WHO WE ARE

THEORY OF CHANGE

Worldwide, structural racism, rooted in the transatlantic slave trade of enslaved Africans and colonialism continues to oppress Africans and people of African descent.  The types and intersections of this oppression vary in each country, but indubitably the Criminal Justice Systems and Law Enforcement Institutions use their power to perpetrate violence including  killing Black people.

The Problem:

Words like safety and security are instrumentalized against Black people by making blackness a crime and a reason to be under suspicion, a practice known as racial profiling. With the Black population, States systematically evade their responsibility to protect, violate the right of Black people to be protected by the law and to have justice. States target Black people for surveillance based on racial profiling, perpetuated by widespread institutional racism in justice systems globally. 

While the effects of systemic racism are very real, it can be difficult for people to see due to how covert systemic racism can be, how people have racial biases fully integrated into their worldview, and because of the way that it invisiblizes its victims, their stories and Africans,  Afrodescendants’s narratives 

Systemic racism works in circular ways: due to systemic racism, African and Afrodescendant communities lack the resources and access needed to meaningfully combat systemic racism. 

Hypothesis of Change:

If a strong international coalition focused on the rights of African and Afrodescendant people directly affected by violence in the context of law enforcement, as well as their communities and organizations, is created and thrives, and if this international coalition is supported by other civil society organizations, academics and allies.

If clear, direct, and concise information is provided by this international coalition about the problem of law enforcement violence toward Africans and Afrodescendants worldwide and its root causes (colonization and the transatlantic slave trade in enslaved Africans) and modern day consequences are visible as something global, structural and systemic. 

If directly impacted people have access to international political spaces in particular the United Nations and their narratives, experiences and realities are at the center and amplified by the UN.

If directly impacted people, supported by this international coalition, are able to effectively use the United Nations as a tool to exert pressure on their governments to bring about structural change for Africans and Afrodescendants directly impacted by violence in the context of law enforcement all over the world. 

Then States will be pushed to bring about the national realities necessary to end systemic racism and police violence in the context of law enforcement against Africans and people of African descent.

Resources:

Recruit and maintain a staff specialized in African and/or Afro-descendant issues, structural and systemic racism, anti-blackness, relationships with directly impacted people, families and communities, and international relations.

Securing financial resources through grants and donations. 

Activities:

1. Advocacy and Awareness:

  • Campaigns by members:
    • Small grants for campaigns that uplift local strategies and that also connect to an overall message.

 

  • Facilitating participation in UN call for inputs:
    • Ensure that what is proposed at the UN level, closely reflects the desires of movements on the ground. 

 

  • EMLER Mechanism Visits (country and regional):
    • Supporting members’ engagement with EMLER by working as a liaison
    • Facilitating direct access of members and directly impacted people to the UN. 
    • Getting the testimonies and proposed solutions of directly impacted people before UN bodies.

 

  • Events
    • Events serve to focus or bring an issue into the public eye, as part of a larger advocacy strategy, to highlight a specific case of police violence, and much more. 

 

  • Language access – 4 languages,
    • to guarantee language justice amongst our community is a cross-cutting approach or feature of all our activities. 

2. Communications:

  • Newsletters:
    • Keeping members and stakeholders informed on the coalition´s progress, activities, and impact. 

 

  • Website:
    • The website is used as a central tool to keep members informed, as a depository for important resources, and as a tool to visibilize violence in the context of law enforcement towards Africans and people of African descent. 

 

  • Social Networking:
    • Creating a network and community for mutual support, healing, and information sharing.

3. Coalition Building

  • Coalition meetings:
    • Periodic coalition meetings serve to build and keep the community united and focused on the issue that cuts across us all. The meetings discuss plans, talk about opportunities for involvement and talk about what members are doing. 
 
  • Fellow of African Descent:
    • Periodically, the coalition will hire an African or Afro-descendant fellow to collaborate and support the collective work of holding the UN accountable for systemic racism and police violence against Africans and Afro-descendants. The Fellow will learn about and actively participate in the UN advocacy process and collaborate in the work of the coalition.

Expected
Results

Desired impact:

Logic of Change:

  • Causality: It is expected that the advocacy work at the United Nations about the local realities of Black people in regards to law enforcement will be a driver of systemic change in how law enforcement institutions interact with Black people. This can happen through the following assumptions: 
 
  • Assumptions: It is assumed that working in coalition and collectively using the United Nations as a tool to drive change is a way to positively affect the realities of Black people’s lives in terms of their interactions with state security and justice institutions. 

 

It is assumed that by promoting an environment of cooperation amongst advocates for the Human Rights of people of African Descent, and by having active members who were directly impacted by law enforcement violence, a solidarity movement is built. 

It is assumed that States and government officials care about naming and shaming: they will react if their name is called at the international level in the context of an accusation for human rights violations. 

Risk:

TRANSFORM THE SYSTEM WITH US!