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Understanding and addressing white supremacy

On Sept. 22-23 members of local immigrant rights groups held a workshop on Combating White Supremacy and Working for Immigrant Justice. We based the workshop on the Catalyst Project’s Immigrant Justice curriculum, which provides anti-racist resources for activists and organizers. We had two goals: (1) to deepen our understanding of white supremacy and privilege, especially in relationship to anti-immigrant policies and immigrant struggles for justice; and (2) to learn to address white supremacy within our organizations and movements.

Through presentations, group work and reflection, we developed our understanding of how white supremacy functions and perpetuates itself, often through our actions, and explored how to create relationships of accountability and solidarity with organizations led by immigrants/people of color.

Three organizations participated: Strengthening Sanctuary, Elevate Mason County and Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ). Most of us who attended were white-identified. We recognize that white supremacy is a system that we share responsibility for and need to challenge. Because SURJ focuses on this issue, it was especially useful to collaborate with them.

You can find information about Strengthening Sanctuary and Elevate Mason County in the Profiles of Local Organizations, p. 9 of this issue. SURJ is a national organization dedicated to undermining white supremacy and building a racially just society.  Olympia SURJ meets the fourth Monday of every month from 6-8pm at United Churches. For further information, visit their Facebook page or write: olympiasurj@gmail.com. The Catalyst Project can be found at: https://collectiveliberation.org

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