Black lives DO matter.

June 3, 2020

To our CRE community,

Black lives DO matter. Now is the time for each of us to join and stand in shared values: anti-racism, inclusion, equity, and fairness toward those whose well-being in America remains under constant threat. 

We are horrified by the most recent acts of terror committed against Black people by people who were hired to serve and protect. Again, we find ourselves swallowed in collective grief as we see more Black families tragically lose their loved ones through state-sanctioned violence. Humanities eviscerated. George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery are permanently stamped alongside an already agonizing list of Black people who have lost their lives at the police’s hand. This is our nation’s shame. We grieve among those in mourning.

CRE stands with the Black community and against the institutional racism and systemic abuse that has eroded the social trust between law enforcement and our community. 

We recognize that recent protest and unrest in communities across the nation is a boiling over of the pain, frustration, and sadness stemming from 400 years of anti-Black institutional discrimination. This on top of a pandemic that had already further exposed the tragic inequalities that disproportionately impact communities of color. 

We grieve alongside the organizations, funders, and especially the staff who work on the frontlines for social and racial justice. 

To grieve is not enough. Now is the time for sustained action.

In addition to doing our own internal racial equity work, we re-emphasize that nonprofits can and must serve as models for racial and social justice. Our commitment includes becoming an anti-racist organization and supporting our sector to do the same. Now is the time for all leaders across our sector to dive deeper into their policies and practices, and to engage with their staffs on the journey toward diversity, equity, and inclusion within their organizations. Now more than ever, nonprofits must use their power to lead the way in creating the change we need to see in our communities and the larger world.

Actions you can take today to put these values into practice: 

  • Funders: Invest in Black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) leaders and organizations. Frame the issues you fund in the context of the systemic and institutional racism that shape them. Focus on the root causes (e.g., political, economic systems, etc.) that drive the social outcomes.
  • Organizations: Join a coalition focused on dismantling anti-Blackness. Partner with inclusive and equitable networks for Black, Indigenous, People of Color, and all gender identities and sexual orientations. Continue your journeys to become more equitable organizations.
  • Individuals: Support nonprofit organizations on the frontlines of anti-racist struggle, and amplify their mission. Continue your own learning about racism and work to root out implicit bias. 

Please stand with our community partners and us as we continue to elevate and amplify Black, indigenous and people of color leaders and their organizations and work towards an inclusive and equitable world.  

 In solidarity, 

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