Standing in Solidarity
A Message from NSCC President Don Bureaux
Jun. 04, 2020 – Statement
As the world continues to respond to the unjust killing of George Floyd, adding his name to a long list of Black lives lost after encounters with police, I'm haunted by Mr. Floyd's last words. I'm filled with sorrow at the anguish of his family, awestruck by images of protesters and police officers taking the knee together, enraged by dangerous political rhetoric and challenged to understand how I can help, how NSCC can help turn this pain into real and lasting change.
The hurt runs generations deep. It hits close to home where we, in Nova Scotia, have a history of racial injustice and where racism lives on today. As an institution that values diversity, equity and inclusion, NSCC stands in solidarity with those protesting injustice and anti-Black racism. We stand in solidarity with Black colleagues and students, and Nova Scotia's Black communities.
We see you, we hear you, we support you. Let us galvanize around this painful moment in our shared humanity and history.
As Barack Obama said on Friday, "It falls on all of us, regardless of our race or station…to work together to create a 'new normal' in which the legacy of bigotry and unequal treatment no longer infects our institutions or our hearts."
Time is short. Change is hard. Action is critical. We can all do something to take a stand against Anti-Black racism.
As the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission said this week: "It is not enough to simply sympathize and stand in support of those harmed and traumatized by ongoing anti-Black racism. Our institutions must act to address this pervasive issue and act now."
Let's figure out how we can each take a stand in our own way.
If you're wondering where to start, here are some powerful anti-racism resources to spend some time considering:
- Hear More Black Voices (a collection of books, radio interviews, TEDx talks and documentaries featuring Black voices)
- A Guide to Allyship (an evolving open-source guide to help you become a more thoughtful and effective ally)
- How White People Can Be Better Allies to the Black Community (article)
- How to be an ally in everyday situations (article)
- Your Black Colleagues May Look Like They're Okay — Chances Are They're Not (article)
- We Must Step Up For Black People Right Now - Here's How (article)
- Racism In Canada Is Ever-Present, But We Have A Long History Of Denial (article)
As a learning institution, NSCC is committed to putting in the work to create a just and equitable community by acknowledging and addressing the harm racism causes. We cannot fulfill our promise to empower those who strive to know more, do more, be more unless we do our part to eliminate inequity and systemic racism. I've challenged the College's Equity Leadership Team to mobilize and bring to life the vision we have for NSCC's equity eco-system – they will be engaging the college community in this work.
There's a lot of pain, a lot of trauma being surfaced in the tragic events that have unfolded over the past week. Please take good care of yourselves and each other.