There’s Another Census in Your Future — And this One Comes from the Co-op

Michelle Burke, Weavers Way Racial Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Committee

Illustration by Ariel Dinero

As we’re all likely aware by now, the United States is in the midst of conducting the 2020 census. The census is a valuable tool, providing our government with important data meant to be used to better understand how resources can be best allocated, to determine the number of congressional representatives each state should have, and for other purposes.

With that census fresh in our minds, the Racial Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee would like to ask our shoppers and members to participate in our upcoming Co-op census. We hope to gather our own valuable data that might give us more insight into the Co-op community and its needs.

In the coming months, a short questionnaire will be available to fill out in stores and online. Your engagement will positively benefit the Weavers Way community, and potentially help make it an even better place.

As the Racial DEI Committee continues our ongoing anti-racist work, we want to collect data to create baseline statistics about our stores. At the start of our work as a committee, while using data available to us at that time, we were able to gather racial demographics of the Co-op’s staff and neighborhoods that surround the stores within a one- to three-mile radius. We found that, depending on the store, the Co-op’s staff racial demographics did not reflect the racial demographics of the surrounding neighborhoods.

Seeing the differences in the data sets posed many questions. We realized that we needed more information about the people who already participate in the Co-op community in order to consciously create a more diverse, equitable and inclusive environment that is welcoming to all.

While the Co-op is typically a welcoming community hub to those who know it well, it has come to our attention that this is not always the case for those who come through our doors. We hope to change that, and to better align with our Ends — particularly “End 7”: “Weavers Way will have a welcoming culture that values diversity, openness, inclusiveness and respect in all that we do.”

We need to come together as a community to do our part, big or small, to make sure we are living up to these Ends. If we want to see change in our communities, we need to actively participate to make that happen.

Please help the Racial DEI Committee create the change we want to see at the Co-op. Stay tuned for details on the kickoff date for the census and other information.