It will be quite some time before I feel it is appropriate to deploy my go-to email opener, "I hope you're well,".
I know none of us would call ourselves "well", especially the brilliant BIPOC humans in my community. I will never understand the hurt, loss, and fear you experience regularly or the trauma that having your pain take a public platform these past weeks has brought to you. I hear you; I see you. I mourn with you. I am so sorry for the violations systematic racism continues to cause you. I stand with you in any way I can.
As a queer businessowner, I recognize that my freedom to openly love are only afforded by the fight of the marginalized communities that came before me. I cannot ethically enjoy my freedoms while the freedom to live safely is denied to the Black community.
Going forward I will more vocally support black and brown creators, artists, educators, entrepreneurs and businesses. I will read and educate myself and learn from my own past failures in an effort to be a better Ally. I will sit with discomfort, examine my own privilege and I will speak out against racial injustices.
Stonewall was a riot. Our celebration of Pride came from leadership and resilience of BIPOC trans and gender nonconforming people in a time when no one would listen. It’s well past the time for those with privilege to stand with the Black community and stand up against white supremacy in the pursuit of justice and equality.
MAVPR will continue to donate to causes that aim to dismantle inequality. I’ve launched an eternal campaign to encourage clients to match my donations to these organizations. If you have, work with or know of an organization that may not be on my radar, please let me know and I’ll be sure to make a contribution.
I offer my time and services to organizations dismantling injustice or any BIPOC or LGBTQIA+ creators, entrepreneurs, advocates, educators or business owners. I’m not disillusioned to think PR will save the world, but if a Public Relations consultation can help your goal and mission, it’s yours, free of charge. Just tell me your availability for a call and I’ll put in on our calendars. Please feel welcome to forward this offer along to anyone in your network who it may be beneficial to.
Some trusted friends have compiled a resource document for allies that is being updated in real time. For more ways we can be better allies, please check out: https://bit.ly/AllyGuideBLM
In love and the continued fight for equality,
Melissa A Vitale
A public relations agency specializing in brands and startups across plant and intimate wellness