November 2020 | Spotlight on Anti-Racism
Scene on Radio: Seeing White:
CNMA is working towards becoming an antiracist organization. In 2019 new bylaws were approved that recognize CNMA’s responsibility to actively address racism and the resulting health inequalities suffered by communities of color. Importantly, we must actively support efforts to increase racial diversity in our profession while engaging actively in self-education. “Spotlight on Antiracism” is a new section of the newsletter where you will find a monthly educational offering. We encourage our membership to check it out and share widely in your workplaces.
This month, we encourage our members to look deeper at the historical basis of whiteness with the podcast “Scene on Radio: Seeing White.” This podcast explores the invention of whiteness as a means to systematically exploit and oppress people of color for centuries. Through conversations with leading scholars, we see how our country was founded on white supremacy, and how these ideas are alive and thriving today. Although we urge you to listen to all 14 episodes, there is a specific question which is posed by collaborator Chenjerai Kumanyika in episode 7: “How attached are you to the idea of being white?” So, we implore our white members to wrestle with this idea individually. What does this mean for you? How does your attachment to being white either positively or negatively affect your ability to engage in antiracist work, and how does this show up in your own practice as a midwife?
CNMA Stands with Jemel Roberson
In October, the Cook County State's Attorney's Office stated that it would not bring charges against the officer who murdered Jemel Roberson, a security guard who was killed while restraining a gunman who had opened fire on patrons of the bar where he was working. A man who acted bravely and should have spent the rest of his life known as a hero was instead killed by a police officer, and once again justice has not been served. CNMA opposes this decision and stands with Roberson’s family and our communities of color. We desperately and urgently need drastic changes in policing.
Please take a moment to put your passion into action today:
-Sign the petition to urge Illinois Governor Jay Pritzker to demand the Department of Justice investigate the murder of Jemel Roberson by Midlothian Police officer Ian Covey, and calling on President Trump and Attorney General William Barr to follow through on their promise of a federal investigation in this case.
-Visit The Grassroots law project, an organization which combines grassroots organizing with legal expertise to radically transform policing in America. Donate or join their team of volunteers.
-Visit Campaign Zero, an organization which is working towards ending police violence in America through evidence based solutions and policy changes. You can donate, volunteer, or use it to track your local representative and demand they pass legislation to end police violence.