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Black Lives Matter

Array of nine book covers

06/09/2020
By CWW Faculty Associates and Staff

The lives of black U.S. Americans are in constant danger due to the institutionalized racism that unrelentingly impacts their lives. This racism is historical, systemic, and inherently violent. 

The Center for Women & Work stands with those who call for justice in the killings of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, and for the numerous other black persons, indigenous persons, and persons of color whose lives have been lost or irrevocably altered by violence and racism. We share in the national outrage and grieve these losses. In solidarity with the black community, we demand change and an end to this violence. 

As a research center devoted to producing scholarship that fuels social change, we are committed to joining others in working toward change. As a center based out of UMass Lowell, we honor the identities, struggles, and experiences of all faculty, staff, and students. We strive to bring both passion and compassion to our work. We are committed to:

  • Naming institutionalized oppressions - making the previously invisible visible so that the issues and people cannot be ignored.
  • We are committed to an intersectional approach to justice that recognizes the complexity of identity, oppression, and intervention. making the previously invisible visible so that the issues and people cannot be ignored.
  • Working as allies and to activate allies - working from the belief that promoting justice is the responsibility of ALL of us, not just those who are the targets. We are committed to recognizing the roles that all persons play in systemic racism, honoring experience, recognizing privilege, and taking direct actions to make change.
  • Transforming institutions - starting by examining our own biases and privileges and also challenging entrenched practices that disempower and marginalize. We are committed to being part of creating communities that honor not only diversity, but the value of complex standpoints and voices.

The urgent need for action is not new, but recent events have made the call to act clear and undeniable. All of us must ask ourselves what we can and must do, both in this moment and in terms of a long-term commitment to resisting oppression and racism. 

As we make these commitments and decisions, we would like to offer a short list of resources that may help to inform others about the issues, potential interventions and actions, and how to think through social justice and change. This is only a beginning, and we look forward to expanding this list based on your thoughts, reactions, and recommendations:

In solidarity, 
CWW Faculty Associates and Staff