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$615K Gift to Help U of Minnesota Address Racial Disparities in Housing

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is awarding $615,000 to the University of Minnesota Libraries' Mapping Prejudice project, which is addressing racial disparities in housing.

Mapping Prejudice PhotoCreated in 2016, the project documents and maps racial covenants β€” or clauses that were inserted into property deeds to prevent people who weren't white from buying or living on certain pieces of land β€” for public access. Its project dataset, which has been downloaded more than 5,000 times, is "fueling new scholarship" and "serves as the backbone of the Minneapolis 2040 plan, which has been hailed around the country as a daring new approach to land-use guidelines," writes the university.

The project is currently building a think tank of academics, research and community fellows who will address racial housing disparities through a two-year, community-oriented initiative called "Mapping Trust: A model for co-creative community collaboration in an academic library."

The funding from the Mellon Foundation will specifically help the project hire a new colleague who will lead its community engagement work by developing mutually beneficial collaborations with Black communities.

β€œWe are absolutely thrilled to receive what will be transformational support from the Mellon Foundation for Mapping Prejudice,” said Kirsten Delegard, director of Mapping Prejudice. β€œThis funding will allow us to continue to be a resource for the people of Minnesota and provide capacity to build meaningful, reciprocal relationships with BIPOC communities, while supporting efforts to dismantle structural racism.”

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