A Short Guide to Advocacy and Anti-Racist Praxis

Prepared by the SPH Collaboratory for Health Justice

As recent events bring to light the need for justice, we encourage you to participate in anti-racist work.  Anti-racist is one who is support an antiracist policy through their actions or expressing an antiracist idea (Kendi, 18).  If you have not engaged in anti-racism work in the past, start now.

One either allows racial inequities to persevere, as a racist, or confronts racial inequities, as an antiracist.There is no in-between safe space of “not racist.” The claim of “not racist” neutrality is a mask for racism.

Ibram X. Kendi  |  How to Be an Antiracist

Racist policies uphold racist ideas and result in the economic, social, educational, health, and various forms of inequity that we see today. Being antiracist requires each of us to actively choose to advocate for change within systems that have been left unexamined. There are many ways you can take anti-racist action- but until the policies are changed, we will not see lasting, meaningful change for justice. Below are specific, antiracist actions that you can take that contribute to systems change.

These actions serve as a starting point for your own advocacy work, whatever that may look like. We hope that you take action alongside us—silence is compliance.

Discuss racism openly

  • Find out how slavery, the civil war, and Jim Crow are being taught in your school district. Advocate that it is taught correctly.
  • Teach your loved ones if the system won’t.
  • Explain redlining to someone who doesn’t understand systemic oppression.
  • Talk to white people who are not upset using “I” statements. (I feel [feeling] when you [behavior]”).
  • Use mass media to raise awareness, reframe the debate, share petitions, and amplify other’s voices.
  • Tell your friends who are people of color that you see them, hear them, and love them.

Engage politically

Me and white supremacy workbook

Subscribe to advocacy groups

Follow your local chapter

Guides

Overviews

Topics to watch and next steps

  • Criminal justice reform

     

  • Police de-escalation training

     

  • Police body cameras

     

  • Prison abolition

     

  • Defunding police

     

  • Decriminalizing marijuana

     

  • Ending cash bail

     

  • Affirmative action

     

  • School privatization

     

  • Livable wages

     

  • Healthcare for all

     

  • COVID-19 relief

     

  • Divesting from private prisons