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Overcoming Racism conference:
October 28-29, 2016 at Metropolitan State University in St. Paul
Overcoming Racism: Disrupt Racism As Usual
Check out the
keynote/plenary sessions
Workshop descriptions & schedule
**Registration is SOLD OUT for Friday!**
Online registration is now closed. Same-day registration will be available on Saturday only.

Free film & discussion in conjunction with the conference, Friday October 28, 5:30 pm:
The Black Panthers, Vanguard of the Revolution

Equity-Oriented Leadership Institute February 3, 2017
Letter of Invitation and Application outline
For K-12 and higher ed institutional leadership teams - Applications due October 31

We need you! Be part of FREC
- Join us as we plan our activities:
Every second Thursday of the month, 9-11 am at the
Wilder Foundation
451 Lexington Pkwy. N., St. Paul, MN 55104

Upcoming Learning & Action Opportunities--Scroll Down!


Insisting on Equity Conference
October 15, 2016 - 8:30am - 3:00pm
Washington Technology Magnet
1495 Rice Street
Saint Paul, MN 55117

Registration is now open! 
Keynote Speaker: Paul Gorski
Becoming a Threat to the Existence of Inequity
How can we put our best intentions and strongest commitments to work efficiently and effectively toward the goal of educational equity? The first step is strengthening our Equity Literacy: the knowledge and skills that make us a threat to the existence of inequity in our classrooms, schools, and communities. In this talk I challenge us to reconsider our perceptions of equity and what it will take to get there. I will provide examples relevant to classroom teachers, building and district administrators, and other education workers. 
East Side Freedom Library Events
East Side Freedom Library
1105 Greenbrier Street  St. Paul, MN 55106 

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A panel discussion on State-Sanctioned Violence against People of Color
September 7 @ 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm - Free Throughout history, violence has regularly been used by the State to achieve political, economic and cultural dominance over people, including its own. Giving context to recent events and movements, our incredible panel will draw on their vast expertise and intimate experience to discuss the central place of State-sanctioned violence in the story of the modern USA, as well as the often untold stories of those who stand up to resist that violent oppression. From 1492 to the Trail of Tears to the Homestead Strike to the Black Lives Matter Movement, this is our history, and it needs to be told.
Panelists: Chris Mato Nunpa, retired Associate Professor of Indigenous Nations and Dakota Studies Karin Aguilar-San Juan, co-editor, The People Make the Peace: Lessons from the Vietnam Antiwar Movement Mel Reeves, Journalist Ricardo Levins Morales, Artist

A Roundtable Discussion on Solidarity: Meaning and Place in History and Today
September 12 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm - Free
Solidarity is a term that’s being tossed around a lot lately, and for good reason. It’s a powerful word, one which conjures up images of the Berlin Wall collapsing, the Civil Rights movement and the labor movements of the turn of 20th century. “Solidarity” is even ensconced as one of the Fundamental Rights of the European Union. But what is Solidarity? What does it mean, and what role does it play in organizing, mobilizing and empowering people today?

Citizen Activism and the Fight for Justice in the Workplace.
September 13 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Nick Licata, former Seattle city councilor and author of the new book, Becoming a Citizen Activist: Stories, Strategies and Advice for Changing Our World, joins a panel of local activists from the Fight for $15 and the campaign for earned sick and safe time.
Changing America Traveling Exhibition
The Emancipation Proclamation 1863 and the March On Washington, 1963

September 21-November 4, 2016
1st Floor, Library & Learning Center, Metropolitan State University, St. Paul

“Changing America: The Emancipation Proclamation, 1863 and the March on Washington, 1963” is presented by the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture and the National Museum of American History in collaborations with the American Library Association Public Programs Office. The exhibition is made possible by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and is part of the NEH’s Bridging Cultures initiative, “Created Equal: American’s Civil Rights Struggle,” which brings four outstanding films on the civil rights movement to communities across the United States (see 

Changing America is co-sponsored by 
Metropolitan State University and Saint Paul Public Library. To learn more about the exhibit and associated events visit: http://libguides.metrostate.edu/changingamerica  

Please join us for the
opening reception for "Changing America": September 29, 2016
Reception: 5:00 - 6:30 pm, Susan B. Cole Lounge, 1st Floor, Library and Learning Center
Presentations: 6:30 - 7:30 pm, Library 302, from Petronella J. Ytsma, Photographer and Community Faculty at Metro State, and William P. Jones, Professor of History at the University of Minnesota and author of, "The March on Washington: Jobs, Freedom and the Forgotten History of Civil Rights."

