Statement on Daniel Hambrick Fatal Officer-Involved Shooting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 10, 2018

Like many others in the Nashville community, we were disturbed and outraged at the video released by Nashville District Attorney Glenn Funk of the fatal officer-involved shooting of Daniel Hambrick. The killing of black men and women at the hands of police is a serious matter, as it conjures up a decades-long history of Jim Crow era state-sanctioned racial violence by police in predominantly black communities.

There have been two officer-involved shootings less than two years apart under Chief Steve Anderson’s leadership. Countless other incidents and formal complaints involving black Nashvillians have previously gone unresolved or ignored. The community continues to be distrustful of his leadership based on his refusal or willful neglect to correct and rectify past grievances by residents. In order for any healing and trust to be restored, or for any effective change in policy to occur within the Metro Nashville Police Department, Chief Anderson must not be at the helm. Therefore, we call for Chief Anderson to step down, and if this does not happen, we call on Mayor David Briley to immediately remove him from his position. We also demand that individuals from marginalized communities in Nashville have input in the selection of a new chief.

The Equity Alliance aims to equip citizens with tools and strategies to engage in the civic process and empower them to take action on issues affecting their daily lives. We applaud Nashvillians who use tools readily available to them to be engaged in the civic process. This includes the right to petition, the right to peacefully assemble, meeting with their appointed and elected officials and voting, to name a few. When local government impedes on our ability to be engaged citizens, we find this deeply problematic.

In the year leading up to Daniel Hambrick’s death, community groups, constituents and grieving families repeatedly sought meetings with Chief Anderson, only to be turned away and blacklisted. When Gideon’s Army released the evidence-based “Driving While Black” report, it was met with criticism and called “morally disingenuous” by Chief Anderson. When initial efforts to create a community oversight board were launched, local government officials conspired to bring the New York-based Policing Project to Nashville to diminish these efforts. When the Community Oversight Now coalition delivered to Metropolitan Clerk Elizabeth Waites twice the number of petition signatures required to place a proposed charter amendment on the November 6th ballot, she refused to do her job — paid by taxpayers — to certify the petitions. This act of defiance was met with no reprimand or accountability.

These are not merely isolated incidents. But rather collective evidence of a local government that has gone rogue from the people it’s supposed to serve. This is wrong.

During Mayor David Briley’s press conference, he called for a comprehensive review of policing practices. While we appreciate his commitment to working with community leaders to bring police oversight – a stark contrast from the previous administration, we believe his proposal to bring the Policing Project to Nashville falls short. Not only does this undermine the credible work that has already been done by local black-led community organizations, but the optics of this decision sends a message that local black-led groups cannot be trusted with resources to solve our own community issues. Therefore, we stand in solidarity with Community Oversight Now to support a community oversight board in Nashville and urge Mayor Briley to do the same. The signatures of more than 8,200 residents should not be ignored. This is what the people want.

Our hearts and deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of Daniel Hambrick and hope that justice is served for them.

 

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TEA to host free film screening and panel discussion of new Tim Wise docufilm “The Great White Hoax” Nov. 30

The Equity Alliance presents

‘The Great White Hoax’ Film Screening and Panel Discussion

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The Equity Alliance invites you to a free screening of the short film, The Great White Hoax, on Thursday, November 30, at 5:30 p.m. at Lee Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church, located at 1200 Dr. D.B. Todd Jr. Blvd. in Nashville. Immediately following the screening, we will host a panel discussion featuring experts in politics, voter turnout, and community relations.

The panel will include: John Faison, Sr., Pastor of Watson Grove Missionary Baptist Church; Kristal Knight, Executive Director of Emerge Tennessee; Dr. Pippa Holloway, a local organizer and MTSU Professor of History; and Vonda McDaniel, President of the Central Labor Council of Nashville/Middle Tennessee and Vice President to the National Executive Council of the AFL-CIO.

The panel discussion will dissect the film in a nonpartisan way and provide insight and concrete steps on what community members can do to ensure more people are registered to vote, more people actually do vote, and more people are engaged in the political process.

Food will be provided by The Post East, Olive Garden, and Coco’s Italian Market.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. The film starts at 6:00 p.m. Panel discussion begins at 7:40 p.m. Immediately following the panel, we will have a voter registration drive to register to vote onsite! The event is free and open to the public.

