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Our Work to Combat Systemic Racism
Racism is more than alive in this country– it has been emboldened. So long as we tip-toe around the fragility and discomfort of some who wish to dismiss “talking about race,” the longer we let this insidious and inhumane sentiment brew at the cost of black lives. George Floyd, Michael Brown, Breonna Taylor, Sandra Bland, Ahmaud Arbery, Freddie Gray, Eric Garner, and too many more didn’t have the luxury of avoiding “discomfort” – race played a role from the moment they got out of bed, went for a jog, or encountered those sworn to protect them. To dismiss the daily role that race still plays in this country is to deny the humanity of black people.
We must be more intentional about highlighting and connecting our legislative work to the cause of undoing systemic racism that is not only present in law enforcement, but in education, housing, healthcare, and more. This page is dedicated to transparently showing the public how Rep. Vargas is combatting systemic racism.
Please note this is not a comprehensive list of everything we're working on. Also, some of the initiatives and bills deal with the effects of systemic racism, while others get at the root causes of systemic racism. We find both to be important.
The 3rd Essex District consists of the Gateway City of Haverhill, MA, where there is plenty of work to do. The most diverse neighborhood in Haverhill has a median income of $30k, while the least diverse neighborhood has a median income of $103k. Thankfully, there are many willing partners and advocates. Click here to learn more about the work we're doing in Haverhill.
In the Commonwealth, poverty is disproportionately concentrated in black and brown communities– 32% of African-American children and 38% of Latino children live in poverty, compared to 9% of white children. Children of color are more than 4 times as likely to be held back a grade and 3.5 times more likely to be suspended or expelled. Massachusetts also has the 3rd worst homeownership gap in the country. Click here to learn more about our policy work statewide.
Black & Latino
Founded in 1973, the Caucus remains a voice for Massachusetts' communities of color in the Legislature. We also seek to empower constituents to gain a deeper sense of political awareness on issues concerning them and their greater communities. The MBLLC’s thirteen legislators remain dedicated to serving communities of color throughout the Commonwealth through legislative, budgetary, and community endeavors.
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