Will Lonnie Bunch and the Smithsonian change the conversation and culture surrounding white supremacy?

CULTURE | The significance of Lonnie Bunch’s appointment as the 14th secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, goes far beyond the fact that he is the first African American to hold the job. He is in a unique position to grapple with the institution’s history, which is bound up in complicated ways with the history of white supremacy. (WaPo, 5/28)

Bunch can talk comfortably, in public, about white supremacy which could change not only the Smithsonian, but also the culture of the country it represents. Bunch takes over at a moment of extreme peril in human history, and will lead perhaps the only institution in American life that has both the intellectual capacity and the public credibility to confront the three greatest dangers we now face: climate change, the cultural and technological corruption of democratic processes, and white supremacy and neo-nationalism, three things that will be increasingly interconnected … the fact that Bunch can utter the words “white supremacy” is occasion for hope … if you can anatomize it and explain it to Americans, you can probably solve a host of other problems, too. Bunch has long since demonstrated he can do exactly that.

PHILANTHROPY/NONPROFITS | Yesterday, The Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation announced an innovative partnership with Catchafire to bring capacity building support to more than 100 nonprofits in the D.C. metropolitan area. Through this partnership, select Cafritz grantees will have access to virtual, skills-based volunteers, to help them strengthen their infrastructure, build their capacity, and allow staff to focus on achieving their organization’s programmatic goals. Read the press release here.

WORKFORCE | The DC Central Kitchen’s latest culinary arts program for 18-24 year-olds aims to help connect them to job opportunities in DC’s booming restaurant industry. The program is run out the THEARC in Ward 8. (WaPo, 5/27)

DISTRICT
– On Tuesday the DC Council added millions to subsidize the District’s only public hospital and to repair deteriorated public housing stock, with the passage of a $15.5 billion budget for the next fiscal year, but made cuts in other areas, including a workforce housing fund and free fares on Circulator buses. (WaPo, 5/28)

After a heated fight about race and schools, DC Council decides: Banneker will move to Shaw (WaPo, 5/28)

Need For Urgent Public Housing Repairs Prompts DC Council To Tap Controversial Source Of Money (WAMU, 5/28)

HOUSING | Getting a home near Amazon’s HQ2 in Crystal City is already a lot harder than it was before the announcement that they were coming to town. (WBJ, 5/27)

PUBLIC SAFETY | ‘This Will Not Be the New Normal’: DC Police Prepare For Possible Spike In Violence (WAMU, 5/28)

TRANSIT | As Metro shutdown arrives, dread pervades the Yellow and Blue lines (WaPo, 5/27)

NONPROFITS/RACIAL EQUITY | The Building Movement Project has just released Nonprofit Executives and the Racial Leadership Gap: A Race to Lead Brief which explores the gaps between executive leaders of color and white leaders and compares nonprofit executives to respondents in staff positions.


How to get to the beach this summer without a car.

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back on Thursday!

– Buffy

Middle-income seniors may be unable to afford housing and care in the future

HOUSING
–  According to a recent study published in the journal Health Affairs, the number of middle-income seniors is projected to soar in the next 10 years, and many of them will be unable to afford housing and care. In metropolitan areas such as DC, where the cost of living is higher than the national average, the problem is especially acute. (WaPo, 5/28)

Seniors who have too much income to qualify for government-subsidized housing and don’t make enough to live in a luxury development will be left behind … and for those without homes to sell or borrow against, the outlook is bleak: In 2029, 81 percent of middle-income seniors without equity in housing will have an annual income that is below the projected annual $62,000 for assisted living rent and estimated out of pocket medical spending, the study found … “Even if we assume that seniors devote 100 percent of their annual income to seniors housing — setting aside any personal expenses — only 19 percent of middle-income seniors will have financial resources that exceed today’s costs of assisted living,” the study said.