About The Film

The explosive, thought-provoking film features acclaimed anti-racist educator and author and Nashville resident Tim Wise. It explores how American political leaders of both parties have been tapping into white anxiety, stoking white grievance, and scapegoating people of color for decades to divide and conquer working-class voters and shore up political support.

The film’s primary focus is Donald Trump’s race-baiting 2016 campaign for the presidency. But it also widens its scope to show how Trump’s charged rhetoric about African-Americans, Latinos, and Muslims fits within a longstanding historical pattern, offering a stunning survey of how racism and racial scapegoating have shaped American politics for centuries.

View the trailer:

Panelists

 

John R. Faison, Sr. is the Senior Pastor of Watson Grove Baptist Church in Nashville, Tennessee, affectionately known as “The Grove,” where they endeavor to be “A GROWING church for GROWING people whom Christ will use in GROWING His Kingdom.” A native of Boykins, Virginia, Pastor Faison earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Virginia State University in Petersburg, Virginia and a Master of Arts in Practical Theology from Regent University in Virginia Beach, Virginia. He is currently pursuing a Doctor of Ministry degree at Payne Theological Seminary in Wilberforce, Ohio. Under Pastor Faison’s leadership, God is using The Grove to impact the city of Nashville and beyond with tremendous effectiveness. Since his arrival in March 2012, the congregation has grown from 300 to over 1900 members. Additionally, several innovative ministry initiatives have launched and powerfully impacted the community, making Pastor Faison a “go-to” resource for a city seeking to respond to its own unprecedented growth. He is a passionate advocate for community transformation and development, as seen in his work as an HIV/AIDS National Ambassador with the NAACP (theblackchurchandhiv.org), mentor in public school districts, advisor to several community organizations, and member of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated.

Kristal Knight joined Emerge Tennessee as the Executive Director in late February 2017. She brings a host of presidential and local campaign experience to the job.  She began her political career as a Field Organizer for then-Mayor Adrian Fenty’s Washington, D.C. reelection campaign.  From there. she served as a Regional Field Director for the reelection of President Barack Obama in 2012 in Philadelphia, PA  and returned to D.C. to serve on his Presidential Inaugural Committee in 2013.  Most recently, she worked on the Hillary Clinton campaign in 2016, helping with export operations to Virginia and Pennsylvania. She is passionate about expanding the opportunities for women and people of color in politics and has served on many local and community boards in Washington, D.C. A native of Memphis, Tennessee, Kristal holds a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Howard University and a Masters in International Public Policy from University College London in the UK.

Dr. Pippa Holloway is the author of three books, including Living in Infamy: Felon Disfranchisement and the History of American Citizenship (Oxford Books), and is a 2007 Soros Justice Fellow.  She earned her doctorate in history from The Ohio State University, master’s degree in history from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and her undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a Soros Justice Fellow and Middle Tennessee State University Professor of History. View her full Curriculum Vitae here.

Vonda McDaniel is president of the the Central Labor Council of Nashville and Middle Tennessee and has recently been named vice president to the National Executive Council of the AFL-CIO. Vonda was elected to the leadership position by delegates at the National Convention of the AFL-CIO in St. Louis. Vonda, a United Steelworker member at the Bridgestone/Firestone Plant in La Vergne, has worked as president of the Central Labor Council since 2013. The council operates as a federation of multiple local unions representing more than 19,000 workers. In Metro, Vonda is serving her second term as a member on the Nashville Convention Center Authority after getting reappointed by Mayor Megan Barry in 2015.

THANK YOU TO OUR COMMUNITY PARTNERS

 

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For more information, email info@theequityalliance.org.

