September 30, 2020  /  View this email in your browser
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A group of protesters marching, with one woman holding a sign that reads "Breonna's Life Mattered"

Our new poll shows broad support for meaningful changes to policing & economic reforms

Last week we released the results of a new poll showing that majorities of Americans across racial and ethnic backgrounds support meaningful changes to policing, including requiring officers to live in the communities they police and involving community-resource workers in certain emergency calls. The poll also found broad support for economic policies and programs to reduce wealth and income inequality, including a federal jobs guarantee, temporary suspension of rent and mortgage payments, fair hiring protections for people with criminal histories, and a program to provide grants to Black entrepreneurs starting small businesses.

"We see a lot of agreement on some important principles, and on the need for change. Even where there is disagreement, there is space for us to talk to each other," OBI Director john a. powell said. Click to read more about the survey, which we designed in collaboration with Prosperity Now and the Council for Minnesotans of African Heritage.

How to protect yourself against the threats to protesting

As state surveillance and right-wing armed groups pose an ever greater threat to activists, the need for safety tools and resources has never been more urgent. In a new blog post, Institute researchers Emnet Almedom and Eli Moore provide examples of how the largely peaceful protests rising up in defense of Black lives have been met by violence, and offer resources to protect protesters from the threats posed both by law enforcement who employ digital surveillance tools to monitor them, and individuals who carry out violence. Check out their article and list of safety resources here.

Join us for Part III of Race—The Power of an Illusion

Don't miss our third and final installment of our Race—The Power of an Illusion film screening and panel discussion series, happening Friday, Oct. 9, from 11am to 1pm PT.

Part III of the series, The House We Live In, explores issues of racial formation and citizenship as they unfolded in the early 20th century in the US, and how legal and financial structures shaped the construction of race.

We will screen the documentary in the first hour, followed by an hour of discussion from:

  • Jason Corburn, Professor of Public Health/City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley
  • Michael Omi, Associate Professor of Asian American and Asian Diaspora Studies, UC Berkeley
  • john a. powell, Director of the Othering & Belonging Institute and Professor of Law & African American Studies at UC Berkeley
  • Leti Volpp, Professor of Law and Faculty Director at Center for Race & Gender at UC Berkeley
  • Moderator Rachel Morello-Frosch, Professor of Public Health and Environmental Science, Policy and Management at UC Berkeley
Check below for information and resources from our Part II screening and panel, which took place last week.
Race, Part II recap: The Stories We Tell
Last week, we presented Part II: The Stories We Tell followed by a panel with five phenomenal scholars. Follow this link to access a video recording of the panel featuring professors Lundy Braun, Denise Herd, Gerald Horne, Terence Keel, and Kim TallBear. We'll soon have a transcript of the event on that page as well. To read more about the event, check out this Berkeley News story, "How race came into being."
Image grab from this Rise Up event shows LaTosha Brown

Last week we hosted our third event in our Rise Up for Justice online event series, this one focused on the issue of voter suppression, 55 years after the passage of the Voting Rights Act. The event opened with LaTosha Brown (pictured above), co-founder of the Black Voters Matter (BVM) Fund, singing a powerful rendition of "Lift Every Voice and Sing." Click for a two-minute video teaser of this event. And visit our website for the full video, transcript, and recap.

Introducing the Rise Up for Justice Narrative Hub, with free digital GOTV content through November

We are excited to announce a new open-source content library with high quality, quickly shareable digital content to enrich and expand organizations' civic engagement efforts through Nov. 3. Our new Rise Up for Justice Narrative Hub is a collaboration between a coalition of movement partners to produce daily-updated GOTV assets, which include image stills, memes, digital shorts, and messaging guides around breaking news topics.

Let us know you're interested in accessing this content for your organization.
Portrait of the Alphabet Rockers, chosen as the 2020-2021 artist in residence

"Alphabet Rockers" awarded 2021 Artist in Residence

We're thrilled to announce that we've chosen the Alphabet Rockers as our 2021 artist in residence! The Alphabet Rockers is an intergenerational group of artists dedicated to creating anti-racist and abolitionist music and experiences for children and families. Amidst the many challenges of our times, Alphabet Rockers stood out for the panelists for the powerful way they create the joyful and reflexive work we need right now. Over the course of the coming year, the group will make their collaborative online learning process visible in pursuit of a new album. Click to learn more about the Alphabet Rockers.
Image just says "Call for papers" - Toward Belonging
We are pleased to issue this Call for Papers which will commission content that examines belonging in the European region. This work is part of our Toward Belonging initiative, a partnership effort with More in Common, Counterpoint UK, Queen Mary University in London, SciencesPo in Paris, along with an emergent network of social change actors in the European region. The Toward Belonging effort aims to contribute to a more connected and aligned field of work, across regions and sectors, that can mount an effective challenge to the rise of authoritarianism, mitigate polarization and division, and create more inclusive political and social identities. Learn more about this project here.
Image shows five arms holding on to each other.
Reasons to Be Cheerful, a new online magazine, published an abridged version of our recent essay on bridging authored by Director john a. powell and Rachel Heydemann. They write, "As we approach uncertain futures, there are many paths we can take. Some incite more fear and polarization, while others encourage cooperation, collaboration and solidarity." Check out their article, "We’re Closer Than We Realize." And see their full essay, "On Bridging," from which it was derived.

News & Media

Director john a. powell was quoted in a article entitled "President Trump Has Attacked Critical Race Theory. Here's What to Know About the Intellectual Movement." “What critical race theory has done is lift up the racial gaze of America,” powell is quoted as saying. 
Associate Director Denise Herd was quoted in Berkeley News article offering a deeper look at racial justice in America. "It’s not anti-American to teach [our history]," Herd is quoted as saying. "It’s incredibly American. I think there are a lot of people who are interested in working on racial justice issues right now, so there’s an urgency to talk about this and to write about it, and there should be, because everybody needs to really understand this history in order to tackle its contemporary effects.” 
Staff researcher EJ Toppin was interviewed on the podcast Reclaiming the California Dream on the "Racism Behind California's Tax Revolt."
Faculty scholar Cristina Mora was quoted in a KQED article about a recent Institute of Governmental Studies poll finding Biden leading Trump by 39 points in California. 
Faculty scholar Stephen Small was interviewed by Berkeley News in a podcast about how plantation museum tours distort the reality of slavery. 
Faculty scholar Bertrall Ross was quoted in a Berkeley News article about how the GOP has worked to suppress minority voting. “This is perhaps the most consequential election for African Americans and people of color since the election of 1860, or at least since 1960 or 1964,” Ross says.
Faculty scholar Michael Reich was quoted in a Quartz article about Prop. 22, an Uber and Lyft-backed voter proposition that has become the most expensive ballot campaign in California history. "Uber and Lyft are just exaggerating the importance of flexibility, given that you can only drive when there’s demand for rides,” Reich says.
Faculty scholar Hilary Hoynes was quoted in a Pew Trusts article about how momentum for a Basic Income is building during the pandemic.
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