Fourth Annual Racial Equity Week Begins Today

This year’s theme “Many People, One Goal” reflects the breadth and depth of the County’s diverse residents and the desire for a thriving, safe and just county for all.

This year, Cook County will continue to offer a week of events available to the public and to Cook County employees. Some events will be held in-person and outside, following public health guidelines, and most events will continue to be offered virtually. Events during the week will be posted on the County’s website and details will be shared on social media.

“Racial Equity Week presents a unique opportunity for Cook County residents, community leaders and stakeholders to engage in meaningful dialogue on race at all its intersections,” said President Preckwinkle. “The events being hosted this week promote the well-being of everyone in Cook County regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation or national origin. I encourage the public to participate and look forward to using the outcomes from these discussions to advance racial equity in Cook County.”

See below for a full list of events:

Monday

Racial Equity Week Kick-off Event in the Forest Preserves of Cook County

Where: Thatcher Woods Pavilion – 8030 Chicago Avenue, River Forest, IL 60305 (Register here)

When: Monday, September 12 |10:30 AM -11:30 AM

What: President Preckwinkle will join residents and County officials for a “Culture and Healing Connections in Nature” event. Jerry Attere, Forest Preserves of Cook County Naturalist at River Trail Nature Center, will lead a walk in Thatcher Woods and provide space to share cultural and healing connections to nature.

White Supremacist Ideology and Indoctrination Conversation Presented by Simon Weisenthal Center

Where: Virtual Event (Register here)

When: Monday, September 12 | 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

What: The event will feature a one-on-one moderated discussion between Simon Wiesenthal Center Midwest Director Alison Pure-Slovin and ex-Nazi Jeff Schoep on understanding white supremacist indoctrination.

Tuesday

CMAP Talks: How can we design safe and complete streets with an equity lens?

Where: Virtual Event (Register here)

When: Tuesday, September 13 | 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM

What: Join Victoria Barrett from Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, representative policy makers and planners from the Northeastern Illinois region, and Cook County’s Department of Transportation and Highways to talk about designing safer streets for all. Traffic safety, especially for people walking and cycling, has never been more urgent in Cook County. Decades of racial inequity and discrimination in planning policy and design have led to inequities in streetscapes that cause safety issues, while conversations around traffic safety often focus on enforcement. In this moderated discussion and Q&A, panelists will discuss how residents can design safer streets for all and create more vibrant, walkable communities with an equity lens.

A Candid Conversation with Native Americans Reflecting on the Urban Indian Relocation Program 60 Years Later

Where: Virtual Event (Register here)

When: Tuesday, September 13 | 5:00 PM – 6:15 PM

What: President Preckwinkle will join key leaders in the Cook County Indigenous community for a candid discussion of the Urban Indian Relocation Act of 1948, the subsequent Urban Indian Relocation Program and the unintended consequences that continue to impact our region today. Panelists include Kim Vigue, Executive Director of the Mitchell Museum of the American Indian, Native Filmmaker Robert Hicks, Native Funder Cindy Soto. The panel will be moderated by Native Scholar Dr. Meredith McCoy.

Wednesday

Illinois Muslims: Needs, Assets, and Opportunities – Cook County Roundtable

Where: Virtual Event (Register here)

When: Wednesday, September 14 | 12:00 PM -1:00 PM

What: Cook County is the most diverse County in Illinois. Within that population is the largest per capita Muslim population in the state – and the nation. Who are Cook County’s Muslim population? What are their needs and assets? Join Dr. Dilara Sayeed, President, IL Muslim Civic Coalition, and Dr. Joseph Hoereth, Director, Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement, University of Illinois Chicago, to learn about the findings of the recent report “Illinois Muslims: Needs, Assets, and Opportunities,” and to have a conversation about opportunities to support and collaborate with Cook County’s Muslim communities.

Emergency Management and Regional Security (EMRS) Preparedness Fair

Where: Daley Plaza, 118 N. Clark St. Chicago, IL

When: Wednesday, September 14 | 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM

What: Participants are invited to engage with the #RacialEquityWeek table at Cook County’s Preparedness Fair. Members of the Racial Equity Leadership Council will be on hand to answer questions, share resources and talk about why racial equity matters in Cook County and across the nation.

Championing the Unsung: A Fireside Chat with filmmaker Adewole A. Abioye and Cook County Manager of Archives Skyla S. Hearn

Where: Virtual Event (Register here)

When: Wednesday, September 14 | 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM

What: This event will include screenings of Adewole A. Abioye’s original works Red & Purple (2011) and My Father Lives Here (Unreleased). Following the film screenings, there will be a discussion highlighting the importance of the role of media to document and preserve the experiences and voices of underrepresented individuals, communities and movements. Abioye is a filmmaker that lives and works in Chicago. His cinema seeks to champion underrepresented voices through the prism of race, identity, history and place.

Thursday

Cook County United Against Hate Community Activation Event featuring the Mobile Art Cart of William Estrada

Where: Tyner Interpretive Center, 2400 Compass Road, Glenview, IL (Register here)

When: Thursday, September 15 | 4:30 PM – 6:30 PM

What: Join Cook County United Against Hate for an interactive event designed for residents to learn and begin to take action against hate in all its forms. Participants will explore this initiative through art, social justice stations, cultural exchange and educational opportunities.

Friday

Dare to Connect: Turbulent Times, Courageous Stories Live Storytelling with Dr. Ada Cheng

Where: Virtual Event (Register here)

When: Friday, September 16, | 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM

What: Professor turned storyteller Dr. Ada Cheng will present a curated series of intersectional and personal narratives by local performers that follow the theme of this year’s Racial Equity Week.

For a list of events and details, visit www.engagecookcounty.com/racialequity

All virtual events will be livestreamed on www.facebook.com/cookcountygov

Questions about these events can be directed to Denise Barreto – Denise.Mbarreto@cookcountyil.gov

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