We believe that now is a critical time to engage our cooperative community in important conversations about racism and oppression. Everyone Welcome? Personal Narratives about Race and Food Co-ops presents a variety of perspectives on what can be done to make food co-ops more racially inclusive. Fifteen co-operators from a variety of backgrounds — class, gender, race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation — talk about their introduction to co-ops and respond to two questions: how did food co-ops become so white and what can be done to make food co-ops more racially inclusive? We think storytelling is an excellent medium for exploring these themes, and we invite you to use these narratives as a springboard for your own discussions about racial issues affecting your co-op and your community.
- Everyone Welcome? Personal Narratives about Race and Food Co-ops (PDF booklet)
- Case studies of individual co-ops exploring their challenges around race and what they have learned (available November 2017)
- Associated educational materials (available March 2018)
Transforming institutions takes everyone’s participation. Certainly one conversation, or even one project will not undo racism in our society, yet each one successively builds on the other to deepen understanding and support change. Our hope is that this project will support food co-ops that are willing to take leadership on a problem that affects not only food co-ops, but also society as a whole.
This project grew out of CDS Consulting Co-op’s work exploring issues of racism and oppression. It was made possible by generous support from National Co+op Grocers, CDS Consulting Co-op, and the Cooperative Development Foundation, as well as the following food co-ops: Blue Hill Food Co-op, Brattleboro Food Co-op, BriarPatch Co-op, Co+opportunity Market & Deli, Eastside Food Co-op, Flatbush Food Co-op, French Broad Food Co-op, Friendly City Food Co-op, GreenStar Cooperative Market, Lexington Cooperative Market, Mississippi Market Natural Food Co-op, New Pioneer Food Co-op, City Market/Onion River Co-op, Outpost Natural Foods, Putney Food Co-op, Roanoke Co+op, River Valley Co-op, Seward Community Co-op, Syracuse Real Food Co-op, and Three Rivers Market
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