The Greater Boston Evaluation Network (GBEN) unequivocally condemns police brutality and white supremacy, which has both taken the lives of Black Americans and continues to subject People of Color to police violence at this moment. We encourage jurisdictions to adopt evidence-based solutions to reduce police violence against Black Americans as quickly as possible.
In addition, we are appalled at the health inequities laid bare by COVID-19 in Massachusetts and beyond, which have similarly stolen the breath from communities of color and immigrant communities. Black Americans have been dying from COVID-19 at rates 2.4 times as high as that of White Americans. Out of the ten communities in Massachusetts with the highest COVID-19 infection rates, nine far exceed the statewide proportion of people of color.
The police violence and these health inequities are a direct manifestation of a legacy of racism that Black Americans have experienced since slavery began in 1619 in the United States. Though much has been accomplished in dismantling discrimination in our country, much more needs to be done. We commit to the fight for equity, and in particular to leveraging the truth-speaking power of evaluation.
What we are doing and how you can help
While evaluation would not have saved George Floyd’s life or that of countless others, we are committed to looking within ourselves and our organization to do better and do what we can to dismantle discrimination, racism, and white supremacy. Here is where we are starting:
Earlier this year, GBEN formed a standing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee. This committee is working towards a plan of action to improve the state of DEI within GBEN and our members. Please consider volunteering with us (email firstname.lastname@example.org if interested).
More than ever, as part of our planning, the DEI Committee needs to hear from GBEN members about your thoughts, knowledge, and experience around equitable evaluation. We have launched a short survey and invite all GBEN members to participate. Please fill out the survey, so that we can design the best plan for our organization and members.
In partnership with and through the generous support of the Barr Foundation, GBEN will shortly be issuing a Request for Proposals for a consultant to help us with our DEI planning. Please look out for this RFP and help circulate it to your networks.
If there are other ways for us to help, please do not hesitate to be in touch.
List of anti-racism resources
Equitable evaluation resources:
Can Social Justice Live in a House of Structural Racism? A Question for the Field of Evaluation
Being responsive: The first assessment of Culturally Responsive Evaluation in Wisconsin: Findings from the 2017 survey
More on the GBEN site (requires member login)
The GBEN Executive Committee
Danelle Marable, President
Matan BenYishay, Vice President
Eileen Marra, Treasurer
Elizabeth Brown, Clerk
Kelly Washburn, Programming Co-chair
Min Ma, Programming Co-chair and DEI Co-chair
Calpurnyia Roberts, DEI Co-chair
Bryan Hall, Communications Chair
Annie Summers, Membership Chair