Guest Blog by my beautiful wife Sarah Keenan
On Friday, February 9th Mother’s Helping Mother of Elmira hosted a racial justice workshop at the EOP building located at 650 Baldwin Street, Elmira.
The two-hour session focused on the reality of systemic racism in this country and the consequences of allowing it to continue unchallenged.
Shanel Boyce, community organizer, activist, nurse, MSW candidate from Binghamton University, and co-founder of the Binghamton Women’s March, led the two-hour discussion. In attendance was a diverse group of community members looking to be educated and empowered.
Some of the topics touched upon included the distinction between racial justice and diversity, multiculturalism, and equality. We need to acknowledge that institutional racism exists and that policies and practices create different outcomes for different racial groups.
We also examined the role people of privilege have in affecting change when related to racism. Being an ally to people of color, especially in
the current climate requires a lot of tough introspection and the ability to recognize the necessity of anti-oppression work for all people.
Two hours was just enough time to scratch the surface. Shanel guided the group and fostered dialogue between all. Everyone left with much to think about and to further discuss out in the community.