Policing, Affordable Housing, and Integration v. Gentrification

Hi Friends!
I have started going back to the beginning of my weekly updates and posting them on Medium. I’m sharing this with you because I think this is a good way to share the kind of work we’re all doing with a broader audience (I’m editing it to generalize it beyond our community). I’m also hoping that this will reach more people locally who aren’t interested (or able) to sign up for the weekly emails/email list that I have created. At the moment, I’m just catching up from the emails I have sent since last August, but eventually I’ll be posting current weekly updates there as well as to this email list. Which means that being on this email list will be more important for those who want to participate in local events/meetings/etc. because I’ll do more specific local things in the emails that will not be in the Medium posts. If you have any questions about this, please let me know.
My updates are a bit scattered this week, focusing on policing, a POC perspective on racial equity recently, and PTA and teacher spending inequities:
(1) SURJ DC sent out an update on police infiltration.
(2) There was a Black Lives Matter DC press release on Metro police accountability and their website has many ways to get involved.
(3) A perspective on the slide for racial equality from Courtland Milloy.
(4) I did some more research on PTA spending and inequities. This article has ideas for addressing inequities with a district-wide fund. I would love thoughts on how we can make our county-wide PTA’s grant fund better or if you like any of the ideas presented here.
(5) Teachers’ spending is higher at schools with larger numbers of economically disadvantaged students, furthering inequities for teachers from school to school even within the same school district.
Our large group meeting with an advocate for affordable housing was a great success. She’s putting together an event on June 18 called “Confronting Diversity: Housing Policies for a Truly Inclusive Community.” We had a great discussion about how the agenda is structured, how equity in housing and schools fits together, the history of segregated housing in our community, and how we can continue to support each others’ efforts.
I met with another School Board member this morning. It was a really good conversation and I’ll have a better write-up for everyone about it soon. I also went to this month’s local NAACP meeting and they have asked me to support their education committee, so I’ll be working with them more on that.
EmbraceRace is hosting a web event called “Unlocking the potential of parents to fight for racial equity in schools” on May 29 — can we get more relevant than that?! If you can’t make the date live, register and then you’ll have access to the recording.
I have mentioned Integrated Schools before, but I spent some time on their website recently and they have a wonderful Resource list. I also noticed that the closest local group is in Richmond, so I signed up to be an official local group since we’re already doing that work. I’ll be talking to them later this week. The more connections we can make with others working on these issues the better! It also reminded me of the resource list at the bottom of this Medium post by Molly McClure. Great resources to dig into!
This is a painful and necessary read about the overlap that can happen between integration and gentrification. As privileged white families, we need to be very aware of this dynamic. THIS is why we must listen to the communities who are most impacted, why we must consider what might change and any unintended consequences of our best-laid efforts. The impact we have, even when we are trying to do the right thing, can be negative (refer back to the negative impacts of desegregation after Brown v. Board of Education that we have discussed before). This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try — it means we need to follow and listen to the communities being directly impacted by our efforts.
I’m planning ahead and setting goals for next year and I would love to hear from any of you who might be interested in helping out with some of our group efforts. In particular, I’m thinking about what I can delegate, specifically event planning (for the few large group meetings we have) and some outreach possibilities. I’m also open to suggestions if there’s something you want to work on in particular. Let me know!
I hope you have a great holiday weekend coming up. Keep sharing what you’re doing with those in your lives!

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