This week we have the opportunity to hear from Jamie as she reflects on 2020 and more specifically on the last few weeks.
2020 has been an overwhelming year, first with the pandemic, and now with the murder of George Floyd. In all the chaos and uncertainty, I believe truth is being exposed.
Many of us are at home and unable to keep ourselves busy like normal. We are forced to move slowly and sit with the silence. Any issues we might have been running from just became harder to avoid. In that silence, an eruption occurred as we witnessed the murder of George Floyd. Police brutality was undeniably exposed. The brokenness in our systems was brought to light; these systems that were built to serve white people, me being one of them. Being exposed can be frightening. There’s light being shed that is challenging a truth we hold, a ‘truth’ that we are all served and treated as equals. In my experience, there seem to be two choices; either continue to run and find another dark corner or step in the light. This may feel awkward at times, but it inevitably opens us to see a new truth. My heart feels exposed as I dig deeper to understand my own white privilege and the various ways that the system has served me while holding the BIPOC community back, and in many instances, at the sacrifice of BIPOC. Denial of our history and the ignorance of white supremacy will simply continue this oppression.
In my role as the Senior Accountant with Urban Homeworks, I see all the ins and outs of our finances; funds coming in through rent, property sales and donations, and funds going out to vendors and the community members that drive our projects forward. Equity has historically been distributed to white-bodied communities and withheld from the BIPOC community. At Urban Homeworks, our goal and desire through all the work we do is to redistribute this equity. We are dedicated to using our finances to bring justice to our community, and I’m humbled to be a part of this team during such a pivotal moment in our city.
My heart and deepest condolences go out to the Floyd family and countless others from the BIPOC community whose lives have been wrongly taken. This injustice can’t continue. There is an urgency that change must happen. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “Silence becomes cowardice when occasion demands speaking out the whole truth and acting accordingly”. My hope is we continue to seek truth and step into the light.