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Black Lives Matter.

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Words matter– but they are not enough. 

Black Lives Matter.

We recognize the power of this statement and why we are saying it loud and clear–because we know Black lives are valuable, precious, and inherently worthy. We are speaking out to acknowledge the pain that our Black community members have been experiencing for generations, as well as listening to their lived experiences, and recognizing the existence of racist structures, policies, and actions responsible for the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Abrey, Elijah McClain and so many more over the past 400 years. 

Dismantling Systems of Oppression 

We can and will do better. DUG is committed to showing up, doing the work, and being held accountable for actively challenging policies that perpetuate inequities for our Black communities. 

Photo courtesy of Nikki A. Rae Photography.

This looks like: 

  • Developing internal policies and systems to ensure that our team, our volunteer leaders, and our board of directors represent the communities we serve.
  • Creating and implementing a framework for organizational transformation centering justice, equity, diversity and inclusion.
  • Ensuring our entire team is trained in anti-racist work. This includes mandatory trainings for staff, volunteers, board members to understand how racial inequalities have seeped into our everyday actions and to understand how we continue to perpetuate racist ideas and policies with our actions or our inactions.
  • Supporting actions and policies focused on food sovereignty at both the local and state levels by bringing equity to the forefront and ensuring our Black and Brown communities are represented.
  • Putting community voices at the forefront as we move forward with strategic planning. In 2020 we engaged in a listening tour throughout the Denver metro area. We surveyed our community and held 45 focus groups to better understand  how we can serve and support our communities in all that we do.

While these are a few examples of how we plan to get started, we also recognize our gaps and where we will continue to challenge ourselves for personal and organizational growth. Our commitment to our Black community is to listen, to take feedback, to embrace and amplify Black and Brown voices, and to take bold action with a humble heart.  

As we move forward as educated allies, unwavering advocates, and courageous leaders for our community in the name of love, we also commit to acknowledging critical feedback and doing better when we get it wrong.

Let’s get to work.