IFR wishes to recognize, honor and celebrate Black History Month 2022. With the many struggles the Latinx community shares with all communities of color, we value the opportunity to celebrate the many people, places, and events that honor those who have come before us and live among us.
We recognize and celebrate the many accomplishments and hard-fought victories of this community. We recognize so many exceptional Black women leaders, including Stacey Abrams, Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi, and the wealth of talented Black women who are only just beginning to gain recognition. The late bell hooks was honored as Time Magazine’s 100 Women of the Year in 2020, the late Maya Angelou was the first Black woman on a U.S. minted coin, and we may finally have a Black woman on the Supreme Court.
However, IFR also knows that, for every noted Black leader, there are hundreds of thousands that work every day to improve their communities whose names we may never know. We honor their contributions in the fight for justice for the Black community. We recognize their sacrifices and struggle and celebrate their many accomplishments.
We understand the great importance of learning Black history – not just the historical facts, but the implications of that history on Black Americans – to better understand how to combat anti-Black racism today.
In the past few years, we have seen policemen who unjustly killed Black men and women shielded from impunity, efforts to restrict voting access in many Black communities, and campaigns to remove the teachings of Black history itself from public school classrooms.
We at IFR understand we must all play a role to ensure the present and future for the Black community is fair, just, and equitable. As we work to identify the most impactful ways for IFR to fight against anti-Black racism, we know we must not only be allies but advocates. IFR’s staff and board have committed to actively participate in this work, knowing it must continue throughout the year, and not just during Black History Month.
In recognition of Black History Month 2022, to celebrate the struggles and victories of the Black community and the incredible Black leaders who have contributed to their communities, we raise our fists with yours in recognition of the work that lies ahead, and for which we intend to support.