Rise, Resist, Remember: 2023 NREI Summit

By: Danielle Browne, John R. Lewis Social Justice Fellow

In the ongoing fight for social justice, the 2023 National Racial Equity Initiative for Social Justice’s (NREI) Summit serves as a powerful platform for crucial discussions to inspire, educate, and mobilize our communities and organizations. This year, we are excited to delve into three pressing issues: protecting the Black vote, preserving Black history, and banned books, and corporations’ roles in advancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA). These issues faced by the Black community are not distant challenges but woven into our daily experiences, our dreams for our children, and our hopes for achieving a more equitable future.

This NREI Summit is not just an event but a pivotal convergence of elected officials, emerging leaders, activists, and community members to engage in conversations that intentionally examine the critical social justice issues that systemically and uniquely impact the Black community.

Protecting the Black Vote: The Road to 2024

In the wake of the upcoming 2024 Presidential election, Black Americans—having faced voter suppression and disenfranchisement historically—still encounter systemic barriers to equally exercise their right to vote. Despite hard-won victories in the past, contemporary challenges such as restrictive voter ID laws, gerrymandering, and reduced access to polling stations disproportionately affect the Black community. During the Summit, we will address current voting challenges and present solutions to ensure that Black Americans can fully participate in our nation’s democratic process as well as have their voices heard in shaping the nation’s future. Don’t miss the chance to be at the forefront of a pivotal movement to secure the future of voting rights for the Black community.   

Upholding the Truth: Preserving African American History for a Better Tomorrow

The significance of convening at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, not lost on us. It is crucial to address the ongoing fight against the banning of books by LGBTQ+ and authors of color, as well as the efforts against teaching the true history of Black Americans and this country’s legacy of racism. The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF) understands the importance of upholding the democratic ideal of freedom of speech, fostering different ideas in the marketplace, and reclaiming our nation’s commitment to education. Make sure to attend this vital dialogue to be a part of a movement to protect the legacy of marginalized voices and our history in society.

Corporations As Social Justice Change Agents? Unpacking Corporate Pledges to DEIA Initiatives and the Road Ahead

Corporations play a crucial role in upholding diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility for the advancement of the Black community—a duty that goes beyond mere compliance but involves actively fostering an inclusive workplace culture, promoting equal opportunities, and addressing systemic biases. Corporations can also play a significant role as change agents by championing social justice and DEIA initiatives that recognize the value of a diverse workforce, reflected at all levels of an organization. We hope that you will join us for this important conversation about reshaping our societal norms and exploring best practices to advance racial equity.

You will also not want to miss the networking lunch and interactive breakout rooms which will offer a refreshing break from the large group sessions. In these engaging and dynamic spaces, participants can explore the banned work of influential Black authors, enjoy snippets from Black documentaries, discover Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)/ Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) best practices in the gallery room, and learn about state and federal voting laws through trivia.   Join us virtually or in-person on Tuesday, November 14, 2023, from 9:30 am to 3 pm EST to be a part of this collaborative environment where you can participate in vital discussions concerning the Black community, problem-solve, coalition-build, and be a part of the change-makers shaping our world.