“Law enforcement reports that hate crime incidents in the US have increased 30% since 2015, and identifies more than 1,000 hate groups in the US--75 of those are in Florida alone. If these statistics concern you, you will want to join us for this all-day conference that will help us understand the root causes of hatred and bigotry and explore ways to create positive change.” Jam and All Interfaith
Jam and All Interfaith organized a conference themed, Transforming Bigotry and Hate: From Awareness to Action to mark World Interfaith Harmony Week. Cooperation Circles; Interfaith Cafe and the Abrahamic Reunion took part in this conference.
This event explored the root causes of hatred and tasked participants to create positive actions.
Among the topics discussed was “Managing Your Prejudices,” an engaging interactive session by Gail Price Wise, founder, and president of the Florida Center for Cultural Competence; she led participants in effective processes that would help make participants aware of their own implicit biases and how to handle them.
A panel of local faith leaders participated in becoming aware of hate and bigotry, in their communities and their wider faith traditions, and examples of their response to it.
Former White Supremacist Arno Michaelis. Once a leader of a worldwide racist skinhead organization and lead singer of the hate-metal band Centurion, Michaelis is now an educator for Serve 2 Unite, and is the author of the book “Life After Hate.”
He was invited to share from personal experience what draws people to White Nationalism and bigotry, how we can help prevent it, and how bigotry and hate can be transformed. Q & A following his address.
In addition, workshop groups led by skilled local leaders were part of the agenda where conference participants could share personal knowledge and experiences of bigotry and hate, and work together to create positive actions and responses to it in our community.
To sum up the conference, participants engaged in breakout workshop groups where they created action statements and concluded the workshop with a call to action.