Amy Stitely is blogging from the Equity Summit, an annual meeting that brings together those working to advance a truly inclusive American policy agenda.
The Detroit Institute of Arts and Sciences Show Choir sings “Dee-Troit”. Listen to their song below:
This week MIT Community Innovators Lab, which houses this blog, sent me and three other staff people to the PolicyLink Equity Summit in Detroit, Michigan. There were 2,500 summit attendees from all over the country. For me, this was a week of “firsts”: first time in Detroit, first time at a big conference, and first time trying to tweet my way through a life event.
It is difficult to capture the collective energy that was present, both at the conference and in the city itself. Detroit was definitely the right place for a conference about equity, but sadly, I didn’t get to see enough of her, and neither did many of the attendees, most of whom dropped in and out in 48 hours or less.
Nevertheless, I appreciated having the task of tweeting the event from the CoLab account because it gave me a medium to record and then broadcast snippets of inspiration that flowed from the mouths of presenters. Below, find some of the words that spoke to my heart.
• ON AMERICA NOW
“This is our time to create an alternative to a dying empire. This is a great time.” – Grace Lee Boggs
“We are NOT a poor country! We have the money to do what we have to do.” – Angela Glover Blackwell
• ON DEMOGRAPHIC CHANGE AND IMMIGRATION
“Find a way to talk not in deficits but in opportunities.” – Vanessa Cardenas
“Voting is the language of democracy. If you don’t vote, you don’t count.” – Wade Henderson
• ON MAPPING FOR ADVOCACY AND COMMUNITY CHANGE
“Data alone does not drive change… Need to combine with powerful narratives, personal voices.” – Jason Reece
• ON AUTHENTIC COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
“Organizations can’t do it by themselves. We need community.” – Dana Richardson
• ON EQUITY AND DEMOCRACY
“Challenge the conflation of capitalism and democracy. Free enterprise does not automatically equal free people.” – Rha Goddess
“Equity is love in action.” – Nathaniel Smith
• ON POVERTY, WHITE FLIGHT, AND SUBURBANIZATION
“Trend is NOT destiny.” – Carl AnthonyFor further reading, check out the Summit’s position paper: America’s Tomorrow: Equity is a Superior Growth Model