Joint Affinity Groups Stand in Unity to Address Racism in Philanthropy

Thu, 2014-08-14

In recent months, Dan Snyder, owner of the Washington football team, established the “Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation.” Snyder has said he recognizes the tremendous inequities faced by Native American communities and has pledged to work in partnership with Native Americans to foster “genuine opportunities for tribal communities.” Unfortunately, these laudable philanthropic goals are undermined by the continued use of a racist slur in the name of the foundation and the franchise that founded it.

As a coalition of philanthropic networks representing communities of color, LGBTQ communities, women, and young and emerging leaders, we believe that philanthropy can only address long-standing inequities if we work with underserved communities as respected and valued partners. Foundations rooted in tribal communities and some leading national and regional foundations have done exactly that, resulting in powerful philanthropic models for social change and partnership with Native communities. The Original Americans Foundation is treating Native communities disrespectfully, thus failing to follow these best practices from the start.

Native Americans in Philanthropy, a founding partner of the Joint Affinity Groups and a leading philanthropic voice for Native Americans, has challenged the field regarding this issue and more deeply about its commitment to inclusiveness and equity. Our philanthropic community can only have a meaningful dialogue about how to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion if we listen to and lift up diverse voices. We encourage you to read and consider the statement below by Carly Hare, executive director of Native Americans in Philanthropy.

In unity,

Peggy Saika
President & Executive Director
Asian American and Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy (AAPIP)

Susan Batten
President & CEO
Association of Black Foundation Executives (ABFE)

Rahsaan Harris
Executive Director
Emerging Practitioners In Philanthropy (EPIP)

Ben Francisco Maulbeck
President & CEO
Funders for LGBTQ Issues

Carly Hare
Executive Director
Native Americans in Philanthropy (NAP)

Michele Ozumba
President & CEO
Women’s Funding Network

Diana Campoamor
President
Hispanics in Philanthropy

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