As a brand we are still trying to find our place in the fight against racism – it can be hard to know what to say and we want to get it right because it’s so important, but it's important to not wait until you're perfect to act. We’ve been thinking hard about what we can do better as a brand with a large platform and an engaged following who care about social justice in all its different forms. We have always tried to keep our content light and positive (even when talking about social issues), however we know there is no way to speak about racism in a light-hearted way. We acknowledge that it took us too long to address this in our space – it shouldn’t have taken for another black person to die from racial injustice to speak out about this. Being uncomfortable or not used to speaking about it is not a good enough excuse. The purpose of sharing our thoughts is not make any of this about us or go down the road of virtue signalling, it’s about holding ourselves accountable, acknowledging that we can do better and saying it’s ok if you don’t have all the answers – but we must act. Even having the option of not speaking out against racism defines the position of white privilege and we all have work to do to make fundamental changes. It’s time to get uncomfortable and confront how we can break down a system built on inequality to make long lasting change.
“Racism is not a black people problem, it is a white culture issue. Sexism is not a female problem, it is an issue with male dominated culture. Classism is not a poor people problem, it is a capitalism issue. Homophobia and transphobia aren't queer people problems, they are issues with cis straight post-colonial society. In order to push forward, we need to shift the perspective of oppression being the problem of those who experience it. We need to acknowledge that privilege exists as a spectrum and is an indicator for where the work needs to take place. Expecting marginalized folk to be the ones to deconstruct their own oppression is as good as saying "not my problem" and letting it happen, as it doesn't acknowledge where the problem is coming from. The definition of privilege is thinking that something isn't a problem because it isn't your problem."
We realise that we have a responsibility to use our platform and space to support the black community in the fight against racism and injustice to demand long lasting change and equality. Even if we haven’t figured all the best ways to do this yet, we are going to be working on this internally and externally and using our platform to do better long-term. Being anti-racist requires action, it takes learning, unlearning, dismantling and building. We are all learning, and we know that the only way to learn is to make mistakes. There are going to be times when we get it wrong; we may say too little or too much. Even if those mistakes mean we lose followers or customers who may only look for lightheartedness, because ultimately black lives and racial equality are inexplicably more important.
As a starting point, we have been dedicating our platform to sharing resources with action and education at their core - petitions to sign, places to donate, individuals and organisations to follow and support. We are not experts and many have put it far better than we can, so we have put together a few resources over the last couple of days via Instagram here, but we wanted to create a blog too for an easily accessible directory.
It can be overwhelming and hard to know where to start, but we have to turn our emotions and anger into tangible action and change, and hopefully this list can give you some pointers.
The resources have been there, the educators have been doing the work for many many years, it's time that many many more of us tuned in. Now is the time for action. We all have a responsibility to use our voice, educate ourselves better and act together to create a world free of injustice and full of tolerance for all.
Add your voice: Petitions for Justice
Petitions are a quick, easy way to make your voice heard on a matter. Below are a few links for justice for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade and Belly Mujinga - the list of those who have lost their lives at the hands of systemic racism and injustice is abhorrently long but these are just some of the most active current petitions.
If you live outside of the US and you cannot sign the petition without US postal codes, here are some zip codes that you can use;
90015 - Los Angeles, California
10001 - New York City, New York
75001 - Dallas, Texas
- Justice for George Floyd - You can also text FLOYD to 55156
Where you can donate to the above causes directly:
George Floyd Memorial Fund - Set up by George's sister to help cover the legal and funeral fees to commemorate his passing.
Belly Mujinga Family Support Fund - Belly was a British Transport employee who died with Covid-19, after being spat at while working at Victoria Station, London. This donation page has been set up a fund to support the family.
Dominique Rem'mie Fells Funeral Fund - Dominique Rem’mie Fells’ was a black trans woman, found murdered in Philidelphia.
Other petitions and funding we have found which will promote long lasting intersectional change:
Immediate action is crucial but it's important to look at all the factors that racism affects and make sure our anti-racism work covers all areas of life, and facilitates deep, long term change in black communities. From childbirth to schools and businesses, here are some petitions to rethink the way we learn and buy.
Our next directory will be a wonderful list of black-owned businesses - where we all spend our money has power and can empower not only individuals but whole communities.
List of Organisations and Charities where you can learn, research and donate directly:
Lucy & Yak will be donating to a group of organisations - a mixture of USA and UK based) that are combating racial injustice; Black Lives Matter, Stand Against Racism & Inequality (SARI), Show Racism the Red Card, The Runnymede Trust and Stop Hate UK.
Here are some other organisations to which donations will be gratefully received and where money will be put to very important use. Consider where your money is going more than ever at this time and give as much as you're comfortable with. If you can, commit to continuous support for their causes with regular donations.
US based charities and organisations:
Black Lives Matter - Black Lives Matter Foundation, Inc. is a global organisation in the US, UK, and Canada, whose mission is to eradicate white supremacy and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes.
