The Sankofa Bird from the African culture symbolizes the need for building our future, while remembering our past.
Dr. Brooks is not a newcomer in addressing racial and social justice issues. In 1990 she created the phraseology that “Pittsburgh is an Apartheid City.” The media refused to cover the events that happened in Crestas Terrace. Foundations provided limited funding to the organization, and some provided no assistance because they could not deal with the reality of the name. Others called her militant and angry for speaking out against social injustice. She has not changed, and will represent the issues of all citizens regardless of race, gender, age, disability, income status…
Citizens Against Domestic Apartheid (CADAprograms) was founded in 1990 by Dr. Janis C. Brooks (Ph.D.) as a result of several incidents of extreme police brutality in the historic African American community of Crestas Terrace in North Versailles, Pennsylvania. Dr. Brooks was a forerunner. Most organizations were not focusing on nor addressing police brutality issues. Residents, young and old, male and female, witnessed:
1) A young man beaten by a police officer and forced to walk to the squad car with his pants around his ankles (Maryland and Palma Avenues).
2) A young female forced to the ground and handcuffed because she verbally disagreed with what she had seen. She required medical assistance. Her baby, who was being held by her grandmother, witnessed this.
3) Police officers at the end of a dead end street (Milligan Avenue) surrounded a young man who was forced to lay prostrate on the ground, handcuffed, with a shotgun to his head. The police officer’s foot was on the young man’s neck.
4) Youth being chased throughout the community by police officers with weapons drawn. Despite repeated requests by the community for assistance from several political entities, no assistance was provided. Acts of violence of this nature were commonplace in South Africa but were not expected to be tolerated or witnessed in America, thus the name of the organization.
The name was changed in 1993 to Citizens to Abolish Domestic Apartheid to stress and to highlight that full societal access and social equity is guaranteed to all regardless of race, creed, color, gender, or age. The organization continued to focus on education, social justice issues, and family preservation. The reality for many of America’s minorities and poor falls short of the ideal presented as an inalienable right. It is CADAprograms assertion that inclusiveness of all individuals and the acceptance of diverse cultures are essential in embracing the commonality of all individuals.