Racial Justice

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In the wake of the killing of George Floyd in May 2020 and other incidents of police brutality against people of color, YWCA Bethlehem staff is re-centering on our racial justice mission by promoting and participating in gatherings and peaceful protests throughout the Lehigh Valley. We invite you to sign the Stand Against Racism Pledge below and follow our Facebook page for upcoming racial justice events.

PLEDGE TO

STAND AGAINST RACISM

YWCA is on a mission to eliminate racism, empower women, stand up for social justice, help families, and strengthen communities.  I am taking a stand against racism with YWCA as hundreds of thousands of people across the country mobilize to demand racial justice, accountability, and an end to police brutality. By taking the Pledge, I commit to “do the work” to make the Lehigh Valley a more safe, just, and equitable place for all.
Mindful of the continuing affliction of institutional and structural racism as well as the daily realities of all forms of bias, prejudice and bigotry in my own life, my family, my circle of friends, my co-workers and the society in which I live, with conviction and hope:
  • I take this pledge, fully aware that the struggle to eliminate racism will not end with a mere pledge but calls for an ongoing transformation within myself and the institutions and structures of our society;
  • I pledge to look deeply and continuously in my heart and in my mind to identify all signs and vestiges of racism; to rebuke the use of racist language and behavior towards others; to root out such racism in my daily life and in my encounters with persons I know and with strangers I do not know; and to expand my consciousness to be more aware and sensitive to my use of overt and subtle expressions of racism and racial stereotypes;
  • I pledge to educate myself on racial justice issues and share what I learn in my own communities even if it means challenging my family, my partner, my children, my friends, my co-workers and those I encounter on a daily basis;
  • I pledge, within my means, to actively work to support public policy solutions that prominently, openly and enthusiastically promote racial equity in all aspects of human affairs; and to actively support and devote my time to YWCA, as well as other organizations working to eradicate racism from our society.
YWCA USA is on a mission to eliminate racism and empower women. I join YWCA in taking a stand against racism today and every day.

Stand Against Racism Pledge

Take the Pledge today and do better every day.
*This pledge has been adapted by YWCA USA from the Pledge to Eliminate Racism in My Life, YWCA Bergen County which is an adaptation of the Pledge to Heal Racism in My Life, Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace, April 10, 2006.

Diversity Reading Circles

During this time of renewed commitment to racial justice and civil rights, YWCA Bethlehem continues to offer Diversity Reading Circles that lift up the lives and accomplishments of women and people of color. By sharing carefully selected age-appropriate stories, YWCA Reading Circles teaches children about Civil Rights leaders, Black history, diverse cultures, equality and social justice.

Due to the current COVID-19 health crisis, YWCA staff is available to host Reading Circles outdoors to children and family groups willing to respect safety measures such as wearing face coverings and maintaining social distancing.

Contact Jen Wanisko at 610-867-4669 x104 for more information

Dr. King Holiday Celebration

YWCA Bethlehem partners with Bethlehem NAACP each January to host a free community event to honor the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Civil rights are civil rights. There are no persons who are not entitled to their civil rights… We have to recognize that we have a long way to go, but we have to go that way together.

Dorothy Height, Civil Rights Activist and YWCA Leader, 1912-2010