Opinion: The 2020 DC Council budget may cut the Affordable Housing Preservation Tool, which provides an opportunity for residents to stay in their homes with affordable rents. Eliminating funding for the AHPF in 2020 means, at minimum, a $60 million cut in funds to preserve affordable housing. (GGWash, 5/24)

EDUCATION | Five new charter schools are planned for the District for the 2020-2021 academic year but there are concerns that city resources will be affected and their opening may result in more empty seats at existing middle and high schools that are struggling to attract students. (WaPo, 5/26)

ENVIRONMENT | Can the DC area clean up its waste problem? (WTOP, 5/27)

POVERTY/HUNGER | It’s World Hunger Day. Here’s why so many people still suffer from malnutrition. (WaPo, 5/28)

DISTRICT | Long-standing tax breaks for tech companies in the District could be cut and the revenue used instead to fund social services. (WAMU, 5/27)

LGBTQIA | Transgender Military Members Say Ban Is ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell 2.0’ (WAMU, 5/28)

GUN VIOLENCE | Giving Up Guns: High-Risk Veterans Are Ready To Talk About It (WAMU, 5/24)

PHILANTHROPY | One Foundation CEO’s Plan to Respond to Today’s Outrages. What’s Yours? (Chronicle, 5/22)


Hunting for mushrooms with the Mycological Association of Washington.

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back on Wednesday and Thursday!

– Buffy

Fairfax County Public School Board allocates $1 million to remedy isolation and restraint practices

VIRGINIA | In a move signaling a focus on special education, the Fairfax County Public School Board has adopted a $3 billion dollar budget for the next school year, which is a 4.1% increase from the previous year. The budget includes over $1 million to remedy isolation and restraint practices in the district. (WAMU, 5/24)

Fairfax County Schools district guidelines prohibit seclusion “unless there is a dangerous situation, and seclusion/restraint is necessary to protect the student or another person or person” but last March an investigation revealed hundreds of cases in which elementary students in schools designed to serve students with special needs were secluded and restrained. Next school year’s budget will include funding for multiple teaching-specialist positions, including five behavioral specialists … “All of the people who provide supports to these children through direct education supports or physical supports, we are addressing their compensation with this budget,” said Fairfax school board chair Karen Corbett Sanders, who is also planning on hiring a new special education ombudsman.

CENSUS 2020 | David Biemesderfer, President & CEO of United Philanthropy Forum, has put out a call for philanthropy to help meet the unprecedented challenges facing the 2020 census, amplifying the joint message from the Ford, JPB, Kellogg, and Open Societies Foundations.

REMINDER: WRAG is co-convening, along with 14 funders and other institutions, a day-long forum called Interventions That Work: Census 2020 & Hard-to-Reach Communities. The event will bring together the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to bridge the gap between information and action necessary to enable an accurate census. Learn more and register here by May 30th.

LGBTQIA | New Trump administration rule would weaken protections for transgender people in health care (WaPo, 5/24)

EDUCATION
– The Montgomery County Council has approved a $5.8 billion budget for the 2020 fiscal year, which includes $2.6 billion for schools, an increase of more than $80 million. (WTOP, 5/23)

– Prince George’s teachers reach a deal to restore raises lost during the recession (WaPo, 5/23)

RACISM | In her first official act outside a ceremonial bill signing, newly elected speaker Adrienne Jones sought to remove the last item commemorating the Confederacy from the Maryland State House — a plaque that pays tribute to soldiers who fought on both sides of the Civil War. (WaPo, 5/23)

HOUSING | How Housing Supply Became the Most Controversial Issue in Urbanism (CityLab, 5/23)

DISTRICT | The new statehood effort called 51 For 51 launched on Tuesday as a “coalition comprised of DC -based and national groups committed to equal representation rights for DC’s over 700,000 residents.” (dcist, 5/23)

JUVENILE JUSTICE | Federal Prosecutors Have Opposed Every Request For Early Release Under A Local Law Aimed At Juvenile Offenders (dcist, 5/23)

FOUNDATIONS | Listen Up, Grant Makers: Radio Is a Hot Way to Advance Knowledge and Culture (Chronicle, 5/23)

PHILANTHROPY | Four ways philanthropy can support the diversity of the Asian American Pacific Islander population. (NCRP, 5/14)


