We are heartbroken and horrified by the murder of George Floyd. His death further exposed the deep and systemic racism that has gone unaddressed for far too long.
We need to address injustices by listening, learning, supporting, and advocating for Black communities, Indigenous communities, and communities of color who continue to experience the damaging effects of historical trauma, oppression, and systemic racism.
As a new member of the community, I'm proud of members of the University of Minnesota Senate for their statement and their commitment to social justice and societal change. I'm also proud of President Gabel for her early and bold action that other Universities and organizations are now following. And I’m especially proud of our students, particularly President of the Minnesota Student Association Jael Kerandi. Student activism, demonstrations, and calls to action give me hope that the future can be, and will be, better than the present. More needs to be done by all of us, but these actions are important first steps in our collective commitment to accountability and justice.
I'm also inspired by what I have seen in our community—the spirit of resilience, determination, support, and cooperation is remarkable. So many have come together to provide for immediate community needs of food and other essentials. We have also come together to support one another as we process our anger and grief.
As an institution of teaching and learning, as an engaged university, we are both obligated and well positioned to lead in efforts to acknowledge and dismantle systemic racism, both on and off campus, and enact real change.
I am honored to join you in this effort.
Rachel T.A. Croson
Executive Vice President and Provost
email sent to all Twin Cities faculty on June 5, 2020