• A Call for A Cultural New Deal for Cultural and Racial Justice
    The Cultural New Deal for Cultural and Racial Justice is a call for us to transform our personal, institutional, and global thinking. We believe that culture moves before policy. We believe that culture endures beyond politics. We wrote this Call because our work in culture and arts is inextricably linked to larger social movements for change. We invite you to adopt and adapt this Call to your specific contexts to hold leaders, policy-makers, and institutions — and ourselves — responsible, accountable, and transparent in achieving equity and justice. In these unprecedented times, as justice movements converge, many of us have asked ourselves what the stakes are for the culture we want to advance. We concluded that we needed to change the conditions under which we artists and culture bearers labor and live. The Cultural New Deal for Cultural and Racial Justice points us toward new understandings of how we together can build a culture that is inclusive, sustainable, and leads us toward justice and freedom for all. We urge timetables that are immediate and demonstrate change that is not aspirational, but concrete, measurable and visible within 1-3 budget cycles. We offer this Call in the spirit of advancing accountability and collective responsibility, and urge you to activate these ideas within your work and our shared future. // El Nuevo Trato Cultural para la Justicia Cultural y Racial es una convocatoria para que transformemos nuestro modo de pensar personal, institucional y global. Creemos que la cultura cambia antes que la política. Creemos que la cultura perdura más allá de la política. Escribimos este llamado porque nuestro trabajo dentro de la cultura y las artes está inextricablemente entrelazado con los movimientos sociales para el cambio. Les invitamos a adoptar y adaptar este Llamado para sus contextos particulares para responsabilizar a líderes, creadores de políticas e instituciones, al igual que nosotres mismes, por lograr la equidad y la justicia de forma responsable y transparente. En estos tiempos sin precedentes, conforme convergen los movimientos por la justicia, muches de nosotres nos hemos preguntado qué está en juego para la cultura que queremos avanzar. Hemos concluido que tenemos que cambiar las condiciones bajo las cuales nosotres les artistas y portadores de cultura trabajamos y vivimos. El Nuevo Trato Cultural para la Justicia Cultural y Racial nos dirige hacia nuevos entendimientos sobre cómo, juntos, podemos crear una cultura que es inclusiva, sustentable y que nos lleva hacía la justicia y la liberación para todes. Exigimos cronogramas que son inmediatos y que demuestran un cambio que no es aspiracional y que, más bien, es concreto, medible y visible dentro de 1 a 3 ciclos presupuestarios. Ofrecemos este Llamado en aras de avanzar la transparencia y la responsabilidad colectiva y urgimos que activen estas ideas dentro de su trabajo y dentro de nuestro futuro compartido.
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    Created by Race Forward Picture
  • Tell Pres. Aoun and Chief Davis to Publish NUPD Policing Data and Policies
    We are members of the Northeastern University (“NU”) and Fenway, Roxbury and Boston communities who are outraged at the continuing systemic violence against Black, Brown, and Indigenous people. We stand against the manner in which systemic racism, racial violence, and white supremacy is institutionalized at Northeastern University including through NU’s investment in and operation of a private police force. The fight against institutionalized racism requires that we divest from organizations and systems that harm Black, Brown, and Indigenous people. We must rebuild our institutions to engage in life-giving practices. In this vein, we support the #BlackatNU platform’s call to build sustainable alternatives to policing, to fund efforts to end systematic oppression of Black people, to terminate interagency agreements with public law enforcement agencies, and to demilitarize and disarm Northeastern University Police Department. Further, we endorse #BlackVoicesMatterNEU’s demands regarding financial support to retain students of the African diaspora, increasing access to health insurance and hiring Black health practitioners and therapists, observation of Black historical celebrations, diversity and cultural competency training, and recurring town hall meetings on anti-Black racism. Undoing racism inherent in the function of our institutions requires that we understand and confront the harms that our systems create. Accordingly, we seek transparency from the Northeastern University Police Department.
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    Created by Defund NUPD
  • Teach Black Hair in Cosmetology Schools
    The National Interstate Council of State Boards of Cosmetology is not promoting the highest standards for consumer safety and does not encourage competency in the practice of cosmetology when it chooses to focus only on certain hair textures. A licensed cosmetologist in any state, should know how to wash, detangle, blow out, and style multi-textured and highly textured hair, the same as is required for straight or wavy hair textures. It is not enough to only require knowledge about relaxers. The standards of beauty culture education have changed, and the NIC has a duty to change along with them. It is imperative that you promote and support opportunities for equality, diversity, and inclusion.
