An Open Letter to the Community

To our community in Winchester and beyond,

At the heart of NW Works and Firefly Cafe & Bakery is our commitment to equity and diversity both in the workplace and in our community at large. As such, we would be remiss not to voice our concerns with the latest incidents of violence happening in our country, specifically against African Americans. All people deserve opportunities to succeed socially and economically, regardless of their race, ethnicity, religion, ability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and socio-economic status. This belief drives NW Works’ mission and has done so for 50 years.

We know that our nation needs to change so that encounters between law enforcement and the public are safe for all parties. As an organization that works primarily within the disability community, these incidents are especially concerning to us, as disabled individuals are disproportionately impacted and disabled people of color even more so. According to a 2019 study in the Journal of Social Issues, researchers found that up to half of all people killed by police in America have some form of disability. These numbers are unacceptable.

To all in our community working for positive change, we recognize you, we thank you, and we stand with you. We encourage everyone in our community to work toward meaningful change, whether by donating to organizations dedicated to equality, by contacting elected officials to advocate for justice, or by starting meaningful conversations with your neighbors about supporting marginalized communities. 

 

Sincerely,

NW Works’ Executive Leadership Team