By New Jersey Institute for Social Justice
On Jan. 21 the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice hosted Making Black Lives Really Matter in New Jersey: An Action Agenda for 2021-2022.
The event was streamed on Zoom and Facebook Live @NJISJ and featured Institute staff as well as Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver and several state legislators for a discussion on the deep racial disparities in New Jersey, exacerbated by the current public health and economic crisis.
Oliver was joined by Sen. Sandra Cunningham, Asseblymembers Verlina Reynolds-Jackson, Shavonda Sumter and Benjie Wimberly. The discussion was moderated by NJISJ Law & Policy Director Andrea McChristian.
At the event, the Institute presented its recently released Action Agenda laying out its recommended legislative and policy reforms to close the racial wealth gap, transform the youth justice system, keep communities safe, provide democracy for all and repair the harm of enduring racism.
From the ravaging of the coronavirus pandemic, to persistent violence by police against Black people, to disparities in wealth, health and criminal justice, we are seeing deeply embedded cracks of structural racism in our foundation erupt into earthquakes in Black communities.
With all seats in the New Jersey Legislature and the Governor’s seat up for election this year, it is essential to seize this urgent moment to repair these cracks of structural racism and build a new foundation.