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Op-Ed: A Blueprint For Tackling Inequity In Philanthropy

Sept. 18, 2023

In the summer of 2020, Americans across the country were united in outrage over the murder of George Floyd and prepared to confront systemic racism. Corporations pledged more than $200 billion in funding to racial equity initiatives. Politicians were suddenly unafraid to say “Black Lives Matter.” For a moment, it felt like real change was possible.

Three years later, the picture is very different. Racial equity has become part of America’s culture war. And while the picture may be dark nationally, if we zoom in, we can see there are some promising steps being made at the local level. For example, this summer, Massachusetts governor Maura Healey signed her first budget, which aims to make the Commonwealth more equitable and inclusive. The budget includes funding to make school lunch free for all students and to make undocumented immigrants eligible for in-state tuition at state institutions of higher education. It also includes $1 million in grants for Black- and Brown-led nonprofits throughout the Commonwealth to help confront the systemic racism in our communities.

Our Commonwealth is fortunate to have such strong supporters of racial equity in leadership. With this budget, the governor, House and Senate are saying unequivocally that dismantling systemic racism is a priority in Massachusetts and that the Black and Brown leaders closest to the challenges should be provided with the resources to continue driving the solutions.

Read full op-ed in Forbes.