A recent blog post on The Huffington Post expresses the importance of equity as New York City works to create its first-ever cultural plan:
Grantmakers in the Arts is committed to addressing structural inequities and increasing philanthropic and government support for African, Latino/a, Asian, Arab, and Native American (ALAANA) artists and arts organizations. Racial equity is a lens through which GIA aims to conduct all of its work, as well as a specific area of its programming. Since 2008, GIA has been elevating racial equity as a critical issue affecting the field. To actualize this work within the sector, GIA published its Racial Equity in Arts Philanthropy Statement of Purpose in 2015. Through webinars, articles, convenings, and conference sessions, GIA provides training and information to support arts funders in addressing historic and structural inequity.
An historical outline of GIA's recent work in equity is available online, including GIA Reader articles, blog posts, and YouTube videos from past conference keynote sessions.
The New York Community Trust has announced a new program called The Liberty Fund, a “special funding opportunity to help New York City nonprofits address immediate issues affecting vulnerable New Yorkers.” The fund is a partnership with the New York Foundation and aims to address issues related to identity-based discrimination, mental health, health care, immigrant rights, and other time-sensitive needs.
A recent article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review advocates a “shift from a framework that grounds giving in ‘charity’ to one that grounds giving in ‘justice.’” The authors ask funders to interrogate the historic inequities which have made philanthropy necessary, offering a set of questions for philanthropic field to examine their own practices under this framework.
A recent article in Crain’s Chicago Business highlights the work of Enrich Chicago, “a coalition of 14 nonprofits and seven foundations whose goal is racial equity, in terms of management, funding, and artist support, for Chicago-area ALAANA nonprofits by 2050.” The coalition was founded in 2014 by Angelique Power, GIA board member and president of The Field Foundation of Illinois, and Brett Batterson, former executive director of Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University.
As the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture releases its Racial Equity Statement, Director Randy Engstrom writes on how the arts can lead the way to cross-sector, community-wide change:
The League of American Orchestras has released two reports on diversity in orchestras. The first, Forty Years of Fellowships, analyzes the efficacy and impact of fellowship programs for African American and Latino musicians. The second report, Racial/Ethnic and Gender Diversity in the Orchestra Field examines diversity among orchestra staff, boards, conductors and instrumentalists.
A new report commissioned by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation surveys the efforts of 15 foundations, including Ford Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, and Surdna Foundation, that are working to “incorporate equity — both in their internal operations and in their grantmaking.” The Road to Achieving Equity presents key findings from the survey, challenges the foundations have faced, and recommendations for foundations looking to begin their own work toward equity.