Working together, Partners Against Hate and CommUNITY 2000 (a
HUD-funded initiative to develop and implement local programs
to prevent and respond to housing related-hate activity and
community tensions), in conjunction with the North Carolina
Human Relations Commission, presented a two-day regional
summit on hate violence/community tensions prevention and
response. The summit was held in Raleigh, NC on December 6-7,
A training report prepared after the summit details the
action steps that were developed there. Read the Training Report from the summit.
Byrdsong was the keynote speaker for the summit. She is the
wife of Ricky Byrdsong, the Northwestern University
basketball coach who was murdered by Benjamin Smith, an
individual deeply influenced by the virulently racist and
anti-Semitic World Church of the Creator, on July 2, 1999.
Mrs. Byrdsong has established The Ricky Byrdsong Foundation,
whose mission is to arrest the epidemic of hate and violence
in our society by and against our youth.
The training summit brought together approximately 100 law
enforcement personnel, community leaders, educators, youth
service professionals, and others with relevant expertise
from around the North Carolina Triangle/Triad region.
To motivate and inform participants, representatives from
Partners Against Hate and local experts made presentations on
the following topics:
- current applicable federal and state law, and the
- police response and investigation;
- impact on victims and communities;
- bias, harassment, and violence in schools and colleges;
- hate violence prevention and response approaches.
To forge consensus and generate action steps,
issue-specific working groups met following the plenary
sessions, with each group assigned a particular topic and the
task of answering questions tailored to that topic. An expert
in the issue addressed by the group facilitated each working
convening of the working groups, the groups reported back to
the larger group in a plenary session. The purpose of this
plenary session was to achieve consensus on effective
approaches to prevent and respond to hate violence/community
tensions, generating action recommendations for participants
to take back to their communities, as well as creating a
powerful regional network of colleagues interested in this
issue. These action steps will identify roles and
responsibilities for a coordinated, community-wide response
by the sectors listed above.