Equity Matters: Dismantling Systemic Racism 

June Topic: Equal Protection

Because of the legacy of slavery there have always been calls for freedom, equal protection, equal rights, civil rights and EQUITY!  Centering Black and Brown communities and with an eye towards racial justice, Equity Matters holds space for some of the most important pressing issues impacting Black folks in Vermont. Equity Matters.

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Equal Protection

The Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment has long been a cornerstone of civil rights and justice in the United States.  The problem is that now in 2024, federal jurisprudence is preventing it from serving our marginalized communities as originally intended.  There are ongoing unprecedented reversals and/or significant alterations of civil rights protections previously safeguarded by the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. Also federal equal protection jurisprudence is preventing current efforts to create the policies and programs to redress disparities being caused by systemic racism and other forms of systemic oppression.  At the same time the “color-blind” premise of the equal protection doctrine continues to provide avenues for the creation of harmful classification-based algorithms that disadvantage Black folks and other marginalized communities 

For the first time in state history, we have initiated a Vermont equal protection constitutional amendment.  Though we know that it will be decided in the courts, this constitutional amendment could assist Vermont in providing broader civil rights protections in the face of national threats.  These protections could even be expanded to some who are currently unprotected.  Never in our state's 247 year history have we amended the constitution to add an equal protection article.  


June 4, 2024 - 6:00pm - 8:00pm

The Library will be closed on Friday, August 16 for Bennington Battle Day.