Trend Bending Policies for Advancing Racial Justice Part 3: Dismantling Structural Racism as a Whole

photo by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuaboa on Unsplash

Trend Bending Policies for Advancing Racial Justice is a three-part series developed by Well-being and Equity in the World (WE in the World), and brought to you in partnership with the Well Being In the Nation Network (WIN Network). The series lifts up policies that Black, Brown and Indigenous-led organizations are fighting for in pursuit of racial justice.

Although the #BlackLivesMatter protests of 2020 were ignited by high-profile police murders, the movement’s demands address a much broader array of issues. Indeed, there can be no end to police violence, and no racial justice, without a complete upheaval of the system of racism that lies at the foundation of the United States. Although truth, reconciliation, and conversation play a role in this process, Black organizers from across the country have emphasized that action must accompany talk, and that this action must involve a massive redistribution of resources. Now, outside of the “Summer of Racial Reckoning”, the need for policies that advance racial justice and disrupt the status quo is more important than ever, as many of the changes called for have still not been realized. Dismantling structural racism in the United States will require sustained effort at the national, community, and individual levels. The following policy goals, which are taken from a diverse array of racial justice organizations, are key steps towards a society free of systemic racism. 

Reparations and Economic Justice

  • Pass H.R. 40 to provide direct reparations to all Black Americans. Other forms of reparations include providing free college, debt forgiveness.

  • Enact an extreme wealth tax to fund social services and invest in social security and social benefits programs.

Environmental Justice

  • Establish a green jobs program that targets low-income communities for employment.

  • Enact community control of permitting to prevent environmentally destructive industries from impacting Black communities.

Expanding Democracy

  • Reinstate the vote for all current and formerly incarcerated people.

  • Abolish the electoral college and create an independent redistricting board to end partisan gerrymandering.

  • Pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to end voter suppression.

Funding for Social Services Over Prisons and Military

  • Massively reduce the military budget in order to increase funding to housing, education, and other social services. 

  • Reduce the prison population by 50% and provide coordinated reentry support for formerly incarcerated people.

Explore resources related to dismantling structural racism below and visit the other parts of this series to learn more about trend-bending policies that advance racial justice. 

Written byNoah Kline, former Social Transformation Intern with WE in the World.

Last Updated 2024


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