The ‘work’ of Vermont’s new IDEAL program

I recently investigated what “work” was proposed to be done by Vermont’s new IDEAL program, funded with $220,000 to increase the work of diversity, equity and inclusion committees around the state.

The chief work appears solely to be to inculcate woke ideology in the minds of more people. I have not been provided with a single example of elimination of racial prejudice or barriers in Vermont municipal or state government — or even of any such barriers existing which must be eliminated. This circuitous logic appears to be the modus operandi of these committees.

Having researched several committees themselves, I asked Vermont’s Office of Racial Equity directly what evidence they have for either accomplishments or goals of their work. Neither Andrea Brett (chair) nor Xusana Davis (executive director) responded to my inquiries. However, Shalini Suryanarayana, Office of Racial Equity’s education and outreach associate, kindly responded.

Xusana Davis has stated that “there is a lot of necessary action that uniquely sits with municipalities.” I asked Ms. Suryanarayana about this alleged necessity for municipal action. Here are my questions, and her responses.

Question: What past examples of “doing” can your department provide relating to existing DEL or similar municipal committees? Have they identified actual examples of government racism that they have identified and eliminated?

Suryanarayana’s response: “There is plenty of data identifying government racism. Two places that can help you learn more about that are the Vermont League of Cities & Towns (VLCT) Equity Committee (for Vermont info), and the National League of Cities (for nationwide information). Another nationwide organization with plenty of helpful data and examples of best practices is the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE).”

Actually, there is no data at all presented at these resources identifying government racism. I presume she is referring to evidence of racial disparities – not proof of racism (though racist intent is imputed or presumed). The VLCT site boasts how its inclusion statement is being adopted by more towns, but contains nothing about what actual work or action is to be undertaken, or what policies must be reformed or eliminated.

The website Government Alliance on Race & Equity, GARE, defines the “work” as spreading ideological conclusions without either proving those assumptions are true, or identifying concrete measures of goals or success.

We will continue our foundational work — the building of a bigger we – so that you, our community of racial equity practitioners working in government, who are transforming the institutions you work in so that everyone can live dignified, healthy, and joyful lives.

…Our foundational work: co-creating interconnectedness, community, and innovation. …. the GARE Network Strategies team weaves together our foundational work – the work of building a bigger we.

“Building a bigger we” would appear to be the work of using state government for partisan advancement. This is also the stated “work” of the Racial Equity Advisory Panel: “The state’s goal is to make equity an intentional part of its work in all sectors.”

GARE claims its core purpose is to “curate and co-create new and advanced racial equity tools and resources for government practitioners” but it does not disclose what those tools are, or how or where they are to be applied, except as “tools” to do the work of spreading the unproven theory that white people are racists.

My second inquiry of Ms. Suryanarayana:

Question: What is it that these committees are to “do”? That is, the actual “work” beyond training that will impact Vermonters and reverse, eliminate, or prevent racist policies or practices? In addition to hiring practices, whatever concrete action is anticipated?

Her response: “The kinds of “doing” that will help Vermont communities move the needle revolve around revising and/or implementing internal and external policies to either introduce ways to prevent bias/discrimination or update existing policies to remove or revise practices that could result in bias/discrimination. Communities involved in the IDEAL Vermont program will be developing DEI action plans that will include things like how to ensure better community outreach and engagement, a reconsideration of how we approach government work, and how to support the work of local community groups/members who are trying to advance the DEI mission, just to name a few examples.

This is not very concrete, and no “practices that could result in bias/discrimination” are identified. Doing the work of supporting the work and approaching the work is not work: it is indoctrination. This is affirmed by Suryanarayana’s additional closing assurance:

I also attached a copy of the IDEAL Vermont brochure from earlier this year. In the short span of time since it was produced, some of the numbers have already changed (like the number of towns/cities that have adopted the Vermont Declaration of Inclusion). We are pleased that Vermont communities are trending in this direction and look forward to supporting our municipalities in this work.

So the work is getting more communities to do the work. The woke work will never end — there will never be a need to prove racist intent, or even identify racist policies, to continue in the work.

John Klar is an attorney and farmer residing in Brookfield. © Copyright True North Reports 2022. All rights reserved.

