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Black Lives Matter

Why we need culture + policy change

Some of you may have already seen A Vision for Black Lives: Policy Demands for Black Power, Freedom & Justice from the Movement for Black Lives. Here is a little bit about the "why" and "who" of this platform in their own words:

“In response to the sustained and increasingly visible violence against Black communities in the U.S. and globally, a collective of more than 50 organizations representing thousands of Black people from across the country have come together with renewed energy and purpose to articulate a common vision and agenda. We are a collective that centers and is rooted in Black communities, but we recognize we have a shared struggle with all oppressed people; collective liberation will be a product of all of our work.”

Many people have been asking to see a policy platform from this movement from the first moment where "Black Lives Matter" became a phrase common in households, media outlets, schools, streets, and faith communities across the United States. Some have wanted to movement to advise and instruct on what policy wins could truly make "Black Lives Matter" in the country. Many have asked why it has "taken so long" to see this platform. 

Announcing Collaborative Organizer Lena K. Gardner

We are thrilled to let you know that prominent leader in both Black Lives of UU (BLUU) and Black Lives Matter Minneapolis, Lena K. Gardner, will be joining our Standing on the Side of Love organizing team part-time in 2016 and 2017 as our 'Collaborative Organizer'. This work is part of deepening our collaborative work with Church of the Larger Fellowship and BLUU. Lena brings a great deal of commitment, heart, humility, and integrity to this work. 

As many of you know, I am deeply committed to the supporting of key organizers as they develop, collaborative practice between groups in justice work, and organizing with (and alongside) people directly affected by oppression and injustice. In a moment where many forces of power would work to turn people of faith against the Movement for Black Lives, our steadfast and steady commitment to accompany, support and fortify the Black Lives Matter movement must be stronger than ever. That sounds like big work. It is.

No One is Disposable

No One is Disposable

It is becoming common knowledge that the United States incarcerates more people than anywhere else in the world. At any given moment there are 2.3 million people in prisons and jails across the country. Black and Pink is an organization that works with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer identified people who are currently incarcerated or involved with the criminal legal system. I founded Black and Pink just over 10 years ago after my own time in prison. I had been locked up in a queer segregated cell in a county jail in Georgia and experienced a sexual assault by a prison guard in a federal minimum security prison. When I got out there were no resources that I could turn to for support, that needed to change. As of now, Black and Pink is a nationally networked grassroots effort, involving nearly 10,000 prisoners, working to abolish the prison industrial complex while meeting the immediate needs of LGBTQ prisoners. The movement for abolition is one that we, as Unitarian Universalists, have made a commitment to understand better and involve ourselves in as we align with the Black Lives Matter movement.

Fourteen Steps Forward Together for America's Third Reconstruction

Fourteen Steps Forward Together for America's Third Reconstruction

Welcome to our second Thirty Days of Love: Towards Racial Justice message lifting up the inspiring, creative and movement-making work happening throughout the country. This week, we are excited to share the profound and important work of the North Carolina NAACP

Below hear a little more directly from our hosts, Carey McDonald and Elizabeth Nguyen. Then check out fourteen tips from Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, President of the NC NAACP, with Jonathan Wilson-Hargrove. The suggested steps are an excerpt from their new book, The Third Reconstruction, that can be found here. We are also excited to share a Discussion Guide on The Third Reconstruction that complements and lifts up many of the themes in the book available here.

Welcome to 30 Days of Love: Towards Racial Justice

Welcome to 30 Days of Love: Towards Racial Justice

We are thrilled to welcome you to 30 Days of Love: Towards Racial Justice. Over the next thirty days, we’ll be sharing content- here, on Facebook and Twitter - about urgent organizing for racial justice happening around the country. We are thrilled to have Rev. Elizabeth Nguyen, Leadership Development Associate for Youth and Young Adults of Color at the UUA, and Carey McDonald, Outreach Director at the UUA, acting as our inaugural 30 Days of Love hosts. 

In their role, Elizabeth and Carey will provide a short video reflection for each of our weekly messages. Centered around the themes of gratitude and wonder, it is our hope that the content of 30 Days of Love feeds and inspires you. Beginning next Tuesday, you’ll receive weekly messages from partners at the frontlines of organizing for racial justice in the country. 

Below, hear or read a little more directly from Elizabeth and Carey. To see additional resources for your observance of 30 Days of Love, click here.