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YWCA Boston hosts April 30 National Stand Against Racism

Banner Staff

More than 30 companies are scheduled to participate in anti-racism activities as part of YWCA Boston’s s promotion of the National Stand Against Racism day on April 30, 2010.

The national civic engagement project is expected to raise awareness that racism still exists and that it should not be ignored or tolerated.

“Any group of any size that believes in a society free of racism is invited to join us,” said YWCA President and Chief Executive Officer Sylvia Ferrell-Jones.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Montgomery, Alabama-based civil rights organization, the number of hate groups operating in the U.S. has grown by 54 percent in the last eight years. The Center estimates that there are nearly 1,000 active hate groups in the U.S.

In Boston, racially and ethnically motivated hate-crimes have risen by 39 percent over the last three years.

 In response, YWCA Boston has joined 70 other YWCAs across the country to combat the spread of hate and intolerance, and to honor and celebrate the richness of diversity.

Participating sites in Boston include:  Neighborhood Health Plan, Holland and Knight, Boston Public Health Commission, Simmons College, Codman Square Health Center, Pine Manor College, Roxbury Youth Works, United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, Wellesley High School, Hay Group, Fair Housing Center of Greater Boston, Franklin Hill Boys and Girls Club, Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ and Mass College of Art.

In 2009, the program attracted over 300 partnering organizations that became participating sites by hosting local “stands.” Over 30,000 individuals took part.

Any organization or group of individuals can become a participating site by signing up on www.StandAgainstRacism.org.  For local information, please contact the YWCA Boston at (617) 585-5423 or dialogues@ywcaboston.org.