In 2020, the fight for racial equity continues. At this moment in time, there is a cultural opportunity for us to come together and create sustainable solutions for the myriad of racial injustices facing the country. Many are filled with grief, anxiety, and fervor as we explore ways to uplift our communities and create actionable change to systemic oppression. We want to motivate and sustain collective action.
COVID-19 has changed our world completely, but it seems that the constant abuse of Black bodies and the prevalent violence against our Black communities has remained and continues to pervade our 24-hour media cycle. We find ourselves in a space where people are publicly recognizing the racial disparities within our societal practices.
Tani Brown, Jopwell’s Head of Community, and Angel Acosta, civic activist and educator, dissected the very challenging moment in time that we are facing and the effects that it has brought on POCs, specifically our Black communities. For the last decade, Angel Acosta has worked to bridge the fields of leadership, social justice and mindfulness. Angel has supported educational leaders and their students by facilitating leadership training, creating pathways to higher education, and designing dynamic learning experiences. In conversations with our Jopwell community, we wanted to create a space for reflecting, processing grief, and empowering one another for meaningful action.
Many companies have resorted to immediate responses addressing their sentiments on the current climate and how they plan to support Black communities by speaking out and/or funding organizations that support community initiatives. At Jopwell, we believe that companies should be addressing the internal work with their Black communities before attempting valiant efforts externally.
In a conversation with Angel Acosta, we explored ways to sustain this cultural moment to educate people on ways to create systemic and institutional change. The first step is to truly understand the 400 years of oppression that this society was built on and how it has affected Black communities and still affect them to this day. We encourage companies to start with acknowledging those systems and creating environments for affinities to thrive. Continue reading for important takeaways from the conversation.
As a Black-founded business where Black team members represent the single largest cohort within our company, it goes without saying that the heinous acts of injustice have left us furious and frustrated.