CHHSM’s Berry to Address Living Water Association Event on Racism as a Public Health Crisis

The Rev. Elyse Berry, D.Min.

The Living Water Association, Ohio NorthEast of the Heartland Conference of the United Church of Christ is hosting an online presentation and panel discussion on racism as a public health crisis Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021, from 1:30 to 4 p.m. “Beyond Declarations: Responding to Racism as a Public Health Crisis” will be held in collaboration with a number of ecumenical and interfaith partners exploring ways that people of faith can respond to the declaration of racism as a public health crisis. Register online.

After a presentation by the Rev. Dr. Elyse Berry, associated for advocacy and leadership development for the UCC Council for Health and Human Service Ministries (CHHSM), the panel discussion will begin. Participants include Veronica Sims, District Five representative on the Summit County (Ohio) Council; the Rev. Raymond Greene Jr., executive director of Freedom BLOC; and Kenyona Sunny Matthews, co-founder of Dimensions of Isms.

The discussion will highlight local efforts to respond to racism as it relates to public health. The Living Water Association hopes the event will raise awareness and present a call to action for faith communities to engage in the work of racial justice and health equity.

The virtual event comes on the heels of a resolution passed this past July by delegates to the UCC’s General Synod. Meeting virtually, delegates passed “A Resolution to Declare and Respond to Racism as a Public Health Crisis,” continuing the UCC’s decades-long advocacy work for social justice. Recently, many local and faith-based groups have passed similar resolutions. The regional Living Water Association provides resources for local congregations to act in response to General Synod resolutions.

Co-sponsoring the event with the Living Water Association are the Akron (Ohio) Area Interfaith Council, the Catholic Commission of Summit County, the East Ohio Conference of the United Methodist Church, Women’s Interfaith Spiritual Heritage (WISH), and the Big Love Network.

Register online for the virtual event.

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