The Salem Award Foundation for Human Rights and Social Justice was established in 1992, the tercentenary of the Salem Witch Trials. In 2018, we changed our name to Voices Against Injustice to better reflect our mission and our work. We focus on promoting awareness of social injustice issues, recognizing and celebrating individuals and organizations who work to confront fear and social injustice with courage, and creating programs and events that help foster tolerance, understanding and reconciliation within the communities we serve.
- Offering educational programming that broadens the community's awareness and understanding of current issues of human rights and social justice.
There are many lessons from the events of 1692 in Salem. Here are the lessons that have inspired us to take action.
“The Trials haunt us as evidence of the victory of prejudice over reason, and the victory of fear over courage. Cultivating the will and the courage to see clearly beyond prejudice safeguards us from “witch hunts” of all kinds.
They remind us that the mechanics of hate can take on a life of their own, particularly in communities already grappling with economic, political, and social divisions. Building community across difference and dedicating ourselves to economic, political and social equality engages the lessons of Salem.
The Witch Trials, with the vast majority of the accused already in positions of marginalization (in this case women), highlight the importance of protecting and safeguarding those at the edges of our society and our communities. When we stand up with and defend anyone on the margins, as well as those whose voices have been silenced, we honor the history of 1692.
The logo for Voices Against Injustice represents both those suffering from injustice, who may be unable to speak for themselves, and those who have the courage and the will to speak for them. It is a contemporary design because our focus is on what is happening in our world now and what can be done to promote human rights today.