Leeds Beckett Students' Union would like to express our undying solidarity with Black people across the world as well those protesting the horrific human rights abuses by the US state on its own citizens following the racist murder of George Floyd by the police. It is crucial that we understand this, as well as other incidents of police violence against black people not just as failings of individuals, but as part of the structural racism in the police force and wider society which led to the killings of George Floyd, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and Atatiana Jefferson amongst sadly many others. Now is a time to break the silence and stand in solidarity.
It has become clear that vague notions of diversity, equality and so-called inclusion were never enough without real liberation which dismantles the racist structures of society. It’s long overdue time to critically observe and challenge the systematic oppression faced by Black people in 2020. We must use our platforms and voices to demand justice, but also to raise the understanding of how inequalities manifest themselves in our society. From police brutality to healthcare, and from class inequality to the fact that black people are disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 crisis, it’s time we listen to the experiences of the black community and put those voices to the forefront.
Structural racism isn’t something which only exists in the US. We address the systemic problems on our own doorsteps. Between April 2018 and March 2019, black people were disproportionately targeted by stop and search at a ratio of 38 black people for every four white people.
Last year, we ran our #MyRacistCampus campaign, recognising the structural inequalities which exist on our campus and aiming to tackle them. One campaign will never be enough, and we’re looking to build on this in the coming academic year, working with our BAME Ambassadors to root out structural inequalities and bring them to an end, not just on Leeds Becketts’ campus, but in every town, city and village from Leeds to Los Angeles and from Minnesota to Meanwood.
We have put together a selection of resources for Allies to read, watch or listen to in order to understand the structures we must now get serious about dismantling. Included in these is a selection of fundraisers providing support and supplies to protestors on the ground. If you can, please donate to these in order to show real, tangible solidarity. If you can’t afford to donate at this time, please make sure you’re sharing your own solidarity along with some of the resources below. Make sure you’re not silent.
In solidarity and memory of George Floyd,
Leeds Beckett Students’ Union
UK ORGANISATIONS TO DONATE TO:
The United Families & Friends Campaign (UFFC)
Coalition of those affected by deaths in police, prison and psychiatric custody.
The Majonzi COVID-19 Bereavement Fund
Supporting members of the BAME community who have lost loved ones to COVID-19.
The Ubele Initiative is a social enterprise with a mission to contribute to the sustainability of the African Diaspora community.
BLM & BHI fundraiser - Leeds together
Raise funds and spread awareness for Black and Minority Ethnic causes in Leeds and the UK, through recording a Charity EP with local artists.
Remove the Statue of Robert Peel in Leeds
This is a petition to urge Leeds City Council to remove the statue of 19th century Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel.
Racial Justice Network
The West Yorkshire Racial Justice Network brings together over thirty organisations and individuals from across the region to proactively promote racial justice.
US ORGANISATIONS TO DONATE TO:
Minnesota Freedom Fund
Raise money to pay for people’s bail and bonds in Minnesota. Their homepage currently includes other organisations who are working on the ground in Minneapolis – please support other organisations if you can too.
Black Visions Collective
Seeks to expand the power of Black people across the Twin Cities metro area and Minnesota.
George Floyd Memorial Fund
Established to cover funeral and burial expenses, mental and grief counseling, lodging and travel for all court proceedings, and to assist our family in the days to come as we continue to seek justice for George.
A member-based coalition of non-profit organisations working toward permanent change in racial, social, and economic justice by increasing civic engagement and voter participation across the state.
Reclaim the Block
Organises Minneapolis community and city council members to move money from the police department into other areas of the city’s budget that truly promote community health and safety.
ANTI-RACIST RESOURCES TO ENGAGE IN:
Brit-ish by Afua Hirsch
Don’t Touch My Hair by Emma Dabiri
How to be Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendri
Slay in Your Lane by Elizabeth Uviebiené & Yomi Adegoke
Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire by Akala
Sway by Prada Agarwal
Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race by Renni Eddo-Lodge
Me and My White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad
White Fragility by Robin DiAngela
Antagonist, Advocates and Allies: The Wake Up Call Guide for White Women Who Want to Become Allies with Black Women by Catrice M Jackson
So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
“I Will Not Be Erased”: Our Stories about Growing Up As People of Colour by Gal-Dem
White Privilege Unmasked by Judy Ryde
Black Skin, White Masks by Frantz Fanon
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Women, Class and Race by Angela Y. Davis
The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexamder
Making All Black Lives Matter: Reimagining Freedom in the Twenty - First Century - Barbara Ransby
From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation - Keeanga - Yamahtta Taylor
The End of Policing by Alex S Vitale - free ebook of Verso
Intersectionaility Matters! Hosted by Kimberlé Crenshaw
Momentum: A Race Forward Podcast
Hoodrat to Headwrap: A Delcolonised Podcast Hosted by Ericka Hart
Tv shows and films
Dear White People (Netflix)
When They See Us (Netflix)
The Hate U Give
The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution
See You Yesterday
Strong Island (Netflix)
Fruitvale Station (Netflix)
Seven Seconds (Netflix)
Stay Woke: The Black Lives Matter Movement Documentary on YouTube
ACCOUNTS TO FOLLOW ON SOCIAL MEDIA:
No White Saviors @nowhitesaviors
Layla Saad @laylafsaad
Rachel Cargle @rachel.cargale
Check Your Privledge @ckyourprivledge
Reni Eddo-Lodge @renieddolodge
Ibram X. Kendi @ibramxk
Rachel Ricketts @iamrachelricketts
Ericka Hart @ihartericka
Activist Tanya Compas Is Here To Tell Queer Black People That They Should “Exist Loudly”
@Rachel.Cargle Community POC Reading Recommendations
Advice and Information on your rights around protesting, stop and search etc.
Twitter thread of important resources posted by NUS Black Students Officer including mental health and Self-Care tips