Systemic Racism and Design

Moxie’s Actions to support Black Lives Matter

The systems and societies that we live in don’t just end up racist, they are designed that way.

As designers, we have a duty to deconstruct and redesign the white supremacist structures that oppress Black, Indigenous and People of Color in our society. We have a duty to not just design for diversity, but to design for justice; regardless of the products or services we create.

We believe Black Lives Matter. We seek justice for Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Rayshard Brooks, and Black people who have died, and continue to die under a system that does not protect and serve the lives of Black people. These include racist policing policies, the criminal justice system as well as inequitable housing and education policies.

As designers, action researchers and educators, we see a civic responsibility to contribute our skills to change the systems and institutions that have oppressed Black people for centuries.

Below are the ongoing actions we are taking at Moxie to be anti-racist and support Black lives. For context, Moxie is a human centered design agency focused on social impact. Our collective of designers and action researchers are a network of people who collaborate on certain projects under the Moxie umbrella. Here are our actions:

  1. We commit to developing a practice of being anti-racist, which to us means: educating ourselves and collaborating with organizations who are committed to racial justice.

  2. We are continuing to listen, reflect on our own biases, and educate ourselves on how to actively be anti-racist and support Black lives.

  3. We commit to stepping beyond our individual bubbles and typical networks and actively seek out Black, Indigenous or People of Color researchers, facilitators, visual designers, service designers, to collaborate with on projects. If you know of someone we should collaborate with, please let us know. Even if you don’t consider yourself a designer in the traditional sense, but are drawn to these topics we would love to hear from you.

  4. We will consciously seek out and collaborate with organizations who pursue racial justice regardless of their ability to pay for services.

  5. We will continue our donations to the ACLU and have recently donated to MPD150 as we believe in both programmatic and systemic change. When working on a moxie project, we will apportion 1% of that project’s income toward racial justice organizations.

  6. We are offering a workshop on remote facilitation Thursday June 25th from 10:00 am — 12:30pm EST; all of the proceeds will go to racial justice educators Mariame Kaba, Rachel Cargle, and Layla Saad. Tickets are 20 dollars, register here.

We invite you to hold us accountable with feedback, ideas and thoughts on ways in which we can improve.

Design our way out of white supremacy

Design our way towards social justice

Team Moxie