Racial Equity Statement
The Food Policy Council’s (FPC) mission is to promote a more equitable, healthy, and sustainable food system in the District of Columbia. We are working to achieve racial equity, which we define as when everyone has equitable access to opportunities and what they need to thrive, no matter where they live or what identities they have, and when race no longer drives disparities or life outcomes for District residents.
We acknowledge that the inequities in our current food system and broader communities stem from past and persistent structural racism in public policy and budget decisions. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) residents are more likely to be food insecure than white residents; majority-Black communities in the District have fewer grocery stores and healthy food options; and BIPOC residents, immigrants, and low-income residents are more likely to be employed in low-wage positions in the food economy – all of which are the products of structural racism and disinvestment. Racism is real, persistent, and experienced, and we believe that the responsibility of dismantling inequities in the food system belongs to all of us.
We commit to promoting a more equitable, healthy, and sustainable food system in Washington, DC and invite everyone to join us in this work. Specifically, the Food Policy Council commits to:
- Shaping food policy priorities that name anti-racism explicitly;
- Creating metrics for racial equity in the food system and evaluate progress toward those metrics;
- Ensuring that the FPC membership uplifts BIPOC food system leaders and reflects the racial and cultural diversity of the District residents;
- Creating and implementing a rubric by which FPC policies, practices, and priorities are assessed through a racial equity lens;
- Ensuring that FPC public meetings and events highlight BIPOC-led organizations and speakers and provide spaces to learn from residents with lived experience of structural racism;
- Creating and decide on a decision making process for the FPC to use, with attention to how race and intersectional identities play a part in how decisions are made;
- Hosting four trainings a year for the FPC members on racial equity topics; and
- Creating intentional and standardized terms the FPC will use when describing food policy issues in the District.
Food Policy Council’s Terms Guide
Through a series of racial equity trainings in 2020, the FPC began to develop a shared language and analysis about how racism shows up in the food policy landscape across the District. This Terms Guide is our initial attempt to define the terms that guide our work and to be intentional about how we describe the food environment. This resource is a living document that will grow and change as we deepen our racial equity analysis.
Resources on Race, Racial Equity, and the Food System
- Food Solutions New England (FSNE) 21-Day Racial Equity Challenge: https://foodsolutionsne.org/21-day-racial-equity-habit-building-challenge/
- FSNE: 10 Things Everyone Should Know About Race and the Food System
- HEAL (Health Environment Agriculture Labor) Alliance: https://healfoodalliance.org/
- Building the Case for Racial Equity in the Food System, Center for Social Inclusion: https://www.centerforsocialinclusion.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Building-the-Case-for-Racial-Equity-in-the-Food-System.pdf
- Civil Eats, Food and Land Justice for Black Americans: https://civileats.com/2020/06/02/want-to-see-food-and-land-justice-for-black-americans-support-these-groups/ (subscription needed)
- Marlysa Gamblin, Applying a Racial Equity Lens to End Hunger: https://www.bread.org/library/applying-racial-equity-lens-end-hunger
- DC Food Policy Council 2020 Discussion Series on Race, Racial Equity, and DC’s Food System (Recordings): https://dcfoodpolicy.org/events-and-meetings/coffee-chats
- Ashanté M. Reese, Black Food Geographies, Race, Self-Reliance, and Food Access in Washington, D.C. (book):
- Melissa L. Jones, Edible Activist Podcast: https://lnkd.in/dn4-teY
- DC Urban Gardeners (DUG) Newsletter: http://dugnetwork.org/newsletter/
- Sustainable DC 2.0 Food & Equity Conversation Cards
- Video – Peggy McIntosh: How to recognize your white privilege — and use it to fight inequality | TED Talk
- Robin DiAngelo, White Fragility | DiAngelo | The International Journal of Critical Pedagogy
- Racial Equity Tools: https://www.racialequitytools.org/resources/fundamentals/core-concepts/system-of-white-supremacy-and-white-privilege