Demystifying state and local policy & research and creating solutions with community at the center.
Voices for Racial Justice dreams of building creative ways for doing racial equity around policy & research work. Our research and policy strategy connects the powerful tools of information, research, and analysis with the work of community organizers, activists, and change-makers. Drawing on research, data, and community input, we create resources that guide race-conscious public policy proposals. Our analysis reveals the impact of policies on issues from education to health care to criminal justice on communities of color, and provides alternative, equity-grounded strategies.
The current focus of our policy work lies in both The Quilt: Policy, Art, and Healing and our Racial Equity Impact Assessment.
The Quilt was born out of our former Legislative Report Cards and Agendas for Racial Equity. The report cards graded state legislators and the governor on their support for legislation forwarding an equitable and inclusive Minnesota, while the agendas articulated community-centered policy solutions for racial justice. While these were helpful tools for lobbyists and legislators with a focus on racial equity, they did little to further build community and power outside of the Capitol.
The Quilt takes the most impactful parts of our report cards, and combines them with storytelling, art, and community. Our intent has been to engage our community in a deeper policy discussion, while also creating and sharing a policy tool that is culturally-and community-rooted. The Quilt is published by Voices for Racial Justice and The UpTake. Since publishing the first edition of The Quilt in September 2019, we have received direction from the community on how The Quilt can advance organizing for racial justice, how best to engage people with the magazine, and how reporting on racial justice issues can evolve.
You can check out the online version of The Quilt here, and our past Legislative Report Cards on Racial Equity below.
Our hope for the Racial Equity Impact Assessment is to build a framework around racial equity that can be utilized by legislators and policy-makers in collaboration with BIPOC communities when writing and introducing bills and policy. Our Racial Equity Impact Assessment helps legislators and policy-makers consider how a certain bill or policy is helping, or hurting, racial equity in Minnesota. This framework causes us to ask ourselves what bills and policies are actually advancing racial equity, and what we as communities of color can support as one collective force for change.
Find the Racial Equity Impact Assessment here.