NAACP - founded in 1909, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is the nation's first and largest grassroots based civil rights organisation with over 2,000 volenteer-run branches worldwide. Their mission is to secure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights in order to eliminate race-based discrimination and ensure the health and well-being of all persons and to create a society in which all individuals have equal rights without discrimination based on race.
Color Of Change is one of the largest online racial justice organisations in the US helping people respond effectively to injustice in the world around us. As a national online force driven by 1.7 million members, they move decision-makers in corporations and government to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people in America
Black Visions Collective - a black LGBTQ+ led US based charity dedicated to developing Minnesota’s “emerging Black leadership to lead powerful campaigns in pursuit of dignity and equity for all.
Reclaim the Block - a community led-initiative calling for the Minneapolis and city council members “to move money from the police department” and into communities that need it. A shift to a more community led approach to safety will save lives.
Campaign Zero - launched in 2015, Campaign Zero is a police reform campaign and a comprehensive platform of research-based policy solutions to end police brutality in America, proposed by activists associated with Black Lives Matter. The plan consists of ten proposals, all of which are aimed at reducing police violence by limiting police interventions, improving community interactions, and ensuring accountability.
Unicorn Riot - a decentralised, non-profit media collective that originated online in 2015. The group is known for reporting on far-right organisation and sources of racial and economic injustice in the US.
BYP100 - Founded in 2013, BYP100 (Black Youth Project 100) is a member-based organisation of Black youth activists creating justice and freedom for all Black people.
Founded by Rachel Cargle, the Loveland Foundation is committed to showing up for communities of colour in unique and powerful ways, with a particular focus on Black women and girls.
The Okra Project is a collective that seeks to address the global crisis faced by Black Trans people by bringing home cooked, healthy, and culturally specific meals and resources to Black Trans People wherever we can reach them.
Sunshine Behavioural Health
Racism is a public health crisis. Sunshine behavioural Health seeks to help Black people who are susceptible to anxiety, depression and drug abuse. For more information on how to access their resources and services click the name above.
UK based charities and organisations:
The problem of racism is in now way exclusive the the USA, below are some amazing organisations who are working on many levels to eradicate racism and hate in the UK:
Show Racism the Red Card - The UK’s leading anti-racism educational charity using “educational workshops, training sessions, multimedia packages, and a whole host of other resources, all with the purpose of tackling racism in society.”
The Runnymede Trust - Runnymede is the UK's leading independent race equality think tank. Runnymede generate intelligence to challenge race inequality in Britain through research, network building, leading debate, and policy engagement.
Stop Hate UK - UK-based service for victims of race hate crimes, founded in 1995 in direct response to Stephen Lawrence’s murder.
Stand Against Racism & Inequality (SARI) - Bristol based service user/community-oriented agency in the UK that provides support and advice to victims of hate, and promotes equality and good relations between people with protected characteristics as defined by law.
The fund will be the first permanent national UK resource for its kind for those affected by deaths in custody, making small grants available for families and their campaign groups across the UK.
The 4Front Project is a member-led youth organisation empowering young people and communities in the UK to fight for justice, peace and freedom. They support members with experiences of violence and the criminal justice system to create change; in their own lives, communities and society.
Black Minds Matter - linking as many black individuals and families in the UK with certified, professional, black practitioners for sessions as soon as possible. Their aim is to use the money raised to pay in full for therapy sessions for those in need.
Say it Loud Club – Providing support and advocacy for LGBTQIA+ refugees and asylum seekers in the UK.
Exist Loudly Fund - An organisation creating programmes, support networks for Queer Black Young People in London and working to offer support to young Queer Black People outside of London digitally
Accounts to follow on social media:
For most of us, social media is a large part of the way we see the world, read the news, ingest information and learn - especially in lockdown. It's important that our digital landscapes are diverse, with the points of view of many different people of colour, and those from all walks of life being regularly represented - as well as organisations working to change the world for the better, not just accounts which are visual, commercial or lighthearted. While following these accounts is a good place to start, it's crucial that we go a step further too - like and share, but also take on board what they say and action it into your daily life also. Remember that every black voice is different and valid, - as Candice Brathwaite says, speaking about racism is not always softly spoken and paletable.
Please note: Some of the below are educators and activists, but some are representing their personal lived experience - if you're engaging with these spaces, it's important to respect boundaries and not demand discussion, answers or labour, especially at this time when they may be experiencing a huge influx of new followers, pressure and stress.
