Communities In Schools of Federal Way stands together with the black community to mourn the senseless murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and countless others who are victims of police brutality and systemic racism. These acts of violence are manifestations of the deeply embedded and structural inequities and injustices that far too many of our young people encounter on a regular basis. These tragic events are neither accidents nor isolated incidents and they serve as a reminder that we still have much work to do in creating anti-racist environments for all of our young people—in our schools, our communities, our nation, and our world. As a youth serving organization, we have a responsibility to ensure that we are doing everything in our power to disrupt systems of oppression, interrupt discriminatory behavior, highlight and call out overt and covert white supremacy and privilege, and condemn violence against our youth of color.
These recent events, on top of the long and blatant history of disregard for black and brown bodies in this country, leave us with a clear affirmation that we need to intensify our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. If we are to successfully advocate for our students and our families, we need to stand tall and stand firm in the face of injustice and the normalization of racial oppression. We need to amplify the voices of our students of color and honor their experiences and histories in meaningful and substantive ways, including pushing for systemic change. We need to counteract the imbalance of access, power, and privilege that leads to generational disadvantage and disparities. We will not be silent, neutral, or indifferent, and we urge our donors, volunteers, partners, and supporters to join us in our unrelenting stance.
This summer, we will be welcoming input from our students, parents, and communities of color on how we can grow in our advocacy and allyship and how to best acknowledge and support the additional trauma that our youth of color have now witnessed and experienced. We will use this input to create action plans for when school resumes in the fall. Please join us in being a part of the conversation by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
To all our Black students and staff: You matter. Black lives matter. We hear you, we see you, and we support you.