Join Us on January 17th for Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation
January 15, 2017
Morning Zen Guest Blog Post ~ Brian Smedley ~
Dear Health Equity Ally:
Eight years ago, many Americans were lulled into believing that our country had become a “post-racial” society with the election of Barack Obama as the 44th President. It’s now clear that such talk was premature. Racism, xenophobia, homophobia, and sexism remain powerful social and political forces that continue to divide us and keep us from achieving greatness as a nation.
The only way to make America great is to promote inclusion, equity, and tolerance. That’s the objective of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation initiative: to engage communities in racial healing and change efforts that address historic and current inequities.
Importantly, the only way to achieve this objective is for many people of good will to come together in collective action to denounce intolerance and divisiveness. This will be a long journey. But an important step in the journey will take place on January 17, when over 130 organizations and many thousands of committed individuals join together in a National Day of Racial Healing.
Please consider joining forces with fellow allies on this day to participate in healing actions and mobilizations. The Kellogg Foundation website lists many resources to help you engage on this day. In addition to coming together in person, please also join us in a Twitter Thunderclap to elevate our voices and concerns the morning of January 17th. Please help us reach our goal of 500 participants, to potentially reach tens of thousands of people via social media.
Brian D. Smedley, PhD, is co-founder and Executive Director of the National Collaborative for Health Equity, a project that connects research, policy analysis, and communications with on-the-ground activism to advance health equity. In this role, Dr. Smedley oversees several initiatives designed to improve opportunities for good health for people of color and undo the health consequences of racism. From 2008 to 2014, Dr. Smedley was Vice President and Director of the Health Policy Institute of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies in Washington, DC, a research and policy organization focused on addressing the needs of communities of color.