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Anti-Racism

The College is committed to promoting dialogue and action around race, racism and anti-racism. This website will serve as a resource to engage with the work of anti-racism. 

Communications

Anti-Racism Action Plan

June 19, 2020 - Today, the College of the Holy Cross affirms our commitment to be an actively anti-racist organization. We join the voices around the country and globe to proclaim that Black Lives Matter. 

View the full plan »

Anti-Racism Strategic Initiatives

In addition to the College’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Planning Group (initial plan issued April 2019 (PDF) with updates on the work done by February 2020) (PDF) the College is currently developing additional strategic initiatives to bolster its commitments to anti-racism. 

Anti-Racism Action Plan Guidebook

The College has created a free resource for those interested in engaging in anti-racism work.

View and download the Anti-Racism Action Plan Guidebook » 

Opportunities for Engagement

We will continue to update this website to provide information on ongoing programs around race, racism and anti-racism. 

Ongoing Programs for Summer 2020

Community Gatherings for Students

  • Open to Holy Cross students and alumni
  • Tuesdays at 7 p.m.
  • The Office of Multicultural Education will continue to hold its community hour and podcast, 6 feet. 20 seconds., every Tuesday at 7 p.m. This space is open for students to gather in community. This space will center the experiences of Black students in particular, along with the voices of students of color. If you would like to participate in this community gathering, please sign up to receive Zoom login credentials.

Watch Wednesdays

  • Open to all students, alumni, faculty, and staff
  • Each Wednesday from 6 - 8 p.m. ET come together to watch and discuss a film that highlights the need for justice, equity, and access. Each week the Office of Multicultural Education will announce the title of the next film via email. If you are interested in participating, complete the registration form by 9 a.m. each Wednesday.
  • State of Pride 
    October 7 ǀ 5:00 – 6:45 PM ǀ Registration link
    Celebrate LGBTQIA+ History Month with us by viewing ‘State of Pride’ for this week’s #WatchWednesday documentary and discussion. Contact Amie Archambault for more information.

  • “Filipino Americans: Discovering Their Past for the Future”
    October 21 (Wednesday) 5:00 – 6:30 PM ǀ Registration link
    To celebrate Filipino American History Month, our #WatchWednesday showing will be Filipino Americans: Discovering Their Past for the Future.  Contact Chris Campbell for more information.

     

  • First Generation
    November 18 (Wednesday) 5:00 – 6:30 PM ǀ Registration link 
    To continue the celebration from National First-Generation College Student Day we will be viewing First Generation for this week’s #WatchWednesday Contact Amie Archambault for more information.

  • Stolen Education
    September 23 (Wednesday) 3pm
    The film documents the untold story of Mexican-American school children who challenged discrimination in Texas schools in the 1950s and changed the face of education in the Southwest. This week's event will be held on Zoom with a discussion to follow the film. Participants will receive the Zoom link upon registering for the event. 
     
  • Laverne Cox Presents: 'The T Word'
    August 5 (Wednesday) 5 pm
    This documentary highlights the current lives of seven Trans youth from the ages of 12 to their early 20s which goes beyond scripted media. Laverne Cox narrates the documentary, asking a series of questions that explore the folx lives since they discovered they were Trans till now and the joys and challenges they each face.  
     
  • "Americans with Disabilities Act" Anniversary Film
    July 29 (Wednesday) 5 pm
    The film highlights deeply personal stories from people living their lives with various types of disabilities. The participants share how they cope with their frustrations and celebrate their successes. After the film and reflection, Amy Borggaard from the Office of Accessibility Services will share how faculty, staff, and students can create accessible and inclusive events, meetings, and spaces. 

Forthcoming Programs

Conversations with Alumni: Dismantling Structural Racism

At a moment when many students feel particularly compelled to activism that improves the well-being of Black and Brown people, and are searching for ways to channel that activism into long-term structural change, the McFarland Center for Religion, Ethics and Culture at Holy Cross is offering three special summer opportunities to engage with young alumni who have become leaders in that work. These moderated discussions will identify structural barriers that disproportionately affect Black and Brown communities, explore actions that can help to close the racial gap and help students think about how they can do the same. 

The online sessions are open to all enrolled students, faculty and staff. Please register for each Zoom webinar below using your Holy Cross email address. Sessions will be recorded and available online after the completion of the series.  

