Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Post?a brief description of a contemporary social justice issue in which you are interested. This can be the same issue that you discussed last week or a different one.HUMN8785WK8DiscBackgrou | WriteDen

Post?a brief description of a contemporary social justice issue in which you are interested. This can be the same issue that you discussed last week or a different one.HUMN8785WK8DiscBackgrou

Post a brief description of a contemporary social justice issue in which you are interested. This can be the same issue that you discussed last week or a different one.

TO PREPARE

· Review your Course Announcements for possible information related to this week’s Discussion and Assignment.

· Review the Learning Resources on social justice issues. Select one to focus on for this Discussion. You may choose the issue that you focused on last week or a different one.

· Use the Learning Resources and any additional resources that you found from your own research to determine how the issue has been addressed thus far (e.g., rallies, protests, policies, and laws), how the public perceives the issue, how power differentials affect the issue, and how to promote social change to address the issue. 

BY DAY 4

Post a brief description of a contemporary social justice issue in which you are interested. This can be the same issue that you discussed last week or a different one. With this issue in mind, respond to the following questions:

· Have there been large rallies and or protests related to the social justice issue? If so, have the rallies or protests made a difference in addressing or furthering the issue? Why or why not?

· How have policy, laws, and public views about the issue changed over time?

· Who holds the power on the issue and who lacks the power? What are the implications?

· If you could promote social change in relation to the issue, what would the outcome look like?

BACKGROUND INFO

Contemporary Social Justice Issue

My selected topic for this discussion on contemporary social justice is empowering the District of Columbia (D.C.) young women of color. Young women of color in D.C. are disproportionately impacted by poverty, lack of educational options, and high crime and violence rates, making this a significant problem. The potential impact on the lives of young women of color in the District of Columbia has led me to label this a social justice problem. Access to high-quality education and healthcare, vocational and professional development, and economic autonomy are all areas where young women of color in the District of Columbia might benefit greatly.

RESOURCES

Williams, C. (2018, September).  A blueprint for action: Supporting young women of color in the District of Columbia. Links to an external site. https://media.thewomensfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/28165335/WAWF_Report_Blueprint-for-Action_Final_Web-1.pdf

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A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION Supporting Young Women of Color in the District of Columbia

About Washington Area Women’s Foundation Washington Area Women’s Foundation mobilizes our community to ensure that economically vulnerable women and girls in the Washington region have the resources they need to thrive. Since 1998, The Women’s Foundation has worked to transform the lives of women and girls in the Washington region through research, grantmaking and advocacy.

As the Washington region’s sole public foundation, specifically committed to investing in women and girls, The Women’s Foundation works to create economic opportunities that have positive ripple effects across society and open doors to progress. An open door can change a woman’s life, and the lives of those around her. But not all doors are open to all women. That’s why we won’t rest until all women, especially young women and girls of color, have equal access to economic security, safety and opportunity.

Acknowledgments Washington Area Women’s Foundation is grateful to all the young women and working group members who provided their time, advice, and expertise to compile the recommendations presented in this Blueprint. We are also grateful to our colleagues who helped facilitate conversations and provided feedback on earlier versions of this report, in particular Shana Bartley, Kisha Bird, Rebecca Burney, Vannesa Chauhan, Amber Coleman, BA Cockburn, Abigail Cohen, Kate Coventry, Aubrey Edwards-Luce, Kandis Driscoll, Andrea Gleaves, Vikki Lassiter, Goldie Patrick, and Lindsey Reichlin-Cruse. The author wishes to thank Jennifer Lockwood-Shabat and Kalisha Dessources for their ongoing guidance and support, Donna Wiedeman and Martine Gordon for their invaluable assistance in preparing the final version, and to Comella Design Group for the design of this report.

The generous support of the NoVo Foundation made this Blueprint possible. We thank them for their financial support and their commitment to investing in young women and girls of color living in the District of Columbia.

A Blueprint for Action Supporting Young Women of Color

in the District of Columbia

Written by Claudia Williams with input from the Young Women’s Advisory Council and the Young Women’s Initiative Working Groups

