It is important for the Minnesota Elder Justice Center (MEJC) to take action in response to what members of Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) communities have been experiencing and expressing for years – that their lived experiences differ because of systemic racism.
As an organization focused on preventing and alleviating the abuse, neglect and financial exploitation of older and vulnerable adults, it is critically important to work for a more just, equitable, and inclusive future for BIPOC communities across the state of Minnesota. This work must be done in partnership with others. Elder justice is directly tied to and intertwined with the inequities that disproportionately affect BIPOC communities. These inequities are built into our systems of health care, criminal justice, education, housing and urban planning, and economic support.
Our organization is also committed to deconstructing the systemic racism within our own conversations and practices at the MEJC, engaging in collective reflection and discussion to deepen our understanding of how our actions may not have aligned with our vision of becoming a trusted resource for all Minnesotans. This vision directs the ways in which we build partnerships and relationships, develop policies and systemic responses, and provide services and support to individuals in every community across the state.