Malik Neal '13, Director, Philadelphia Bail Fund 
July 14, 2020, 4 p.m. 

Malik Neal is a founding member and director of the Philadelphia Bail Fund, a nonprofit organization that works to prevent the unnecessary jailing of low-income Philadelphians by posting bail and advocating for reform. He’ll explain why the cash bail system is unfair and criminalizes poverty, how people of color are disproportionately penalized, and ways students can get involved. 

Malik will be joined by Dante Jones, a North Philly resident who was detained pretrial in Philadelphia’s jails, convicted of no crime other than an inability to pay for his freedom. 

View recorded discussion with Malik Neal here. 

Listen and Learn: Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower
July 20 - July 31, varied days and times

All students, faculty, and staff are invited to participate in our third summer book club. The book club asks participants to listen to a designated set of chapters as part of the two-week module. We will meet regularly to share our thoughts, questions, and concerns. This time will be designated by the group who register for the book club. On the final day, we will meet to debrief the book and create individual action plans to impact change on our personal lives and at the College. If you are interested in participating, please complete the registration form by July 16th.

Rashaunda M. Tyson '04, Assistant Principal, University High School of Science & Engineering, Hartford 
July 21, 2020, 4 p.m.

A secondary school educator and former New York City Teaching Fellow, Rashaunda Tyson will discuss why improving educational opportunities for Black and Brown students at the primary and secondary levels is critical to our future. This discussion will also look at the impact of the way that America funds public education and the range of challenges that educators are called upon to address. 

View recorded discussion with Rashaunda M. Tyson here.

Jerry Dickinson '09, Associate Professor of Law, University of Pittsburgh
July 28, 2020, 4 p.m.

Jerry Dickinson is a law professor who specializes in constitutional law, property, and affordable housing law and policy. As a recent candidate for Congress, he advocated for equitable and inclusive housing, development of a federal community land trust fund, fair housing laws that prohibit discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation, and renters’ rights. He'll reflect on how such work can be done through scholarship, activism, and politics. 

View recorded discussion with Jerry Dickinson here.

Other Programs

Book Read: Nobody: Casualties of America's War on the Vulnerable, from Ferguson to Flint and Beyond by Marc Lamont Hill
Daily, July 6-10 & 13-17, 2020

In this “thought-provoking and important” analysis of state-sanctioned violence, Marc Lamont Hill carefully considers a string of high-profile deaths in America—Sandra Bland, Freddie Gray, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, and others—and incidents of gross negligence by government, such as the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. He digs underneath these events to uncover patterns and policies of authority that allow some citizens to become disempowered, disenfranchised, poor, uneducated, exploited, vulnerable, and disposable. To register, please visit bit.ly/listenlearnregister

How to write an anti-racism action plan (webinar)
July 15, 2020 (Wednesday), 1-2 p.m. 
July 21, 2020 (Tuesday), 11 a.m. -12 p.m.

All students, faculty, and staff are invited to a webinar on how to write an anti-racism action plan. This webinar is intended for those who want to translate their personal values into commitments towards concrete anti-racist action plans, and will center strategies to challenge anti-Black racism - both at the interpersonal and structural levels. 

Becoming a White Ally for Racial Justice (5-week series)
Weekly: Starting July 15 (Wednesday), 3:45 p.m. - 5 p.m. for 5 weeks

All currently enrolled students (including students from the Class of 2024) are invited to join this five-week discussion group. We will discuss interpersonal, structural and community strategies to work towards racial justice, particularly centering responses to anti-black racism. Participants will be invited to write their own anti-racism action plan as well. Students can register here. Deadline for registration is Friday, July 10.

Race to the Start: 50 Years of the Black Student Union at Holy Cross
Available to view here

Race to the Start was produced by Kona Khasu ’92 in 2019. The documentary highlights the history of the Black Student Union (BSU) at Holy Cross and was created in honor of the organization’s 50th anniversary.

Support Conversations for Social Justice Activists
Getting involved in social justice movements in our community and beyond is happening all around us right now. It is an important step in creating and sustaining positive change. It can also be overwhelming at times.

