As a board member of the Homeless Youth Law Clinic, I have the pleasure of spending this Sunday morning with folks who are working to make our world a better place for youth facing unspeakable difficulties.
Much gratitude to Jay Jaffee and Synergy One Lending who have made their space and resources available to us for this event. It is so meaningful to be able to host a community event that centers service and appreciation for those who give back to the community.
Please join us on Sunday, December 9, 2018, from 10:00 AM to Noon at Synergy's office and help us build care kids for the youth. HYLC will hand out these care kits to youth at each of their legal clinics.
Get your FREE ticket at Eventbrite and arrive by 10:00 AM.
Feel free to print out our flyer and color it in.
I had the pleasure of connecting with folks at New Relic and getting into some sticky issues around intersectionality and liberation with them. My presentation, steeped in the work of many other marginalized folks, took a critical look at Diversity and Inclusion programs by looking at how these programs and policies have their roots in capitalism and systematic oppression. Our use of the critical framework made possible by Professor Crenshaw illuminated what Edward Said refers to as the work of an intellectual, to think critically about how systems fail to address the harm endured by the most vulnerable within our communities.
Folks at New Relic were a delight! They asked that I share a list of resources that will enable them to dig deeper into the analysis. Below are a just a small sample of content folks may find helpful.
Reading material passed out during session:
Content referred to during presentation:
I had the wonderful opportunity to learn and share at this year's White Privilege Conference. This conference has "examined challenging concepts of privilege and oppression and offers solution and team building strategies to work towards a more equitable world." I attended multiple workshops that focused on providing functional and practical advice on tackling the work of equity. I was moved by Ms. Stacey Gibson's presentation on how the popular frame of 'Equity' work results in the theft of work and momentum from women of color, most specifically Black women. Her analysis resonated deeply with me.
While at the conference I also had a chance to present my new workshop titled Intersectionality: The Antidote to D&I. This workshop applies an Intersectional critical framework, rooted in legal analysis, on institutional use of Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) policies and practices. The examination reveals that D&I policy are not created for to further liberation of marginalized folks. Rather, the programs deepen and strengthen the capitalistic commodification of marginalized folks for the purposes of increased profits. Kẏra presents a similar analysis in How to Uphold White Supremacy by Focusing on Diversity and Inclusion. I was glad to see this article also listed on Stacey's reading list.
I took a leap and showed up at a three-day Agile Open Northwest tech conference and decided to fully participate. My intention in participation was to learn about Open Space conference format with an eye toward introducing this format of information exchange into the lawyer community. I'm now convinced that the open conference format has the potential to disrupt the white supremacist patriarchal structures that plague the lawyer learning environment.
While at the conference, I gave a presentation on Intersectionality on the second day. The result was amazing. I am deeply moved by the warm and welcoming response I got from folks both during and after the session. The reception of my presentation far exceeded my expectation. In fact, I had folks ask for me to present again because of the positive feedback rolling through the conference. My presentation got called out to the larger group as noteworthy. I connected with some wonderful folks who are very engaged and imaginative about process and movement. Frankly, I'm a bit blown away by this. #AONW 2018
I'm including a copy of my presentation slides for folks who may find it helpful.
Women of color regularly find themselves in a sphere outside of those labeled and designated for Women. Take for example the #MeToo campaign. You may be familiar with the way Tarana Burke was excluded from the movement until women of color pushed back and centered Ms. Burke and her contributions. You may not be aware of the people #MeToo leaves behind, such as immigrant women working on hotel night crews and those working in the fields. The open letter from Latina Farmworkers to Hollywood on sexual assault is an eyeopening example of how easy it is to prioritize white moneyed women when we engage in the work of social justice. The video below provides a wonderful overview of how feminism has historically centered the experiences of moneyed white women and left women of color behind.
On Tuesday, I had the wonderful good fortune of sitting through Emily Evans' presentation on Oregon Women's Foundation's report on Eight That Can't Wait, important issues facing women and girls in Oregon.
Emily's reporting on the economic fragility of our women head of house shook me to the core. Three points stuck with me.
On July 1, 2017, Oregon New Minimum Wage rage went into effect. The Portland Urban Growth Boundary (UGB) now has a rate at $11.25. This is good news for many families who experience economic fragility. A large segment of our community members experience sever economic hardship and live paycheck to paycheck. I'm hopefully that we are moving toward a feature where economic fragility, poverty, will be a historic phenomenon for our communities.
On May 23, I had the pleasure of sharing my analysis on the ADA with OTLA's New Lawyer Power Hour. Specifically why compliance is not inclusion. During the presentation we had a wonderful exchange on how inclusion requires all of us to reach for and actualize spaces and policies that go beyond compliance. This presentation contained the same themes as Above the ADA, presented on April 28, 2017. This presentation was framed around attorneys as employers and service providers under Title I and III of the ADA.
I sent Governor Brown a letter advocating for the appointment of Judge Ortega to the Oregon Supreme Court. In my letter, I describe the importance of having decisions makers and leaders who dedicated to furthering Intersectionality and disrupting White Fragility, and Moral Licensing. Having a sufficient level of analysis is more important now because of the current climate we face. We need better leadership and representation.
I'm so excited to be speaking about an issue that is close to my heart with Oregon NOW (National Organization for Women) on April 9, 2017, at the Annual Meeting.
My presentation will be a focused discussion centered on a marginalized voice on issues of intersectionality within the legal community. What can we learn about the struggles of those individuals tasked with waging legal battles on behalf of others when the warriors themselves are kept at the margins of the community? An examination of the burden of working towards equity while being subject to systems of oppression.