Equity, Solidarity, & Justice Statements
We stand with oppressed minority groups, and oppose violence of any kind against these groups.
Bay Area Creative programs, projects and staff adhere to an understanding of equity where systemic racism, cultural bias, colonialism and predatory capitalism have impacted BIPOC and low income communities by limiting and providing barriers to access of individual and cultural support in the form of: education, occupational advancement, mental health and political representation. We believe that systemic racism is motivated by cultural erasure where those who do not identify and align with white supremacy are taught to deny their culture and adopt the dominant culture.
Bay Area Creative commits to responding to these issues by providing a platform and tools for BIPOC and low income communities to announce individual and cultural strengths, to be heard within in public dialog, to celebrate their strengths and to affirm the challenges of living in colonial culture. 85% of those we serve hail from BIPOC and low income communities, 100% of our partnerships are with organizations that share this mission. Our Executive Director is a talented Black American educator. Our board of directors is composed of 50% BIPOC individuals hailing from underserved communities. All but two of our staff hail from these same communities and two of our past students from these communities currently sit on our board of directors. We believe that in order to respond to systemic racism, the effects of colonialism and white supremacy we need a staff who hails from communities affected by these issues. All of our programs and projects serving these communities are offered at no cost to participants. Our outreach and development of new projects and programs are focused on serving this population.
Bay Area Creative acknowledges that the land where we provide our services was previously stewarded by the Tamien Nation, Ramaytush Ohlone, and Chochenyo Muwekma Ohlone, peoples whose connection to this land we remember, and whose presence—past, present, and future—we respect.
Furthermore, we acknowledge that the land currently occupied by the United States was taken from indigenous civilizations by force, consisting of genocide and cultural erasure. We acknowledge that the cause for this seizure of land was motivated by imperialism which has led to an amount of suffering on this planet that is rarely taken account of by those who have benefited from it. The creation of holidays is a common method used by imperialist countries to mask these atrocities.
Bay Area Creative would like to recognize these indigenous peoples are alive, present, and sustaining their cultures. We recognize that all people are sovereign on the land in which they live and that we, as a people, need to learn from the errors of our history so we can move to a point where imperialism is no longer tolerated in a global community.
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Solidarity Statement to stand with Asian Americans
Bay Area Creative is born from the tradition of spoken word poetry where people of all backgrounds stand up for those who are currently and historically being marginalized, oppressed and silenced. Marginalization, exoticism and erasure of Asian communities has been a wicked tradition in American history and we commit to calling attention to this history and to work with people in and outside of Asian communities to bring an end to this pattern. We understand that cultural bearers of historically and currently oppressed communities know how to stand for their individual and collective strengths. Our commitment is to stand with members of Asian communities, to listen to their direction and to support when our participation is welcomed, requested and relevant. We find the current spike in verbal and physical violence towards Asian communities to be a sign of the sickness that our country must cure if we are to evolve as a cohesive unit. To do so we condemn in the strongest possible terms any violence taken towards Asian Americans and reject the scapegoating of an entire race based off of the politicization of the pandemic and the ongoing impact of white supremacy. Our goal is to acknowledge histories both within and beyond the USA in order to move out of ignorance and towards a future where the wide range of human cultures present in this country exist in mutually beneficial experiences.
Solidarity Statement to stand with Black Americans
Bay Area Creative recognizes that this country was built on the free and forced labor of Black Americans through the vehicle of slavery. We recognize that these foundations have not been removed from the foundation of our country and that their effects are ever present. We acknowledge that the obstacles that Black American’s deal with are present and often are dismissed as no longer present due to the abolition of slavery and the civil rights movement. We acknowledge redlining, a school to prison pipeline, and prison industrial as major factors disproportionately targeting black communities. We see efforts such as the new voting laws in the American state of Georgia and the murder of Black American’s at the hands of the police as evidence of the continued presence of these racist obstacles that are often state sponsored. Our work with teaching the artform of spoken word poetry drives us to provide spaces for speaking truth to power in order to call to attention these racist foundations that our country was built on and that are present to this day. We hope to create a world where all Americans do can understand and/or empathize with the experience of Black Americans regarding the psychological and physical violence perpetuated in both systemic and direct ways. Our dream is that this understanding and empathy will lead to changes in policies, power structures, and economic upward mobility to create an America that truly serves everyone.
Solidarity Statement to stand with Latinx Americans
Bay Area Creative recognizes that Latinx people are a part of the heart and soul of the communities of color that we work with. In accomplishing our mission of facilitating spoken word poetry and film-making workshops, it is imperative that we recognize, organize, and advocate to support these communities and the many families and students who come from them. In building solidarity with these communities we name these truths: first and foremost we must acknowledge that much of the Bay Area land we work on is colonized Muwekma Ohlone territory, as all of the land in the Americas was native-owned prior to its violent colonization. Latinx people have heritage with both these original inhabitants and the first colonial settlers of this land. Though the welcoming of these Latinx communities in the United States are often replaced with hostility and racism. We acknowledge that racism creates inauthentic and inhumane stereotypes of marginalized communities. Many Latinx communities are also met with state and federal sanctioned punishments such as deportation and detainment. We recognize that these reactions only further harm these communities, particularly those we aim to serve. We publicly denounce the discrimination that continues to be a psychologically and physically violent obstacle to Latinx people. We underscore that this discrimination functions as a tool of empire building which delegitimizes people and communities that have genetic and ancestral ties to colonized land. We recognize Latinx people as a vital part of our society who make great contributions to their communities and we denounce any notion that aims to subjugate their humanity through harmful rhetoric or aggressive action. We stand in solidarity with Latinx communities and work together with people from these communities through our mission of creating spaces for radical free speech through the art forms of spoken word poetry and film-making.