Martin Luther King Day

We will be closed Monday January 17, 2022

honoring  Dr. Martin Luther King’s Birthday

The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday is an official day of service and celebrates the civil rights leader’s life and legacy. Observed each year on the third Monday in January as “a day on, not a day off,” MLK Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities.

Gun Violence: Public Health Emergency in Alameda County

Gun violence event

Oakland community leaders call on Alameda County to declare gun violence a public health emergency

Black and brown community leaders are calling on Alameda County to officially declare gun violence a public health emergency and commit $100 million of newly available federal pandemic relief funding to help communities directly impacted by gun violence. 

“State of emergency!” a crowd of about three dozen residents and activists repeatedly chanted at the Lake Merritt Amphitheater on Thursday morning. Leaders in attendance represented local organizations such as LIVE FREE, Roots Community Health Center, Fund Peace, Faith In Action East Bay, and Californians for Safety and Justice. 

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July is Minority Mental Health Month

National Alliance on Mental Health logo

Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

Mental health conditions do not discriminate based on race, color, gender or identity. Anyone can experience the challenges of mental illness regardless of their background. However, background and identity can make access to mental health treatment much more difficult. Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month was established in 2008 to start changing this.

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COVID-19 Vaccine: What White Conservatives Can Learn from Black Americans

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“In November 2020, news broke about the successful development of the first vaccines against COVID-19 and people began to debate whether or not they would be inoculated. As Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the leaders of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) sought to distribute information to diminish fears about the vaccine’s safety and efficacy, and most importantly, its crucial necessity in halting the pandemic; virulent misinformation about the virus and the safety of the injection was spreading rapidly across social media. In the United States alone, COVID-19 has killed nearly 600,000 and sickened more than 33,340,000.

One group that was understandably hesitant about receiving the vaccine was Black Americans. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, in December 2020, 52% of Black Americans said they would take a wait-and-see approach to the vaccine with only 20% saying that they wanted to be vaccinated as soon as possible. In comparison, skepticism about the COVID-19 vaccine was lower in white (36%) and Latino populations (43%). This was particularly concerning since according to the CDC, Black Americans were 2.9 times more likely to require hospitalization for COVID-19 and 1.9 times more likely to die from the disease than white Americans….”

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See Also:

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Community-Academic Partnerships to Address Covid-19 Inequities: Lessons from the San Francisco Bay Area

“A coalition of Bay Area community organizations, academic institutions, and public health departments collaborated to provide high-risk populations with Covid-19 testing and vaccination, and also took the opportunity to connect them with other essential services….”

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NAACP marching later this month in honor of Freedom Day – WQKT Sports Country Radio – Wooster Ohio

Celebrate Freedom - Juneteenth flyer

What is the history behind Juneteenth?

Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, is the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States.

President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation was effective Jan. 1, 1863, but the news took time to travel. It wasn’t until June 19, 1865, when the Union army brought word of the proclamation to enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, making them among the last to be freed.

“Many blacks left. They went to Kansas, some just said, ‘I am out of here,’ and went to Mexico. People were just leaving, saying, ‘I am getting out of here, we are free,'” Asante said.

The celebration of June 19 came to be known as “Juneteenth” and grew with more participation from descendants as they treated the day as their Independence Day, according to the Texas State Library. It spread to other states and has been celebrated every year since.

June is Pride Month

Pride Month Flyer

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month (LGBT Pride Month) is celebrated annually in June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots, and works to achieve equal justice and equal opportunity for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) Americans. In June of 1969, patrons and supporters of the Stonewall Inn in New York City staged an uprising to resist the police harassment and persecution to which LGBT Americans were commonly subjected. This uprising marks the beginning of a movement to outlaw discriminatory laws and practices against LGBT Americans.

Today, celebrations include pride parades, picnics, parties, workshops, symposia and concerts, and LGBT Pride Month events attract millions of participants around the world. Memorials are held during this month for those members of the community who have been lost to hate crimes or HIV/AIDS. The purpose of the commemorative month is to recognize the impact that LGBTQ individuals have had on history locally, nationally, and internationally.

Federal and local policies and practices are increasingly acknowledging and focusing on LGBTQ youth and numerous national advocacy and other organizations are also giving greater attention to LGBTQ youth in their work.  Encouraging greater acceptance and support for all youth, including those who are or are perceived to be LGBTQ, will make communities, schools, and other settings safer, better places for all youth.