This event is free and open to the public.

Upcoming YWCA of Minneapolis Racial Justice events

14th Annual It's Time to Talk: Forums on Race

Keynote Speaker: Alan C. Page Date: October 18, 2016 Location: Minneapolis Convention Center
Diverse leaders from business, education, arts and community service will come together to move Minnesota forward through honest conversation and powerful action. The strength of our future depends on our ability to develop new skills around inclusion and equity, understand the realities of racism today and to commit ourselves to action.

What is Advocacy?

      What is advocacy? Can I influence change? What does this look like?
      We are individuals that live in communities that can influence policies and systems. In this workshop, we’ll answer the above questions and then take time to focus inwardly, reflecting on our personal stories which guides our interactions with the community. From here, personal mission statements will be created to ground our advocacy. 

      Readers Against Racism: Citizen by Claudia Rankine

          Join facilitators from YWCA Minneapolis as we discuss this moving work by Claudia Rankine,Citizen.
          “Marrying prose, poetry, and the visual image, Citizen investigates the ways in which racism pervades daily American social and cultural life, rendering certain of its citizens politically invisible. Rankine's formally inventive book challenges our notion that citizenship is only a legal designation that the state determines by expanding that definition to include a larger understanding of civic belonging and identity, built out of cross-racial empathy, communal responsibility, and a deeply shared commitment to equality.” ―National Book Award Judges’ Citation

          Confronting Racism: Minnesota Style
              This workshop is designed for those who have an understanding of white privilege and racism, and want to acquire skills in dealing with racism as it occurs in their personal lives. The workshop will develop the participants’ active listening skills, as well as help them practice skills to respond to overt racism (i.e. racist remarks), and covert racism (privilege, microagressions, etc.) within the dominant communication styles of the Midwest. The skills learned in this workshop can be easily applied and taught to others to create more inclusive environments in our lives, and to continue the work of eliminating racism. 
              REGISTER HERE

              El Cruce De La Frontera (Crossing the Frontier)
                  This workshop will provide a presentation on the history of Mexico and its relationship with the United States, including an explanation of the different groups under "Latin" culture.
                  We will also look at how undocumented workers have been impacted by past and current immigration policies.
                  REGISTER HERE

                  Readers Against Racism: Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
                    Join facilitators from YWCA Minneapolis as we discuss this provocative work by Bryan Stevenson, Just Mercy.
                    From the flap: "From one of the most brilliant and influential lawyers of our time comes an unforgettable true story about the redeeming potential of mercy. Bryan Stevenson was a gifted young attorney when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending the poor, the wrongly condemned, and those trapped in the furthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillan, a young man sentenced to die for a notorious murder he didn’t commit. The case drew Stevenson into a tangle of conspiracy, political machination, and legal brinksmanship – and transformed his understanding of mercy and justice forever."
                    REGISTER HERE

                    For over ten years, Discussions that Encounter has facilitated open discussions about race, racism and white privilege. These events are open to all and sponsored free of charge in Minneapolis on the second and fourth Thursday evening of each month.  Our vision is to provide an environment where people of all walks-of-life and backgrounds can openly discuss any aspects of racism. We use video or prepared materials to pursue a specific topic with ample time for facilitated conversation. The objectives of these forums are to raise awareness, build relationships, assist all along the journey of overcoming racism, provide education on historical and current topics, and facilitate open conversations that can't usually be approached across the "races."  Notices are sent prior to each Discussion Forum with details on topic, location and directions. Contact Bill Keatts at wkeatts@austin.rr.com to receive information or to be added to the regular distribution. ***Brotherhood Brew offers sales of organic, free-trade coffee, exotic teas, and hot cocoa at our Discussion Forums
                    Discussions Forums are every 2nd Thursday at Phillips Community Center (2323 - 11th Avenue, South, Minneapolis) and 4th Thursday at St. Olaf Church (215 South 8th Street, Minneapolis) with free supper at 6:30PM and program from 7-8:30PM. All are invited at no charge – no need to register.

