Finding Common Purpose
By Andrew Wolk
Finding Common Purpose Jun 27, 2020
“You’re Either with Me or Against Me”
There’s no neutrality when it comes to systemic racism in the workplace, according to David Delmar Sentíes -- you have to pick a side. David leads Resilient Coders, a coding boot camp for young people of color that, like other training programs across the country, helps graduates access well-paying jobs in the (still) white-dominated tech industry. He provides insights for companies with the best hiring intentions and challenges them to push beyond PR-driven “diversity initiatives” to fundamentally question practices that prevent so many people of color from getting a foot in the door -- such as why corporations require a college degree for jobs David has first-hand evidence highly-trained high school graduates can do. This episode continues David’s conversation with Andrew Wolk that started in Taking the Protests to the Office. You can read about this interview, including David’s explanations of how Whiteness opens doors to opportunity, at the Finding Common Purpose blog.
Taking the Protests to the Office
The brutal killing of George Floyd shed a searing light on the dangers and indignities that many people of color, especially Black people, face every single day -- on the streets, and in every facet of American life. David Delmar Sentíes of Resilient Coders has been working for years to dismantle one particularly insidious racial injustice -- the systemic bias preventing so many low-income people of color from accessing the kinds of high-growth careers that can change lives and entire communities. In this frank conversation with Andrew Wolk, David challenges anti-racism allies to stop just tweeting #BlackLivesMatter and start hiring Black people in good-paying jobs.
What $500 Might Do?
Nearly 40% of Americans could already not afford a $400 emergency before the COVID-19 crisis hit. In this episode, Erin Coltrera, Research and Program Officer at the Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration (SEED), shares the what, why, and how of Mayor Tubb’s guaranteed income experiment – otherwise known as a UBI. SEED provides $500 a month, with no strings attached, to 125 Stockton residents and rigorously tracks the results. Listen to how SEED is seeking to prove to supporters and skeptics alike that poverty results from a lack of cash, not character. Read more from the interview in two Finding Common Purpose blog posts, What $500 Might Do and Government Benefits and Trust in People.
A Basic Income for Basic Needs
As our country grapples with the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, universal basic income (UBI) is back in the headlines. In this episode, the story behind the Magnolia Mother’s Trust, a UBI-like initiative that provides low-income African-American mothers living in affordable housing in Jackson, Mississippi with $1,000 cash for 12 months--to use however they see fit, no strings attached. Aisha Nyandoro heads up the effort and talks about how those moms are faring during the crisis, and her belief that if you provide someone with the resources they need, they’ll use them to succeed.
Read more about Aisha’s conversation with host Andrew Wolk about universal basic income at the Finding Common Purpose blog.
Not Doing For, But Doing With
When the coronavirus pandemic took hold in the United States, Susannah Morgan, CEO of the Oregon Food Bank, was as scared as she’s ever been. She didn’t know if her vast food assistance network would be able to meet the region’s sudden and massive increase in need. Susannah talks about how her organization adapts to tackle food insecurity, and how her shift in mindset from “doing for” to “doing with” is a better path to her work. Read more about this interview at the Finding Common Purpose blog.
Introducing Finding Common Purpose
Finding Common Purpose brings you candid conversations with government, business, nonprofit and foundation leaders, about how to build a 21st century social contract that puts millions more people on a pathway to lifelong success -- from healthy birth to quality education, to a good-paying job, to healthy and secure aging.