Yesterday, a guilty verdict was delivered on all charges in the Derek Chauvin trial held in Minneapolis. I realize how much the murder of George Floyd last year, subsequent trial, and other unspeakable acts of violence this year have weighed heavily on the Georgian community.
It’s been a deeply unsettling time – with frequent attacks on many racialized communities. These events continue to happen despite calls for action, and the pain and trauma compounds.
I want you to know I see you and I hear you. We grieve together. We feel together. We come together in solidarity.
As Georgian’s president, I acknowledge the racism, oppression and intolerance that exists in our communities – and I’m committed to personally doing the work, to being part of creating change. We all have a role to play in making our college a more equitable, inclusive and diverse place, where everyone knows and feels that they belong. We must stand up for a world that not only accepts but celebrates difference. We must unlearn and relearn so we can become better allies, citizens and humans. We must listen to understand.
Georgian has a zero tolerance for hate. If you experience racist attacks or bullying behaviour, including online, I urge you to file a human rights complaint. I also want to remind you we have a number of college and community supports available should you wish to talk to someone. You are not alone. Visit the student or employee portals for more information.
As a college, we continue on our journey together to chart a new way forward. We know we won’t always get it right or move as quickly as we want to, but deep reflection is happening, awareness is being raised, meaningful action is at work, and hope will light the darkness – thanks to the compassion, bravery and leadership of many of you.
Stay safe, be well and choose kindness.
Dr. MaryLynn West-Moynes, President and CEO