September 2018

Young Women’s Advisory Council Hawaa Abdul-Alkhaaliq

Olivia Alexander Tatianna Ferguson

Traciee Gentry Christian Herald

Tanazia Matthews Jasmine Mendez

Addison Moore Keniya Parks

Memori Ruffin Keyla Ryland

Amma Saunders Tolani Smith

Ashley Strange

Litzi Valdivia-Cazzol PreAnn Walker Briana Whitfield Ramani Wilson

Kyla Woods

Young Women’s Initiative Working Groups Gregory Acs

Amanda Andere Tiffany Andorful

Shannon Babe-Thomas Bloodine Barthelus

Judy Berman Kisha Bird Lisa Brown Sarah Bryer

Rebecca Burney Angela Carlberg Neena Chaudhry Vanessa Chauhan

Abigail Cohen Nathaniel Cole Kate Coventry Donald Curtis

Tamitha Christian Margie Del Castillo Cecilia Dos Santos

Kandis Driscoll Lisa Dubay

Aubrey Edwards-Luce Lauren Eyster

Elsa Falkenburger Celine Fejeran

LaTasha Fonville-Carter Rachel Friedman

Tina Frundt Laura Furr

Megan Gallagher Karol Gilmore Dixon

Andrea Gleaves Maria Gomez Sequnely Gray Monica Gray

Caroline Griswold Short Avon Hart-Johnson

Bethany Henderson Darby Hickey

Cherice Hopkins Neil Irvin

Renee John Sophia Kerby

Jodi Kwarciany Vikki Lassiter Dawn Leary Alina Liao

Adriana Lopez Erin Mahaffey Kristen Moore Jennifer Nelson Gabrielle Newell

Mankaa Ngwa-Suh Kerriann Peart Myrna Peralta Vanetta Rather

Lindsey Reichlin Cruse Maggie Riden Debby Shore Yun Simpson

Satira Streeter Elizabeth Tang

Marlana Wallace Shakira Washington

Claire Zippel

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION

Table of Contents

Executive Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3

The Young Women’s Initiative . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

Objectives and Partners of the Young Women’s Initiative of the District of Columbia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

A Blueprint for Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11 Overarching Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

Recommendations by Issue Area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

Moving Forward . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48

Appendix A: Methodology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

Appendix B: Young Women’s Advisory Council . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .51

Endnotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION 1

Executive Summary

This Blueprint outlines recommendations by young women of color and community members with the objective to shift local policies and practices in the District of Columbia in support of young women’s ability to thrive.

The Women’s Foundation facilitated conversations and conducted interviews with fellows from the Young Women’s Advisory Council and Young Women’s Initiative Working Groups to understand barriers to success and to learn more about the assets and potential of young women of color. The Women’s Foundation also conducted landscape research using publicly available data, and gathered supporting qualitative data through issue caucuses and an online survey.

Four considerations guided the process to surface the recommendations outlined in this Blueprint, an emphasis on an assets framework and youth perspectives, understanding how discrimination operates at the systemic level to limit access to resources and opportunities for young women of color, a focus on intersectionality, and understanding gender beyond the binary.

The Blueprint offers two sets of recommendations: 1) overarching recommendations to for key decision- makers around systems that impact young women’s lives and that are relevant to the Young Women’s Initiative priorities, and 2) specific recommendations for high-priority policy issues.

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION2

Overarching Recommendations This set of recommendations suggest making changes to the way systems operate and to the established culture, procedures, programs, and policymaking in the District of Columbia. Each recommendation includes actions different stakeholders can take to open doors to progress and opportunity for young women of color who live in the District. Target audiences include school systems, community-based and youth-serving organizations, funders, government, legislators, and policymakers. Recommendations include:

1 Lift up the Lived Experiences of Young Women of Color

2 Shift Narratives and Cultivate Belonging

3 Tap into the Leadership Potential of Young Women of Color by Engaging Them in Decision- Making Processes

4 Provide Gender-Responsive, Culturally Competent, Trauma-Informed, Youth-Friendly Services

5 Provide Guidance and Mentorship

6 Facilitate Accessible and Affordable Mental Health Services

7 Map Services and Programs that Serve Young Women of Color in the District of Columbia

8 Use, Collect and Share Data

Recommendations by Issue Area This set of recommendations emphasize the importance of addressing particular high-priority policy issues The Women’s Foundation identified as central to the Young Women’s Initiative. Recommendations in each issue area provide tangible solutions to alleviate some of the most pressing policy issues affecting young women of color in the District. Recommendations include:

1 Economic Security: Create and Preserve Affordable Housing

2 Education: Create a School Culture That Is Student-Centered, Prevent and Reengage Disconnected Youth, and Expand Pathways to Postsecondary Education

3 Health and Well-Being: Provide Better Access to Health Care Services and Better Health and Nutrition Education

4 Safety and Violence Prevention: Invest in Training, Education, and Prevention

5 Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice: Keep Young Women in Their Communities

6 Community Support and Opportunities: Create a Safe and Connected Environment Where Young Women Can Thrive

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION 3

With the launch of our Young Women’s Initiative (YWI), Washington Area Women’s Foundation made an intentional decision to amplify the voices of young women of color in the District of Columbia, and to center their experiences and contributions in the decision-making process. This report represents what we have learned from young women and community partners over the past two years of listening first-hand to their stories, their recommendations, and their needs with the objective to shift our local policies and practices in support of young women’s ability to thrive.

