Roots of MayDay: BIPOC Leadership
Moving forward in the work in stewarding a more representative and equitable MayDay celebration, we tend to the root of BIPOC Leadership that has been intertwined throughout MayDay since its inception: in the ongoing and often unseen emotional labor of BIPOC artists.
We honor the labor, vision, gifts, experiences, leadership, and brilliance of Black, Indigenous People of Color. We know that moving forward MayDay must be led by and for BIPOC artists and organizers.
Over the past several years, we have been doing deep internal work to dismantle white supremacy culture at HOBT. We know we have a long way to go to heal and repair those who have been harmed by the MayDay process and to live out our commitment to dismantling white supremacy culture at HOBT.
At HOBT we are working to shift from being gatekeepers to key makers, sharing power, resources, and possibilities with the diverse neighborhoods and communities we work with so that with BIPOC artists and community organizers in the lead we can shape a new future that truly lives out the values and spirit of the MayDay Celebration.
Image Description: An orange rectangle appears, with pink squiggles. A quote from John Lewis reads: "Do not get lost in a sea of despair. Be hopeful, be optimistic. Our struggle is not the struggle of a day, a week, a month, or a year, it is the struggle of a lifetime. Never, ever be afraid to make some noice and get in good trouble, necessary trouble." A photograph of John Lewis appears, he is a black man, he wears a suit and tie, and a serious expression.
At HOBT we have been asking “how do we live the spirit of MayDay year-round?” The image of the MayDay Celebration as a seed emerged: a tiny vessel full of power and potential waiting to burst forth.
We are tilling the soil, welcoming in pollinators, readying the compost, and planting the seed of MayDay with strong roots sprouting forth representing our deeply held values: green for Environmental Justice, red for the Labor Movement, purple for Queer Community and brown for BIPOC Leadership. These roots inspire and guide all HOBT programming as we work to embody the values of MayDay in every aspect of our organization.