At the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), we are unwavering in confronting racism in all its forms. Our mission is rooted in the belief that a society where Black communities thrive benefits everyone. We are guided by a deep commitment to building a future where white supremacy, poverty, and mass incarceration are relics of the past.
Our Core Principles
- Empowering Black Communities: At our core, we are committed to strengthening the political, economic, and social power of Black communities in the South because we understand that when Black people thrive, it uplifts us all.
- Rooted in the South: Our work is grounded in the South, where the legacy of civil rights history still informs our struggle for racial equity. We are steadfast in our commitment to listening to and learning from Black and Brown communities most profoundly affected by white supremacy.
- A Vision for Change: We are dedicated to creating a world where Black and Brown communities are not just represented but deeply respected by our democracy. Our vision extends to a future where the scourges of white supremacy, poverty, and mass incarceration are eradicated.
To transform our vision into reality, our focus over the next five years revolves around increasing power and capacity for a multi-racial, inclusive democracy in the South. This includes:
- Strengthening Democracy: We aim to ensure that elected officials genuinely represent the communities they serve. By challenging voter suppression alongside impacted communities, we empower Black and Brown communities to exercise their right to vote and have a voice in decisions affecting them.
- Countering White Supremacy: We strive to force white supremacy out of the mainstream, reduce its impact on our democracy, and end racist violence against Black and Brown communities. This involves educating the public about the effects of white supremacy on the lives of Black and Brown people, particularly in the South, and partnering with communities to combat extremist ideologies.
- Ending Over-Criminalization and Mass Incarceration: We are dedicated to challenging discriminatory practices that lead to the over-criminalization of Black and Brown communities. We will work towards dismantling criminal legal and immigrant detention systems rooted in white supremacy and ending the school-to-prison pipeline.
- Eradicating Poverty and Racial Economic Inequality: We will advocate for policies that invest in Black and Brown communities, increasing access to affordable housing, quality education, employment opportunities, and public services. We aim to dismantle discriminatory systems that perpetuate poverty and hinder generational wealth accumulation.
At the SPLC, we are committed to challenging racism with unwavering determination and an unshakable belief in the power of unity and justice. Together, we can build a future where all communities thrive and discrimination is a thing of the past.
Illustration by Taylor Callery.