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Uprooting Racism

Published: March 13, 2020

Minute on Engagement to Uproot and Dismantle Racism in Strawberry Creek Friends Meeting

Susan Burr reported to meeting for business on 2/8/2020 on behalf of the meeting’s Power, Privilege and Race subcommittee. Susan gave a brief history of the drafting and seasoning process for the minute on uprooting and dismantling racism. She read the revised draft of the minute. Friends made suggestions to improve the clarity of the text. The Meeting approved the minute with the suggested changes. The approved minute is as follows:

Strawberry Creek Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends acknowledges the centrality, depth, and pervasiveness of systemic racism in the United States. Continuing revelations of history, experience, and conscience challenge Friends to live up to the Light, increasing awareness of how we, our communities, and our institutions perpetuate the structure of racism. We must help one another discern what Spirit calls us to do individually and corporately.

We utterly reject the racial status quo.  People are suffering and dying daily as a result of systemic racial bias within and across institutions and economic structures, which reproduces inequity and discrimination for “people of color” and unearned advantage for “others".  We call upon ourselves as Friends to illuminate, uproot, and dismantle white privilege because it is used to maintain white dominance.

Systemic racism creates a barrier to living fully into our deepest Quaker values as reflected in all of our testimonies. We seek to bring about a truly inclusive, compassionate, diverse Religious Society of Friends through which our individual lives speak to our collective belonging to one another and Creation. We commit to the work of healing and transforming to make foundational change in our Meeting. We commit equally to the work of dismantling the political and economic structures of racism and opening to acceptance of real beauty in human difference.

In response to concerns expressed by Friends, PPR will be looking at the next steps on implementing the minute, including sharing with the quarterly and yearly meetings. One Friend asked that we not just approve the minute and send it off to the archives.

A Friend suggested Strawberry Creek adopt a query that has been used by Friends General Conference to test their business decisions in order to support its work to become an anti-racist organization. A modified version for Strawberry Creek would be “How does this decision support Strawberry Creek Meeting in becoming an actively anti-racist community?”

from Peter Lin, SCM Newsletter Editor (2/24/2020)