14 Jan Building toward economic justice in the South
As we remember the towering legacy of Dr. King, we honor his contributions to the fight for civil rights and economic justice. In my work in Mississippi, we feel the sharp edge of economic precarity and working poverty every day, and rededicate ourselves to the mission that Dr. King articulated so powerfully.
I work with DSC Training Academy, located in Jackson, Mississippi—a resilient, majority-Black city that labors under the cloud of systemic racism and poverty. (We even fight for access to clean water!) Our work focuses on empowering both men and women by ensuring that they’re able to care for themselves and their families without sacrificing their jobs or economic security to finally grasp the American Dream.
We equip and prepare Mississippians with vital skills in the transportation industry, which can lead to higher wages in sustainable employment. These skills, tools and resources enable people to empower themselves and their families, and to improve their standard of living.
The COVID-19 pandemic exposed how essential our nation’s truckers are to the supply chain across the United States. It also revealed that the trucking industry needs a larger force of reliable workers. At DSC, we believe that workforce should be diverse, so we are recruiting youth, women, and people of color into our training and employment program, with a particular focus on women of color.
Turning the tide on generations of exclusion
The women we work with are looking for new employment opportunities that will provide economic security. They want jobs that protect them from economic upheavals resulting from natural and human-made disasters; provide healthcare and open employment opportunities; and enable them to earn a decent wage regardless of the quality of their formal education.
Historically, workers of color—especially in the South—have been denied economic stability and income equality because of race, gender, and class discrimination. We believe that non-traditional jobs like trucking can lift many out of poverty and provide them with opportunities to stabilize their lives, move their families and communities forward, and finally grasp hold of the American Dream.