Confronting Implicit Bias

This week, we’ll be sharing and taking actions every day to help us reflect, understand, and support changes to eliminate systemic racism. We recognize that this is a time in our history for Action Utah to listen and learn about how to show up for communities of color through our policy and civic engagement work. Our work is incomplete without representing all Utahns in this manner.

An important step on this journey is looking at how we have internalized attitudes related to race. Today we are sharing a list of resources we have compiled from community leaders that Action Utah is using to better understand and educate ourselves on this complex issue.

WHAT YOU CAN DO

Contact your senator and congressional representatives to support changes to address the underlying issues behind the protests, including these three policies:

  1. This resolution by representative Presley & Omar condemning police brutality.
  2. Federal legislation to ban the use of knee holds and chokeholds by police officers, and ask them to require states to make public the misconduct and disciplinary histories of police officers and to implement citizen’s review boards to hold police departments accountable and build public confidence. (As per Derrick Johnson, president of the NAACP)
  3. Police Reform bill developed by Black Lives Matter Utah – you can also sign this petition to support this policy.
FIND YOUR CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION CONTACT INFO HERE
  • Watch this TED talk on recognizing and overcoming our implicit biases, and take the implicit bias test created by researchers from Harvard.
  • This anti-racism resource list is “intended to serve as a resource to white people and parents to deepen our anti-racism work.”
  • Read these resources by Debby Irving, racial justice educator and writer of “Waking up White”, a powerful 101 resource for white people
  • Read these resources by Rachel Ricketts, a thought leader, speaker and anti-racism educator encouraging growth, healing and activism

In a press conference held Saturday, Representative Sandra Hollins said, “I need people at the capitol pushing with me. I’ve always said I’m willing to push but I need people behind me pushing also…, we need the public out there pushing with us, making those phone calls and calling their elected officials and educating them on why certain policies are more important or how certain policies may have an impact on communities of color.”

Utah legislators need to hear from their constituents to understand what support they have in pushing for and supporting policy changes at the state level. Make your voice heard by contacting your state legislator today using our simple email form below.

  • Let legislators know that you support the message of the Black Lives Matter movement and that you want to see meaningful action to make changes in our state that positively impact communities of color.
  • Inform legislators as to why supporting this cause is an important step towards creating changes to eradicate systemic race-based injustice. 
  • Tell legislators about your personal experiences with systemic racism and how inequality has affected you and/or the people in your community. 
  • Ask your legislator how they plan to affect change for people of color, and specifically black people, in Utah. 
Write Your Letter Now!

Contact Gov. Herbert and Lt. Gov. Cox to voice your support for the recommendations put forth by Black leaders at yesterday’s meeting and to request a commitment from the state to pursue significant changes and invest in adequate resources for new state plans and policies.

Policy changes suggested by the state’s Multicultural and Martin Luther King Jr. commissions: 

  • Include new educational requirements for officers, such as ongoing bias and diversity training that goes beyond the 18 hours they currently receive. 
  • Create an officer database that could track “bad cops” so they can’t go somewhere else to perpetuate the same behavior.
  • Support more people of color in leadership roles, including in the classroom, as well as educational opportunities to teach young people about racism.
  • Create and implement a statewide diversity and inclusivity plan, including a plan for each department, with accountability that is tied to department budget and salaries.
  • Commit significant allocation of financial resources towards justice, equity and inclusive policies
  • As black leaders have said, the time for conversation is over. Now is a time for action and policy change.
  • It is critical for our state not to postpone or pass up this opportunity to implement needed changes, even for financial reasons. Please commit financial and other resources to meaningful action this year.
  • We have much work to do as a state to combat systemic racism, and it is beyond time to make a strong start.
  • Do you have a story about how systemic racism impacts you, your community or someone you know? Consider sharing it.
  • Why do you personally support the black lives matter movement?

How to make sure your letter is successful:

  1. Use a clear and specific subject heading.
  2. Start with a salutation (“Dear …”).
  3. Be CIVIL, PERSONAL and as CONCISE as possible.
  4. Mention that you are a CONSTITUENT and include your full address with zip code.
  5. Sign your name at the end.

Write Your Letter To Gov. Herbert and Lt. Gov. Cox Here

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