Letter from the Board on Black Lives Matter

Letter from the Board on Black Lives Matter

To our Arts and Culture Community,

We are horrified by the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and too many others, by systemic racism, and by widespread police brutality. Collectively, we are bringing a conscious acknowledgment to society that Black Lives Matter. We support and believe in the elevation of its awareness. 

The FAC Board has not released a statement until now because we recognized that we needed more than just words. A statement would be easy to do- create some language; add in the FAC’s Commitment to Racial Equity and Inclusion Policy (CREI); pat ourselves on the back for doing our duty and go back to business as usual.

It would be easy to do. But is it the best we can do? 

No, it’s not.

We can look at the FAC’s history and see that we have played a part in systemic racism. We see that our motto “We believe Everyone is an Artist” does not hold true as the majority of our artists and grant recipients through the years have been white. We recently reviewed our Commitment to Racial Equity and Inclusion Policy and realized that there has been slow progress and no accountability to meet those goals. We are learning how to use our events to amplify social justice.

Being an Ally is an ongoing practice. We have a lot of work to do.

Our next COW (Committee of the Whole meeting) is Tuesday, July 14. Our discussion will be centered around the Actions the FAC can take to be proactive allies of BIPOC communities. These topics will include:

  • Creation of a BIPOC focused artist grant
  • Racial Equity training for the Board and FAC community
  • Establishing systems of accountability that align with our CREI policy
  • Establishing systems of accountability that align with our Agreements for Community Conversation and Conduct policy
  • Finding ways we can use FAC platforms and events to bring about social justice and change

Here you will find a list of resources that we encourage you to use and share. As we move forward, we will continue to share resources that further our goal of being proactive allies.

We hope you will join us with your voices and energy in this fight for change. 

The Fremont Arts Council Board of Directors

Farley, Brigette, Lymarie, Henry, Owl, Maque, Dayna