Burlington Declaration that Racism is an Emergency Health Crisis

Joint Declaration

A couple of weeks ago, in response to the demands of the Vermont Racial Justice Alliance Operation Phoenix R.I.S.E demands, the Burlington City Council resolved that racism is a public health crisis. The Vermont Racial Justice Alliance is now partnering with the City of Burlington in publishing the Declaration that Racism is an Emergency Health Crisis. I am providing a draft of the Declaration for you to review, and am asking that your organization consider signing on to this effort. Now is our time to hold the City accountable to participating in the implementation of the Operation Phoenix R.I.S.E vision, starting with the declaration of racism as a public health crisis. Please join us in creating a new, community-driven vision of health and safety in Burlington that puts Brown and Black people at the center of the solutions

We will be announcing this effort at an event on Thursday, July 16, at 10:00 am on the steps of City Hall in Burlington. We are envisioning having representatives from all organizations that are signing on to this, and a speaking program with about 6 speakers. We will use this announcement to release four documents to the public at this announcement: 

  1. Declaration that Racism is an Emergency Health Crisis (read it here.) This community declaration that racism is a public health emergency.  Please note: the descriptive “whereas” clauses in this resolution are still shifting, the “resolved” clauses are in final form for you to consider.
  2. Press Release: with additional information regarding Operation Phoenix R.I.S.E and this important step in declaring racism as an emergency health crisis, 
  3. Participating Organizations: a summary of participating organizations’ immediate commitments, and 
  4. Public Action Advisory from the Racial Justice Alliance about this Declaration. 

We hope you’ll join us in person at City Hall for this historic moment. The event will be outside and we will follow careful COVID-19 prevention guidelines including face covering and physical distancing precautions.  

This event will also be streamed on the Vermont Racial Justice Alliance Facebook page.

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