                    Preview of coming topics for Discussions that Encounter:
                    The next Discussions that Encounter Forum is this coming Thursday, September 8 at Phillips Community Center (2323 - 11thAvenue, South, Minneapolis, MN 55404.) Enter through the 11th Avenue door, check in with security, and take stairs or elevator to the 2nd floor in the cafeteria.  
                    Directions to Phillips Community Center: The center is located at the corner of S 11
                    th Avenue and E 24th Street, about halfway between Cedar and Park Avenues S along E 24th Street.
                    Parking for the center is available free in their lot entered from 24
                    th Street. A light supper and social begins at 6:30PM with presentation and discussion from 7-8:30PM. All are welcome, free of charge!
                    This Thursday, we will  feature a discussion of public reparations as a potential response to historical and contemporary racial oppression in the USA, drawing upon short films in which two African American professors present the case - one for reparations, one against - as they were interviewed by a family who had learned that their founding generations in Rhode Island were the leading slave-trading family in early America.  Rosalind Sampson and Lou Schoen will facilitate discussion. Hope you can join us!

                    Healing Minnesota Stories Blog Entries
                    Suggested reading: "White Fragility" by Robin DiAngelo, co-author of Is Everyone Really Equal (Sensoy and DiAngelo 2012). This short piece does an excellent job of identifying many of the participant behaviors that we antiracism facilitators see in our dialogue circles or workshops. The reading is a naming of the various displays, performances and emotional responses some participants engage in when they find themselves in race conversations. This reading offers an explanation of the contexts and mindsets motivating the behavior. Scroll down for more suggested reading.
                    Free online resources: Bridging Activist Class Cultures
                    There are many reasons progressive groups run into trouble, but class culture differences don't have to be one of them. In fact, understanding diverse class backgrounds makes us more likely to succeed. A few years back, our own Betsy Leondar-Wright studied 25 varied social justice organizations to find class patterns in culture traits and problem solving approaches. Her findings, published in her book Missing Class and taught in Class Action's Bridging Activist Class Cultures workshops, are now available free online in the Activist Class Cultures Kit.
                    This kit is a comprehensive guide to understanding your own class experience, seeing class culture traits around you, collaborating
                    better with others from class backgrounds different than your own, and implementing the strengths of each class to help your social justice organization succeed. It's full of videos, quizzes, tips and stories about real progressive activist groups facing class culture challenges. It even features a discussion guide for groups reading Missing Class. For all these resources and more, visit www.activistclasscultures.org online.
                    Brotherhood, Inc. offers a wide variety of coffee, tea and cocoa products for sale or delivery. These products are available at all Discussions that Encounter Forums and directly through the website www.brotherhoodmn.org. Sales assist in achieving their mission to enable African-American youth and young men to envision and achieve successful futures. Brotherhood, Inc. aspires to create a pathway out of poverty, gangs and incarceration by offering comprehensive and culturally-sensitive educational opportunities, social services, legal services and in-house employment all under one roof.
                    Bdote Sacred Sites Tour
                    Bdote is the Dakota word for "meeting place of rivers" and specifically the confluence of the Mississippi River and Minnesota River which is located near Fort Snelling and the Mendota Bridge. Join Jim Bear and/or other Dakota elders who will  be graciously guiding a tour of several sites within the Bdote area.
                    Target audience: Faith community leaders, interfaith leaders, "Healing Minnesota Stories" planning group, community members interested in learning more.
                    Anyone may participate in a tour of the Bdote Sacred Sites.  We desire for the whole group to ride together and to keep the group relatively small, so please RSVP early  to allow us to plan appropriately for our outings.
                    For more information and to sign up, go to <
                    Gustavus Speaker Series on U.S. Dakota War of 1862 Archived Online
                    • Dr. John Peacock, “War of Words: Writings by Dakota People in Their Own Language and Later in English During and After the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862”
                    • Glenn Wasicuna, “A Dakota Way of Life”
                    • Dr. Gary Clayton Anderson, “The Dakota War Trials: Travesty of Justice or Reasonable Retribution?”
                    • Thomas Maltman, “Based on a True Story: Researching a Controversial History to Create Fiction”
                    • Corinne Monjeau-Marz, "Aftermath of the 1862 War: Reviewing the Years from 1862-1866"
                    • Dr. Gwen Westerman, "We Are Still Here"
                    To access video of these events, go online to the Gustavus Live Streaming Portal. A listing of archived events will be available under the “On Demand” tab.
                    This U.S.-Dakota War lecture series was made possible with funds from Gustavus Adolphus College, Minnesota Humanities Council, and the State of Minnesota through the Minnesota Historical Society from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.
                    Here is a recap of the
                    10 reparation strategies offered by Waziyatawin at the 2012 Overcoming Racism conference, as tweeted by @Two_Cranes #10DakotaReparations (thanks, Liz!)
                    1. Return state/federal lands to Dakota. Can start w/ non-revenue-producing state parks
                    2. Contribute* to re-purchase of lands for land return, a form of paying "back rent" (see below for how)
                    3. Lobby for return of Dakota sacred sites & for access to them, such as Coldwater Spring in Mpls
                    4. Take down Fort Snelling, which "celebrates the righteousness of pioneer settlement"
                    5. Lobby for the return of sacred objects from places like museums & Minnesota Historical Society
                    6. Remove icons, colonial symbols incl street names, names of sports teams, schools, etc.
                    7. Form action groups to fight/protect the Dakota land we all love; work to stop development industry
                    8. Support Dakota language programs, including fundraise for them
                    9. Support Dakota protests, right to have ceremony; provide legal support; support anti-colonial struggle
                    10. Support direct-action training camps

