Facing Race: A new conversation on race and racism in St. Paul

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Facing Race: A new conversation on Race and Racism
by Mary Thoemke, TC Daily Planet
Facing the issue of race is not an easy thing to do. Talking about race and racism can be the first step in breaking down long-held barriers to understanding . In an effort to begin a new conversation, the Payne Phalen District 5 Planning Council invites the community to join them in a dialogue: Facing Race – We’re all in this together.

Facing Race will be held on Thursday, October 16, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.. at First Covenant Church at 1280 Arcade Street . Registration is required. To register, call 651-774-5234 to register. For more information, go to the Payne Phalen district council web site.

Leslie McMurray, Executive Director of District 5, says that the dialogue is a community response to the hate crime that took place at Phalen Park last summer when a public art rock sculpture was defaced. McMurray says that due to the diversity of the neighborhood the community has wanted to have this dialogue for some time, and “it just made sense” to do it now.

Developed by the Saint Paul Foundation the Facing Race dialogue will give participants an opportunity to share personal histories and to learn new skills that address real-life issues.

Mary Thoemke, a lifelong resident of Saint Paul, is a free lance writer for the Twin Cities Daily Planet.