IASJ Stands in Solidarity With Racial Justice Protests
In light of recent racist incidents including the murders of Breonna Taylor, Tony McCade, and George Floyd, Investor Advocates for Social Justice (IASJ) stands in solidarity with the ongoing protests, and is committed to take action on racial justice.
As representatives of investors, IASJ recognizes and acknowledges that our country’s economy is rooted in structural racism and was founded on the exploitation and enslavement of Black Americans. We view with heavy hearts the reality of current financial and social systems that continue to oppress Black Americans and all people of color. Inherently racist punitive systems like surveillance, policing, and incarceration have contributed to deepening racial wealth gaps that compound other negative impacts of discrimination. As these events unfold on the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic, we see these discriminatory forces leading to worse health outcomes and higher mortality rates for Black communities.
Now more than ever, IASJ accepts our responsibility as financial actors to use our investments as leverage to advance racial justice in all forms. Internally, IASJ is committed to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion, and recognizes that we have work to do. IASJ strives to demonstrate respect and accountability throughout our hiring practices, organizational policies, and partnerships with community organizations. In our work, IASJ is called to act against structural racism by engaging with companies in our Affiliates’ and Partners’ portfolios whose services or operations further systems of racial oppression. These include violations of labor rights, workplace discrimination, private prison funding, contracts with military, police, or immigration enforcement, pollution in environmental justice communities, weapons sales, and development of surveillance technology. IASJ is committed to further incorporate a racial justice lens into our investor engagements and advocate for public policy to advance the systemic change needed.
From our founding during the movement to divest from apartheid South Africa in the 1970’s, IASJ has a legacy as faith-based investors of using its leverage to fight for racial justice. Now IASJ stands with those who are raising their voices and risking their lives to denounce a system that oppresses and targets Black people. We are committed to matching our solidarity with action and will organize and mobilize our community to look internally and chart a course forward for our investments and advocacy to address systemic racism.