Group organizes to ‘Better Beavercreek,’ plans to fight racism

Citizens for a Better Beavercreek's Talkback event on July 13th held at This Old Couch in Beavercreek. PHOTO: Jackie Morgan
Caption
Citizens for a Better Beavercreek's Talkback event on July 13th held at This Old Couch in Beavercreek. PHOTO: Jackie Morgan

After the killing of George Floyd on May 25 and the national outrage that followed, some Beavercreek business owners began discussing the problems in their own backyard.

Those conversations led to arranging a meeting with a couple of Beavercreek police officers, which led to a larger meeting with Beavercreek Mayor Bob Stone about the potential race issues within the Beavercreek community and now, “Citizens for a Better Beavercreek” is a growing organization of about 300 residents seeking change.

“Our Facebook group was created initially to share information and invite people to attend our Community Talkback event, but it has turned into so much more in the past two months,” said Tabitha Guidone, Citizens for a Better Beavercreek organizer. “The speed that our group grew through word of mouth alone and the passion we’ve already seen in our members make it clear that there is a need for a group like this in Beavercreek.”

ExploreCrawford family calls for new state law during Beavercreek rally

The newly-formed group’s mission statement is “We are working to make Beavercreek more welcoming, more inclusive, and more equitable for our BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ residents, visitors, and employees. We want to help our neighbors and the greater community work for diversity, equity, and inclusion in our schools, local government, and police.”

At a Community Talkback event on July 13, one of the group’s first official events, people who attended spoke about racial profiling and bullying that has occurred. Organizers said it was disheartening to hear those stories about their community. The event was held in partnership with Dayton’s Solution Movement.

“You can think that everything is fine inside the four walls of your box – but when you poke your head out you see there is much work to be done,” said Jennifer Doom, Citizens for a Better Beavercreek Organizer. “Without any accompanying public efforts to demonstrate that Beavercreek would welcome non-white members, it makes sense that BIPOC would choose someplace else.”

ExploreBeavercreek asking voters to pass 1% income tax in November

The organization cited Beavercreek’s demographic statistics on census.gov to provide what they said was evidence that Beavercreek seems to be unappealing to non-white people.

As of July 1, 2019, Ohio’s population was 13.1% Black, according to U.S. Census data; 2.1 % of Beavercreek’s residents are Black. Fairborn, in contrast, is 9% Black. Xenia is 13.7% Black.

“Why is there such a disparity between our city’s demographics and those of our nearby cities and our state? Is it our reputation in the BIPOC community? Is it our history? We want to find out,” Doom said.

Since its creation on July 1, membership has grown to include nearly 300 members.

The group is currently establishing three “action groups” surrounding Beavercreek policing, government and schools.

ExploreOregon District’s Trolley Stop celebrates 25 years of food, drinks and fun with throwback prices

Six women make up the CBB leadership team -- Doom, Guidone, Lori Lucas, Jackie Morgan, Gina Turlington and Cherie Washington White.

The group said its actively seeking more BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ community members who are interested in leading with them.

For more information or to join CBB, people can contact the leadership team at citizensforabetterbeavercreek@gmail.com or visit the Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/citizensforabetterbeavercreek.