Dear FosterClub Community,
I think most of us had hoped for a better start to 2021 than what we witnessed happening in our nation’s Capitol last week. We at FosterClub condemn the January 6th attack in Washington DC in the strongest terms.
As disturbing images of the insurgency flashed across the screen, many at FosterClub noticed familiar landmarks. Our young leaders have walked the steps of the Capitol building to make their voices heard for foster care reform. They have walked the halls of Congress, meeting in policymaker offices to share their stories. As some FosterClub members observed, “I recognize that office where rioters broke in,” or “I was in that hall where the Trump and Confederate flags were being waved.”
Unfortunately, although terrible, the Jan. 6 insurgency was not really so surprising. White supremacy was in clear view for America last week, we are well aware that it has been showing up in the lives of Black and Brown children and families involved with the child welfare system for decades. In June of last year, in response to the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and Cornelius Frederick, I wrote to you saying we must face the reality that racism is firmly planted in the very institutions that hypocritically exist to keep America’s children safe.
The response by law enforcement to the nearly entirely white insurrection group was glaringly mismatched to the response of the Black Lives Matter march at the Capitol last year. Despite an open call for rebellion by the President and across the internet, it was clear there was a reluctance - or downright abdication - to plan for security in the same way that happens when People of Color march.
As we continue to heal from a difficult 2020 and process the insurgency that occurred just six days into the new year, FosterClub reinforces its dedication to collective, active work dismantling structural and institutional racism. Together, we will put young people and their families first, with a vision for a child welfare system that centers on justice, equity, diversity and inclusion. More specifically, FosterClub will continue to center the needs of those impacted by the structural racism found in child welfare. Additionally, our staff will continue ongoing learning about white supremacy, seeking to dismantle it and ameliorate its adverse effects through our work.
To our community of young people: We hope you will continue to reach out to us and to each other for support during these troubling times. Our staff and I are deeply committed to each of you now and always. We want you to know we are with you. We hear you. We see you. We stand with you.