The Just Communities Central Coast (JCCC) organization will be dissolved effective August 31, due to “insufficient funding, structural deficits, and changes in the external environment.”
The group cited the COVID-19 pandemic as the most damaging to the organization, and a significant factor in the decision to close. The shift to virtual programming “produced debilitating limitations to JCCC’s core strengths: Workshops, consciousness-raising, building relationships, and professional development,” read the announcement sent out by JCCC. Despite efforts to shift these services, the group said it could not establish the “sustainable structural footing,” necessary to continue operating.
The organization also said it would not be able to provide new services and will focus on honoring existing partnerships and negotiating the transfer of other programs.
JCCC is best known for the work done to help close the achievement and opportunity gaps at educational institutions in Santa Barbara, such as the Santa Barbara Unified School District (SBUSD) and Santa Barbara City College. The group mainly focused on providing JCCC-led educational experiences on implicit bias, racism, sexism, heterosexism, class privilege, and other forms of oppression and injustice.
In 2018, Fair Education Santa Barbara filed a lawsuit against JCCC and SBUSD, which asserted the group’s anti-bias training courses were a radical attempt to indoctrinate teachers and students, and that the district had not done a competitive bid for the contract. The Santa Barbara Superior Court and a three-justice panel ruled that the district had violated no laws by entering into a contract with JCCC.