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Native Women Lead with Solidarity for Black Lives Matter

Jun 4, 2020

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Credit nativewomenlead.org

ative Women Lead states:

To our Relatives:

Native Women Lead (NWL) stands in solidarity with our Black relatives. The sadness and pain of the unjust killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery and the countless others before, has become too common for too long. Native Women Lead vehemently condemns racialized violence that terrorizes Black, Brown, Immigrant, Indigenous and Communities of Color everywhere.  

NWL’s foundation is rooted in our BEWE values - we are the Backbones of our community, Emerging as leaders, Weaving our ideas and resources and Empowering one another for change.

Justice is a shared responsibility and if we truly stand in our values then we must stand for our Black Relatives. Now is the time to center the Black community by holding space and activating our support for #BlackLivesMatter as anti-racist relatives and allies. It will not be business as usual, NWL will pause it’s online webinar retreat series and instead use the time on Thursday, June 4, 2020 at 11:30 am (MST) to call-in our Native womxn sister entrepreneurs to hold space and support our Black relatives by asking ourselves to reflect on how we can do better from where we are with what we have. 

We must once again strengthen our Backbones and call out the systemic racism that has benefited for over 500 years off of the backs of Black and Native people. We believe if we act in solidarity mobilizing our communities we will move closer to Liberation for all. 

We must Empower by calling to action ways we can all do the work together:

  1. As non-Black people of color we must not remain silent when others in our community make anti-black comments, our complacency is part of the problem;

  2. We will continue to acknowledge our Black-Indigenous/Afro-Indigenous relatives as kin, understanding anti-blackness has lived in our communities too;

  3. Check in with our Black relatives, they are in pain. Doing so to hold space and not centering ourselves;

  4. As businesses and entrepreneurs we know the power of intentional buying, use your money to buy and/or donate to a Black business and organizations. Put your money to work;

  5. Use your network, promote amazing Black owned businesses, post about them on social media, share them with your friends.

To Emerge as leaders, we must do it by holding ourselves accountable. NWL does not have all the answers but we can use our platform and our resources to be a part of the solution.  NWL will be convening “Healing In Solidarity for #BlackLivesMatter” conversation in place of our retreat this Thursday, June 4, 2020 at 11:30 am *MST.  Register here. (Our previously planned retreat is postponed.) 

We are Weaving our resources together and will be donating a $1,000 to #SayHerName and invite you to do the same here: https://aapf.org/supportshn #SayHerName is “a movement that calls attention to police violence against Black women, girls and femmes, and demands that their stories be integrated into calls for justice, policy responses to police violence, and media representations of police brutality”.

 

Finally, we are committed to doing this work in public and with the community. As a result we have updated our Community Working Agreement to be explicitly anti-racist. These agreements were always meant to be a living pledge for our work and approach:

 

  • Our organization is committed to the understanding of the inherent value of the women in our community. We believe we can learn from each other and it is this exchange which is critical to our movement. 

  • Celebrate mistakes. Our work to revolutionize systems requires a dedication to experimentation and fearlessness. We will make mistakes and will learn and grow from them. 

  • We are committed to radical transparency understanding as an organization that will work to heal each other and our communities in the decisions we make. We are committed to learning together in public and will share our reasons for decisions with our stakeholders and relatives. 

  • We believe in thinking critically about our work and its impact on our Earth Mother and our peoples. 

  • We come to the table of Native Women Lead as equals. Dedicated to striving for excellence and holding one another accountable as we co-create. 

  • As we deconstruct the western systems of entrepreneurialism, we strive toward greater inclusion of our relatives who are Black-Indigenous/Afro-Indigenous, LGBTQIA, veterans, possessing differing abilities and come from different backgrounds.  

  • We believe that our work must be intentional and utilize anti-racist frameworks to ensure we keep moving forward with social and economic justice in mind for all.

In Solidarity, 

Native Women Lead Co-Founders

To find out more, see link below: 

https://www.nativewomenlead.org/