Chattanooga/ Southeast TN Continuum of Care
Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines racism as follows:
a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial
differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race.”
a: doctrine or political program based on the assumption of racism and designed to execute its principles
b: a political or social system founded on racism
racial prejudice or discrimination.
The explicit and implicit (i.e. subconscious) biases of service providers can result
in fewer housing opportunities for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color.
We must recognize and examine racial inequities across, economic, education,
health care, criminal justice, and other systems.
These all contribute to racial inequities in housing and homelessness. For
example, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color are overrepresented in the
population of people experiencing homelessness.
As the Chattanooga/Southeast TN Continuum of Care (CoC), we take the following
pledge to regularly examine, evaluate, and do our work in a manner that is anti-racist:
We will work to enact policy and practices that prominently, openly, and effectively
promote racial equity in homelessness and housing. We will also actively support
and devote our time to other groups and organizations working to deconstruct
racism in our CoC.
We will recruit, hire, and work in alliance with Black, Indigenous, People of Color
(BIPOC) staff, volunteers, and community activists and amplify their voices so that
BIPOC people can lead the way as we move forward in deconstructing racism in
the communities that we serve.
We will recognize and respect the right to self-determination of BIPOC people in the
communities we serve, as well as empowering people to possess and assertively
communicate those rights for themselves.
We will continuously educate ourselves as organizations and as individuals on
the history of racism and current systems of oppression in our region.We also
work to educate the communities that we serve on racism and its impacts on
housing currently and historically.
We will honor all aspects of an individual’s social and political identity, including their race,
gender, class, sexuality, physical and mental abilities, cultures of origin and current cultural
context, and how this contributes to a person’s unique lived experience.
We will remain mindful of the power and privilege ( i.e. whiteness, class, education, male
etc.) that we bring into every space and conversation that we enter, and actively look for
opportunities to share decision making power with BIPOC people in the communities we