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    Created by Jennifer Lord & Jamie Amadio Picture
  • LMU, PRIORITIZE PEOPLE OVER PROFIT
    Students are anxiously preparing to return to LMU, yet our academic, living, & social environments remain uncertain. LMU has firmly stated there will be no tuition adjustments for the upcoming academic year. As a result of LMU's indifference toward students' needs, we are forced to bear the financial burden of full-tuition amid an economic recession caused by a pandemic that inevitably restructures our educational experience. Students have unacknowledged concerns about the value of LMU’s ’20-’21 academic year. Despite students having expressed discomfort, disappointment, & anxiety about our fall semester, the university has dismissed our voices & neglected to make any adjustments to the exploitative price. Students & parents are left in a vulnerable position during this burdensome time. We are forced to choose between making a critical financial decision & staying on track with our degree and career paths. This burden is not reflected within tuition as it does not account for the hindered access to resources. There will be drastic alterations & limitations to student resources such as the ARC, in-person office hours, library resources (librarians, study rooms, WiFi, laptop rentals), Disability Student Services, Student Health Services, Student Psychological Services, on-campus jobs, admission to events on campus, club meetings, affinity groups, greek life, recreational facilities, transportation services, equipment/tools/technology, living conditions, dining options, & more. EVERYTHING IS CHANGING EXCEPT FOR THE PRICE TAG Loyola Marymount University has a responsibility to its student body to ensure that the term balance is reflective of the quality of education we receive. Regardless of in-person, online, or hybrid style classes, the current global pandemic will inevitably restructure the living & learning environment.
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    Created by Izz Oarsley
  • Black App State Demands Accountability
    Sign this petition if you support Black and brown students and want to be on the RIGHT side of history.
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    Created by Black At Appstate Picture
  • 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 MDCPS to Allow the People to Testify for Budget Hearings
    MDCPS is the nation's fourth largest school board district, with over 350,000 students, and is the largest employer in the county. In the midst of a pandemic and economic crisis, we all know public schools will be one of the worst hit, with severe budget cuts concurrent with over-policing policies. Join Power U in demanding that schools be sites of support and holistic student development.
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    Created by Power U Center for Social Change Picture
  • End the College Board's Whitewashing of US History
    In 2014, the College Board shifted from a five-page course outline for APUSH to an extensive outline containing over a hundred pages that went far more in-depth regarding the standards that the course should cover. The new coverage received heavy backlash from conservatives across the country, calling it “unpatriotic” and “biased”, despite being factual. Unfortunately, the College Board caved after only a single year with the new standards and lightened the document’s tone regarding slavery and racism, releasing a newly revised document that is still in use today. Examples of changes made include the removal of references to the European and colonial beliefs in white supremacy in Period 1, as well as the removal of lines referring to “anti-black sentiments” when describing the Antebellum era. In light of the recent spike in anti-Black violence, the College Board ought to not only bring back the original tone utilized by the 2014 version of the outline when discussing racism but also expand the required course content to cover the modern-day ramifications and continuations of racist and anti-Black sentiment. Nowhere in the document are policies like redlining, the war on drugs, and mass incarceration mentioned, despite their huge role in oppressing BIPOC people. On a broader level, most mentions of modern injustice to marginalized groups are covered only as a subsection of the civil rights movement - we’re only learning about the injustices as a subset of the calls for justice, rather than learning about the injustices themselves. For instance, the lesbian and gay communities are only brought up once in the entire text, and that’s when broadly referring to the various civil rights movements - not a single other LGBTQ+ group is mentioned throughout the text. Furthermore, the language utilized by the AP curriculum ought to shift as well - for example, "slave" should be replaced by "enslaved person", as the former reduces the people who were enslaved to nothing more than their status, while the latter emphasizes their humanity and the fact that those enslaved were still people. The words used to refer to the Indigenous peoples of America are controversial, and there’s little agreement on what word to use - however, referring to groups of Indigenous peoples by their nations is almost universally agreed upon, yet not a SINGLE Indigenous tribe/nation is mentioned by name. One of the greatest examples of eurocentrism comes from this quote: “French, Dutch, British, and Spanish colonies allied with and armed American Indian groups”. Each of the European nations are all specified by name, but not a single one of the Indigenous nations were. There’s also a significant lack of coverage regarding post-WWII immigration - for instance, deportation never once shows up throughout the text, despite being arguably one of the most significant policies affecting Hispanic workers and undocumented immigrants to this day. The course content more or less completely ignores the barriers that immigrants (especially Hispanic and Southeast Asian) faced. As the organization responsible for the education of millions of history students, it is vital that the College Board acknowledges its role in shaping our nation’s future. A strong understanding of history requires a complete understanding of history - one that includes and embraces the analysis and comprehension of centuries of government policy dedicated to subjugating Black, BIPOC, and marginalized communities. News Coverage: https://www.newsweek.com/newly-revised-ap-us-history-standards-take-softer-tone-racial-history-america-358537 2014 Course Standards: https://time.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/ap-us-history-course-and-exam-description.pdf Current Course Standards: https://secure-media.collegeboard.org/digitalServices/pdf/ap/ap-us-history-course-and-exam-description.pdf
