Truth and Reconciliation

Implement solutions to specific harms that create and perpetuate racial disparities.

History

In October 2020, the City Council approved a resolution establishing a truth and reconciliation process for the City of Minneapolis.

Goals

The ultimate goal of this process is to begin putting specific solutions in action towards specific harms that created and perpetuate racial disparities with a prioritized focus on healing with historically:

  • Black American descendants of slavery, and
  • American Indian/Indigenous communities

Resolution

The resolution calls for the establishment of a working group that will:

  • Explore the creation of the truth and reconciliation process
  • Study the meaning of reconciliation
  • Research different models of truth and reconciliation commissions
  • Understand the impact that such a process might have on the City of Minneapolis and its residents.

Truth and reconciliation processes have taken place all over the world. Some places include South Africa after the end of Apartheid and in Sierra Leone after the end of an 11-year civil war.

Read the resolution on the truth and reconciliation process

People working and collaborating

 

Next steps

Racial Equity, Inclusion & Belonging (REIB) will lead this enterprise-wide effort. We'll collaborate with other City leaders to explore forming the truth and reconciliation process.

Key work includes consulting with:

  • local and national truth and reconciliation experts
  • People skilled in conflict resolution
  • Other stakeholders from the community

The work also involves:

  • Developing the organizational capacity and framework required for a City-led process
  • Recommending an approach for establishing a truth and reconciliation commission.

A report back on the proposed truth and reconciliation process and commission framework was due to the City Council in June 2021.

Racism as a public health emergency

This latest action follows another resolution passed by the City Council in July. This resolution declared racism a public health emergency in the City of Minneapolis. City leaders committed to a series of action steps to dedicate more resources to racial equity work.

Read the racism as public health emergency resolution

 

Words from leadership

“Defining a more just future requires an honest and thorough understanding of our past, and that’s the process we’re undertaking,” said Mayor Jacob Frey. “By refusing to ignore an often painful history, we commit ourselves to creating that future. I commend Council Vice President Jenkins for her leadership in carrying this important work forward.”

“We are in some very difficult and challenging times in our city and our nation,” said City Council Vice President Andrea Jenkins. “We must tell the truth and then begin to address that truth.”

Truth and reconciliation workgroup

To understand the impact that such a process might have on the City of Minneapolis and its residents, the resolution calls for the establishment of a working group. This work group will explore the creation of the truth and reconciliation process.

This group is made up of:

  • City staff
  • Those who have knowledge of reconciliation and healing processes
  • Community residents

More information

Focus of the group

This group will study the meaning of reconciliation and research different models of truth and reconciliation commissions.

Note: this workgroup is not a truth and reconciliation commission.

Meetings and recommendations

The truth and reconciliation workgroup will meet bi-weekly through the end of January. They brought forth recommendations to the Policy & Government Oversight Committee in June 2021.

Staff leadership for the truth and reconciliation workgroup is provided by the City’s Division of Racial Equity, Inclusion and Belonging. This is in collaboration with Council Vice President, Andrea Jenkins.

Email Racial Equity with questions

Large meeting around conference table

 

Members of the group

The group's confirmed members include:

  • C Terrence Anderson, director of community-based research for the University of Minnesota’s Center for Urban & Regional Affairs (CURA).
  • Elder Atum Azzahir, CEO of the Cultural Wellness Center.
  • Dr. Kate Beane, Ph.D., Dakota historian, and a member of the Flandreau Santee Dakota tribal.
  • Dr. Rose Brewer, professor of African American & African Studies at the University of Minnesota.
  • Rev. Curtiss DeYoung, CEO of the Minnesota Council of Churches.
  • Rev. Jim Bear Jacobs, program director for racial justice for the Minnesota Council of Churches.
  • LaJune Lange, Honorary Consul of South Africa in Minnesota and former Hennepin County District Court Judge.
  • Robert Lilligren, president and CEO of the Native American Community Development Institute.
  • Christine Diindiisi McCleave, CEO of The National Native American Boarding School Healing.
  • Rev. Shawn Moore of Living Spirit UMC.
  • Melissa Olson, director of partnerships and operations for MIGIZI Communications.
  • Melanie Plucinski, a policy analyst for Public Health Law Center at Mitchell Hamline School of Law.
  • Sandra Richardson of the People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond.
  • Sharon Sayles-Belton, former Minneapolis mayor.

City of Minneapolis departments

  • Mayor’s Office
  • City Council
  • Civil Rights Department
  • Office of Public Service
  • City Attorney’s Office
  • City Clerk

Truth and reconciliation resources

You can see resources that can help you understand racial reconciliation.

Contact us

Racial Equity, Inclusion and Belonging

Phone

 

Address

City Hall
350 S. 5th St, Room 223
Minneapolis, MN 55415