Dear Erie House Community,

 

Erie House stands in solidarity with those fighting against injustice, oppression, and systemic racism in all its forms. We stand with our Black colleagues, Black families, and the entire Black community. We see you, we stand with you, and we’re here for you.

We mourn the needless killings of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless others. We recognize that these murders and other inequities — including the disproportionate impact of the coronavirus pandemic on black and brown communities and an immigration system that callously mistreats Latinx and Muslim individuals and families — are not simply one-off failings of our law enforcement and government systems, but proof that these systems are fundamentally racist.

Our mission statement is “to empower our community — Latinx immigrants alongside individuals and families of all backgrounds — through education, access to critical services and advocacy, working together to create a just and inclusive society.” But we recognize, especially in this moment, “all backgrounds” is not specific enough. We want it to be explicitly clear: Black Lives Matter.

As a member of the Latino Policy Forum, we signed on to this statement in solidarity and allyship with the Black community at this watershed moment. And as a member of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant & Refugee Rights (ICIRR), we also joined their #Justice4Floyd Solidarity Action demanding the end to violence against protesters and murder charges for George Floyd’s killers.

Moving forward, Erie House is charging its Diversity & Inclusion Council to provide education and space to prioritize our goal of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access. We’re also working closely with our team on how, as a predominantly Latinx organization, we can work in solidarity with the Black community and actively address and prevent anti-blackness in our communities.

As we work within our organization and with our community to dismantle racist systems so no family has to live in fear, we encourage you to also seek out other organizations that are living and breathing anti-racism work on the ground here in Chicago. We hope you’ll join us in standing in solidarity and support. Examples include Brave Space Alliance; My Block, My Hood, My City; Teamwork Englewood; Chicago Freedom School; and Black Lives Matter Chicago. We will be highlighting these and other organizations on social media and on this page.

It’s at the core of the Erie House mission to empower our community to create a more just and inclusive society. We’ll continue to work to unify our communities behind the shared goal of justice and equity.

We can’t back down or give up. If we continue to work together, we can dismantle racist systems, re-build a more just and equitable world, and collectively heal.