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How do we talk to our youth about current events and what is on the news?

shayna cureton

Hello Abundant Beginnings Community,

     There has been a lot going on in our community! The San Francisco Police Department is currently under federal investigation for racial bias for the murders of three people of color since December. The Bay Area community has been participating in numerous protests, including marches in support of the Frisco Five, a group of five people that called for SFPD Chief Greg Suhr to step down during an 18 day hunger strike.  On Thursday, May 19th, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee asked that Suhr resign after the fatal shooting of an unarmed black woman, which occurred in the same neighborhood that Mario Woods was killed.

     How do we talk to our youth about current events and what is on the news? When talking about recent police violence, be honest with how you are feeling and what you’d like to see happen differently. Invite the youth in your life to do the same. With young children, I often utilize the idea of little voices in a police officer’s head to talk about bias and racism. Many police officers hear little voices that black people are scary, bad, and dangerous -- but we know that’s not true! Sometimes those voices are put there by their boss, the media, and the system. Encouraging ourselves and our children to tell police officers not to listen to those little voices will help to challenge racist messages and paradigms.

Shayna Cureton, Director of Abundant Beginnings, engaging in dialogue with children at the May 14th "Play, Power, and Privilege Teach-In for Children".

Here are some ideas to try at home to engage in dialogue about current events:

  • Talk about National #SayHerNameDay, which took place on May 19th and acknowledges the injustices and violence against black women and girls. You can look up photos online of non-violent direct “Say Her Name” actions and talk about how it’s important to prevent violence against all people of all gender identities.

  • Engage in dialogue about how People Power has a role in current events. For example, the Bay Area community had lots of strategic meetings, the Friso Five utilized hunger strikes, and what came to be known as the Frisco 500 participated in marches and blockades to tell the Mayor and SFPD Chief that they are not doing their jobs correctly.

Continue to connect with the children in your life about what is going on with current events and how we can fight for a more just world in our everyday lives.

Much love,

Shayna