Monday, June 22, 2020

Don't miss the Kempe Cafe's session this Wednesday on being an ally to LGBTQ+ youth!

Demonstrating allyship to LGBTQ+ youth and why it matters
Thursday, June 25th  10 - 11 AM (MST)  Zoom
Colleen Gibley-Reed (She / Her / Hers)

June is Pride Month when LGBTQ+ communities come together across the world and celebrate the freedom to be themselves. This Kempe Café will introduce attendees to effective approaches to support LGBTQ+ youth who are particularly vulnerable. Join us as we learn about the history behind Pride month, key terms and concepts, and strategies to demonstrate allyship in both your personal and professional life.

Coming together during Pride month, a month intended to promote the self-affirmation, dignity, equality, and increased visibility of LGBTQ+ people as a social group, you will learn the importance of understanding, embracing and supporting this historically marginalized group. Participants will leave with greater empathy for this population, feeling empowered to show up as a true ally.

  • Familiarize yourself with the history of Pride month
  • Acquire a knowledge of the key terms and concepts specific to SOGIE (sexual orientation, gender identity and expression)
  • Learn about the outcomes of LGBTQ+ youth, why it’s important to be data-informed about this population and how it impacts those you serve
  • Grasp what it means to have heterosexual and cisgender privilege
  • Gain an understanding of actionable steps you can immediately take to demonstrate allyship
“Don’t tolerate me as different. Accept me as part of the spectrum of normalcy”

Ann Northrop

Friday, June 19, 2020

Juneteenth Statement from Office of Health Equity

On honor of Juneteenth and the ongoing struggle for racial justice and against white supremacy, we'd like to share today's blog post from Web Brown, the Director of the Office of Health Equity:

Reflections on Juneteenth

President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863 and intended to free all slaves. The proclamation only applied to places under Confederate control and not to slave-holding border states or rebel areas already under Union control. In Texas, slavery had continued as the state experienced no large-scale fighting or significant presence of Union troops. In fact, many slave owners from outside of Texas viewed it as a safe haven and moved there with their slaves. In Texas, approximately 250,000 people were still being held in slavery when, on June 19, 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston to announce that the war had ended and that all slaves were now free.

But more than 150 years after the final slaves were freed, too many still don't know why celebrating June 19 is important. Juneteenth has added significance this year, amid global unrest and protests against systemic racism. In many ways, Juneteenth represents how justice in the US has always been delayed for African-Americans. In the immediate aftermath of the Civil War, there were waves of lynchings, imprisonment, and the implementation of Jim Crow laws. What followed was the disproportionate impact of mass incarceration, discriminatory housing policies, and a lack of economic investment. Juneteenth should serve as a reminder of the need for us to commit to structural changes that the country has not yet addressed.

Today, it's important for all of us to acknowledge Juneteenth in our own way, whether that be posting something on your social media page, having a discussion with our kids, or having a physically distanced celebration with neighbors. Show your community that the historical experiences of African-Americans and the struggles that they have had to endure is one worth acknowledging. Use this as an opportunity to educate yourself and others about a reality that may be far removed from many of us, the reality of systemic racism and pervasive injustice in our country. Let’s use today as a critical moment of observation and reflection about the impact of our nation’s past, how it impacts the present lived experience of African-Americans, and what we have to do to create a better future.  

Web Brown
Director, Office of Health Equity

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Supporting LGBTQ+ Children & Youth During Pride Month & Always

The COVID pandemic, ongoing racist violence against black and brown communities, and an overall sense of unease are taking their toll on many people's mental and physical health.  LGBTQ+ children and youth may be having an especially difficult time right now and it's important that we have the resources to support them as they deal with heightened stress and anxiety.

