Statement from the Climate and Executive Committees, June 2020
We condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the horrific killings by the police of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and many other members of the Black community. We know these events are particularly painful for our Black colleagues and students and the Black community as well as other people of color. We want to express our staunch support to the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color in our department, and to the Black Lives Matter movement. We understand and acknowledge that systemic racism is prevalent in our society and that the culture in our own department cannot ignore the society in which it exists. When we all are involved when it comes to combating racism, we begin to correct the inequities and injustices that have prevailed. We commit to formulating and enacting anti-racist policies, including those related to our curricula, teaching, professional development, admissions, and hiring processes. We also acknowledge that the mathematics we do has an effect on the society in which we live, and we must consider those effects. We know that these statements alone are meaningless without concrete actions. Our Climate and Executive Committees will prioritize following through on these commitments. We call on every member of our department to create a welcoming environment for our colleagues and a space where we all feel like we can thrive. As such, we encourage everyone to engage in initiatives relating to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). We list on this website current initiatives which highlight the important DEI work being done by members of our department. We acknowledge all the work carried out by Black, Indigenous, and people of color, women, and members of the LGBTQ+ community in our department, and we call on everyone to contribute to this important work. The website has information about how you can volunteer and contribute to these programs. We know that there is still much work to be done, and that there are undoubtedly problems the department is not aware of. We are also making available this feedback space for you to share with us your feedback, suggestions, and requests for additional work we can be doing to support people of color both in and outside our department. In closing, we affirm that our Black colleagues and students, and other colleagues and students of color are an essential part of the department and their contributions are invaluable. We are listening and committed to taking action.