Recommended Actions for the Week of 20171211


Local Level Actions

Source: RC


Facebook event


“What we do not say, what we do not talk about, allows the status quo to continue.”
-Stephanie Wildman, Making Systems of Privilege Visible
Engaging in frank discussions of race and race-based issues is often a delicate task, requiring participants to recognize their status and privileges (or lack thereof) concerning another in a differently situated group. Many people remain ill-equipped with the skills necessary to navigate these encounters constructively. Discussions about race and racism need to be carefully crafted to resonate with people’s own experiences. Race, white supremacy, sexuality, and other aspects of an intersectional analysis may be perceived as too abstract if they are not presented in a manner to which participants can relate and connect.
Let’s Talk is about obtaining the foundational skills to explore better ways to connect with each other by engaging in deep listening and transformative dialogue about issues that divide us. Participants will learn to “see,” talk about, and be self-reflexive about race and racism, power and privilege, which can be both jarring and liberating. Often, however, this transformation takes time.
Nothing bridges the divide between race and culture like informed dialogue that’s grounded in shared understanding. In the first hour, Gerry Ebalaroza Tunnell and Ashanti Monts-Tréviska will share their stories about race and racism, and power and privilege. Participants will then reflect on their own comfort level when talking about race and distinguish between intent and impact and reflect on what it means to enjoy or have a lack of privilege.
In the second hour, participants we will gather in a talking circle to debrief about what was learned and the takeaways to engage in transformative dialogue. In the last half hour, participants will be introduced to “Is Everyone Really Equal?” book club and receive a coupon for the book. To continue the dialogue on race and privilege, and perpetuate cohesive communities, participants will be asked to form book club groups with people having a different profile than their own.
ASL interpretation will be provided. Please email us at if you need other accommodations.


Hey, Pants Peeps/Riveters!
***This is LONG and IMPORTANT story about this group; please bear with me***
You may have noticed there are a lot of white girls here. Yeah, I noticed too. The RC board currently has a single Y chromosome and skin so white you might need sunglasses. Beyond the board, the wonderful people who regularly contribute to the utility of this group are similarly mostly white and female-identifying. Constrained by our homogeneity, we risk perpetuating the “us and them” narrative. This narrative is a capital P Problem.
For a while, I personally invited people with more diverse backgrounds and identities to be part of the RC leadership. After quite a few polite “no thank-yous,” I was puzzled about making progress toward greater inclusion and diversity.
Receiving the gift of honest feedback from Ashanti Monts-Tréviska – an amazing human being who courageously stands at many intersections – who had learned from some community members of color that they were unsure they could trust the RC. What these individuals witnessed within our group, was the “white savior” complex. After hearing this news, I believed that it was the time the Riveters Collective acted upon this truth.
Ashanti was willing to work with me to build trust between the RC and community of color. She invited Gerry Ebalaroza Tunnell, a trainer and facilitator in Equity, Inclusion and Diversity practices into the conversation, and for the past couple of months, we have met regularly to discuss how we might proceed in facilitating a dialogue around race and privilege.
We have developed a plan, and we’re ready to invite you to join. Our goal is to stretch our edges on issues of race and privilege. We’ll begin by holding a seminar with Gerry and Ashanti on February 11th. Following the seminar, we plan to have a book club and weekly online discussions on the issues of race and privilege (book club details coming soon). Expanding your comfort zone is – by definition – uncomfortable, but this is the space for growth and learning.
We are determined that money will not be a barrier to participate in this project, so are asking a suggested donation of $10.00 to reserve your seat. We will be fundraising in January!
Grab a friend and sign up NOW!
Want to help with logistics, setup, fundraising, whatever else? Please email
ASL interpretation will be provided. Please email us at if you need other accommodations.
For more information on Gerry and Ashanti, below are their very impressive bios. Having the opportunity to get to know them both, I have found that they are fantastic people to have in your life, and like me, you will be better for knowing them.
Gerry Ebalaroza-Tunnell is the founder and mastermind behind Co3 Consulting: Co-Creating Cohesive Communities.

She is a dynamic instructor and facilitator who demonstrates that the best gift we can give ourselves and others is the practice of resilience; our ability to promote positive emotional perceptions and manage our stress-induced reactions.

A certified trainer of the Institute of Heart Math’s Resilience Advantage Program, a graduate from Antioch University’s Masters of Whole Systems Design and currently a Doctoral student in Transformative Studies and Consciousness at the California Institute of Integral Studies, Gerry understands the importance of co-creating change and the dialogue of learning together. She believes that through systemic thinking and daily practice of resilience, we can move towards cultivating an environment of cohesiveness and synchronicity.

To add to her list of credentials, Gerry holds Graduate Certificates in Systems Thinking and Design, Integrated Skills for Sustainable Change, and Permaculture Design.
Ashanti Monts-Tréviska is the co-founder and the creative visionary of Cascadia Deaf Nation, a For Profit Social Enterprise of Deaf Black Indigenous People of Color (DBIPOC*) where it focuses on bringing creative solutions to dismantle socio-economic and social injustices through its transformative cooperative model. Ashanti demonstrates that Deafhood is the first step to bringing transformative narratives into co-creating collaborative relationship between Deaf and Hearing communities. Through this understanding, she offers spiritual insights on activism, human connection, the meaning of community, and education, and believes in the creative arts of deep listening and communication to convey the need to transform human connections.

Ashanti holds Master’s degree in Transpersonal Psychology and Certificate in Spiritual Psychology from Sofia University and is currently a Doctoral student in Transformative Studies and Consciousness at the California Institute of Integral Studies. She enjoys coloring mandalas and writing poems as her meditative hobbies. She jogs frequently and is always unpredictable when it comes to her leisure activities.

Ashanti understands that deep change has to start at the individual level before the actual changes reach the community level based on her current transformative activism framework model. She seeks to reframe and transform current reductive worldviews of Deaf people globally.

National Action Items / Other

From the Calendar

Link to the Riveters Collective Calendar

Every Monday: Attend a vigil hosted by Racial Justice Coalition and Keep Bellingham Families Working. A vigil will be held from 11:30a.m.-1:30p.m. in front of the Whatcom County Courthouse . Support undocumented and immigrant families to live in safety and dignity in our community. Bring your friends and co-workers!