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Recognizing Privilege: How Our Background Can Change the Way We Work on Policy PLAN Fall Institute 2011 Thao Nguyen, Senior Outreach Manager National Women’s.

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Presentation on theme: "Recognizing Privilege: How Our Background Can Change the Way We Work on Policy PLAN Fall Institute 2011 Thao Nguyen, Senior Outreach Manager National Women’s."— Presentation transcript:

1 Recognizing Privilege: How Our Background Can Change the Way We Work on Policy PLAN Fall Institute 2011 Thao Nguyen, Senior Outreach Manager National Women’s Law Center

2 Privilege Exercise How did it feel to do that exercise? How do you feel about where you were standing? What do you think this means about the way you examine, advocate for, and communicate about policy issues that you work on?

3 Why Are We Talking About This?

4 What We’ll Be Doing Privilege Exercise Looking at a historical case study Talk about using a racial equity impact analysis Go through a more recent case study in groups Discuss how to bring this to our organizations

5 Case Study: The GI Bill Created in 1944 by President Roosevelt for World War II veterans. The GI Bill’s most famous provisions included:  Low interest, zero down payment home loans for servicemen  Provided tuition for education and technical training (veterans accounted for 49 percent of college admissions at the program’s peak). Because of the GI Bill, 7.8 million World War II veterans had participated in an education or training program and 2.4 million veterans had home loans backed by the Veterans' Administration (VA).

6 Philip’s Story

7 Thomas’s Story

8 Juan’s Story

9 Fast Forward to Today…

10 How to tackle the problem, rather than becoming the problem…

11 What’s different about work that uses an embedded racial inequities lens? Makes the case differently Shapes the message differently Does the actual work differently

12 Where We Might Be… Divisive, rhetorical, and individually focused messages Across the board aggregated data or quick assumptions on the basis of simple disaggregation Typical focus on the individual Generic, across-the-board outcomes Color-blind approach Good people with good intentions

13 Where We Want to Be Leading with values that unite instead of divide; bundling solutions with problem descriptions; leading with structural and embedded issues Data are always disaggregated by race and deeply analyzed Focus on structural explanations for racial disparities (i.e., polices and practices) Equitable outcomes Race-informed approach Assessing our capacity to do work that uses an embedded racial inequities lens Do we have the right competencies? Are we making the right investments? Does our organization operate in ways that eliminate embedded racial inequities?

14 Racial Equity Impact Analysis Who are the racial / ethnic groups affected by the policy / practice / decision, and are they at the table? How will the policy / practice / decision affect each group? How will the policy / practice / decision be perceived by each group? Does the policy / practice / decision ignore or worsen existing disparities, or produce other unintended consequences? Based on the above responses, what revisions are needed in the policy / practice / decision under discussion?

15 Putting it to practice

16 Let’s Talk About the Mandatory HPV Vaccine Law in Washington, DC The DC City Council passed a law requiring all girls in DC public schools to get the HPV Vaccine before entering 6 th grade. Prominent Washington Post writer issued scathing editorial opposing the plan; wrote that mandate implies that girls of color are promiscuous and parents of color are irresponsible. Only DC and Virginia have HPV requirements for school attendance and Virginia tried to rescind theirs; fast tracked as compared other mandatory vaccines.

17 A Plan for a D.C. Do-Over Presuming the HPV Vaccine furthers the important public health goal of reducing cervical cancer disparities, what could the DC Council have done to get community buy-in?  Please put aside the serious controversy on the safety of the Vaccine for now. What would be some key factors making sure that parents accepted and girls received the Vaccine?

18 Your Plan Should Include… What are your potential audiences? Who do you need to influence? How do you reach them, keeping in mind limited resources? What are some of your key messages? Who are the best messengers?

19 Now, about bringing it home…

20 The Difficult Question How can we start talking about racial, economic, and other inequity issues at our organizations when we are working on policy issues?

21 RESOURCES Race Matters Toolkit, by Annie E. Casey cationsseries/racematters.aspx cationsseries/racematters.aspx Racial Equity Impact Toolkit, by Applied Research Center More resources!


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