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22 thoughts on “The ‘work’ of Vermont’s new IDEAL program

  1. Hey–Don’t just blame the Dems/Progs for THIS Soviet style make-work program, it was our RINO Guv Picklenose Phil that CREATED this..”outfit” & hired Xsusana and, not to be outdone after the Pink Floyd RIOTS, Mayor Groucho Whineburger created a CITY program that’s been nothing but a THORN in his side ever since..And remember during the “lockdowns” that Picklenose also allowed MASS demonstrations AND even changed the Vt.-DOT’s graffiti policies to allow pro-BLM defacing public, state, and railroad property! And NEVER forget Picklenose’s “Snitch-Line” for Vt.’rs to “report” other “non-compliant” businesses & citizens also! Maybe one day Mike will publish some of the “best of” snitch-line “reports”, they ARE available from the VSP on request,& some are a real HOOT! But not to worry, now that Leahy’s retired the DC cash gravy train will come to a halt and maybe, just maybe, this insanity will have trouble getting financed by US.

  2. Here’s an ad for a teacher at Harwood:” Harwood Union High is seeking an enthusiastic, dedicated and progressive educator to join our English Department”

    Notice the word “progressive” in the requirements. A friend applied there and was required to bring vaccine card to the interview. He chose not to go.

    The point being that public schools all over VT are teaching this garbage and requiring anyone interested in educating young people to be on the exact same political page or need not apply. So much for diversity of thought in education. Every public school here are training students to believe in the DEI bs and everything surrounding it. Goto the district home page and see the leading image of students gathered around Bernie. Talk about wasted tax dollars

    • One has to wonder how a candidate’s “progressive” credentials would be validated? Will they go the way of New York gun permit requirements where you have to divulge access to your social media accounts? Would you have to swear an affidavit? If someone applies and is turned down due to them not being a good enough commie, would there be any options for a civil lawsuit?
      Seriously though, I can’t imaging someone teaching English who would not fit that category anyhow.

  3. What a rotten and vicious scam. These race-baiters seem to think they are superstars.
    What kind of a name is Xusanna? Is she the love-child of Malcolm X and Miles Davis?
    I bet both of them would disown her, for being such a phony.
    I never was one, but they could make me to be a racist, if I didn’t know already, all races are just human, nothing to hate about their skin color.
    If they could just get whity to be a little more racist, that would really make their day.
    Pigs.
    Fortunately I have known enough people of different races and nationalities, to know they, like me, are all human.
    These clowns never want racism or any evil to go away. What would they do for a living? Bums.

  4. There is only one “race”, that being the Human Race. Check it out for yourself. Every human being bleeds red. The real divisions come where skin color, ethnicity, religion, politics, and differences of opinion are exploited by those who stand to gain power, authority, and money in doing so. If we all got back to treating others as we would like to be treated, the money for these do-nothing programs like IDEAL could be put to much better use.

  5. What a crock of S–t, where do we get these clowns, these clowns should hang there
    heads in shame, for taking a paycheck from taxpayers….. agenda-driven nonsense !!

    When will people wake up?

  6. Asking a grifter to justify their purpose and accomplishments? The Truth is they are liars and deceivers. Their purpose is to swindle taxpayer money for their own gain and keep people demoralized and stupified. As long as Vermont taxpayers keep paying their salaries and supporting their lies, the charades and thievery will continue. They help themselves – please get that fact straight. There are copious amounts of evidence of millions of dollars collected and spent over decades – none of which improved any neighborhood or community. The grift was invented and cemented in the DNC platform decades ago. Wash, rinse, repeat = Gaslight, Collect, and Collect some more!

  7. My how far we’ve come from when there was only 2 national race baiters, Sharpton, and the Rev Jessie Jackson… now every city in every state has created worthless positions of taxpayer funded hate the white people spewers… worthless positions for worthless flatlanders.

  8. If Blacks make up 1.5% of the Vermont population…and that is probably the lowest percentage of ANY State….then why does Burlington (if it’s right) need to have a full staff of FIFTEEN PEOPLE for “diversity, equity etc…” The truth is that Blacks just don’t want to be in VT…and it isn’t because VT is full of racists….it is because VT is rural, low pay jobs, very few large industrial/manufacturing jobs…high taxation, not near any city really…..high housing costs, not much free subsidized housing and a frigid, frigid winter full of snow. So what the heck is all this DEI craziness. It is all BS!

    Does DEI work “equally” in Vermont PRISONS? If VT has only 1.5% of it’s population is Black….how is it that a much, much larger percentage of the VT prisons are Black inmates (not 1.5%!)….hard core criminals. Seems VT prisons are way overly “diversified” black, compared to what the real %.. of Blacks in prison population should be …1.5% !!!!…..so now the Prisons are racist too 🙂

  9. Our friends on the Left have mastered the art of “Circle Talk.” They bloviate on and on and on… while saying absolutely nothing.

