By Anti-Oppression and Allyship Working Group July 16, 2020
We share in the heartbreak, rage, and sorrow over the recent police murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks, Tony McDade, Sean Reed, the murder of Ahmaud Arbery and the loss of countless others to state-sanctioned racism and violence. This list has grown in recent weeks. As we take pause to recognize that fact, we also emphasize the urgent need to continue organizing to dismantle white supremacy and address the longstanding social inequities laid bare by the COVID 19 pandemic. These include food apartheid, intentional divestment from communities of Color, exploitation, state and police violence, mass incarceration, and public denial of the fact that we are a nation built on stolen land & labor.
As the Anti-Oppression and Allyship Working Group of the Cooperative Gardens Commission, we are working to challenge patterns of colonialism and racism in ourselves, our communities and in this work, because we know that this is the best path forward for all of us. We say this while acknowledging that we also have much to learn.
To the Black members of our collective: We stand in solidarity with you. We are grieving, we are outraged, and we are channeling these feelings into action. We are learning from the resilience of Black communities and taking the following steps to address the immediate needs of individuals and communities:
- Researching, educating ourselves, and opening dialogues with white co-organizers, neighbors, and community members.
- Attempting to be good allies. Allyship is active and an on-going commitment, not a self-granted title. We also somberly acknowledge that “ally” is a term with a history of broken promises.
- Working to find ways the CGC can support individual and societal reparations.
- Lifting up stated priorities, wherever and whenever we can, of the people most affected by racism, ableism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and all other forms of bigotry.
- We are grateful for guidance from the CGC’s BIPOC Working Group to points of research, thought-provoking questions, and other feedback.
- Though CGC is focused on food sovereignty, we recognize that many people are moving together in a time of great change. We support efforts to collectively challenge long-standing systems of oppression, including calls to defund the police, to abolish prisons, and to develop community-based systems of restorative justice.
White supremacy is a toxicity embedded in the soil of our collective home. We are committed, as members of the Cooperative Gardens Commission, to using our collective power to further the challenging, critical, and generational work of dismantling structural racism.
CGC Anti-Oppression and Allyship Working Group