Black People - We are Committed to the Work Ahead

June 03, 2020

These are Our Communities, ANHD is Alongside You

The recent outpouring of collective outrage in response to continued police brutality against Black people has rocked our city, our country, and the world.

This comes at a time when communities across New York City are grappling with the devastating impacts of a global pandemic and the disparate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color, and especially Black people. Black communities dying from the coronavirus at staggeringly high rates is rooted in the legacy of slavery and white supremacy that, through decades of racist policies, has restricted quality healthcare and hospitals from reaching predominately people of color neighborhoods. 

And those Black communities, already shouldering the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, are now grieving the loss of even more Black bodies, including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, among the many others taken by police violence… again.

ANHD’s mission is to build community power to win affordable housing and thriving, equitable neighborhoods for all New Yorkers. We were founded out of the movements and struggles of New York City’s Black and Brown neighborhoods in the 1960s and 1970s that used protesting and community organizing to force changes to the same systems of injustice, inequality, and racism we grapple with today. Our collective power comes from our member organizations and from the people and communities they are rooted in. 

We know that when community members bond together they can stop speculators, withstand predatory landlords, prevent harassment, and ensure that people can stay in their neighborhoods. They can also create first-time homeownership, investments in small businesses, new processes for community planning, and legislation that changes the actions of government.

Our communities are powerful, valuable, and vibrant. 
Yet, not all members of our communities are valued equally.

We know it. We see it. We experience it. We fight it. And, frankly, we hate it.

If we are to actualize equitable and thriving neighborhoods for all New Yorkers, we must challenge the systems that value some lives over others. And we must understand the root causes of the problems our communities face — central of which is white supremacy. 

Black communities have been suffering for centuries. The protests, mourning, and cries of outrage echoing across the nation exemplify our collective recognition of the struggles faced by those most impacted by racism and systemic inequality. And we must continue to confront the ideologies and systems that prop up police brutality and other forms of violence inflicted upon Black people in this country. 

At ANHD we research, analyze, report, convene, advocate, rally and we protest. Protest is the language of the unheard. Protest is a powerful tactic that forces those in power to listen to those who have been deliberately silenced, alienated, and ignored. Through protest we can elevate the voices of those left otherwise voiceless and unheard.

What binds our work, our efforts, and our purpose is the shared pursuit of justice for the marginalized and unheard.

So as an organization, as allies, as partners, and as individuals, we say:

To those calling out racism, we yell with you.
To those standing up against oppression, we stand with you.
To those confronting police brutality, we defend you.
To those fighting white supremacy, we’re fighting alongside you.
And to those in the long battle against entrenched, systemic racism, we are and will be alongside you.

This is our work. These are our communities. And we say with pride and humility, ANHD will continue to fight alongside you. 

We are here to stay.

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