                    *Donations to the Dakota nonprofit Oyate Nipi Kte (The People Shall Live) will support Makoce Ikikcu (Recovering Land)
                    Online: http://givemn.razoo.com/story/Oyate-Nipi-Kte
                    By mail: Oyate Nipi Kte, 4052 Hwy 212 SE, Granite Falls, MN 56241

                    What Does Justice Look Like? by Waziyatawin Read more about it
                    The Color of Wealth by Rose Brewer and others Read more about it
                    Download a reflection on Joe Feagin's book, The White Racial Frame
                    No-Man's-Land by Eulah Biss found in the February 2008 issue of The Believer, Believermag.com. Subtitle: Fear, Racism, and the Historically Troubling Attitude of American Pioneers.
                    Join our list (upper left) so you don't miss the next edition!
                    Read the January 2016 e-news
                    Read the September 2015 e-news
                    Read the May 2015 e-news


                    THANKS to all who made the 2015 conference a success!
                    Video of the conference opening, panelists and keynotes
                    linked from the 2015 conference page

                    2014 Overcoming Racism: Cultivating Transformation
                    MayKao Hang's Friday keynote
                    Sam Grant's Saturday keynote
                    Transformation Talk videos by Leon Rodrigues, Elder Atum Azzahir, Dr. Ed Ehlinger, Maria Isa and Pastor Tim Johnson
                    Photos from the conference Thanks to Allyn Uniacke for the photography
                    Read/download MayKao's dissertation Whites and the Active Representation of Racial Minority Interests
                    Read/download resources from some of the 2014 workshops.
                    Check out these videos from the
                    2013 Overcoming Racism conference plenaries, produced by SPNN:
                    Brotherhood Inc. panel discussion:
                    Diane Wilson keynote address:

                    Listen to TruthToTell's 11/19 episode, originally broadcast on KFAI radio
                    Overcoming Racism conference keynote speakers Dr. Rose M. Brewer & Waziyatawin and conference co-host Herbert Perkins explore decolonization and other conference themes with TTT's Andy Driscoll & Michelle Alimoradi
                    Listen to a conversation with the two 2011 conference keynoters and conference co-host Antonia Apolinario Wilcoxon about racial framing and the conference on Truth To Tell, KFAI Radio. Or watch the in-studio video (keynoters both participated by phone)
                    Lots of great photos
                    from the 2010 Overcoming Racism: Recognizing and Challenging the Legacies That Oppress Us conference can be found at overcomingracism.shutterfly.com/ Thanks to Miss Marie Photography for taking and sharing the photos!