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Action Ridge Book Club July 18

Dear Action Ridge Enthusiasts,  Our Anti-Oppression Book Club will be on July 18th to accommodate our leader, Jena Doolas.  We will gather at the Community Church at 7:00.
To prepare for the meeting, please purchase What Does it mean to be White?  Here is the link:
If you would like to share a book, let me know; and we’ll figure that out.  Also Barb Sanders has an extra book she’d like to sell.  If you’d like to purchase it, please let me know and I’ll arrange for you to get it.
Jena suggests that we first consider this question, (which is in the book on page 14), and write our responses in a journal, which we’ll use throughout our exploration of the material.
“Discuss what it means to be part of your particular racial group(s). How racially diverse was your neighborhood(s) growing up? What messages have you received about race from your family, friends, schools and neighborhoods about race? In other words, how has your race(s) shaped your life?”
She asks that we read the first 5 chapters of the book, making notes of our questions and reactions as we go along.
Book-Club

Park Ridge Library Survey

Dear Action Ridge Friends,  As you may know, the library is holding community meetings to talk to residents about their interests and wishes regarding library programs.  On July 15th at 7:00 you may talk to library staff in person or you may fill out the survey below.
Also please note that the City is asking us to participate in Park Ridge Wonderful in preparation for the creation of a Comprehensive Plan.  The website for that survey is below, too.
I hope we Action Ridge folks will take action on these surveys.  We movers and shakers need to make our opinions known.  Thanks!  Nan


We are working to be the best public library we can be for our community. We’re initiating conversations throughout Park Ridge with civic leaders, community groups and hopefully, each of you.
We want to hear from as many people around town as we can! Please take a few minutes and share your thoughts with us through a brief survey. Your answers will help us write our strategic plan and make our programs and services better than ever.

Meeting May 9

It’s going to be a REALLY good meeting with important information about water and all of its pluses and minuses.  Also, you’ll notice that we have A LOT of plans for future efforts.  Please come to learn and offer your thoughts.

Action Ridge Agenda

May 9, 2019 at 7:00 PM

Park Ridge Community Church  100 Courtland Ave.

7:00-8:30—Presentation: Water: You, Park Ridge and the Planet with Cam Davis of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District and Amy Bartucci of Go Green Park Ridge

8:30-9:00—Review of future Action Ridge Initiatives:

  1. May 15th,  7:00, 328 Courtland—Meeting of the Core Leaders Group.  If you’d like to join the group, let Nan know.
  2. May 27th, Early a.m., South Park—Memorial Day Parade: Please sign up.
  3. Sometime in May—Participation in a Library Survey regarding the interests of patrons
  4. June 13th,7:00, Monthly meeting, Community Church—Peter Contos, of the Illinois Gun Violence Prevention Coalition and Duane Mellema, the Park Ridge Deputy Chief of Police will talk about Gun Violence Prevention, especially about the Fire Arm Restraining Order and how it applies to Park Ridge.
  5. July 11th—Do we want to have a table at the Taste of Park Ridge?  Sign up, please.
  6. July and August—No regular meetings but possibly a book discussion on the subject of racial equity and/or participation in a “White Affinity Group”.  Who would like to take part?
  7. September 12th—, Monthly Meeting, Community Church, Discussion of Rank Choice Voting
  8. On-going—Kristin, Marilyn and Nan are approaching City Hall about creating a Housing Plan as part of the Comprehensive Plan. Are there others who are interested in this?

9:00–Adjournment

 

Action Ridge Meeting Minutes 4/4/2019

Meeting was called to order by Nan Parson at 7:03PM.

7:00-8:30—Presentation was titled “Racial Equity : Raising Awareness and Understanding White Privilege.  Corrie Wallace is an Anti-Oppression Educator.  This was an interactive experience aimed at raising our awareness of White Privilege on our culture.  Corrie helped us come to the realization that we take for granted the effects of White Privilege.  She asked us to access our feelings about the subject and to “get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable”, expect and accept non-closure, speak our individual truth (use I/me, not we/us), stay engaged, and be respectful and open-minded.

  1. The audience was invited to share answers to “When I hear white privilege I think/feel….”. These were the feelings and thoughts shared on large sheets of paper placed around the room:
  2. I am aware of my White Privilege and how can I use this unearned privilege to help bring voice to those who are silenced.
  3. Systemic injustice
  4. Guilty
  5. Patriarchy
  6. Sadness/Injustice
  7. Enjoy benefits of society at expense to others
  8. Confusion/sadness
  9. An edge on life
  10. Guilty and lucky
  11. Frustrated, that others can’t understand the concept
  12. I feel a particular awareness between cultures and the asymmetries in how they treat one another
  13. How can we change something that has taken generations to hurt our culture?
  14. Guilty
  15. Lucky, but undeserving
  16. Embarrassed
  17. Ashamed and Angry
  18. Guilty
  19. Unequal playing field
  20. Unaware
  21. It’s something my college kids made me aware of
  22. Stable home, 2 parent home, economic security
  23. Take things for granted
  24. Lucky to have and realize later in life how fortunate
  25. That we need equity.

