DSM SURJ Newsletter 2/23/19

CCI Racial Profiling Report & Action this Week
Attendees from a broad coalition met on February 16 to prepare for upcoming dialogues with city officials to advocate for passing the anti-racial profiling ordinance presented to City Council in November 2018. If you have questions about the ordinance or want to be actively engaged in this work please contact Harvey Harrison by email:  harvey@dwx.com or submit this Iowa CCI Racial Justice Team Volunteer Form. Learn more here.

This week’s action: Anti-Racial Profiling bill, SSB1038, has passed out of subcommittee and will be voted on in the Judiciary Committee probably next week.  Please contact the leadership of the committee and your Senator to urge them to move the bill on.

Get Informed and Take Action: A Deep Dive into Des Moines’ Bridging the Gap Campaign
The campaign to build momentum to address racial disparity in Des Moines needs you!  Identified priorities include “Stable Housing – Stable Communities”; “Ladder Up – Create Economic Opportunities”; and “Mandatory Training for First Responders”.  The Des Moines Civic & Human Rights Commission drafted specific recommendations which the Mayor and City Council supported. The City Manager was directed to report back at the March 25, 2019 city council meeting. Learn details at this link. (Thanks to Jean ODonnell for providing these important details and course of action!)

If you are a resident of Des Moines we encourage you to attend these City Council meetings to hold our elected officials accountable. Attend the Commission’s annual Human Rights Symposium on March 20th.  The amazing high school students from C.O.R.E. for Advancement are leading the Future Progress track, for-youth-by-youth sessions that explore the current ways our youth are leading the charge to a better future.  Click on the link for all the details.

SURJ Bookclub is back!
Saturday, March 2, 2019. 10:00 am. Join us in reading “White Fragility: Why it’s so hard for white people to talk about racism” by Robin DiAngelo. Here’s the most awesome part: DiAngelo will be speaking at ISU on Feb 26th at 7pm. If you’re interested in carpooling, check in in the discussion to the Facebook event, linked here. Ritual Cafe.  Join Erin & Petra for a great facilitated discussion of the book and lecture. You are welcome to join for the discussion whether or not you’ve read the book. We hope to see you there.


Future SURJ Meetings:

Sunday, March 3rd: Op-Ed Workshop/Writing. Talking about legislative action against bill to dismantle voluntary diversity plan.

Sunday, March 17th: Taking Action Together on Education (We continue to build our 2019 action plan to resist discrimination in education in Des Moines. We’re engaging and responding to demands and needs identified by C.O.R.E. and Al Exito and we need all of us to pitch and help!)

Sunday, April 7th: What’s White Identity Got to Do With It? (Join us as we explore the ways that people are socialized and racialized as “white” impact the ways we show up to racial justice work. Whatever your racial/ethnic identity, all are welcome to dig deeper into how understanding the racial identity of white people can help us design strategies and practices for anti-racist growth.)

Sunday, April 21st: Taking Action Together (We continue to build our 2019 action plan on discrimination in education. We’ll also pick up the working group focus for a second major SURJ initiative for 2019. We’re engaging and responding to demands and needs identified by our accountability partners and need all of us to pitch in!)

Newcomers, returnees and longtime participants always welcome. DSM SURJ meetings are the first and third Sundays of each month, 6-8 pm at Drake University.  Childcare provided. All meetings held at Medbury Honors Lounge at Drake University at 6:00 pm. Park in the Olmsted Center Parking Lot located at 2875 University Avenue.


Racial Justice Events

Wednesday, March 6. 8:00am-11:30 am. Understanding Cultural and Racial Trauma. Science Center of Iowa. Explore the basis of historical and cultural trauma. Learn how it impacts the willingness of ethnic communities and people of color to seek help for a variety of mental health challenges. Keisha Ross, PhD, will engage participants in a session outlining coping mechanisms and cultural considerations for serving communities impacted by trauma. This session will build connections and grow alliances for mental health access and advocacy, with a focus on bridging faith and mental health circles. Tickets and details here.

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