12-16-2017  2:39 pm      •     
MLK Breakfast
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NEWS BRIEFS

Exhibit Explores the Legacy of Portland Bird Watchers

Dedicated bird watchers catapult a conservationist movement ...

Special Call for Stories about the Spanish Flu

Genealogical Forum of Oregon seeks stories from the public about one of history's most lethal outbreaks ...

Joint Office of Homeless Services Announces Severe Weather Strategy

Those seeking shelter should call 211 or visit 211.org. Neighbors needed to volunteer, donate cold-weather apparel ...

Q&A with Facebook's Global Director of Diversity Maxine Williams

A conversation on diversity and the tech industry ...

City Announces Laura John as Tribal Liason

Laura John brings an extensive background in tribal advocacy and community engagement to the city of Portland ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Don’t Delay, Sign-up for Affordable Healthcare Today

The deadline to enroll or modify healthcare coverage under the Affordable Care Act is December 15. ...

The Skanner Editorial: Alabama Voters Must Reject Moore

Allegations of predatory behavior are troubling – and so is his resume ...

Payday Lenders Continue Attack on Consumer Protections

Charlene Crowell of the Center for Responsible Lending writes that two bills that favor predatory lenders has received bipartisan...

Hundreds Rallied for Meek Mill, but What About the Rest?

Lynette Monroe, a guest columnist for the NNPA Newswire, talks about Meek Mill, the shady judge that locked him up and mass...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

Oregon Shakespeare Festival

Dear Patrons, Supporters and Community Members,

"Inspired by Shakespeare's work and the cultural richness of the United States, we reveal our collective humanity through illuminating interpretations of new and classic plays, deepened by the kaleidoscope of rotating repertory."

This is our mission statement. Today, it feels woefully inadequate, not only in terms of describing what we should be doing as an organization, but also what we are doing. We cannot reveal our collective humanity without addressing the fact that the humanity of a majority of the human race is under attack. This threat is felt by people of color, by the LGBTQ community, by women, by people of various faiths, and—as the recent shootings in Baton Rouge, Falcon Heights and Dallas remind us—the law enforcement community can be perceived as both a source of violence and a target for it.

You may have heard by now about the racist verbal assault directed at one of our actors, and about a death threat leveled at another female company member of color only days later. As far too many people in our community have experienced, these are not isolated incidents—they are happening daily in Ashland, and all over our country.

They are happening to our Box Office employees, who bear the brunt of racially-charged and homophobic complaints about our approach to casting and season selection. They are happening to our Education staff, who sometimes must weigh their own sense of safety and ability to do their job against their instinct to turn an ignorant comment into a teaching moment.

Social justice is central to our mission. Doing whatever we can to provide a safe and welcoming environment for our company and our patrons is also a central priority. To both those ends, we will not tolerate hate speech or other acts of racism and prejudice on our campus, and we will not be silent when such acts are committed beyond our campus.

We have been inspired by recent OSF company member-driven efforts to address oppression and violence—from enlisting theatres and artists nationwide in the Every 28 Hours project, to quickly organizing a community vigil in response to the mass shooting in Orlando, to flying the LGBTQ Pride and Black Lives Matter flags over campus and wearing Black Lives Matter t-shirts in the Ashland Fourth of July Parade, to taking flowers to the Ashland Police Department after the tragedy in Dallas.

We express our solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement not to say other lives matter less, but to acknowledge that our society does not treat Black lives as if they matter as much. “We are committed to collectively, lovingly and courageously working vigorously for freedom and justice for Black people and, by extension all people,” the Black Lives Matter website states among its Guiding Principles. “As we forge our path, we intentionally build and nurture a beloved community that is bonded together through a beautiful struggle that is restorative, not depleting.”

We will continue partnering with other local and national organizations to bring about events like the community gathering on July 2 that packed the Historic Ashland Armory with people willing to try to unpack racism. We will work with the Ashland Police Department, the local business community and our tourism partners to address the bias that people of color encounter here regularly while driving, walking, shopping and dining. 

We will continue to choose plays and cast them in ways that reflect the world we live in now, with pride and without apology. We will continue striving to bring greater diversity to our workforce and our audience. We will recognize that we have a long way to go to live up to our goals of equity, diversity, inclusion and justice, and that we don’t and won’t always get it right—but we will keep trying.

We hope you will join us.

Sincerely,

 

Artistic Director Bill Rauch
Executive Director Cynthia Rider
And the OSF Leadership Team

Oregon Lottery
Health Effects of Smoking
Calendar

MLK breakfast 2018 300x100

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

Family Care Health