Black Atheists Step Up

WLP scholarship winners
Young scholars from South L.A.

Some atheists are constantly bashing faith-based organizations AND believers of color for being backwards, ignorant and discriminatory.  But at the end of the day, what are mainstream secular, humanist, atheist and freethought “human rights” organizations doing to actively fight for social and racial justice in American communities of color?  How many know or care about the following human and civil rights crises in a nation that poses as the most civilized “democracy” on the planet:

FACT: The school-to-prison pipeline disproportionately locks up African American and Latino youth, leaving many with criminal records and no possibility of “re-entry” to employment, housing or higher education

FACT: African American youth are severely over-represented in foster care, homeless populations, and juvenile jails

FACT: Foster care and homeless youth of color have some of the lowest rates of college transfer and graduation amongst college youth populations

FACT: LGBTQ youth of color have disproportionately high suspension/expulsion and push-out rates in U.S. public schools

FACT: Black females are consistently suspended at greater rates than ALL OTHER groups besides black males

FACT: So-called inner city schools have fewer Advanced Placement, college prep and honors courses and highly qualified STEM teachers than their white suburban counterparts

FACT: Due to Congress’ failure to pass the federal Dream Act undocumented youth are ineligible for most forms of financial aid–feeding the school-to-prison pipeline

Because we live, work, and teach in communities that are under siege by these and other human rights issues, Black Skeptics Los Angeles is pleased to announce its first annual “First in the Family Humanist Scholarship.”  Four $1000 scholarships will be awarded to college-bound Los Angeles Unified School District students in South Los Angeles.  Preference will be given to students who are in foster care, homeless, undocumented and/or LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning).  Students must have a record of service and participation in school and/or community-based organizations.  Scholarships will be awarded in June 2013.

Black Skeptics Los Angeles (BSLA) is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to providing Humanist public education, media representation, and cultural resources for African American non-believers and their allies.  BSLA’s programming and initiatives seek to promote greater awareness and understanding of African American secular humanist, freethought, and atheist traditions, beliefs and practices in Los Angeles communities of color and beyond.  Since 2010, BSLA has hosted roundtables on secular social justice, sponsored interfaith dialogues, conducted Humanist professional development trainings, and published articles on a broad range of issues pertaining to gender equity, racial justice, economic justice, and progressive education.

We are currently soliciting matching fund contributions for these scholarships, which will help support under-represented first generation college students with room, board, transportation, books, and other living expenses.  Your valuable tax deductible donation can be made to our Paypal address ([email protected]), mailing address or online at the following site:

Black Atheists Step Up

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