The Action Series: The Time is Now

In July, we kicked off our multi-part series of conversations, Truth. Action. Reconciliation., with the Truth Series, reviewing the past and exploring how we got where we are on criminal justice, health equity, economic opportunity, and democracy.

In September, we continued with the Action Series, posing the question: knowing what we know, how do we move forward to build stronger, more equitable communities for all of us?

If you missed any of the Action Series conversations, you can find them below.

Episode 1 – Audacious Leadership

September 17, 2020

Through our work, E Pluribus Unum has found that there are entrenched distrust and disappointment in leadership, which is bred by persistent racial disparities and a perceived lack of transparency. Despite this distrust, many leaders across the South are deeply committed to strengthening their communities and are working to address the issues of race and class. This first conversation of the Action Series provides a call-to-action for audacious leaders across the South and the country. From the global COVID-19 pandemic to the Black Lives Matter movement, our country is now at a crossroads that is commanding the attention and action of our nation’s leaders at federal, regional, state, and local levels.

Episode 2 – Criminal Justice

September 24, 2020

The brutal deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, the long history of law enforcement’s excessive use of force that is most often used to oppress Black Americans, and the systemic racism and bias that is often perpetuated in our criminal justice system have all sparked attention to historic injustices in our justice system. Now that we better understand our history of the criminal justice system, what changes need to be made? Can our nation’s federal, regional, state, and local leaders ensure that those who have found a voice in this time won’t lose momentum in this fight against institutional racism? What needs to be done and how will we redesign the criminal justice system?

Episode 3 – Health Equity

October 1, 2020

Now that we’ve established the lasting impacts of medical racism in the U.S. health care system, we discuss how to redress them within the health system in the U.S. 

In this conversation, our panelists explore the restoration of trust between Black patients and those who provide their health care. They explore systems of medical education that train providers to offer care that works for and serves everyone. 

How can we ensure that Black patients and other patients of color receive respectful, highest-quality care? What kind of work do we have to do to make the system one that Black people can trust with their health?

Episode 4 – Economic Equity

October 8, 2020

Now that we’ve taken a historical look at the numerous institutions that have actively created systems that disenfranchise Black people in the U.S., we explore how we can restore the ability of Black communities to build generational wealth. What steps can we take to ensure Black communities are not being left behind? Our panelists discuss how we can develop innovative solutions to close the racial wealth gap and the importance of investing in Black communities and businesses. As we learned, upwards of $14 trillion was made in free labor off of Black people in America. Not one single policy or incentive will correct this wealth that other Americans inherited. We must redesign our systems to work for all of us.  

Episode 5 – Democracy

October 15, 2020

In the face of the COVID-19 crisis, intentional voter suppression, an unfirm 2020 Census response deadline, and a campaign of misinformation, making sure all Americans are counted have never been more urgent or important. From ensuring people have the resources they need to complete the 2020 Census and adequate access to local polling locations, the promise of America is that everyone has equal opportunity to participate in our democracy. But, since our nation’s founding, systemic voter suppression has threatened our democracy by determining who has a seat at the table.

What is being done? What is at stake if we don’t act to address the current inequities seen within our democracy? How can we work to make our democracy accessible to all and to address systemic voter suppression? And, looking past November 3, in what ways can the momentum of this work continue to make the U.S. democratic system stronger?