WASHINGTON, DC – The murder of George Floyd by a police officer in Minneapolis coupled with the devastating impacts of COVID-19—a disease disproportionately affecting Black communities—have forced the country to confront tough realities about police brutality, the justice system, wealth gaps, and education and health disparities, among other issues.
Today, the Race, Prosperity, and Inclusion (RPI) Initiative at Brookings has officially launched How We Rise—a new policy blog focused on solutions to upend structural racism and create a more equitable society for all.
- Why individual effort is not going to help America address racism. Undoing 400 years of racism is too big a problem to be overcome by any individual American and requires targeted policy solutions to tackle racism in all its manifestations, including expanding opportunities for employment, education, and health care as well as reforming the law enforcement and criminal justice system writes Camille Busette.
- Getting beyond corporate statements of solidarity and CEO rhetoric of equality. Financial institutions have an opportunity to move beyond corporate statements of solidarity by focusing on reinvesting in community organizations that are working to rehabilitate neighborhoods at the frontlines of police violence and misconduct writes Makada Henry-Nickie.
- The collateral consequences of state-sanctioned police violence for women. The mental, emotional, and physical consequences, particularly for Black women, that result from mourning the death of a loved one at the hands of the criminal legal system write Rashawn Ray and Alyasah Ali Sewell.
- Racism and the task ahead for the 2021 White House. Any presidential plan to address racial justice and inequality in America should include legislative and federal agency components, as well as the appointment of a non-partisan Federal Equity Commission charged with identifying and prioritizing critical areas for attention and investment, writes Camille Busette.
- To add value to Black communities, we must defund the police and prison systems. “Defund the police” has been a rallying cry for the protest movement, but that’s not enough—the country should rethink the entire criminal justice system and how excessive policing and incarceration extract wealth from Black communities, with spending that dwarfs systems which could serve to invigorate economic mobility for Black Americans instead of arrest it, writes Andre Perry.
- Systemic racism and America today. Reflection on the origin of systemic racism in the United States and the ways in which it continues to impact, and even define, American culture and society today from Brookings President John R. Allen.
Additionally, this afternoon at 2:00 p.m., RPI will host a webinar featuring Brookings experts Camille Busette, Makada Henry-Nickie, Rashawn Ray, and President Gen. John R. Allen, USMC, Ret., for a conversation on anti-racist policy approaches to jobs, health, education, and other arenas that would support the well-being and success of communities of color. Watch here: https://brook.gs/2MNBZv2. Viewers can submit questions for speakers by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter at @BrookingsGov by using #HowWeRise.
In the coming days and over time, How We Rise will explore a wide range of issues at the intersection of race and public policy. Be sure to check back for more research and analysis and sign up here to receive future updates via the How We Rise newsletter.
The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit organization devoted to independent research and policy solutions. Its mission is to conduct high-quality, independent research and, based on that research, to provide innovative, practical recommendations for policymakers and the public.