We'd like to share the following resources from the Trevor Project to support LGBTQ+ children and youth:

Supporting Black LGBTQ Youth Mental Health

Implications of COVID-19 for LGBTQ Youth Mental Health and Suicide Prevention

Trevor Lifeline 1-866-488-7386 or text START to 678-678

Suicide crisis line for LGBTQ+ children and youth

Friday, June 12, 2020

Resources for Talking to Kids About Race & Racism

The organization Embrace Race has been conducting a series of webinars on talking to kids about race and racism, and supporting the leadership and activism of young people organizing for racial justice.  The following webinars are available to watch and may be helpful in talking to the children and youth in our lives about equity and anti-racism:

How NOT to raise kids who are quick to call police on people of color

In our social media age, the figure of the "entitled White woman" who calls the police on people of color, especially Black people, simply for living their lives has become so common that she has become a meme. In a week also marked by the 100,000th official COVID-19 death in the United States and the death of a Black man, George Floyd, at the hands (and knee) of a White Minneapolis police officer, Amy Cooper took her place in that long, infamous line of White women. We believe that relatively few people would have behaved as Amy Cooper did that morning in her Central Park encounter with Christian Cooper (no relation) on the morning of May 25th. But it is self-serving for the rest of us to believe that we have nothing in common with her. The truth is that the attitudes and impulses made manifest in her behavior are pervasive, and she wasn't born with them; she learned them.

Andrew and Melissa of talk to Jennifer Harvey about what the parents of White children, in particular, can do to ensure they're not raising white children who are quick to call the police on Black and Indigenous people and people of color.

"I [still] can't breath": Supporting kids of color amidst racialized violence

Black, Brown, Native peoples, poor people – we talk with our children about how to interact with police. We file formal complaints against abusive officers. (Derek Chauvin had at least SEVENTEEN complaints on his record before his encounter with George Floyd.) We take cell phone videos that go viral. We share our stories with media outlets. We file lawsuits. We protest, allies at our side. If it were altogether up to us to stop the racialized violence directed against us, we’d be having a completely different conversation.

With COVID-19 as backdrop, some predict a “long, hot summer.” Others see a promising new determination by many Whites to become a vigorous part of the solution. In this complicated context, what conversations about policing, violence, safety, justice, and race should we be having with our children of color? Join us for that conversation and Q & A with child psychologist Dr. Allison Briscoe-Smith.

"Rays of Hope": Supporting the leadership & activism of our young people

A Talking Race & Kids conversation about how parents, teachers, and other adults in the lives of children can support their activism and advocacy while keeping them safe and managing our own fears for their emotional and physical safety.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Resources to Understand Racism in Child Welfare Work

We'd like to share this newly published resource from the Colorado Office of Children, Youth, & Families:

Resources to understand and confront racism in our work

As the nation grapples with the death of George Floyd and countless other people of color who have lost their lives, we're sharing resources about the intersection of racism and our work together. This list is not all-inclusive. Additional information will be shared in the coming weeks.

Webinars this week:

Thursday, June 4, 11am - 12pm
Network for Public Health Law

This webinar will provide you with:

An overview of how child nutrition programs, specifically the Summer Food Service Program and Seamless Summer Option, can be used to support students during the pandemic.

A summary of how SNAP and WIC have been modified in response to the pandemic to better address the needs of Americans. 

An explanation of how government is working to reduce food waste on farms and support the operations of the Nation’s food banks.

Examples of innovative policies implemented by states to address the food security of their vulnerable citizens.

Thursday, June 4, 2 - 3pm
Poligon, American Muslim Health Professionals, Emgage

Are you interested in advocating for policies that benefit the children and families in your community, but aren't sure where to start? This training includes an introduction to how Congress works, advocacy tips for healthcare issues, and advice on how to engage with your representatives and amplify your voice in the policymaking process.

Friday, June 5, 10 - 11am
Public Impact Partners

Join Human Impact Partners for an emergency conversation with public health researchers and advocates on why policing — and police violence — is a public health issue, and what we can do to address it. 

On a related note, in 2018 the American Public Health Association released a policy statement on Addressing Law Enforcement Violence as a Public Health Issue.