Rachel Cargle @rachel.cargle
Mona Chalabi @monachalabi
Layla F Saad @laylafsaad
Ibram X. Kendi @ibramxk
Ijeoma Oluo @ijeomaoluo
Tamika Mallory @tamikadmallory
Mikaela Loach @mikaelaloach
Brittany Packnett Cunningham @mspackyetti
Munroe Bergdorf @munroebergdorf
Candice Brathwaite @candicebrathwaite
Andrea Ranae @andrearanaej
Nova Reid @novareidofficial
Erika Hart M. Ed @ihartericka
Kuchenga Shenje @kuchenga
Black Lives Matter @blklivesmatter
UK Black Pride - @ukblackpride
Color of Change - @colorofchange
Colorlinenews - @colorlinesnews
Equal Justice Initiative - @eji_org
Families Belong Together - @fams2gether
NAACP - @naacp
Gal-dem Zine - @galdemzine
Domestic Workers Alliance - @domesticworkers
RAICES - @raicestexas
United We Dream - @unitedwedream
Black Womens' Blueprint - @blackwomensblueprint
We The Urban - @wetheurban
Ravideep Kaur, Anti-racism Consultant - @ravideepkaur
Chanté Joseph @chantayyjayy
Chesca Leigh @chescaleigh
Cleo Wade @cleowade
Emma Dabiri @emmadabiri
Sarah Mian @Sarahmian
Tanya Compas @Tanyacompas
Remake our World @remakeourworld
Shit You Should Care About @shityoushouldcareabout
Black Trans Lives Matter #blacktranslivesmatter
Make sure you always get news, headlines and articles from reputable sources online, and fact check what you read where you can. There can be a lot of damaging false or biased information being circulated at times like this.
What to check out online:
It's important for non-Black individuals to take responsibility for their own education on subjects related to racism. Try not to reach out to black people for help at this heavy time and do your own research, reading, listening and supporting. If you don't feel you have the right words or knowledge to speak up, this is a great opportunity to learn and make sure you do. There are a lot of great resources being shared online at the moment, here's a selection of some of the best we've seen.
Nicole Carpenter - Resources for White People to Learn and Talk About Race and Racism
Cancer Awareness & Prevention for People of Color THE DERM Review research and writing team has created a guide to help education the Black Community
The Summit Wellness Group - 61 mental health and substance use resources for the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) community.
Further more detailed and specific directories:
Jenna Arnold has created a list of people to follow to help educate yourself here: https://www.jennaarnold.com/resources
Anti Racist Resources by Victoria Alexander, MEd
Ally Resource Guide - Author Unknown
Write to your Local MP to demand change on a local and national level -
Template letters to MPs demanding change/ justice: https://drive.google.com/drive/mobile/folders/1wjerRWbWQ3_QlIS1McrMP9t0-nKKvkS7?usp=sharing
Making it easy to write to the politicians who represent you about the things that matter – even if you don’t know who they are https://www.writetothem.com/
How to help fight Anti-racism in the UK resource document:
What to Read
Books often are the best way to explore a topic the most deeply - be sure to diversify your bookshelf and remember to support local bookshops or buy second hand if you can! Hive is also a great option and donates to independent bookshops with every purchase!
- How To Be An Antiracist by Dr. Ibram X. Kendi
- Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad
- I am Not Your Baby Mother - Candice Brathwaite
- Black Feminist Thought by Patricia Hill Collins
- Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower by Dr. Brittney Cooper
- Heavy: An American Memoir by Kiese Laymon
- I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
- Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
- Raising Our Hands by Jenna Arnold
- Redefining Realness by Janet Mock
- Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde
- So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
- The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
- The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
- The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
- The Next American Revolution: Sustainable Activism for the Twenty-First Century by Grace Lee Boggs
- The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson
- Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
- This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color by Cherríe Moraga
- When Affirmative Action Was White: An Untold History of Racial Inequality in Twentieth Century America by Ira Katznelson
- Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge
- This Bridge Called My Back Writings by Radical Feminists of Colour
- Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?: by Beverly Daniel Tatum
- Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo
- I will not be erased by Gal-dem writers
- Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
- Kindred by Octavia E. Butler
What to watch: Film & TV
There's so much on offer to watch to learn more, and visual media can be especially powerful, visceral and educational - consider putting the below on in place of your current fave series. There's a range of Netflix, Amazon and other online sources.
- Becoming - Netflix
- Orange is the New Black (esp seasons 4 and 5) - Netflix
- Explained: The Racial Wealth Gap - Netflix
- Little Fires Everywhere - Amazon Prime
- If BEale Street Could Talk - Amazon Prime
- Sorry to Bother You - Film
- Queen & Slim - Film
- The Rosa Parks Story - Film
- Get Out - Film
What to listen to: Podcasts
If you absorb information more easily by listening, there's a whole range of podcasts available which discuss race, diversity, human rights and how best to get involved anti racism work. Accessible mostly on Spotify, there's no excuse not to put these on instead of your music a few times a week - listen while you cook, while you exercise or while you travel.
- 1619 - The NYT
- Pod Save the People - Crooked Media
Additional resources for parents on talking to your kids about race:
- Coretta Scott King Book Award Winners: Books for children and young adults
- Parenting Forward podcast episode ‘Five Pandemic Parenting Lessons with Cindy Wang Brandt’
- Fare of the Free Child podcast
Accounts to follow:
This is a live resources guide and we will continue to add to it. If you would like to contribute any additional resources, please send through any details to firstname.lastname@example.org