Social Sector Job Openings 

Development Associate | Sitar Arts Center – New!
Grants Manager | Arabella Advisors
Institutional Development Officer | Martha’s Table
Development Manager, Washington, DC | Reading Partners
Director of Individual Giving | Horizons Greater Washington
Grants Compliance Manager | Loudoun Abused Women’s Shelter
Director of Communications, Technology, and Administration | Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers
Director of Corporate and Foundation Advancement | Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers
Engagement Officer | Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute
Grants and Communications Associate | Neighborhood Health
Senior Manager of Member Engagement and Partnerships | United Philanthropy Forum
Director of Development​ | ​Washington Tennis & Education Foundation
Director of Operations​ | ​Washington Tennis & Education Foundation
Director, Flamboyan Arts Fund​ | ​Flamboyan Foundation
Membership Director​ | ​Council on Foundations
Development Director​ | ​Council on Foundations
Communications Director​ |​ Council on Foundations
Learning Engagement Manager​ | ​ Council on Foundations
Program Coordinator | TGR Foundation – A Tiger Woods Charity
Individual Giving Manager | Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company

Hiring? Post your job on WRAG’s job board and get it included in the Daily! Free for members; $60/60 days for non-members. Details here.


Community Calendar

To add an event to WRAG’s community calendar, email Rebekah Seder. Click here to view the community calendar.


Looking for ideas about what to do in DC this Memorial Day?

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back next week on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday!

– Buffy

The connection between high asthma rates and poor housing conditions in the District

HOUSING
– According to Dr. Ankoor Shah, medical director of the Children’s National Medical Center, the District has an “epidemic” child asthma problem that is exacerbated by poor housing conditions and disproportionately affects low-income children of color, specifically in Wards 7 and 8. (CP, 5/22)

Shah rattles off the statistics: Fourteen percent of children in DC have asthma, and Children’s National takes the bulk of those cases … and emergency room data show that children who live in Ward 8 have 20 to 25 times the number of ER visits, total, as their counterparts who live in more affluent Northwest neighborhoods … same with hospitalization rates for asthma, which are 10 times higher for Ward 8 kids … and exacerbating, if not directly contributing, to these asthma cases are poor housing conditions, Shah says.

– Bowser and DC Council offer competing visions on affordable-housing crisis (WaPo, 5/22)

ENVIRONMENT | New law will require half of Maryland power to come from renewable sources by 2030 (WaPo, 5/22)

EDUCATION | Many School Districts Hesitate To Say Students Have Dyslexia. That Can Lead To Problems (WAMU, 5/20)

TRANSIT
– An upcoming 15-week Metro shutdown of six stations in Virginia will affect an estimated 17,000 travelers daily. (WaPo, 5/22)

– E-Bikes And Scooters Will Be Allowed On Some Montgomery County Trails (WAMU, 5/20)

DISTRICT | DC parks are the best in the country according to this year’s ParkScore, the Trust for Public Land’s annual ranking of urban parks and recreation opportunities in the 100 largest cities in the country. (dcist, 5/22)

MONTGOMERY COUNTY | Downtown Silver Spring to get $10 million face-lift (WTOP, 5/22)

PHILANTHROPY | Billionaire Robert Smith, who pledged to wipe out the student debt of nearly 400 Morehouse College graduates this week, also plans to help African-American students get involved in internX, where STEM students can connect with companies looking to ensure their interns are drawn from a diverse pool of students. (Chronicle, 5/2)


This 80’s girl is excited – after 40 years the Stray Cats are ready for a comeback.

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back on Friday!

– Buffy

Study examines the impact of ‘adultification’ on black girls

RACIAL EQUITY | Building on research that shows adults view young black girls as older and less innocent than their white peers, the Center on Poverty and Inequality at Georgetown University Law Center has affirmed the findings in its 2017 study through interviews with black girls and women ages 12 to 60 in towns and cities of various sizes across the United States. (WAMU, 5/16)

Through focus groups, researchers learned that young black girls are routinely subject to adultification bias, where black girls between the ages of 5 and 9 are perceived as being much older than they actually are … which contributes to harsher punishments in school and fewer leadership and mentorship opportunities. Among the solutions discussed is the idea that improving cultural competency and gender-responsiveness can help educators better understand black girls … “Change can only come when we add action to the data” says Rebecca Epstein, the center’s executive director… “We all have a responsibility once we know this information to start changing the landscape for black girls.”

