Meeting 1 – 17/7/20

Agenda:

  1. Introductions.
  2. What prompted each of us to respond?
  3. Nature of this group.
  4. What next?

Groundrules:

  1. Confidentiality:  By that we mean:
    1. Chatham House rule:  what is discussed in the group can be reported outside the group – but only in a way that does not identify any individual or their foundation.
    2. It is OK for us to tell others who is participating in the group.
  2. Honesty:  We will be open with each other and we will each contribute what we can to move the work of the group forward.
  3. Doubt and uncertainty:  It is OK to approach this work with uncertainty.  Acknowledging our need to learn is a helpful counterbalance to the power we hold.
  4. Challenge:  In these sessions:
    1. we are willing to be challenged in a constructive and respectful way.
    2. we are willing to challenge each other in a constructive and respectful way.
  5. Change:  we are committed to create positive change on race equity and racial justice.
  6. Accountability:
    1. We recognise the responsibility that white people, and particularly white people in leadership positions, have for taking overdue action on issues of racial equity and racial justice.  
    2. We are accountable to ourselves for what we do as a result of participating in the group.
    3. We are accountable to each other for anything we volunteer to do on behalf of the group (eg lead a session).
    4. We recognise the risk associated with being a group exclusively of white people holding positions of power in powerful organisations.  We will work hard to avoid centring ourselves as being the experts in the issues we discuss. 
    5. We are accountable to others – particularly People of Colour and People from BAME Communities  – for what we don’t do.
  7. Commitment:  Though we recognise it may not be possible to attend every meeting, we will attend as many meetings of the group as possible.

Membership of the group:

  1. White Chief Execs of UK trusts and foundations.
  2. To allow the group to incubate and develop, we will limit the membership for the time being to those who are already involved or have been approached.  Membership is personal – ie if a member is not able to attend a meeting they will not send a substitute in their place.
  3. With the agreement of the current members, we may recruit new members through nominations by current members.
  4. We will take stock of this as the group develops.  If there is sufficient demand, we may decide to establish another cohort of chief execs who will meet separately.

How we envisage the group working:

  1. Monthly meetings of 90 minutes – usually the same day each time (eg Fridays).
  2. Each meeting will be in 2 parts:
    1. Participants sharing any current issues / topics / dilemmas related to the group’s focus.
    2. Discussion of a topic that has been agreed by the group at the previous meeting.
  3. One or more members of the group will take responsibility for preparing each meeting and leading the discussion of the chosen topic.
  4. If appropriate, at the start of each session someone will be appointed to keep the group to time, etc. 
  5. We will publish a summary of what we discuss after each meeting as a way of demonstrating a commitment to openness and as a form of accountability.

Some important issues for us to explore and bear in mind:

  1. Defining and understanding terms – including:
    1. Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (see ACF’s DEI pillars).
    2. Racial Justice and Racial Equity (see Grantmaking with a Racial Justice Lens and Equity in the Center – Awake to Woke to Work).
  2. Power – is a key issue underpinning this topic (see Power Moves).

Attendees:

  • Celia McKeon – Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust
  • Joe Howes – Buttle Trust
  • James Fitzpatrick – Joseph Levy Foundation

Apologies:

  • Fran Perrin – Indigo Trust
  • Paul Carbury – Smallwood Trust

The focus for the next meeting:

Starting from what People of Colour and People from Black and Ethnic Minority Communities are telling us we should be doing – including:

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