October 2022 Newsletter
Home is a heavy concept. As a noun, it’s pretty easy to point one out, but things get murky when we explore it as a feeling. Home is jumping off the last step on the school bus and running full speed to catch up with your friends so you all can walk together. Home is knowing which burner on the stove is the tricky one. Home is knowing that Ms. Gladys on the 3rd floor walks to church every Sunday and going up to knock when you don’t hear her come down the steps. Home is sacred, but just as quickly as you can create one, it can be taken from you.
In 2020, California began taking steps toward making families whole again. Assembly Bill 3121 established the Task Force to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African Americans. “AB 3121 charges the Reparations Task Force with studying the institution of slavery and its lingering negative effects on living African Americans, including descendants of persons enslaved in the United States, and on society. Additionally, the Task Force will recommend appropriate remedies of compensation, rehabilitation, and restitution for African Americans, with a special consideration for descendants of persons enslaved in the United States. By statute, the Task Force will issue a report to the Legislature by June 1, 2022, which will be available to the public.” (The report is done and it’s [appropriately] 500 pages long).
Through this bill, families like the descendants of Willa and Charles Bruce have an avenue to win their fight for home. Earlier this year, The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to return Bruce’s Beach, a popular Black resort in 1920’s Manhattan Beach City, to the family of the owners. “As we move to remedy this nearly century-old injustice, California takes another step furthering our commitment to making the California Dream a reality for communities that were shamefully shut out by a history of racist exclusion,” Governor Newsom said. “We know our work is just beginning to make amends for our past, and California will not shy from confronting the structural racism and bias that people of color face to this day.”
We agree wholeheartedly. The work to remedy the injustice of the past–a necessity prior to realize a just and inclusive future–is just beginning. Rising rents, gentrification, and climate change remain daily threats to the sanctity of our homes. It’s time to build a new future for the Bay Area, one where everyone can live full lives with security, dignity, and agency in our work, home, and communities. It’s time to craft a world where good hard work translates into bright futures for current and future generations. It’s time to ReWork the Bay.
Ready to join us? Check out our website to see how we are showing up for that future and what you can do to help (and while you are there, check out the State of Bay Area Workers Data Tool!).
Rob, Kayla, & Brianna