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    Created by Brandon Pan
  • @Cornell: Rescind Nathan Panza's Offer of Admission
    There is a disturbing video circulating of an incoming student to the Dyson School of Business and a recruit to Cornell’s football team. Nathan Panza is seen in a video using racial slurs and laughing at a disturbing comment made about George Floyd, a recent emblematic example of police brutality and racial injustices in the country. I found this video shocking, not only because of the casual nature of this disgusting conversation, but also because of Panza’s awareness to not post the content online. It showed his true character and also that he knows how to navigate situations of bigotry in a way that he can partake but not face repercussions. I have no doubt that part of this carefulness comes from knowing that he will be attending Cornell in the fall and doesn’t want to lose that opportunity. As a Cornell student, I’ve seen examples of racism across the campus that all too often reflect Panza’s actions. Disgusting behavior that is executed in a way that can be kept quiet and not get out to a wider audience. I’ve also heard the voices of many Black students in recent weeks discussing these actions and microaggressions themselves and how they feel alienated and othered at Cornell. How can a school that prides itself on having an “any person, any study” allow students like Panza to plague its campus and infringe on the experiences of Black students on the same campus? Similarly, how can statements from Martha Pollack and the football team about combatting racial injustices be taken seriously if they are unwilling to take action against students like Nathan Panza? I am calling for the immediate rescinding of Nathan Panza’s admittance to Cornell and a firm administrative stance on students (and prospective students) like him in the future. There is a well documented issue of racism on Cornell’s campus that has never truly been addressed. The termination of Panza’s attendance at Cornell would be a step that the administration could take to denounce such actions and set a firm stance for the future. If the administration fails to take action against him, it will send a loud and clear message to the Black student body that public statements are as far as Cornell is willing to go against racism on campus.
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    Created by P C
  • Make Juneteenth an Official California State Holiday!
    Every year our states celebrate the Fourth of July to honor our nation’s independence from Great Britain, in 1776. The United States continued to deny freedom to enslaved Africans for almost another 100 years. We still do not have a national holiday celebrating the official end of the brutal enslavement our Ancestors endured. Despite Abraham Lincoln’s efforts with the implementation of the Emancipation Proclamation that took effect on January 1, 1863, the executive order was not enforced in Texas until June 19th when Union Gen. Gordon Granger rode in to deliver the news after the official end of the Civil War, in 1865. Even though the E.P. took place in 1863, Texas was considered a fringe state. As a young mixed Black womxn, moving through Oakland public schools did not allow me the opportunity to learn about my heritage and/or ancestors in the way that I believe we should have. Only after graduating have I come to understand our history and the importance of Juneteenth. Juneteenth marks a day of the utmost significance in American history. It represents the ways in which freedom for Black people has been delayed. It should be celebrated as the day when all Americans were liberated.
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    Created by Aminah Hanif
  • Ban the Confederate Flag from School Grounds
    My name is Chloe Mikala (Anderson). I was born and raised in Garrett County, MD and I am a 2011 Southern Garrett High School Alum. I have been inspired by so many locals protesting in support of Black Lives Matter. Something I never thought I would see in my hometown. I was also impressed by Mayor Don Sincell’s address on racism, police brutality, and the call for everyone to practice being anti-racist. Again, something else I never thought I would see. So, let’s keep this momentum going! Join me in petitioning GCPS and the Board of Education in banning the Confederate Flag and its symbols from clothing, memorabilia, vehicles on school grounds, and at school-sponsored events It’s upsetting that the Confederate Flag removal has to even be a topic of discussion. The history and pain behind it is so obvious, that its removal should be swift and simple. This is America though, and nothing is ever swift and simple. Superintendent Barbara Baker and President Tom Woods have agreed that it is a topic of discussion at their upcoming meetings (June 23rd & July 14th), so let’s make sure that they hear our voices! The Confederate Flag’s association with the KKK, alone, should say enough about what it stands for and the pain and harm it brings to Black people. This flag is a symbol that states flew to support segregation laws during the Civil Rights era and is a symbol of white supremacy nation wide. As a Black woman myself, I hated seeing the Confederate Flag all throughout my schooling in Garrett County because it made me feel ostracized, hated, and unwanted. The Confederate Flag has a place in the history books, but not on display on school grounds. And for those that argue “heritage”: Confederate Vice President Alexander H. Stephens said in his 1861 “Cornerstone speech,” “Our new government is founded upon … the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition.” This is their “heritage.” Ask yourselves, would you allow Nazi symbols to be on school grounds? If your answer is no (which it should be because WTF?!) then you should understand why the Confederate Flag and its symbols should also not be allowed on school grounds. If Carroll County, Nascar (NASCAR?!), and the Navy can ban the Confederate flag, then so can Garrett County Public Schools.
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    Created by Chloe Mikala
  • Removing Discriminatory Hair Policies from Henrico County Schools
    Students of all colors and with all hair textures should be able to do the following at school: protect their hair and proudly wear cultural hairstyles. These policies were put in place with the ignorance of African American hair care and their enforcement criminalizes Black children and interferes with their learning.
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    Created by Naomi Davis