Thanks to decades of power-building, Los Angeles is reaching a tipping point, with the time coming near when organized youth power can dictate that public systems transform themselves into ones of support, not suppression. This tipping point is an opportunity for youth of color and their adult allies to eliminate these inequities.
It is not due to a lack of vision or commitment on the part of youth of color. Rather, it is because Los Angeles’s leaders have not felt themselves accountable to young people and their allies; because there have not been sufficient resources to ensure young people from every community and every corner of the county have the infrastructure for advocacy. In addition, there has often been a lack of coordination across systems change efforts that has limited their impact and ability to truly challenge the status quo. The disparities and barriers youth of color face have deep roots because Los Angeles is not innocent of America’s original sins: settler colonialism and anti-Black racism. This is not simply a matter of history – the path from these original sins runs in a straight line to the sequence of modern crises whose impacts perennially fall most heavily on families and youth of color.
It is time for a bold vision
whose theory of change does not center on the leaders of public systems or a top-down approach, but on forging deeper and stronger relationships with youth, community groups, and organizers, ensuring they have resources to not only respond to urgent needs but put in place the strategies that can break the repetitive cycles of reform and reaction that have so long failed youth of color. For all our history and the current time of crisis, there is now perhaps no place in America where white supremacy is more vulnerable. The task before us is to follow the lead of youth of color, and commit to the investments, the advocacy, and the power building needed to finally uproot it from our public systems.
Bold Vision is a unique initiative that will leverage LA’s formidable movement infrastructure to finally wash away the vestiges of white supremacy in our public systems and ensure youth of color benefit from living in one of the country’s most progressive counties. Bold Vision aims to transform L.A. County into a place where youth of color thrive.
To accomplish this Bold Vision will:
- Strengthen youth voice and ensure that L.A.’s young people are well represented and have power in public decision-making across their full spectrum of identities and geographies.
- Advance policy and systems change efforts that more efficiently and effectively move government towards supporting youth of color
- Establish an infrastructure that simultaneously leverages the extraordinary existing capacities within L.A. County, centers youth of color voice, and supports coordination across the range of issues and needs youth face
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