How do Unitarian Universalists work towards ending racism? We start with ourselves because for us, ending racism is soul work. Through readings, discussions, workshops, training programs, teach-ins, service, and public witnessing, ERC attempts to help identify and fight racism in ourselves and in American society.
ERC vision and mission statements
Vision: ERC envisions a society in which racial justice and equality are the reality for all.
Mission: ERC works toward dismantling racism in all its forms; individual, institutional, and systemic; through self-examination, education, advocacy, public witness, and service.
The Ending Racism Committee (ERC) has been active since 2002 at USG and has been committed to raising awareness among its own members and in the congregation. Members feel that ERC work is necessary, supportive, positive, empowering, rewarding, spiritually nourishing, and inspiring.
ERC meets on the first Sunday of each month in the Sullivan Chapel. For the first hour (usually 12-1pm), we Engage the BLUU box, a new resource from Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism which includes readings and reflections from Black UUs and a brief biography of a prominent Black UU. And the second hour, 1-2pm, is our committee meetings. Everyone is welcome to either or both.
There is also a Racism Book/Study Group that meets monthly. We have read UUs of Color, Centering and Black Pioneers in a White Denomination and Darkening the Doorways: Black Trailblazers and Missed Opportunities in Unitarian Universalism by Mark Morrison-Reed, White Rage by Carol Anderson and the document White Supremacy Culture, by Tema Okun. We are now reading Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram Kendi. All are welcome and asked to do the reading or preparation in advance. To find out when we meet next go to “Upcoming Events” which is under “News and Events” or on the right or at the bottom of this page. Treva Burger facilitates the group, contact her with questions or if you would like to buy or borrow a book, email@example.com.
ERC has a new affiliation with Men Who Care Germantown. Their website is linked here, they welcome support from anyone at USG whether you are a member of ERC or not.
To join ERC, come to our meetings. For more information, please email –firstname.lastname@example.org
Ending Racism 150th Anniversary Video Project
In 2015, in honor of USG’s 150th anniversary, ERC decided to make an offering to the congregation. Selected congregants, including members of the Ending Racism Committee, were interviewed regarding their experiences and reflections on issues of race and racism during their time at USG.
The Video Narrative book with composite answers on some of the questions from the interviewees linked here.
All the available interviews can be found at this link.
Ideally all white people examine and reflect on their own privilege. This is a very deep personal process that is essential to becoming a truly equal society. With the goal of helping the white people of USG on this journey, we offer a variety of resources and a space to share experiences and feelings about this process.
We recommend the following curriculum from the United Church of Christ, our Christian partner denomination, White Privilege: Let’s Talk.
Here is a link to an implicit bias quiz. It can be disturbing to discover you biases, but helpful in changing them.
July 24, 2016 Service at USG: “Why Black Lives Matter”