diversity | Not in Our Town


Not In Our Town toured through the Detroit area screening the film "Waking in Oak Creek" and meeting with local anti-intolerance organizations, law enforcement, and educational institutions to talk about community empowerment.
Most families have so many things in common: they share love, get into conflicts, face life’s daily routines, overcome challenges together, and take care of one another. Yet they are also unique and special in their own ways. As children grow up, they need to see, hear, and learn about people like themselves as well as learn about others who might be different from them.
Find stories and tools to foster diversity and inclusion in your town, school, agency or workplace. Our resources have been used as diversity training materials in a variety of environments, from classrooms to boardrooms. Not In Our Town is a movement to stop hate, racism and bullying, and build safe, inclusive communities for all. Not In Our Town films, new media, and organizing tools help local leaders build vibrant, diverse cities and towns, where everyone can participate. We have been documenting best practices for more than 20 years. Our films and tools have been used in workplace trainings, classrooms, town halls, and police department roll calls. Here are some easy ways to use free Not In Our Town materials in your diversity work. Diversity Training Videos/Films Many begin by using our short films or long-form PBS films to open the conversation about diversity. These films are a great place to start.
Court of Appeals Upholds Affirmative Action at University of Texas at Austin In a 2-1 ruling, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals decided that the University of Texas at Austin can use affirmative action in their admissions decisions, according to Politico. This ruling is a response to a suit filed in 2008 by Abigail Fisher, a white student who opposed the University’s affirmative action program, alleging that it is discriminatory against white applicants from high-achieving high schools. The affirming judges stood by the University’s use of race in a “holistic” admissions process.
Adapted from Valarie Honeycutt Spears / Lexington Herald-Leader Damon Dunson and Melanie Stamper of Berea, Ky. woke up one morning last week to spray-painted racial slurs on their vehicles. Damon Dunson and Melanie Stamper. Photo from Lexington Herald-Leader. Click through for story. "I was angry, but at the same time I knew whoever did it was ignorant," said Dunson, who is black. "They spelled the n-word three different ways," said Stamper, his girlfriend, who is white.  The message left on Stamper's Jeep, she said, told her to get out of the neighborhood. But the couple said that in the aftermath of the incident, people in Berea have rallied around them, inviting them to a potluck to discuss discrimination and creating a fund to help pay to repair the vehicles. "It was a pretty bad shock to many of us in the community," said Mae Suramek, who set up the fund at U.S. Bank. "Many people wanted to make it known as a community that this would not be tolerated."
Not in Our Town staff is gearing up for some big events in Morgantown and Charleston, WV next week. In the meantime, we offer a tip of the hat to folks at West Virginia University (in Morgantown), who have put together the "One WVU" campaign that celebrates the diversity on campus and makes clear that bigotry will not be tolerated. The campaign was initiated by WVU soccer coach Marlon LeBlanc. The coach responded to an incident where one of his team's players, who is black, was showered with racial epithets by youth in a passing car. The One WVU campaign has been embraced by university authorities who now sponsor an annual diversity week that boasts more than 40 events. The videos below were produced by the One WVU campaign. Patrice O'Neill, executive producer of the Working Group, will travel the state to talk about creative efforts to build safe, hate-free communities. MORGANTOWN EVENT:Where: WVU Mountainlair Gluck TheaterWhen: 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009 CHARLESTON EVENTS:When: Wednesday, November 4th, 2009Where: 3 p.m. Charleston Area Alliance, 1116 Smith StreetWhere: 7 p.m. YWCA of Charleston, 1114 Quarrier St.
Fall is here, and students, teachers, and parents are marking the start of another school year. As the first months of school unfold, it’s a great time to engage young people in setting a tone of acceptance, inclusion, and safety on campus.  Not In Our School videos highlight real students across the country who are role models and “upstanders” against bullying and intolerance.  NIOS videos show what can be possible when students and teachers work together to transform their campus. We’ve seen the films inspire young people to start their own campus-based NIOS activities and events. The videos listed below are part of Palo Alto Unified School District’s annual “Not In Our School Month” campaign which encourages students to talk about and take action against hate. Although many of our resources are geared towards middle and high school students, some activities can also be tailored to elementary school students. Here are a few ways educators and students are putting Not In Our School resources into action on their campuses.
Lessons for Engaging Diverse Youth in Hate Crime Prevention By Willie Halbert, NIOT Bloomington-Normal Member