Moving Toward Racial Justice: Dismantling Institutional Racism An Event Series at the Montpelier Senior Activity Center

MONTPELIER — This week the City announced that the Montpelier Senior Activity Center will host an art show, artist reception and panel discussion in January and February to call attention to and deepen understanding of issues related to racism and racial justice. They are timed to coincide with other community activities celebrating Martin Luther King Day, and in February, Black History Month.

 Starting January 4, an art show in the Community Room (58 Barre Street) titled Black Lives Matter will feature work by Alex Bottinelli, Cheryl Daye Dick, Jane Pincus, Jack Rowell, and Anne Sarcka, and will be curated by Janet Van Fleet. All the artists live in Central Vermont, and several are members.

On Friday, January 13, following a reception with the artists, the center will host a community panel discussion on racial justice and an invitation for community involvement. The events are free and open to the public, and light refreshments will be served.  The featured artists will speak to the inspiration for and the message inherent in their art; Chief Tony Facos of the Montpelier Police Department will provide a law enforcement perspective on current national and local calls for racial justice. Mark Hughes, co-founder of Justice for All, will discuss an approach the organization uses to address racial disparities in our criminal justice system. Facos and Hughes will also talk about the work they have been doing together to address related challenges. The panel will be facilitated by Yvonne Byrd, Director of the Montpelier Community Justice Center. The members will take questions from attendees, who will be invited to offer their own perspectives in an atmosphere that encourages listening and constructive dialogue.

This series is being presented for the benefit of those who want to learn more and talk about racism, justice and the well-being of our community. It is organized and hosted by three departments of the City of Montpelier:  Montpelier Senior Activity Center, Montpelier Community Justice Center, and Montpelier Police Department, and also by Justice for All, a Vermont-based racial justice non-profit organization with a mission to ensure justice for ALL through community organizing, research, education, community policing, legislative reform, and judicial monitoring.

 Summary of Events

  • Black Lives Matter Art Show: Beginning Wednesday, January 4 through February
  • Artist Reception:  Friday, January 13, 4-5pm
  • Panel Discussion:  Friday, January 13, 5-7pm
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