Cloud Hill Developers seeks community’s input on Fort Negley, Greer Stadium redevelopment at Aug. 29 meeting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  

August 17, 2017

CLOUD HILL DEVELOPERS SEEK COMMUNITY INPUT ON FORT NEGLEY, GREER STADIUM REDEVELOPMENT PROJECT

Bert Mathews to speak at The Equity Alliance’s Aug. 29 meeting

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Cloud Hill Partnership developers are seeking the community’s input on their plans to redevelop the old Greer Stadium property that sits adjacent to Fort Negley in south Nashville. Bert Mathews, one of three individuals leading the Cloud Hill development team, will address concerns and clear up misinformation during a community meeting Tuesday, Aug. 29 at 6 p.m. at First Baptist Church Capitol Hill, 625 Rosa L. Parks Blvd. The meeting is hosted by The Equity Alliance, a nonprofit advocacy organization that encourages people of color to be civically engaged voters.

Since Cloud Hill Partnership was awarded the bid in January to redevelop Greer Stadium, the group has been met with backlash from community groups who want to preserve the property as open green space and honor the unique history of Fort Negley. The Civil War-era fort is believed to be the gravesite of hundreds of former slaves and free blacks who fought and died while building the fort.

The Equity Alliance has invited a representative from the Friends of Fort Negley to attend the meeting to offer a balanced, historical perspective on the issue.

Charlane Oliver, board president for The Equity Alliance, will facilitate the discussion.

“We appreciate that the Cloud Hill team reached out to The Equity Alliance to lead a discussion on how to best honor the historical significance of Fort Negley’s past while shaping Nashville’s future growth,” said Oliver. “As a champion for creating informed voters, we want to ensure all interested parties are invited to the discussion.”

Community members are encouraged to bring questions. The meeting is free and open to the public. For more information, email info@theequityalliance.org.

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About The Equity Alliance

The Equity Alliance proactively advocates for African Americans and other communities of color to have a fair and just opportunity at realizing the American dream. Established in January 2017, The Equity Alliance is a Nashville-based 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that encourages people of color to become active participants in government through Advocacy, Civic Engagement and Civic Leadership and empowers them to take action on issues affecting their daily lives in an effort to bring about equitable, systemic change in their communities. Learn more at www.theequityalliance.org or follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

Bills + Budgets: A Community Town Hall and Legislative Update – July 25

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Ask Questions. Get Answers.

Want to know what criminal justice and education bills were passed and debated this year in the Tennessee General Assembly? How will the Metro Council’s budget affect you and your neighborhood?

Join us on Tuesday, July 25 at 6 p.m. at First Baptist Church Capitol Hill to hear first-hand from our state and local elected officials. In our effort to bring equitable change to communities of color by building informed, engaged minority voters, we’ll discuss everything from body cameras and teacher pay raises to new developments and traffic congestion. Bring your questions!

Confirmed Panelists include:

Rep. Brenda Gilmore
House District 54
Member House Finance, Ways and Means Committee

Rep. Harold Love, Jr. 
House District 58
Member, House Finance, Ways and Means Committee
Member, House Education Instruction and Programs Committee

Councilwoman Erica Gilmore 
At-Large Metro Council Member
Budget & Finance Committee Member

Councilwoman Tanaka Vercher
Metro Council Member for District 58
Vice Chair, Budget & Finance Committee

Stay informed. Stay woke.

RSVP here.

DOWNLOAD the flyer: Full size | Instagram

 

The Equity Alliance to host voter registration drive at Slim & Husky’s

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Equity Alliance, a new 501(c)3 nonprofit organization focused on building informed and engaged minority voters, is hosting a voter registration drive Thursday, July 13 at 5:30 p.m. at the popular pizza spot, Slim & Husky’s Pizza Beeria.

Patrons who register on the spot will be entered to win a free Slim and Husky’s pizza.

Capitalizing on the long wait line, volunteers from The Equity Alliance will also conduct a three-question survey asking about previous voting behavior.

“There is a culture and mentality in the African-American community of believing that one’s vote does not matter,” said Board President Charlane Oliver. “We are interested in learning what factors drive this behavior, and how can The Equity Alliance improve our efforts to change the mentality around voting as a mechanism for social change.”

Tennessee currently ranks 50th in voter turnout and 40th in voter registration, according to nonpartisan think tank Think Tennessee.

In Tennessee, voters can be purged from the voter rolls if he or she fails to respond to notices to update their registration record over a period of two consecutive November elections. This can disproportionately lead to voter suppression in communities of color where there is a history of frequently changing addresses.

