I look forward to celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King Day more than any other holiday of the year <3
Dr. King lived his life relentlessly asking for us to see the humanity in one another. He called us to do so urgently and unwaveringly. Dr. King especially wanted to see black people treated with humanity, with equity, and freedom of opportunity.
So how are we doing on that humanity, equity, and opportunity front? In my prior post, The Importance of Access & Addressing Inequity, I shared statistics on where we are as a nation in regards to providing access of education, and employment opportunities for people living with disabilities.
Now, I’ll share with you the latest United States Department of Labor Statistics (2017) as they relate to a black woman; CEO; in America; half a century after the death of
CEO’s In America:
White – 90% Black 3.8%
(3.8% includes black men/women. Different minorities represent remaining percentages.)
Top 5 Occupations for Blacks:
1. Postal service mail sorters, processors, and processing machine operators – 38.4%
2. Barbers – 38.1%
3. Bailiffs, Correction Officers, Jailers – 29%
4. Taxi Drivers/Chauffeurs – 28.4%
5. Reuse/Recycle Workers 26.8%
I see this lack of equity routinely. Yet what’s worse, is experiencing that we as a society often choose to “feel bad” for one another’s circumstances, and say the words “I understand,” “I empathize,” “I hear you,” but then fall short of actually doing our part to change the inequity. Dr. King cautioned of apathy:
“It may well be that we will have to repent in this generation. Not merely for the vitriolic words and the violent actions of the bad people, but for the appalling silence and indifference of the good people who sit around and say, “Wait on time.”
Minorities don’t need sympathy, they need access, and for who have the access, to choose a path that they may not have otherwise considered. Why? Because each time that those who have access choose to disavow reality of the minority perspective (or avoid it) our society lands at the aforementioned statistics.
Avoidance buys time. Time, that those who Dr. King gave his life for, often cannot afford.
So where do we start? Stand with minority perspectives. Support marginalized constituencies. I invite you to review our Mission and Core Values at Invest in Access to see if they resonate with you. If you’re looking to invest in value, invest in us, and our team. To do so, please visit our current funding priorities.
“Shall we say the odds are too great? Shall we tell them the struggle is too hard?…Or will there be another message, of longing, of hope, of solidarity with their yearnings, of commitment to their cause, whatever the cost? The choice is ours, and though we might prefer it otherwise we must choose in this crucial moment of human history.”Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.