Skip to main content

Racial Justice & Equity

“Racism is an underlying or root cause of health inequities and leads to unfair outcomes between racial and ethnic groups. Different geographic areas and various racial and ethnic groups experience challenges or advantages that lead to stark differences in life expectancy, infant mortality, poverty, and more” (County Health Rankings, 2021).

In 2021, WNC residents were asked a series of questions regarding race, ethnicity, and inequality. In Jackson County, one quarter of the population disagreed that the community is a welcoming place for people of all races and ethnicities. In comparison, Jackson County’s percentage was higher than all other WNC counties. Over the course of their lifetime, 12.9% reported they have often or sometimes been threatened or harassed due to their race/ethnicity, and 3.7% were often or sometimes treated unfairly when seeking medical care due to race/ethnicity. Further, 16.7% were often or sometimes treated unfairly at school over the course of their lifetime (WNC Health Network, 2021). Sourced from Jackson County Community Health Assessment 2021 by the Department of Public Health.

Community Partners that actively work with WCU in the Racial Equity & Justice focus area are listed below. If you are interested in working on a project with one of these organization, please contact the CCESL office. For all volunteer opportunities, visit the CCESL Engage page.

NAACP (Jackson County Branch)

The NAACP was founded Feb. 12. 1909 and is the nation’s oldest, largest and most widely recognized grassroots–based civil rights organization. Its more than half-million members and supporters throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.

Office of Web Services