June 4, 2020

How to Support Our Black Community and Promote Anti-Racist Efforts

It’s up to each and every one of us to change the systemic racism that pervades so many areas of our society, so we can achieve true equality for black Americans. We urge you to look for safe, effective ways to address issues of social injustice, whether that be through protest, monetary contributions, self-education, or other means. While we stand in solidarity with our black community members, we know that’s not enough. We need to act, we need to make a change, and we need to do it now.

Below are a handful of ways to get involved in the fight against systemic racism and support our black community members.

Donate to Anti-Racism Groups

  • PDX Protest Bail Fund: The General Defense Committee in Portland, Oregon, has established a fundraiser to cover bail and other legal expenses for protesters arrested in Portland, Oregon in connection to protests against George Floyd’s murder by Minneapolis police, along with general police brutality.
  • National Bail Out: A Black-led and Black-centered collective of abolitionist organizers, lawyers and activists building a community-based movement to support our folks and end systems of pretrial detention and ultimately mass incarceration.
  • Black Lives Matter: The movement was founded in 2013 in response to the acquittal of Trayvon Martin’s murderer. Black Lives Matter Foundation, Inc is a global organization in the US, UK, and Canada, whose mission is to eradicate white supremacy and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes.
  • Campaign Zero: Funds donated to Campaign Zero support the analysis of policing practices across the country, research to identify effective solutions to end police violence, technical assistance to organizers leading police accountability campaigns and the development of model legislation and advocacy to end police violence nationwide.
  • NAACP PDX: The mission of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is to secure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights in order to eliminate race-based discrimination and ensure the health and well-being of all persons. Everyone is welcome to attend any of the meetings to learn about issues within our black communities.
  • Black United Fund of Oregon: The group’s mission is to assist in the social and economic development of Oregon’s underserves communities and contribute to a broader understanding of ethnic and culturally diverse groups.
  • Black Parent Initiative: The Black Parent Initiative (BPI) was established in 2006 to help families achieve financial, educational and spiritual success. BPI was founded and organized on a large body of educational research that demonstrates the importance of parental and family engagement in attaining educational success for children.
  • Don’t Shoot Portland: This organization’s work and activism, including direct community education workshops, supports the outreach of continued advocacy as first respondents and has helped community members contribute through direct engagement and legislative value.
  • Poor People’s Campaign: The Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival works to demand that the 140 million poor and low-wealth people in our nation — from every race, creed, color, sexuality and place — are no longer ignored, dismissed or pushed to the margins of our political and social agenda.
  • Official George Floyd Memorial Fund: This fund is established to cover funeral and burial expenses, mental and grief counseling, lodging and travel for all court proceedings, and to assist the Floyd family in the days to come as we continue to seek justice for George. A portion of these funds will also go to the Estate of George Floyd for the benefit and care of his children and their educational fund.

Push for Political and Policy Change

  • Call, email, or send letters to your local politicians and leadersin your state or city if there are issues you would like to see addressed.
  • VOTE! Using your right to vote on all levels – including county, state, and national – is crucial to ensuring we elect officials who are committed to true equality. If you’re not registered to vote in Oregon, make sure to visit Oregon’s Online Voter Registration page.

Learn about Your Own Biases

  • Harvard University Implicit Bias Test: This simple, online test measures attitudes and beliefs that people may be unaware of, or unwilling or unable to report. This is especially helpful to identify an implicit attitude that you did not know about, and help you identify areas in yourself to improve upon.

Educate Yourself

  • Watch movies, TV shows, and educational interviews:
  • Read books:
    • Stamped from the Beginning, Ibram X Kendi
    • A People’s History of the United States, Howard Zinn
    • The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race, Jesmyn Ward
    • White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide, Carol Anderson
    • So You Want to Talk about Race, Ijeoma Oluo
    • How to Be an Antiracist, Ibram X Kendi
    • Conversations in Black: On Politics, Power and Leadership, Ed Gordon
    • Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates
    • The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, Michelle Alexander
    • White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk about Racism, Robin DeAngelo
    • I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness, Austin Channing Brown
    • Me and White Supremacy, Layla F Saad
    • White Like Me, Tim Wise
  • Listen to podcasts:
    • Revisionist History, Malcom Gladwell
    • Code Switch, NPR
    • 1619, New York Times
    • Lynching in America, EJI
    • Pod Save the People, Crooked Media
    • Come Through, WNYC Studios
    • The United States of Anxiety, WNYC Studios
  • Follow black voices on social media platforms:
    • Victoria Alexander, Anti-Racist Researcher (@victoriaalxndr)
    • Shaun King, Civil Rights Activist and Author (@ShaunKing)
    • Layla F. Saad, Author, Speaker, and Teacher (@LaylaFSaad)
    • Brittany Packnett Cunningham, Activist, Educator, Writer (@mspackyetti)
    • Ijeoma Oluo, Writer, Speaker, and NYT-Bestselling Author (@IjeomaOluo)
    • Sam Swey, Black Activist and Data Scientist (@SamSwey)
    • Ibram X. Kendi, Author and Speaker (@ibramxk)
    • Rachel Cargle, Writer and Racial Educator (@rachel.cargle)
    • Tamika Mallory, Entrepreneur and Speaker (@TamikaDMallory)

Support Black-Owned Businesses

  • BlackPDX: BlackPDX.com is a virtual community hub created to amplify the voices and messages of the black community in the greater Portland metro area, ultimately to improve economic conditions for black families.
  • I Love Black Food: In the whitest major city in the US, with gentrification pushing out small businesses and with hate crimes targeting visibly black-owned restaurants on the rise: it is harder than ever to keep a small business afloat. I Love Black Food is here to support the many black-owned restaurants of Portland and the deliciousness they serve.