Monica McLemore at Know Her Truths Conference

Drs. Harris-Perry and McLemore at the Know Her Truths Conference

At the end of April, Assistant Professor in the School of Nursing Monica McLemore, PhD, MPH, RN, worked with Know Her Truths conference organizer Melissa Harris-Perry, PhD, and 200 scholars across the country to develop the women and girls of color research agenda on behalf of the White House and the newly formed Congressional Caucus on Women and Girls of Color. The event examined research on the lives of women and girls of color to fortify the most prominent academics and policymakers to devise new solutions to longstanding injustices and inequities.

Panelists discussed the justice work of black women writers, the sexual-abuse-to-prison pipeline, the role of storytelling and photography for the voices of women of color, and how to better organize black women and girls. Monica was the first solo speaker behind a powerful panel from Philadelphia who are using story telling to help young girls heal from sex trafficking. She shared the community engagement methodology currently being used in the Preterm Birth Initiative (PTBi) at UCSF.

The purpose of the conference was to develop an Intersectional Research Agenda (IRA) where collective work can be done to support the development of the knowledge base and basic research to better understand women and girls of color and their unique policy, health, education, and economic needs. Work toward the refinement of the IRA and specific working groups will continue and Monica volunteered to begin to make deposits to this IRA by working specifically to:

  • Develop a repository for essential documents across the research platform including IRB applications and community engagement materials;
  • Provide a model of community engagement (UK Lind Alliance method) that is currently being used at UCSF within the PTBI.
  • Provide support and mentorship to the collective members.

Vice Chancellor Renee Navarro, the Office of Diversity and Outreach staff, and Monica will strategize next steps to follow on this important foundation with Dr. Harris-Perry. To learn more, follow the conference live stream and explore highlights on Twitter #KnowHerTruths.

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