Commitment to Anti-Racism

Achieving Racial Equity through Anti-Racism

The Night Ministry is committed to racial equity in its services, its organizational structure, and its policies and procedures. Given that the majority of those whom The Night Ministry serves and the majority of our staff are people of color, it is imperative that we center racial equity in our day-to-day operations as well as in our strategic planning, and embark on deliberate and thoughtful action to become an anti-racist organization.

Through this work, we are identifying and dismantling institutional racism that exists within our organization. We are empowering staff, clients, and our partners with the tools and the support to disrupt white supremacy within the confines of the agency and within the spheres in which we operate. We are committed to ongoing, collective assessment of where we are as an organization and where we want to be, while formulating and taking the necessary steps to get there. We call upon all members of our community, from staff, volunteers, and supporters to our clients, to engage with us on our commitment to anti-racism.

Racial Equity Task Force

  • Burke Patten, Task Force Co-Chair
    Communications Manager

  • Latice Woodard, Task Force Co-Chair
    The Crib Program Supervisor

  • Kiantae Bowles
    Board of Directors

  • Felitha Jones-Patterson
    Assistant Director, Early Intervention Services

  • Candace Musick
    Youth Development Specialist

  • Tedd Peso
    Director of Strategic Partnerships
  • Audrey Robertson
    Data Specialist

  • Erin Ryan
    Interim President & CEO
  • Sarah Warner
    Case Manager

The Steps We Are Taking

Working Group Goals

Staff from across the agency are developing goals in the following areas for The Night Ministry to acheive in its pursuit of becoming an anti-racist organization.
Shared Power & Decision Making
The Night Ministry's Executive Team and Strategic Leadership Team are undergoing training in the RAPID decision-making process, which provides concrete steps and direct accountability for how decisions are made. The RAPID process will be rolled out through trainings to the rest of the organization over time. (RAPID stands for Recommend, Agree, Perform, provide Input, and Decide).
Philanthropic Engagement
The Philanthrophic Engagement department will be conducting an audit of its communication materials and its procedures, and undergo trainings, to increase the department’s capacity to center anti-racism in its fundraising practices and donor relations.
Pay Equity & Human Resources Policies
The Night Ministry has conducted an audit of its compensation structure to idenfity where there are race and gender inequities in the areas of pay and career advancement. The agency has begun to implement an HR and Pay Equity Action Plan to address inequities identified by the audit.
Accountability to Clients & Communities
The Accountability Working Group focuses on strategies that The Night Ministry can implement to hold itself accountable to communities of color, clients, and those with lived experience. One aspect of this work is ensuring that we continue to collect feedback from clients about their experiences in our programs, that it is from a representative sample in terms of race/ethnicity, age, zip code, and other demographics, and that it is incorporated into program decisions. We hope to implement new channels for feedback across all programs, but one of our first projects is supporting the development of a client advisory board within the agency's Health Outrech Program. Going forward, we are interested in developing strategies that shift our programs away from a white savior lens to one that focuses on client empowerment and leadership. This could include expanding, revising, or reallocating certain client services based upon our group’s recommendations.
Cultural Competency & Celebrations
A group is forming to identify and celebrate cultural holidays and provide opportunities for staff to learn about different cultures, communities, and identities.

Strategic Plan

Making progress on becoming an anti-racist organization is embedded into The Night Ministry's new strategic plan. This includes the following:
Demonstrate Our Commitment to Action
The Night Ministry will demonstrate our commitment to anti-racism and racial equity through public communications, clear and dedicated leadership, accountability targets, continuous learning, and dedication of resources.
Revisit Human Resources Functions
The Night Ministry will review human resources functions to ensure equity in the staff experience. This includes increasing diversity on staff (particularly leadership), clarifying roles and promotion criteria, ensuring pay equity, creating succession plans, and formalizing training.
More Deeply Engage Our Board
The Night Ministry's Board of Directors will actively explore and understand its leadership role in antiracism efforts, set goals for Board diversity and inclusion, and incorporate racial equity into agendas, trainings, and decisions.
Right-Size Our Way of Working
The Night Ministry will ensure that our internal systems scale up to support and keep pace with growth in the organization. This includes clarifying decision-making processes, scaling up internal communication, closing feedback loops, and further promoting a culture of learning and accountability.

1735 North Ashland Avenue, Suite 2000, Chicago, IL 60622 | 773-784-9000
The Night Ministry is a 501(c)3 charitable organization. Our Federal Tax ID (EIN) is 36-3145764.