Updated: Apr 26, 2018
In February 2018, Skinner Leadership Institute partnered with the Circle of Protection and other faith organizations to produce The Unity Statement on Racism and Poverty. The Circle of Protection is the broadest group of diverse Christian leaders focused on poverty. The Unity Statement was signed by 80 leaders from African-American, Hispanic, Asian-American, Native American, Evangelical, Catholic, Pentecostal, and mainline Protestant churches; and many national faith-based organizations. Circle members meet regularly with Congressional leaders to ensure that the interests and needs of low-income people are considered in shaping the federal budget and in other public policies. Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner serves as Co-Facilitator of the Circle.
For the first time, the issue of structural racism and structural poverty were addressed in a theological framework. It is based on the teaching of Jesus and the prophets on the "image of God" in all humans, who are worthy of a decent quality of life. It was presented to both Republicans and Democrats in Congress who were encouraged to consider this statement as they shape public policies. Many white churches are now holding webinars and other educational forums to teach their members about the sinful nature of structural racism.