  10. So our modern day prophets have had a revelation; Our shameful lack of DiversityEquity& Inclusiveness is gona need some correction from our overlords. This of course, is not a correction we ask for. But then, much of what elected official do doesn’t seem to be about “representing” what we might want. Representation has given way to ruling. As long as they keep giving us stuff bought with those “other guys’” money we seem tolerant of their agendas…that is, their enlighten vision of how our lives ought to be lived. Gota say…not sure this busybody level of meddlesomeness is what we had in mind for government.

  11. Thank you for digging in a new bureaucracy whose raison d’etre seems more than vaporous based on the responses given to you .
    An excellent article from Seven Days in 2007 called:” Out of Africa ..and into Vermont ” draws a very different picture than that of systemic racism thrown down the throats of Vermonters since the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd . Here is the link of the article which I suggest every reader to read , https://www.sevendaysvt.com/vermont/out-of-africa-and-into-vermont/Content?oid=2127066
    A sentence from the long but educational article: “From all I’m hearing so far, Vermont is a friendly place that doesn’t make people feel afraid,” says Jacob Bogre, president of the Association of Africans Living in Vermont. The 4-year-old group, which assists with settlement and language issues, includes between 1500 and 2000 members from 29 African countries, says Bogre, a Congolese. Most live in or around Burlington or in the White River Junction or Brattleboro areas.” Another sentence :”Ahmed Omar works about 40 hours a week at the Brixton Halal Market on North Street in Burlington while studying for a nursing degree at the Community College of Vermont.
    He loves his adopted state.
    “It’s my favorite place,” Omar, 19, says with a toothy smile. “I feel accepted here. Everyone here is my brother,” he declares, noting that he has “lots of white friends.”
    The article is very extensive and extremely positive regarding African refugees and the expensive network of services provided by Vermont . Racial slurs amongst students or checks of driver licenses by police were reported but on an anecdotal note . Sadly slurs have a hard time disappearing in society and they exist geared at many among us . However this article seems to have completely missed the systemic nature of a racist illness diagnosed by today’ politicians and activists in the summer of 2020 .

  12. Imprecise, vague language seems to typify this movement (and progressive movements in general). I would have asked her directly what IDEAL is providing beyond the protections already enshrined in Civil Rights laws. If indeed there “is plenty of data identifying government racism,” then those are Civil Rights violations and should be treated as such through the legal system. Why are they not doing that?

    • Because it’s a grift being perpetrated by the Activist Left in order to consolidate power and wealth. There’s a lot of money in racial grievance. Everyone knows it but they’re too afraid to speak up, less they be called a racist.

  13. The work they are doing is to brainwashing the population into seeing all discrepancies in outcomes as a result of structural oppression and an unjust social order. Read pedagogy of the Oppressed by Paulo Freire. Linda Darling Hammond who was responsible for implementing SEL in America in the forward to her book Social Emotional Learning Research and Practice stated that for Freire the point of all education was political and to generate a Marxist consciousness, as explained by Dr. James Lindsey in his book The Marxification of Education.

  14. This DEI grift is one of the greatest scams in recent history. Burlington has 15 employees in their DEI department alone and most other municipalities have departments too. Burlington Schools and all other public school districts have the same departments, sizes may vary. UVM and all colleges also have these departments, some very large. The number of employees in these “jobs” is mind blowing and the question is just as the article asks; what do they actually do? My friends and I call it a “black jobs program” where the only qualification necessary is a skin color and claims of racism. Nothing is improved and communities are divided by their employment cry of “RACISM!”. As long as someone has a story to tell, the do-nothing DEI employees yell from the rooftops to ensure their fat-cat salaries with zero expectations of productivity. Lateness, absences and long coffee breaks are the norm as there is no real work that needs doing, or is done. Dare to say something? Labeled the bit R.

    • You condemn these Fascists? Note will be taken of that. You will be persecuted for your opposition to Progress. Their mission is to balkanize the commoners into mutually antagonistic special interest groups, none of which will get what they want – and blame will always lie upon other special interest groups. The self-assigned mission of the high-salaried Progressives is to decide what you want, give it to you like it or not and make you pay for it. Like deciding the cats lounging on the sunny porch are too hot for their own comfort, turning the garden hose on them – and sending them the water bill. I suspect sadistic motives behind these pathological controllers. They seek power like pederasts are on the lookout for playgrounds.

  15. What a waste of taxpayers dollars. Thank you democrats. What we get is a load of verbal diarrhea lacking in substance and direction.

    • What a bunch of crap ! These folks are taking salaries from the taxpayers and doing zero “work” with it. They can’t even answer a question with any FACTS, just opinionated BS. They should be ashamed.

    • Oh Lester, I forgot to mention. There is a word for what you describe: logaria – excessive and often incoherent talkativeness or wordiness.

      Sound like a certain white house figure ?

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