 

  1. Corrie opened the session with a reading that pointed out that the land we are on was stolen. People of color were here long before the White Man. The privilege of being white was imposed on the original inhabitants.
  • She asked the group what they could tell about her by just looking at her. We became aware that what we saw couldn’t tell us a lot about who she is and that we sometimes make assumptions about people based on their outward appearance.  She then told us about her experiences and background, that her mom is white and Jewish and that her dad is black, that she graduated from U of Michigan.  She talked about some of her life experiences, her professional background, her children and more.  It was clear that she’s much more and maybe different than one might assume from her outward appearance.
  • We then viewed videos. One video showed several sets of twins, one of which chewed gum and the other didn’t.  Participants in the video experiment consistently thought that the gum-chewing twin was more socially comfortable and successful than the non-gun chewing twin.  Clearly the participants judged the twins based on their outward appearance.
  • Corrie had placed evocative photos and statements around the room.  Each individual stood by the photo or statement that spoke to him/her the most and discussed each one, then shared responses with the larger group.  We became aware of ways in which we experience implicit bias, universal understanding of power and the difference between equality and equity.
  • She made recommendations of books and programs, which could help us understand the effects of White Privilege—among these are the book titled Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh.
  • The presentation ended with an outline of the evolution of diversity lingo:
  1. First people talked about “Not Seeing Color” (1954 & 1964)
  2. Then “Tolerance” was the by-word
  3. Next “Multiculturalism” became important and we began to celebrate heroes and holidays.
  4. The term “Diversity” was more current.
  5. Eventually “Cultural Competence” was expected.
  6. The terms “Diversity & Inclusion” were current and “Desegregation and Integration” were instituted.
  7. And, finally, now, we’re aware of “Color Consciousness and Striving for Cultural Humility”.

 

  • Corrie ended by asking us to complete an electronic evaluation through the link below.

Electronic Evaluation: http://tinyurl.com/ActionRidgeApril2019

Please fill out the evaluation at the link above, if you attended the April meeting.

The group thanked Corrie for helping us become more aware of the effects of White Privilege and Implicit Bias on ourselves, as individuals, and as a group and talked about ways that we can continue this conversation and plan for future awareness raising experiences.  We hope that these efforts will lead to changes in our society here in Park Ridge and beyond.

Corrie provided us with a list of relevant books, including:

Courageous Conversation about Race

Culturally Relevant Teaching and the Brain

Is Everyone Really Equal?  What does it Mean to be White?

White Fragility

Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome

Waking up White; and Finding Myself in the Story of Race

When They Call You a Terrorist

Why Are All of the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?

Other Conversations About Race

Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack

8:45-9:00—Outline of Action Ridge’s future plans:

  • Description of our May 9th meeting with Cam Davis of the MWRD in collaboration with Go Green.  The meeting will be dedicated to Jody Baty, who was Cam’s cousin and an active member of Action Ridge.
  • Noreen Gayford gave an update on Gun Violence Prevention legislation including the Firearms Restraining Order and the SAFE Act.  On June 14th Peter Contos, of the ILGVP Coalition, will tell us about that legislation and more.  Late breaking news is that the Deputy Police Chief of Park Ridge will talk about ways that our city is supporting gun violence prevention legislation.  On Tuesday, April 9, 10-10:30, at the Thompson Center, there will be a press conference to announce a bill about strengthening FOID card legislation.   If the law had been stronger, the Aurora shootings might have been prevented.
  • The Core Group has suggested that Action Ridge take a break during the months of July and August.  There seemed to be agreement from the larger group, though we may follow up this evening’s workshop with a book discussion in the summer.
  • Claris Olson and Scott Adelman presented a description of Rank Voting, which will be the subject of our September meeting.
    • This plan is already in effect Maine and gives people the opportunity to rank their choices, not just pick one, so that everyone’s vote counts and a run-off isn’t necessary.
    • If interested in participating in working on Rank Voting, email IL4RankChoiceVoting@gmail.com
  • The meeting adjourned with the acknowledgment that Action Ridge is going to continue to support issues that are important to our pledge to “Promote Principles of Democracy—Inclusion, Respect and Equity and the Health of our Planet.  Truth Matters!

Please note that a summary of the District 64 Candidates’ Forum is available, should anyone want to take a look at it.  It includes the questions that were asked of the candidates.  It will be referred to, should Action Ridge conduct another forum in the future.

9:00–Adjournment

 

Meeting April 4

EqualityGood Morning, Action Ridge Warriors!  Our next Action Ridge meeting will be held on Thursday, April 4th, at 7:00 at the Community Church.  This is a change of date from the second Thursday of the month to the first.  Please make note.

This meeting is going to be one of the most fascinating and, perhaps, life changing events we’ve held so far.  Corrie Wallace, who is a nationally known Anti-oppression educator, will present an interactive workshop aimed at raising our awareness of the effects of white privilege on our culture.
We’ll view posters and videos, then break into small groups to discuss our reactions to what we’ve seen and end by forming a circle to share our thoughts and feelings.  I hope we have an excellent turn-out to explore this important topic.  After all, our Mission Statement states that we “promote the principles of equity and inclusion”.  Let’s act on our principles!!
A cash donation of $15-20 will be suggested; but, of course, the program is free and open to all.