As an organization a lot of what we do is fueled by the concept of social justice. Therefore, it's important that people know what that is. The following is an explanation of the concept:
Social justice embodies the vision of a society that is equitable and in which all members are physically and psychologically safe.* Social justice also demands that all people have a right to basic human dignity and to have their basic economic needs met. Our commitment to social justice recognizes that health is affected by a host of social factors. It is not possible to address trauma and violence without also wrestling with poverty, racism, sexism, classism, homophobia and all other forms of stigma. Because of this, we cannot ignore deep seated inequalities as we seek answers to problems like violence and trauma. Rather, we must struggle with these problems clearly and honestly.**
*From: Barry S. Levy and Victor Sidel. The nature of social injustice and its impact on public health, p.8. In: Social Injustice and Public Health, Barry S. Levy and Victor Sidel, editors. Oxford Press, 2006, 529 pp.
At Dorothy’s Place we are committed to the practice of social justice, starting in Salinas’ Chinatown, where we serve the poor, the traumatized, the chronically homeless. Our organization is a reliable resource that fulfills basic needs and actively assists our consumers into temporary and permanent housing.
Our services reach beyond those who live in our neighborhood (who number 150-200) to the hundreds of people we serve from throughout Monterey County who are seeking shelter and permanent housing. The lack of safe, affordable, and permanent housing is an injustice that our programs address. See Our Services to learn about our programs.
Salinas’ Chinatown is in a period of carefully planned growth. We welcome the implementation of new programs and projects and believe these changes are in the best interest of those we serve. We refer to those we serve as “consumers”, a ‘label’ that we believe levels the field and is the least discriminatory.
As the neighborhood changes, we must change our methods of service. We believe in consumer autonomy and their right to make their own decisions. We know our consumers, the people we serve, are able to consider their needs and determine what is best for them. Respecting this, as a partner, Dorothy’s Place will support our consumers as they work toward meeting their goals.