We — a collective of MYCincinnati youth and parents, Price Hill Will staff and board, and residents of Price Hill — write this open letter to our community to express outrage and grief at the racist violence perpetrated by actors within a system of white supremacy, and to reaffirm our full commitment to anti-racism and racial equity. As an organization, we are driven by our mission: to create systemic change through equitable practice. This mission, and the set of values embedded within it, compels us to come together in this moment to speak up, reflect critically, and take action.
We recognize that all individuals and organizations are in different stages of expanding their social consciousness, unlearning oppressive ideologies, practicing anti-racism, and demanding equity. We acknowledge, with humility, that Price Hill Will is in an ongoing, active process of growth, and we remain committed to a lifelong struggle for racial equity in our community.
We condemn and grieve the murders of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Oscar Grant, Tony McDade, Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and so many beloved parents, siblings, children, and friends whose lives were ended by police, whose lives were devalued by a system rooted in slave patrols and the safeguarding of white capital. Black Lives Matter.
We condemn and grieve the murders of Riah Milton, Dominique “Rem’Mie” Fells, Layleen Polanco, Dana Martin, Claire Legato, Muhlaysia Booker, and so many other Black transgender women whose lives were devalued by a system rooted in misogynoir, toxic masculinity, and gender-based violence. We recognize the critical contributions of trans activists toward abolishing ideologies and systems we are told are unchangeable. Say Her Name. Black Trans Lives Matter.
We recognize that community safety is a consequence of strong investment in education, affordable housing, an inclusive economy, vibrant public and cultural spaces, after school programs, art and creative engagement, and robust networks of interpersonal support. We reject the racist idea that the communities of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) are inherently more criminal and therefore need to be policed more intensely.
We acknowledge and condemn the racial inequities embedded in our country’s economic systems, intentionally created to prevent Black, Indigenous, and People of Color from accessing homeownership, accumulating generational wealth, and wielding economic and political power. We acknowledge that our country was founded on a campaign of Indigenous genocide, ethnic cleansing, and theft, and that the land we call Price Hill was home to the Myaamia and Shawnee people. Any discussion of property, land, and development must be informed by this context, and by the perspectives of Indigenous communities. We continue to fight for equitable access to high-quality, affordable housing, homeownership, and respectful stewardship of land.
We stand in solidarity with protesters and activists who have forced our country -- and all countries -- to reflect critically on our own participation and complicity in the systems of cis-hetero white supremacist patriarchy, and how we might evolve toward a truly equitable society. We condemn any and all state-sanctioned violence perpetrated by law enforcement and the legal system.
We recognize our incredible Price Hill neighbors, creative collaborators, organizational partners, and all those who are, and have been, doing the daily work of co-creating resilient communities, investing in youth, and striving for a more equitable world. We know that when the protests dwindle and the mainstream conversation has moved on, you will continue this work in transformational and profound ways.
We recognize that everything about an organization’s practices, beliefs, culture, structure, and programs either contribute to racial equity, or oppose it. In an act of transparency, vulnerability, and accountability, we share an overview of Price Hill Will’s programs, practices, and policies as they relate to racial equity. This list includes current and future programs, practices, and policies and was collaboratively developed and approved by MYCincinnati youth and parents, and Price Hill Will staff and board.
Please feel free to direct comments, questions, or concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org.