Thursday, August 06, 2020

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"The emergency triggered by COVID-19 lays bare the structural failures of an economy that devalues workers and so greedily commodifies the most basic necessities—health care, housing, clean water—that they are out of reach to many. Without centering racial equity, the survival packages Congress is passing will not act as levelers, equally protecting all. Tragically, they will be sweet deals for corporations and their executives, with little accountability. They will further concentrate wealth at the top and make human suffering and inequities worse unless local leaders commit unequivocally to meet the expressed needs and priorities of communities in greatest need. While the survival packages that does have some people-first elements, they are insufficient and continue the toxic pattern of previous bailouts, which never prioritized low-income people, working families, or struggling communities. Once again we are reminded that this is the United States of America, a country founded on stolen land and human bondage and which still operates according to a hierarchy of human value. "

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"This is not a list to follow sequentially or a menu from which to pick and choose. Rather, these principles, collectively, must guide leaders in developing plans and policies and executing on them to deliver equity results. This guidance emerges from a cross-section of people, the expertise of many organizations in the equity movement, and PolicyLink experience in partnering with local residents and leaders to chart a course toward equitable recovery after Hurricane Katrina and the 2008 financial collapse. From this moment, every action — every policy and investment — must provide significant, sustained support to the people hurting most and serve as a bridge to creating an equitable economy, an inclusive and compassionate society, and a strong, accountable democracy. It is time to “Win on Equity”!"


 


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Vernellia R. Randall
Founder and Editor
Professor Emerita of Law
The University of Dayton School of Law

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