In the Face of Two Pandemics, McKnight Announces Second-Quarter Grants

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

During this extraordinary moment in history, our communities must contend with two pandemics. The first is a deadly novel coronavirus that confounds experts. The second is systemic racism—an infliction that led to the murder of George Floyd. The convergence of the coronavirus with the senseless police killings of more Black Americans has forced our country to reckon with the brutal reality that systemic racism permeates every aspect of our society. These present-day racial disparities stem from policies and systems that have failed Black Minnesotans and our Indigenous and communities of color for hundreds of years.

Nationally, Covid-19 has especially impacted Black Americans, who are dying from the infection at more than double the rate of white, Latino, and Asian Americans, according to analysis from the nonpartisan American Public Media Research Lab. This inequity in health outcomes links to the many structural and interdependent inequities evident across housing, employment, wages, wealth, and other areas.

The McKnight board and staff are reflecting on the Foundation’s role during this time and have reaffirmed our core value of equity—which McKnight sees as mission-critical—and remain committed to working inclusively with community partners to build a more equitable Minnesota.

“As a place-based foundation, McKnight takes a long view, and we are committed to standing by our communities now and in the future,” said Debby Landesman, McKnight board chair. “As always, we are grateful to our grantees and partners, who have had to respond to multiple crises in recent months. They anchor and uplift our communities and set the collective course to recover, reimagine, and rebuild.”

Read more on McKnight's website