This weekly discussion group is meant to provide a space for students to acknowledge the struggle within the struggle and have support. Students can engage in discussions about the social justice work that is important to them, how they choose to engage in the work, what challenges they encounter, and ways to access support. These discussions are for any and all current Holy Cross students engaged in social justice work, on-campus or in our larger community. Examples of such engagement include but are not limited to: BLM, Eco-Action, LGBTQIA+ rights, MeToo movement, DREAMers movement, Accessibility rights, Voting rights, etc.

The conversations will take place once a week over a 4-week period.
Students are welcome to attend one, some, or all of the conversations.
Sign up is required as attendance will be capped at 20 students per meeting.
Once registered you will receive a secure zoom link and password the day before each conversation.
Registration closes at 12 PM the day before each meeting. To register for any of the above meetings please choose one or more of the following:

Civitas - Community Engagement & Leadership Institute - Summer 2020!
Weekly on Sunday nights, 8-9:30 p.m. EST, July 19-August 16  

Join us for Civitas - Community Engagement Leadership Institute!  In Civitas you will have the chance to 

  • Connect with other HC students in small and large student-led groups   
  • Discuss questions related to racial & economic justice, mission, and service   
  • Access resources to assist you with finding opportunities to get involved in service and social justice work in your local community

Can’t make the weekly meeting time? Sign up and we will pair you with another student so you can stay connected to the program! Questions?  Contact Marty Kelly and Michelle Sterk Barrett at civitas@holycross.edu 

Register for Civitas here

Past Programs

“Healing to Action in Community”

  • Thursday, June 4 at 4:30 p.m.
  • This event was an opportunity for social solidarity in a time of physical distancing. The goals for this virtual space were to foster healing for those in pain, learn and grow from each other's lived experiences, and to find ways to create positive change in our Holy Cross community and beyond. Thanks for the 150+ participants who engaged in this dialogue.

Listen and Learn Book Club

  • Starting June 15
  • Open to all students, faculty, and staff
  • This audio book club will start on June 15 with the book So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo. The book club will offer an opportunity to listen to chapters each day with 30-minute discussions in the evening for two weeks. The book club will conclude with a session to discuss the book and debrief individual learning. 

Reflection and Prayer for Racial Justice

  • Open to students, faculty, and staff
  • 4-week series, Starting Monday, June 8 at 4:30 p.m.
  • Each week we will gather to listen to voices from the Holy Cross community as we pray with themes listed below. We will utilize the Ignatian Examen to provide an overarching structure to the series. The Examen invites us to notice where God is at work in our everyday lives and in our histories with all of our sorrows, pain, desires, and hope. 
    • June 8 - Lamenting - Where is God?
    • June 15 - Recalling Our History of Racism and White Privilege
    • June 22 - Sitting with Our Emotions and Desires in this Moment
    • June 29 - Committing to Change
  • Sign up to participate here.

Support Resources

The following offices are available for support and resources:

  • Counseling Center: (508) 793-3363
  • Chaplains’ Office: (508)793-3012
  • Class Deans: (508)793-2530
  • Employee Assistance Program (including Counseling Support)
  • Office of Multicultural Education:  (508)793-2669
  • Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion:  (508)793-3009
  • Student Affairs: (508)793-2414  

Holy Cross Student Wellness Services recently compiled a list of health, wellness and healing resources related to race and racism. These resources highlight and center Black practitioners and authors who work with marginalized communities.  

Additional Self-Care resources are available at http://holycross.edu/selfcare

Educational Resources

Allyship is an ongoing practice that requires us to educate and challenge ourselves. This document is structured to offer resources to those in the various stages of self-reflection and awareness, as well as experiences related to race-related history, dialogue, and anti-racism work. We encourage you to explore these suggestions in a way that allows you to progress in your own personal growth. 

Resources for Bias & Harassment

The College prohibits discrimination and harassment under its Discrimination & Discriminatory Harassment Policy & its Sexual Misconduct Policy. These links provide details on confidential and non-confidential resources, including options on how to report behavior. Additionally, reports of concerning behavior, including bias incidents, can be reported here

Racial Justice Focused Community Organizations

We encourage all community members to contribute to organizations advocating for change. Thanks to students, faculty, staff and alumni who have shared information with us about community organizations that are advocating for racial justice. The list of suggested organizations is available here.

If you are involved in a community organization that works on racial justice, please let us know via this form.