California philanthropic organizations pledge to take bold steps to fight racial injustices

“COVID 19 and the resulting economic fallout laid bare California’s deep structural inequities… The need to focus our efforts and resources away from fear and incarceration towards care, community and racial equity has come front and center.”

-Fred Blackwell, CEO, San Francisco Foundation

We know that philanthropy must make bold moves to address racial injustices, especially in the midst of a global pandemic that has only exacerbated existing disparities. Silicon Valley Community Foundation joins our colleagues at San Francisco Foundation and California Community Foundation in pledging that we will use our voices and actions to support the movement towards equity and justice.

A pledge from California philanthropic organizations:

The COVID-19 public health and economic crisis and the murders of Black Americans by police, have laid bare the deep inequities across our state. We need bold steps to ensure a future based on economic inclusion, racial equity, and compassionate humanity. 

On behalf of philanthropic leaders and in solidarity with dozens of labor, community organizing, faith-based, policy, research, and academic leaders from across California, we stand together to urge the prioritization of critical issues —health, justice, workers, education and housing-- as the state makes critical budget decisions. Supporting these basic needs for all Californians will require increasing resources. 

Ultimately, how we spend public resources and what and who we prioritize is a statement of our morals and values. We share fundamental beliefs in meeting basic human needs, standing-up for justice, developing an economy that can grow living wage jobs, building a caring economy, strengthening an education system that prepares youth with the skills to secure their (and our) futures; and solving the state’s ongoing challenges for those who are unhoused or struggling with the burdens of high rent and unemployment. Supporting basic human rights requires investing in Californians’ potential and divesting in prisons and the militarization of police forces. 

Now is not the time to re-arrange the deck chairs. Our future is at risk. We need bold action that embraces a bold new economy – a California New Deal—to lead our state and be a beacon for our country. We need a comprehensive, all-hands-on-deck response.  We cannot repeat the mistakes of the last recession where cuts to services dragged down the economic recovery of California and added to the structural inequities in the state. By investing now, we can rebuild equitably, and support the long-term sustainability of our people and our economy. We must divest in fear and hate, and invest in care.  

This includes:

  1. Generating additional revenues through a combination of closing existing loopholes, capturing new and additional resources from those who have benefited the most from California’s economy and from the re-direction of funds from incarceration-focused arenas;
  2. Ensuring racial equity and inclusion for all in California, by:
  3. Allocating targeted resources to communities of color and other low-income people - those hardest hit - now and throughout the recovery process to accelerate their health, economic recovery and democratic participation;
  4. We must recognize that all immigrants are part of the California community. We need to acknowledge the contributions of all immigrants, including the undocumented, and the critical role they play in our society and our economy. We must stand together and extend full California Residency with all its benefits, including access to safety-net programs and economic relief, benefits that immigrants already support through their taxes;
  5. Making major investments to protect struggling tenants and landlords, stabilize precariously-housed tenants, and rebuild our affordable housing supply; and
  6. Investments to support the health and safety of working Californians.  

California has been leading the nation in resisting the drive to division, xenophobia and austerity. Now, we must show that we believe that we are a community, that ensuring the health and well-being of one another leads to a more resilient state.  We must stand-up together for an inclusive and equitable future. 

Sincerely,

Blue Shield of California Foundation
Debbie I. Chang, President and CEO
Debbie I. Chang, President and CEO
Blue Shield of California Foundation
California Community Foundation
Antonia Hernandez, CEO
California Community Foundation
California Health Care Foundation
Sandra Hernandez, President and CEO
California Health Care Foundation
College Futures Foundation
Monica Lozano, President and CEO
Monica Lozano, President and CEO
College Futures Foundation
East Bay Community Foundation
James W. Head, President and CEO
East Bay Community Foundation
Firedoll Foundation
Sandor Straus, President
Sandor Straus, President
Firedoll Foundation
Friedman Family Foundation
Robert Friedman, Vice-President
Robert Friedman, Vice-President
Friedman Family Foundation
Heising Simons Foundation
Deanna Gomby, President & CEO
Heising Simons Foundation
International Community Foundation
Anne McEnany, President and CEO
Anne McEnany, President and CEO
International Community Foundation
Latino Community Foundation
Jacqueline Martinez Garcel, CEO
Jacqueline Martinez Garcel, CEO
Latino Community Foundation
Liberty Hill Foundation
Shane Murphy Goldsmith, President/CEO
Shane Murphy Goldsmith, President/CEO
Liberty Hill Foundation
Marin Community Foundation
Dr. Thomas Peters, President & CEO
Dr. Thomas Peters, President & CEO
Marin Community Foundation
Northern California Grantmakers
Steve Barton, Acting Co-CEO
Steve Barton, Acting Co-CEO
Northern California Grantmakers
Orange County Grantmakers
Taryn Palumbo, Executive Director
Taryn Palumbo, Executive Director
Orange County Grantmakers
Rosenberg Foundation
Tim Silard, CEO
Tim Silard, CEO
Rosenberg Foundation
San Diego Grantmakers
Debbie McKeon, President and CEO
San Diego Grantmakers
San Francisco Foundation
Fred Blackwell, CEO
Fred Blackwell, CEO
San Francisco Foundation
Sierra Health Foundation and The Center
Chet P. Hewitt, President and CEO
Chet P. Hewitt, President and CEO
Sierra Health Foundation and The Center
Silicon Valley Community Foundation
Nicole Taylor, CEO
Nicole Taylor, CEO
Silicon Valley Community Foundation
Southern California Grantmakers
Chris Essel, President and CEO
Chris Essel, President and CEO
Southern California Grantmakers
The California Endowment
Dr. Robert K. Ross, President and CEO
Dr. Robert K. Ross, President and CEO
The California Endowment
The California Wellness Foundation
Judy Belk, President and CEO
Judy Belk, President and CEO
The California Wellness Foundation
The Grove Foundation
Leslie Dorosin and Rebekah Saul Butler Co-Executive Directors
The Grove Foundation
The James Irvine Foundation
Don Howard
Don Howard
The James Irvine Foundation
Unbound Philanthropy
Taryn Higashi, Executive Director
Taryn Higashi, Executive Director
Unbound Philanthropy
Weingart Foundation
Fred Ali, President and CEO
Fred Ali, President and CEO
Weingart Foundation
Y&H Soda Foundation
Luis Arteaga, CEO
Y&H Soda Foundation