PHS ASB presents:
The History of Piedmont
The Piedmont community must recognize its problematic past so it can build a more inclusive city, Piedmont High School students leaders said last Monday at their presentation, the History of Piedmont: Racism and Redlining.
“Whether you have perpetuated, witnessed, or experienced discrimination, everyone is affected by it,” said Hailey Marshburn, a senior and one of the event’s organizers. “Despite this awareness, Piedmont has a culture that tends to overlook it.”
The interactive presentation was created and organized by Hailey Marshburn, Phoenix Nwokedi, Dahlia Saffouri, Valentina Prieto-Black, Jack Cramer and members of the PHS Associated Student Body. It featured dozens of students, who quizzed the audience on whether certain incidents happened in Piedmont or elsewhere.
The students also discussed how redlining — a system in which certain groups of people are prevented from living in certain neighborhoods — has shaped the city.
“We know that this culture can’t be changed in one presentation, so today is just the start of the work we’re hoping to continue for years to come,” Marshburn said. “We are presenting today about the history of Piedmont and how it still affects us today.”
The Piedmont Anti-Racism and Diversity Committee (PADC) supported the presentation at the Alan Harvey Theater, which was filled with more than 150 people. After the presentation, the audience also broke into small groups for lively discussions.
“We need to be aware of Piedmont’s history as we make decisions about our housing, our schools, our police, and our elected officials,” said Ellen Lee, PADC president. “It touches everything we do.”
The History of Piedmont was first presented last spring to PHS and MHS juniors and seniors. It will also be given to PHS sophomores and juniors next week.