Who We Are and What We Do

Whites for Racial Equity is the Monterey County affiliate of SURJ (Showing up for Racial Justice). SURJ moves white folks into accountable action as part of a multi-racial movement through community organizing, mobilizing and education. 

Cultivating greater racial competency and examining the ways in which we consciously or unconsciously enact our own white privilege can be difficult and uncomfortable.  Our monthly meetings are designed for white people to take risks, and to dig deep, as we examine white privilege more critically and personally.  These meetings are not designed for people of color, as it can be painful to listen to white people struggle and stumble. Also, there is often a tendency to put the burden of educating white people onto people of color in the room. 

We believe it is crucial that we take on this burden ourselves, and do the hard work of educating ourselves and one another.  We hold other gatherings that are designed to be multiracial:  video discussions and a monthly book group, as well as occasional panels and trainings.  We share resources on our website and Facebook page, and collaborate with other local and national groups (SURJ, NCBI, NAACP, etc.).  We welcome everyone to join us for these activities.This group is not a replacement for multi-racial activism — far from it.  But, we need to do our work. White supremacy is our problem as white people. We created it and we benefit from it and so we must work to dismantle it.  Whites for Racial Equity (whites working on awareness, reflection, and action).

May the socially constructed but very meaningful concept of race sunset as a predictor of a person’s outcomes in the areas of health care, education, housing, career and promotion, criminal justice, voting rights, wealth, policing, wealth accumulation and more.

What We Do

Whites for Racial Equity (WRE) was co-founded by Anita Crawley, Caroline Haskell, Fred Jealous, JT Mason, and Sue Parris in 2015. While Whites for Racial Equity is not a membership organization nor do we collect dues, we are the Monterey County affiliate of SURJ (Showing up for Racial Justice).

Historically, White Affinity group meetings were scheduled on the second Saturday of most months and either a monthly book or movie discussion, co-sponsored with the Unitarian Universalist Church, were scheduled on the second Tuesday of most months. The weekly eBlast newsletter and website have the most current information about upcoming activities. Return often for 2023 activities.

These activities and communication tools are intended for white folks to educate ourselves for the purpose of taking action to dismantle racism.  Additional activities include co-sponsoring and participating in anti-racist community events. We also provide a platform for organizations led by people of color to promote their offerings.

The best way to become involved is to start receiving the eBlast and come to WRE or other community events.  In most cases all you have to do is show up or register for a Zoom link.  Select the Contact Us link to be added to the mailing list. We will not share your information with anyone.

BIPOC Speakers - White Audiences: A Soul Fire Farm Guide to a Successful Collaboration

When inviting a BIPOC speaker/facilitator/writer to work with your predominantly white organization, consider the following tips for reciprocal and respectful collaboration. 



Frame your event as “exposure” or a “platform” for the speaker 

Agree on a fair honorarium to the speaker and donation to their community project, in advance of any prep work, and in writing

Advise the speaker as to what they should be doing with their time or community work

Ask how you can be of support to the community work already in place

Ask the speaker how they got to be so knowledgeable, articulate and/or professional

Express gratitude to the speaker for their time and the knowledge they shared with you

Assume that everyone in your audience will show respect to the speaker

Have “safer space” agreements and people available to call folks into awareness when they act in disrespectful ways

Assume that everyone in your audience has a basic education on racism and white supremacy

Provide handouts, readings, discussions, and/or videos on racism and white supremacy to your audience in advance 

Expect the speaker to do the labor of transforming your organization to be anti-racist

Use the readings, resources, action steps, and suggestions of the speaker to do your own anti-racism work and/or hire a consultant

Assume that BIPOC facilitators can only speak on issues of race and identity, or are the “voice of all people of color”

Invite BIPOC speakers to share their expertise on a wide range of topics, e.g. soil science. Invite other BIPOC panelists from community organizations to share the mic.

Attempt to control the content of the speaker’s remarks or details of the curriculum

Share your overall goals for the session and trust the speaker to develop content – they were hired for their expertise after all

Set an admission fee that would prohibit community members from hearing the speaker

Offer scholarships for BIPOC attendees and a “safe space” for BIPOC participants to caucus 

Attempt to schedule every minute of the speaker’s time while they are at your site

Recognize the emotional labor involved for BIPOC folks engaging with white audiences and offer breaks, snacks, and water

Expect that the speaker has funds to cover their own travel, or to front the money and be reimbursed

Offer to pay for travel expenses directly or offer an up-front travel stipend

Assume that you know how the speaker wants to be introduced at the beginning or evaluated at the end. 

Ask the speaker how they want to be introduced and what a suitable evaluation process should be.