In 2017, the ACLU of Kansas launched the Racial Justice Network. The RJN is committed to an inclusive future that serves all Kansans, by removing barriers to racial equity. From public schools where students of color are too often confined to racially isolated and inferior programs, to a criminal justice system that disproportionately targets, incarcerates people of color and criminalizes poverty, to the starkly segregated world of housing and access to food, the dream of full equality remains elusive.
Achieving these goals requires coordinated community outreach and advocacy. Whereas the ACLU of Kansas has initiatives targeting the state’s criminal justice and elections systems, these are not the only issues that confront communities of color in Kansas. The RJN’s mission is to decrease racial disparities and institutional discrimination faced by people of color in Kansas by incorporating a network of voices from these communities. The RJN’s priorities are driven by its members, and will evolve to address issues as they arise across the state.