process, and resulted in the deaths and incarceration of adults and children in facilities that can only be described as concentration camps. These raids are part of a larger plan to follow through on one of the worst human rights abuses the United States has seen in recent memory. And Enterprise Holdings is leasing him the vans to do it. Over the course of his presidency, Trump has made it crystal clear what his intentions for migrants crossing the border are. He knows that the terror, suffering and premature death that he has inflicted on the migrant community, many of whom are Black and from majority Black countries, galvanizes and empowers his base, who see migrants as less than human and have carried out horrific acts of violence against our family members, loved ones and neighbors. In a moment when they should be taking a stance against Trump’s genocidal policies, Enterprise Holdings is planning to profit from the pain that these raids will inflict by leasing vans to the Department of Homeland Security that ICE intends to use to steal people from their homes and their families. In its Suppliers Code of Ethics, Enterprise claims that it selects “suppliers and partners who share our values and our commitment to uphold the highest standards of quality, integrity, excellence, safety, legal compliance, and respect for human rights, as well as to respect the customs and culture of the communities we serve.” How can this be when the company is willing to give I.C.E. the vehicles needed to transport people to detention camps that fundamentally violate their basic rights and dignity? Let Enterprise know that enough is enough. They have a duty to stand up for what is right. Sign now to demand that Enterprise stop doing business with the Department of Homeland Security today.
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    Created by Adrian Reyna Chavoya
  • Stand with Wayfair Workers
    When Wayfair employees found out that their company was selling $200,000 worth of furniture to Trump’s detention camps for migrant children at the Mexican border, they were horrified. With media reports of at-least six children who have died in ICE custody within the last year, as well as the bone-chilling accounts of the conditions that those children have been forced to endure, it has become increasingly clear how important it is to call these facilities what they are to galvanize the action we need to shut them down: concentration camps. Determined to stand up for what is right, Wayfair workers crafted a letter to the company’s leadership asking them to not to fulfill the order and to make a commitment not to support or profit from “the detention and mistreatment of thousands of migrants seeking asylum in our country.” Wayfair’s response? A letter that states that it intends to continue selling to “any customer who is acting within the laws of the countries within which we operate.” The hard pill to swallow over the course of the last two years has been that just because President Trump mandates an action does not mean that it is in accordance with the laws of this country. Over the course of his presidency, Trump has made it crystal clear what his intentions for migrants crossing the border are. He knows that the terror, suffering and premature death that he has inflicted on the migrant community, many of whom are Black and from majority Black countries, strengthens and empowers his base, who see migrants as less than human. In response to Wayfair leadership’s lack of accountability, Wayfair employees have announced that they are planning a walk-out today. Any person who believes in common decency, dignity, and respect knows that we have a duty to support and stand with them. Civil rights leader, Bayard Rustin, once said “We need in every community a group of angelic troublemakers...the only weapon we have is our bodies and we need to tuck them in places so the wheels don’t turn.” Turning our backs on migrant children means turning our backs on the fight for justice and freedom for everyone this administration has so brutally targeted. Our fathers, mothers, cousins, grandparents and neighbors. We cannot accept this. Show support for the Wayfair employees who are so courageously risking their livelihoods to take a stand for justice. Let Wayfair’s leadership know that they have a duty to respond to the needs and wishes of the people who work for them every day. Sign now and demand that Wayfair stop profiting off of Trump’s war on migrant children today!
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    Created by Native Son