This report includes an overview of the Young Women’s Initiative goals, partners, and objectives, and is a blueprint for action for interested stakeholders to move the District forward in its journey to reduce barriers and better support young women of color. It offers overarching recommendations for key decision-makers around systems that impact young women’s lives, and targeted recommendations on specific high-priority policy issue areas.

Throughout the report, we highlight the voices of young women who provided their time and expertise to surface the issues that require our attention, and provide data and statistics to underscore their concerns.

This Blueprint will drive how The Women’s Foundation invests in and advocates for the advancement of young women of color in the District. It is our hope that by working together, across sectors, systems, and communities, we can advance these recommendations to create a city that better supports the talented young women of color who call the District home.

Introduction

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION4

The Young Women’s Initiative

In 2016, The Women’s Foundation publicly committed to advancing equity for women and girls of color and tackling racism head on, recognizing that these are central to advancing our mission of mobilizing the community to ensure that economically vulnerable women and girls in the region have the resources they need to thrive. When young women of color are able to harness their potential, our region gains a remarkable amount of talent, creativity, and leadership.

Building on this commitment and the learnings of successful sister programs nationwide, The Women’s Foundation launched the Young Women’s Initiative (YWI) in DC to provide meaningful leadership opportunities for young women of color, and increased funding for programs that promote racial and gender equity. The foundation’s approach to racial and gender equity is one that makes space for all aspects of young women’s identities, stretching beyond the gender binary, and paying careful attention at how these identities intersect to shape outcomes.

Beyond the Gender Binary

YWI embraces an expansive framework around gender beyond the gender binary.

Throughout this report the term young women and young women of color are used interchangeably and include cisgender, gender-expansive youth, and transgender young women of color.

Cisgender/Cis: A term used to describe a person whose gender identity aligns with those typically associated with the sex assigned to them at birth.

Gender-Expansive: Conveys a wider, more flexible range of gender identity and/or expression than typically associated with the binary gender system.

Transgender/Trans: An umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or expression is different from cultural expectations based on the sex they were assigned at birth.

Being transgender does not imply any specific sexual orientation. Therefore, transgender people may identify as straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, etc.

Definitions from Human Rights Campaign

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION 5

The Women’s Foundation modeled YWI in DC after the New York City Young Women’s Initiative, launched in 2015 through a partnership between Girls for Gender Equity, the New York City Council, and the New York Women’s Foundation. New York City’s YWI is the nation’s first intergenerational, participatory governance planning process. Community advocates, policy experts, and an advisory council of young women determine the needs for data collection, policy change, public/private partnerships, and programming that could improve the lives of young women of color in the city of New York.

The success of YWI-NYC inspired women’s foundations from across the country to launch their own Young Women’s Initiatives, creating the National Philanthropic Collaborative of Young Women’s Initiatives (NPCYWI) with a focus on galvanizing resources and creating cross-sector partnerships to advance equity and outcomes for young women of color.

Foundations that form the NPCYWI include Dallas Women’s Foundation, New York Women’s Foundation, The Women’s Foundation of California, The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham, Washington Area Women’s Foundation, Women’s Foundation for a Greater Memphis, Women’s Foundation of Minnesota, and Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts.

Aligned with YWI-NYC’s commitment to participatory governance, and knowing that young women of color are experts in their own lives, the collaborative has centered its approach on the fundamental belief that young women of color are best positioned to propose solutions to the issues they face and challenges they identify.

In each YWI, a Young Women’s Advisory Council (YWAC) works alongside a cross-sector group of experts to implement a blueprint for action created through a process that includes data collection, listening sessions, and issue-based working groups. In addition, each partnering foundation works to bring together diverse councils of leaders from government, philanthropy, policy, and community-based organizations to determine effective ways to move recommendations forward through policy, legislation, and grantmaking.

Through YWI, each partnering foundation seeks to support community organizations serving young women of color that are committed to racial and gender equity and that provide leadership opportunities for young women of color. Partnering foundations also invest in organizations led by women of color.

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION6

Objectives • Strengthen and amplify leadership and advocacy skills

of young women of color aged 12 to 24 in the District of Columbia, and provide opportunities for them to leverage their leadership to create change.

• Prepare a Blueprint for Action to strategically create and advance opportunities for and with young women.

• Work in partnership with key stakeholders, local policymakers, and community-based organizations to improve outcomes for young women of color and their families.

• Align services and public policies to eliminate systemic- level barriers to success for young women of color.

• Produce original research on young women of color to influence the field and various communities of practice.

• Invest in organizations and leaders working to meet the needs of young women of color and their families.

Partners

The Young Women’s Advisory Council The Young Women’s Advisory Council (YWAC) is an integral part of YWI. It ensures the work of the initiative stays grounded in the lived experiences and needs of young women of color residing in DC, and serves as a leadership development program.

