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The Delaware Coalition to Dismantle the New Jim Crow

This group had its beginnings when members of First Unitarian Church and members of Mother Africa Union Church jointly met to read and discuss Michelle Alexander’s book The New Jim Crow over five years ago. Led by Rev. Paula Maiorano and Rev. Dr. Lawrence Livingston, these discussions were deep and meaningful for all who participated. The question was asked at the end as to what to do next. The Delaware Coalition to Dismantle the New Jim Crow was formed and the work of educating people about how modern incarceration of people of color affects us all has spread to many other churches throughout Delaware.
The Coalition has sponsored monthly meetings on many topics, two highly attended public forums featuring nationally known speakers, and workshops to highlight the civic cost of racism in America and in our communities. We have influenced criminal justice reforms for previously incarcerated individuals, worked for changes to improve the education support for inner city youth, and met with civic leaders from the governor on down to speak out against laws and practices that perpetuate systems of oppression to black and brown people in our state. We join with other non-profit agencies like the ACLU, Delaware Center for Justice, Interdenominational Ministers Action Council, Wilmington Neighborhoods Coalition and others to advance the beloved community and provide equity and justice for all.
We do all this with a volunteer board and depend on donations from congregations and individuals to move our work forward. Rev. Richard Speck currently serves as the secretary of the Coalition board and invites conversation as to how others can be involved in this valuable work of dismantling racism in our community.