Racial Justice

Encouraging Open Conversation on Racism

For more than a century, YWCA Central Carolinas has stood at the forefront of social change, justice and economic empowerment in Greater Charlotte. We are committed to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. We carry on this long tradition of social action and advocacy to advance our mission – and you are a crucial part of this work. Your voice is critical as we build bridges and advocate for policies that bring our community closer together.

YWCA's Stand Against Racism

As a part of the national campaign of YWCA USA, each year YWCA Central Carolinas hosts a Stand Against Racism forum followed by a public pledging in Uptown Charlotte.

This year’s national theme, “No Hate. No Fear.” will be focusing on immigration and racism, and the ways in which they intersect. We know that immigrant justice is racial justice, and that xenophobia, bigotry, and racism is continuing to impact the lives and safety of our communities. The violence and trauma enacted upon immigrant communities has become increasingly visible at the forefront of conversations on race, citizenship, and criminalization. Charlotte’s Immigrant community has been severely impacted and has seen an increase in arrests and deportations. YWCA will host an Immigration forum on Thursday, April 25 from 6-8 pm to discuss concerns raised in the Charlotte area.

On Friday, April 26 from 11am-1pm at the corner of Trade and Tryon, YWCA will continue to raise awareness about the negative impact of institutional and structural racism in our community. The 2-hour event features music, poetry, dancing, conversation and distributing ‘Racism Hurts Everyone’ stickers to passers-by.

Register for the forum and take the pledge to Stand Against Racism here.


YWCA Central Carolinas is focused on these priorities in Charlotte:

  1. Economic Mobility – Upward mobility for children in poverty is more difficult in Charlotte than in any of the country’s 50 largest cities, according to researchers at Harvard and the University of California at Berkeley. Children born at the bottom of the income ladder have a 4 to 5 percent chance of reaching the top, the study found.
  2. Affordable Housing – As the nation’s third-fastest growing city, Charlotte is seeing home prices increase by as much as nine percent, contributing to longstanding concerns about affordability for working families.
  3. Racial Profiling – Officer-involved killings nationwide has further eroded trust between police and minorities. Though African-Americans make up less than a third of Charlotte’s driving-age residents, they are pulled over by police more frequently, receive more tickets and are the subjects of roadside searches twice as often as whites, according to a study by a UNC-Chapel Hill research team.

Racial Justice Forums

fo·rum or ‘fôrəm (n) – a place, meeting or medium where ideas and views on a particular issue can be exchanged.

YWCA Central Carolinas hosts multiple racial justice forums every year where we invite people of all socioeconomic backgrounds, ethnicities, genders and ages to our Park Road campus to have open conversations around challenging topics. The free community dinner events consistently draw capacity audiences and leave participants with an urgency to take action. After each forum, we collect feedback via anonymous online surveys. Participants frequently say the forums are extremely “eye-opening” and that they enjoy the candid conversations.

Our next forum – Hitting Close To Home: A Community Conversation About Immigration In Charlotte. We invite you for an evening of conversation on April 25 from 6-8 pm around immigration and how it has affected our Charlotte community. Our panelist will include Jorge Millares from Queen City Unity, Rachel Humphries from Refugee Support Services, Joey Haynes from Queens University of Charlotte, Councilwoman Dimple Ajmera from the City of Charlotte, Stefanie from Communidad Colectiva and Dr. M. Gina Navarrete from Charlotte Women’s March. Our moderator will be Judith Barriga from Norsan Media.

There will be light refreshments provided, so please register on our Events page.

Click here for a list of previous Racial Justice Forums.

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