During the 2017–2018 school year, The Women’s Foundation in partnership with the YWCA National Capital Area offered a paid fellowship for young women of color to advocate for gender and racial equity, engage in the decision making process that shapes YWI, and learn about local policy. YWAC gives young women of color opportunities to expand their professional networks and broaden their skill-sets. It provides them with a solid knowledge base to have discussions with policymakers about issues that impact youth, and to engage in conversations with community members.

As part of their leadership training, YWAC’s first cohort collaborated with The Women’s Foundation on the following activities:

• Hosting a GirlsLEAD summit, an all-day leadership event for DC girls of color. The summit brought together girls of color from across the District to participate in workshops, learn from influential speakers—including award-winning journalist and former editor-in-chief of Teen Vogue, Elaine Welteroth—and to engage in career-building and self-care activities such as fashion design, dance, resume-writing, computer coding, and yoga. They also had the opportunity to connect with women mentors drawn from the DC-area business community and to network with other girls of color.

Objectives and Partners of the Young Women’s Initiative of the District of Columbia

I think there are a number of local

community based organizations providing

programming and services for girls. And

of course, schools. However, I think DC

tends to focus most of its efforts on

boys of color in the District. Too often

new programs, funding opportunities, etc.

ignore that nearly 50% of the DC youth

population are facing many of the same

struggles as DC’s boys of color.

YWI survey respondent

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION 7

• Submitting written testimony to DC City Council in favor of the Student Fair Access to School Act, a bill that limits the use of exclusionary discipline in DC public and public charter schools.

• Attending policy forums to discuss how local policies and legislation can create safer spaces to enhance the lives of young women of color.

• Providing their expertise to create the list of recommendations and tangible solutions outlined in this report.

• Participating in the 2018 United States of Women Summit.

Going forward, YWAC cohorts will continue guiding the work of YWI, advocating for this Blueprint recommendations, defining new areas of focus and research, and taking part in participatory grantmaking.

YWCA National Capital Area The YWCA National Capital Area (YWCA) collaborates with The Women’s Foundation to provide leadership development to fellows. Their organizational mission is to ensure that a majority of women and girls across the national capital area have the resources and support necessary to achieve personal, professional, and educational success. They are fully invested in eliminating racism and creating spaces and situations geared toward women to find their voice and power, making them an ideal partner for this endeavor.

Issue Area Working Groups Comprised of policymakers, practitioners, advocates, and researchers, the working groups collaborated with YWAC fellows to surface key barriers, strengths, and community-based themes to guide the Blueprint.

Advisory Committee Comprised of cross-sector leaders from education, philanthropy, and the community, the role of the Committee is to sequence the Blueprint and to inspire and catalyze resources to move it forward. Co-chairs and lead partners include the DC Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Casa Ruby, Mary’s Center, Sasha Bruce, and YWCA National Capital Region.

Issue Areas Following the 2015 National Listening Tour on Women and Girls of Color organized by the Obama Administration’s White House Council on Women and Girls, The Women’s Foundation convened a series of Listening Sessions in 2016 and 2017. The sessions served to connect with young women of color in the District of Columbia by providing a platform for them to tell their stories and to allow for deeper conversation around issues that matter to them.

During these sessions, young women of color shared with the philanthropy and policy leaders in attendance how certain policies and practices act as barriers to their success. The Women’s Foundation used these learnings to launch YWI and to identify the highest priority policy issues to address moving forward. Those policy issues are:

Economic Security: Strategies and interventions that build pathways out of poverty for young women of color and their families.

Education: Supports and resources young women of color need to succeed in their educational experience, including pregnant and parenting students and young women who have left the school system.

Health and Well-Being: Interventions and supports young women need to be physically and emotionally healthy, including sexual and reproductive health.

Safety and Violence Prevention: Policies and actions to guarantee young women feel safe and free from all forms of violence in private and public spaces including home, school, public transit, work, and the community.

Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice: Solutions to reduce the number of young women who will become involved with foster care or juvenile justice systems, and to support those already in the systems so they can reach their full potential.

Community Support and Opportunities: Supports that facilitate young women and girls’ access to positive role models and a strong cultural and self-identity.

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION8

A BLUEPRINT FOR ACTION 9

A Blueprint for Action

More than 250 young women, policymakers, philanthropists, scholars, service providers, and government officials shared their knowledge, experience, and insights to develop this Blueprint for supporting young women of color in DC.

The Women’s Foundation facilitated conversations and conducted interviews with YWAC fellows, issue- based working groups, and the broader community to learn more about the assets and potential of young women of color, to identify barriers that undermine their development, and to propose solutions. The Women’s Foundation also conducted landscape research using publicly available data, a

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