Rochester Racial Justice Toolkit
The Toolkit is a compilation of articles, guides, news, videos, social media, and other tools from several online sources on racial justice and Black Lives Matter activism. The site is a work in progress with ongoing updates and contributions to each section. Please contact us with any suggestions or resource contributions! The Toolkit is an online social justice resource rooted in a commitment to radical love and service to the Rochester, MN community.
History of the site
The site was created by Nicole Nfonoyim-Hara in the wake of the 2016 shooting deaths of Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, MN and Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, LA.
Rochester is a growing and diverse community. Communities of color continue to confront systemic inequalities here in our city. Our city depends on informed citizens-in-solidarity, leadership, and change partners who are dedicated to creating a truly just and inclusive community where all members can thrive and belong without fear or marginalization. The Toolkit is about supporting a deeper dialogue, building solidarity, and helping to build a community culture that is anti-racist at its core.
WHO IS THE TOOLKIT FOR?
This Toolkit is for members of the Rochester, MN community who need further information and guidance about racial justice and the Black Lives Matter movement. Check out the GUIDE for quick links of the Toolkit. We are working to translate sections of the toolkit and build in more information for new Americans about racial history and racial justice in the U.S.
While, allyship has become a tired buzzword, the basic concept is a great place to start the conversation. The "For Allies" section presents key concepts around "allyship" and "white privilege" as well as tools to guide allies.
The Toolkit also contains information specifically for those who identify broadly as "people of color" People of color is a clumsy word describing an incredibly diverse population that is considered "non-white". While, the rallying call today is "Black Lives Matter", solidarity and connection among other people of color and historically marginalized groups is essential. We must also hold up the Native and indigenous communities, women, and Latinx, undocumented, Muslim, and trangender communities also affected by issues of unjust policing in our country. Please check out our sections on solidarity and an "intersectional" understanding of racial justice.
HOW TO USE THE TOOLKIT
How you use this Toolkit is ultimately up to you. True change starts at home: with us, and then our family, friends, peers, and local community. This is as much a personal charge as it is a political one. If we cannot transform our own hearts and minds and work to engage those closest to us, we cannot hope to successfully transform a nation.
We encourage you to browse, read, watch, listen, learn, question, engage, and share as often as you can. If you can't find something you're looking for or would like to contribute a resource, please feel free to CONTACT US.
A PERSONAL SPACE FOR LEARNING
The Toolkit site is an online space for personal education and engagement. The site contains no comments sections or open forum. We encourage you to share the information that resonates with you and to engage in "offline" discussions outside of social media and email with those around you.
You may find some of the language, concepts, and history new, difficult, or strange. Lean into that discomfort. We have worked to make the site accessible, user-friendly, and most importantly, kind and generous to people of all backgrounds. It is a site to elevate and deepen the conversation.
That being said, the Toolkit is not "neutral" and it is unapologetically committed to racial justice. Changing our world for the better is an insanely difficult thing to attempt, but together we are capable of extraordinary things. The struggle for human dignity and justice is not a geographical issue, a generational issue, or a partisan issue. We have important work to do together.
In Peace, Love, and Solidarity.