Creating Wealth for Women of Color in an Economic Depression: "Are you Crazy?!"
September 16, 2009 12:30-2:00 at the Women of Color Resource Center 1611 Telegraph Ave suite 303 Oakland
Especially during times like these, it's hard to focus on anything but having an income. But if all we have is income, we'll never be economically secure. What is "wealth," and why is it important even for poor women of color? What is the extent of the wealth gap between whites and people of color, and between men and women? How do we account for the difference? What can we do to gain wealth even in these hard times? We know that out of necessity, women of color have always been financially creative. Bring your experiences, your insights, and your strategies to share. And your lunch!
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Meizhu Lui considers her profession to be "troublemaker!" She currently heads up the Closing the Racial Wealth Gap Initiative for the Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Wealth - and not just income - is of critical importance in achieving economic security. The Initiative organizes experts of color in the asset building field to push for policy solutions to close the enormous gap in wealth owned by people of color compared to whites in the U.S.
The daughter of Chinese immigrants, Lui was a single mother when she moved to Boston and took a job as a hospital kitchen worker out of necessity. But then she chose to stay in the kitchen for 20 years as she became committed to organizing her fellow workers to fight for recognition that "women's work" should not be undervalued and underpaid. Lui went on to become the first Asian woman elected President of a union local in Massachusetts.
She organized in communities of color at Health Care for All Massachusetts for improved health and access to culturally competent care, and was the Executive Director of United for a Fair Economy, which raised awareness of the growing economic divide between the very wealthy and everyone else. She started UFE's program on race and wealth.
She has received recognition for her work from women's organizations including the Boston Women's Fund, Rosie's Place (a homeless women's shelter), the Women's Law Caucus of the New England School of Law, the Big Sister Association of Greater Boston, the Coalition for Basic Human Needs (welfare issues), the Patriots Trail Girl Scout Council, and was inducted into the YWCA's Academy of Women Achievers.
WCRC started the BrownBag Lunch Series as a way to stay engaged in community discussion around current events and issues that are of interest to women of color. All BrownBag Lunches are held at the Women of Color Resource Center and are open to the general community. Don't forget to bring your lunch!
If you can't make it out to WCRC to attend a BrownBag in person, now you can catch up on these engaging conversations by listening to audio at the Public Radio Exchange, or watching images at blip.tv where you can also subscribe to the podcast.