US ranks 161 out of 172 in Covid-19 response
Almost every other country did a better job responding to the Covid-19 pandemic than the United States, according to the 2020 Inclusiveness Index we released last week. Using data on deaths, infections and testing as indicators for how a country got a handle on the pandemic, our study showed the United States, then led by President Donald Trump who famously and repeatedly undermined public health officials and downplayed the seriousness of the pandemic, scoring a ranking of 161 out of 172 countries for which there was data. Our index also compared the performance of states in responding to the pandemic, showing the top three as Vermont, Alaska and Maine, and the bottom three as South Dakota, Iowa and Mississippi. Download the 2020 Inclusiveness Index here, read a summary of our findings here, and check out media coverage of the report here.
Join us TODAY at 1pm PT / 4pm ET for a live discussion, titled:
Privilege Revealed: How invisible preference undermines America
The phrase “check your privilege” has become common in popular discourse over the last decade. But do we really understand what “privilege” means? Join us TODAY, April 7, for the next livestream in our #AskOBI series to hear from leading scholars Stephanie M. Wildman and Margalynne Armstrong, authors of the new edition of “Privilege Revealed,” in conversation with OBI Director john a. powell. Facilitated by scholar and advocate Adam Ryan Chang, they’ll discuss what has changed—and what hasn’t—in the 25 years since the book was first released, and why understanding “privilege” still remains critical to our movements for justice today. Register here.
The event will be livestreamed on our website here with live captioning below the video. We encourage everyone to submit questions for the speakers using the chat box.
Bay Area teachers: Apply to our summer fellowship on race & housing
We've just opened applications for our second annual fellowship for teachers around the theme of race and housing in the Bay Area. This program will examine the region’s histories of racial dispossession and housing, the geographies they have created, and current policy and organizing work around housing justice. We invite K-12 teachers to join us as we delve into resources and materials developed by our institute and others, hear from prominent local activists and community leaders, and craft meaningful curriculum to facilitate students’ understanding of these issues and engagement with how their communities fit into the broader regional and national picture. Learn more about the fellowship.
Our 2021 Summit takes place two weeks from today!
Join the 2,500 people registered (and counting) for the 2021 Othering & Belonging Summit on April 21! Our virtual summit, the first of our 2021 conference events, will be a day of connection and big ideas for building a world based on belonging. Designed as both a learning space and a caring space, we will gather to discuss what we face in terms of both threats and opportunities in our work to secure more fair, more just, and more inclusive societies and a sustainable future for our communities and our living planet. Summit will feature special sessions with Toshi Reagon, john a. powell, Tokata Iron Eyes, Xiye Bastida, The Nile Project, Naomi Klein, Taeku Lee, Astra Taylor, Norma Wong, Sarah Crowell, Alphabet Rockers, and more.
Blog: How to protect privacy and public health during Covid-19
This week we published a new piece by Christine Mitchell, a senior research associate with the Health Instead of Punishment program at Human Impact Partners, that looks at the history of privacy violations in public health campaigns that primarily hurt vulnerable communities, gives an overview of the current issues in contact tracing amid the Covid-19 pandemic, and offers ways to benefit from public health measures while protecting the privacy of impacted people. Read Christine's piece here.
Berkeley School economists go mainstream
Five OBI-affiliated faculty cluster members from our Economic Disparities group were profiled in this long feature in the American Prospect about how their ideas on how to address economic inequality are going mainstream in the US. From social safety net policies that benefit children, to federal minimum wage increases, their proposals have long had overwhelming public support, and we're now seeing that translated into legislative action. As the article notes, "Much of the work that shaped the groundbreaking child benefits in the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill, and directed those benefits for the first time to the genuinely poor, was done by Hilary Hoynes, a professor in both Berkeley’s economics department and its public-policy school." The other profiled economists are David Card, Jesse Rothstein, Emmanuel Saez, and Michael Reich. Read this article here.
Other OBI updates
New website launch:
- This week, OBI’s Toward Belonging’s initiative launched its new public website. As OBI’s first program outside the US, Toward Belonging aims to connect work in Europe and globally to challenge the growing intolerance, lack of trust, and erosion of democratic norms that threaten our collective work to build belonging for all people at scale. Toward Belonging works with organizations, scholars, artists, the public sector, philanthropy, and the wider civil society ecosystem to co-create a world where all belong. Sign up for Toward Belonging’s newsletter to stay up to date on its work in Europe and globally!
In the news:
Director john a. powell was featured in this long Q&A in Vox about the Chauvin trial, titled, "The sympathy and authority of the witnesses in the Chauvin trial," plus this radio interview on KALW's "Your Call" program on the same topic, titled, "Takeaways From The Derek Chauvin Trial & Justice For George Floyd."
- Associate Director Denise Herd was interviewed for two articles in the San Francisco Chronicle about vaccination efforts in California, one titled "Alameda County in talks to run Oakland Coliseum vaccination site after feds and state leave," and the other titled "Can't get to Moscone for a vaccine? Counties are bringing more doses directly to residents."
- Assistant Director Stephen Menendian was interviewed for this article in Alaska's Fairbanks Daily News-Miner newspaper about the newly released Inclusiveness Index, titled, "As vaccinations plateau, Alaska sees a spike in Covid cases." He was also interviewed in an article in The Daily Californian, titled, “Berkeley City Council votes to begin process of ending exclusionary zoning.”
Faculty scholar Rachel Morello-Frosch was appointed as a member of the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council.
Faculty scholar Jason Corburn was quoted in this ABC10 story, titled, “Study: Advance Peace reducing gun violence in Stockton, Sacramento.”
Faculty scholar Jonathan Simon was quoted in an article by Berkeley News, titled, “Despite damning video, complex legal issues make Chauvin trial unpredictable.”
Faculty scholar Colette Auerswald was quoted in an article by Cal Alumni Associations, titled, “We’re Four Months Into COVID Vaccines. Here’s What We Know So Far.”
Othering & Belonging Institute
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