Looking Back on a Year of Reckoning

May 25, 2021

On this one-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police, we remember and we grieve for the man and with his family, friends and loved ones. We grieve also for all who have died unjustly at the hands of white brutality.

We are taking stock of a year unlike any we have known, a year in which our nation, our organization and many among us reckoned – and continue to reckon – with multiple crises, all with racial injustice at their center. Once again, it has been a result of the labor of our Black neighbors, friends and colleagues that many are finally facing this truth: that racism impacts every policy, decision and outcome confronting every Black life in this country. As an organization focused on housing, a racist system from the beginning, fighting for racial justice is our responsibility.

The pain of racial injustice is exhausting and it calls on all of us – most especially white people – to turn toward that pain and to act. As we mark one year from the murder of George Floyd, we at Human Solutions lift up our enduring and unending commitment to dismantle the architecture of white supremacy within our community, our organization and ourselves. The personal is political and racism ends with each of us.

To that end, we should be transparent about actions we have taken and continue to implement within our organization. In the past year, we’ve added racial justice leave to our benefits, established bail funds for staff arrested during racial justice protests, added Juneteenth as a paid holiday, convened a BIPOC-run internal equity council with the power to keep us accountable, directed our purchases toward BIPOC-owned businesses, and expanded our Board of Directors to be 50% BIPOC. This is by no means enough, and we are committed to walking steadfastly on this path into the future. Becoming anti-racist is a life-long journey built on action, one day and step forward at a time.

May the year ahead bring progress and relief and support for the movements of change, shifting us toward a future built on justice.