CENSUS 2020 | Four of the nation’s most prominent foundations have committed millions to ensure a complete and accurate tally in the 2020 census, and are calling on other grantmakers to provide funding as well. (Chronicle, 5/15 – Subscription)

Related: WRAG is co-convening, along with 14 funders and other institutions, a day-long forum called Interventions That Work: Census 2020 & Hard-to-Reach Communities. The event will bring together the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to bridge the gap between information and action necessary to enable an accurate census. Learn more and register here.

EDUCATION
– Opinion: Montgomery County should let kids ride free to school  (GGWash, 5/17)

– Sixty-five years after Brown V. Board of Education, Montgomery County schools are  still trying to desegregate. (Bethesda Magazine, 5/16)

ENVIRONMENT
– The Potomac-Chesapeake Dolphin Project is looking for the public to help name two dolphins that live in the Potomac River. (WaPo, 5/17)

– States take steps to strengthen environmental regulations, widening the rift between stringent state policies and the administration’s deregulatory agenda. (WaPo, 5/19)

HOUSING
HUD Rule Targeting Immigrant Families Could Evict 55,000 Children (CityLab, 5/10)

– Opinion: The region has built a lot of housing – but not enough, and not in the right places (GGWash, 5/16)

VIRGINIA | Amazon Announces Plans For Arlington HQ2 Campus (dcist, 5/17)

TRANSIT | The DC Council is going to consider citizen parking enforcers to address parking challenges. (WaPo, 5/19)

ARTS  | New DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities Director Claps Back (Afro, 5/16)

NONPROFITS | Philanthropy critic Anand Giridharadas writes that nonprofits should interrogate themselves on how the money that is fueling them was made. (NYT, 5/16)

PHILANTHROPY | Giving by Women’s Funds Has Soared. And They’re Getting More Savvy and Strategic (Inside Philanthropy, 5/14)


The new Spy Museum in the District highlights the past and takes on current day affairs.

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back on Thursday and Friday!

– Buffy

Landmark education bill will reshape Maryland’s public school system

EDUCATION | A landmark education bill designed to reshape Maryland’s public school system will become law without Gov. Larry Hogan’s signature, and will send an additional $855 million to schools over the next two years. (WaPo, 5/15)

Over the next two years, the funding will pay for school-based health centers, grants for schools where at least 80 percent of the students are eligible for free or reduced-price meals, raises for teachers — the state will provide a 1.5 percent raise if the local district gives 3 percent — and grants to improve teacher standards.

The Maryland Commission on Innovation and Excellence, also known as the Kirwan Commission, was asked in 2016 to devise a plan to create a world-class school system in Maryland and ensure that all students, regardless of race and ethnicity, are “college- and career-ready” by 10th grade. The Kirwan Commission also was charged with coming up with funding formulas to pay for the plan, but the panel released its recommendations this year without a breakdown of how the state and local governments would share the costs.

IMMIGRATION | Between 75 and 150 adult adoptees in the District and up to 1,700 Virginians are at risk of being deported. (WAMU, 5/15)

RACIAL EQUITY/HEALTH
– An emergency Task Force on Black Youth Suicide and Mental Health has been created by the Congressional Black Caucus to address access to mental health care and suicide among Black youth, including those who are LGBTQIA. (Washington Blade, 5/7)

Opioid Addiction Drug Going Mostly To Whites, Even As Black Death Rate Rises (NPR, 5/8)

CENSUS | Mayor Bowser officially kicked off the District’s 2020 Census efforts by presenting a proclamation to honor the selection of her Complete Count Committee.

