Jun 10, 2020

Standing Together with Our Black Community

By Steve Weber, Jenna Burrell, and Catherine Cronquist Browning

We write to affirm and amplify Chancellor Christ and Vice Chancellor Dubón’s statement from Friday, May 29, 2020. We are horrified and outraged by the racist killings that have taken place recently and by the continuing violent legacy of racism and white supremacy in the United States. We stand together with our Black community at this time of great pain, stress, grief, anger, and exhaustion.

The chancellor and vice chancellor have called on us all to say the names of the recent victims: Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd, who were killed, and Christian Cooper, who was the victim of a racist attempt to use the police as a weapon; we add the name of Tony McDade, a Black transgender man who was killed on May 27. We acknowledge their humanity and commit to doing what we can to build a more just society. We ask each of you to consider what personal and professional commitments you can make in the service of justice.

Our anti-racist work is ongoing. Our response to anti-Black violence and racial bias in society will not be covered in one message, one program, or one discussion. We know this work will continue to be complex and challenging, and we are committed to the long-term struggle for justice.

At this very difficult time, we know that members of our community may need support. We encourage you to review and use existing campus wellness resources for students, faculty, and staff.

We also want to encourage everyone, particularly students, faculty, and staff of color, to reach out to us any time with thoughts, concerns, and ideas. Much work is underway at the I School and much remains to be done. Your voices and needs are important and we are here to listen.

We call on everyone to reflect on our campus Principles of Community and to focus on making specific, personal commitments to ensure that Black members of our community feel a sense of belonging.

Last updated:

June 10, 2020