Patrons will have the opportunity to update their voter contact information during the voter drive. The event will end at sundown.

For more information, visit www.theequityalliance.org or email info@theequityalliance.org.

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About The Equity Alliance

The Equity Alliance proactively advocates for African Americans and other communities of color to have a fair and just opportunity at realizing the American dream. Established in January 2017, The Equity Alliance is a Nashville-based 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that seeks to eliminate policy barriers related to criminal justice reform, voting rights and public education; equip citizens with tools and strategies to engage in the civic process; and empower them to take action on issues affecting their daily lives in an effort to bring about equitable, systemic change in our communities. Learn more at www.theequityalliance.org or follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Isaac Addae Joins The Equity Alliance Board of Directors

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We are pleased to welcome Isaac Addae to the board of directors for The Equity Alliance!

Isaac is an Assistant Professor of Business Administration in the College of Business at Tennessee State University. He is currently a Management Ph.D. candidate in the School of Business and Management at Morgan State University in Baltimore. He completed a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and an M.S. in Systems Engineering at Tennessee State University.

“Isaac brings a wealth of community institutional knowledge and will be a great asset to the board,” Board President Charlane Oliver said.

With regard to community impact, Isaac is very active in efforts to influence economic development across Nashville’s urban population. He is the creator of the Conscious Conversation community discussion series, an effort that focuses on galvanizing local citizens around common issues. Isaac is a co-founder of The Hub for Urban Entrepreneurship, a Nashville-based social enterprise responsible for supporting minority business owners through initiatives such as Black Entrepreneurship Week. He is also leaving the formation of a community change fund that will drive collective philanthropy in Nashville’s urban communities. From a global perspective, Isaac has been involved in developing schools within rural villages in the West African nation of Ghana through Save the Villages, a nonprofit organization he founded.

As a self-described change agent and social engineer, Isaac is very focused on utilizing his full potential to advance communities of color around the world. He aims to achieve this goal by innovatively integrating his academic and community-based efforts.

Money Matters: Tips for Creating a Realistic Budget

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Money Matters: Tips for Creating a Realistic Budget

Celebrating National Financial Literacy Month with tips you can use

April is National Financial Literacy Month and The Equity Alliance is focused on educating and empowering communities of color in Nashville to become more civically engaged in the political process as a means of ensuring more equitable economic, social, and political outcomes. When it comes to important money matters, we want to give you some helpful weekly personal financial tips to put you on a path to financial independence. This week is about Creating a Realistic Budget. Here’s how:

  1. Make a plan for your money.

A budget is simply a monthly plan that tells your money where to go. The formula should be this: Income minus Expenses equals Zero

 (Income) – (Expenses) = $0.00

Assign every dollar to a category. Major categories include Housing/Rent, Food, Transportation, Entertainment, Emergency Fund, and Debt/Loans

  1. Write down all of your bills and expenses for the month.

You have to see it, and your expenses have to match what you actually spend. How can you ever assess how well you’re doing financially if you have no idea how you’re actually doing. You’d be surprised where your money goes once you actually write down every expense, especially when it comes to entertainment and eating out. If you have children, factor in things such as birthday parties, summer clothes, doctor visits, and school field trips.

  1. Pay yourself first.

Make a habit to build your $1,000 emergency fund for unexpected expenses. You can even have a set amount automatically deducted from your paycheck and into your savings account.

  1. Execute the plan.

Use online and mobile resources like Mint.com, EveryDollar.com, Dave Ramsey’s Zero-Based Budgeting tools, or your bank’s online bill pay option to help you create a budget. Then, stick with it for at least 90 days to begin seeing your plan work.

  1. Don’t give up.

According to financial guru Dave Ramsey, personal finance is 80% behavior and 20% head knowledge. Of course, things come up. Impulse spending can be tempting. But be disciplined enough to keep at it.

Check back next week for more money matters tips from The Equity Alliance. Make plans to attend our Financial Empowerment Series presented by Regions Bank in partnership with Knowledge Bank Nashville, Clerisy Circle, Conscious Conversation, Urban Enterprise Group, and the Urban League of Middle Tennessee. The first seminar will be on Saturday, April 29, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Check our website and Facebook page for updated details on this upcoming event.