CHILDREN/SAFETY | A Centers for Disease Control study has found that 1 in 14 public and charter high school students in DC has exchanged sex for something of value. Students who had been kicked out of their homes, run away or been abandoned were most likely to have exchanged sex.  (WAMU, 5/16)

HEALTHCARE | How safe are Greater Washington’s hospitals? Some earn top grades for quality and safety, and others don’t score as well. (WBJ, 5/16)

ARTS | Mayor Muriel Bowser Wants Big Changes for the City’s Arts Commission (CP, 5/16)

WOMEN/EQUALITY | June 4 marks the 100-year anniversary of Congress’ passage of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution, and there are a number of places around the Greater Washington region to learn the history of women’s suffrage. (WAMU, 5/16)


Social Sector Job Openings 

Grants Manager | Arabella Advisors – New!
Institutional Development Officer | Martha’s Table – New!
Development Manager, Washington, DC | Reading Partners – New!
Director of Individual Giving | Horizons Greater Washington
Grants Compliance Manager | Loudoun Abused Women’s Shelter
Director of Communications, Technology, and Administration | Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers
Director of Corporate and Foundation Advancement | Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers
Engagement Officer | Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute
Grants and Communications Associate | Neighborhood Health
Senior Manager of Member Engagement and Partnerships | United Philanthropy Forum
Director of Development​ | ​Washington Tennis & Education Foundation
Director of Operations​ | ​Washington Tennis & Education Foundation
Director, Flamboyan Arts Fund​ | ​Flamboyan Foundation
Membership Director​ | ​Council on Foundations
Development Director​ | ​Council on Foundations
Communications Director​ |​ Council on Foundations
Learning Engagement Manager​ | ​ Council on Foundations
Program Coordinator | TGR Foundation – A Tiger Woods Charity
Individual Giving Manager | Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company

Hiring? Post your job on WRAG’s job board and get it included in the Daily! Free for members; $60/60 days for non-members. Details here.


Community Calendar

To add an event to WRAG’s community calendar, email Rebekah Seder. Click here to view the community calendar.


Architecture is like a tree … it grows and matures and branches out. I am part of that tree, of that movement, not starting, or ending, or following anything.” I.M. Pei has died at 102.

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back next week on Monday, Thursday and Friday!

– Buffy

A disproportionate number of black people are arrested in the District for minor violations

JUSTICE/RACIAL EQUITY | A study from two watchdog groups has found that a disproportionate number of black people are arrested in the District for minor violations, including driving without a license, gambling, and smoking marijuana in public. The disparities are spread across the District and not limited to wards with high crime rates. (WaPo, 5/14)

The study was done by the DC office of the American Civil Liberties Union and a consortium of groups advocating transparency called Open the Government and is based on five years of arrest statistics … and says blacks accounted for 86 percent of the total arrests over the years examined, even though they make up slightly less than half of the District’s population … The disparity held true across 90 percent of the District’s census tracts “including the whitest parts of the city.”

HEALTHCARE | Kaiser Permanente is rolling out Thrive Local, a digital care coordination platform that makes it easier for its medical providers to connect patients to community-based social services. (NPQ, 5/8)

HOUSING
– Mayor Bowser calls for equitably distributing affordable housing and for creating enough overall housing. (GGWash, 5/13)

– ‘Build More Housing’ Is No Match for Inequality (CityLab, 5/9)

GENTRIFICATION
– The District’s Ivy City neighborhood is rapidly gentrifying and trying to preserve a sense of community. (WaPo, 5/4)

– After #DontMuteDC, this year’s Funk Parade is a call to action (WaPo, 5/11)

COMMUNITY | Alice M. Rivlin, a master of budgetary and fiscal policy who, among many roles, was an advocate for healthy communities, passed away yesterday at age 88. (WaPo, 5/14)

PUBLIC SAFETY | Lead in the District’s water is still a problem. Will the DC Council fund a plan to fix it? (GGWash, 5/13)

MARYLAND/VIRGINIA | According to an annual “Best States” survey, Maryland and Virginia are among the nation’s best states based on metrics including education, health care, the economy and public safety. (US News & World Report, 5/14)

PHILANTHROPY | Dozens of giving circles in the US recently met in Seattle to share stories, hopes and plans for building a stronger giving circle movement. (Philanthropy Women, 5/2)


Meet the “Bee Lady” of Capitol Hill

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back on Friday!

– Buffy