SAVE THE DATE
Stand Against Racism 2019 | Thursday, April 25, 2019
Theme: Our Power, Our Mission, Our Future
Civic engagement is a powerful tool for eliminating racism. In fact, it is the one tool that disenfranchised groups consistently rely on to create a more representative democracy. While we can use this tool in a variety of ways, from acts of civil disobedience to serving on the school board, laws have been changed and communities have been empowered when community members dedicate their time to doing something for the greater good.
Defined as working to make a difference in communities through both political and non-political activities, civic engagement addresses public concern and promotes a better quality of life for community members.
For many, the term “civic engagement” refers only to voting, but civic engagement is a much larger body of work. That full breadth of work is important because voting alone cannot create systemic change. Throughout American history right up through the present, voting has only been accessible as a privilege, and not a true civil right. Voter suppression remains a very real challenge for many marginalized communities.
The hard work of ensuring communities can and do get out to vote is so important. But this work is best coupled with meeting the day to day needs of those communities through direct service, raising awareness on the issues that impact their lives most and advocating for policy change. Civic engagement is most powerful when the full spectrum of civic life is valued and all community members can choose how they’d like to participate.
Each of us can stand against racism by engaging in our communities in a meaningful way.