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Nebraska Black Leaders Launch Anti-Racism Toolkit

A new online anti-racist toolkit includes tips for advocating while practicing safe social distancing, and from the comfort of your couch. (Becker1999/Wikimedia Commons)
A new online anti-racist toolkit includes tips for advocating while practicing safe social distancing, and from the comfort of your couch. (Becker1999/Wikimedia Commons)
June 11, 2020

LINCOLN, Neb. -- With demonstrations sparked by the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer well into their second week, civic organizations in Nebraska are offering resources for individuals who want to end state-sanctioned violence against people of color.

Ashlei Spivey, an American Civil Liberties Union of Nebraska board member and founder of I Be Black Girl, says the effort is likely to be more marathon than sprint. But she believes the time to eliminate systemic racism has finally arrived.

"I think people are just really ready for things to change and to see actual impact," she states. "And a lot of young people are demanding that now, and I think that's what's needed, and will ultimately lead to the change that we want to see."

A new toolkit, available at ACLU of Nebraska's website, includes tasks people can take right now -- such as contributing time and money to organizations working to end racism -- as well as long-term policy solutions in the Nebraska Legislature.

The barrier for entry into the work is fairly low. Spivey says the toolkit includes book recommendations so that people can get started on their own and at their own pace.

The online resource was created by Spivey and other black leaders. But Spivey says people that have not felt oppression and violence based on the color of their skin need to do the work because it's not enough to be handed information, check the box, and feel like you're done.

She says people from all racial identities will need to find their own blind spots, educate themselves, and make plans to hold each other accountable.

"And it's not the role of anyone who is experiencing oppression, who is experiencing harm, to then teach the person that is perpetuating the harm and the oppression how not to do it," she states.

As Nebraskans continue to navigate life during the COVID-19 pandemic, the toolkit also includes tips for advocating while practicing safe social distancing and from the comfort of your couch.

Spivey says she hopes the resource will be an outlet for anyone looking for positive ways to contribute to building a better world, but not sure where to begin.

Eric Galatas, Public News Service - NE