Dear Beach Community:
The theme of my convocation remarks last Friday was that this is “our time in history” which conjures for me comparisons to disruptions caused by world wars, other plagues, social justice and civil rights action and previous economic collapses. Among the many examples I provided, today my focus is on one in particular—an unprecedented mandate to diversify our faculty and student body and ensure more equitable opportunities for diverse faculty, staff and students.
We have embraced the Framework for Reconciliation in Long Beach and over the summer I met with several groups of Black and African American campus and community constituents to begin a much more focused process of acknowledging the existence and longstanding impacts of systemic racism, especially anti-Blackness, listening to accounts and experiences of racial injustice, inequity or harm to community members, convening stakeholders to shape reform, and catalyzing action in the short-term, medium-term and long-term.
Today I am following through on the promise I made to share several action plans for further input. I ask every member of our campus and community to review the Black Lives Matter President's Equity and Action Report. As I have said before, moving forward we do not claim to have all the answers and cannot promise that we won’t misstep in the process of learning. However, we look forward to continued meaningful dialogue with our Black and African American campus and community members to develop specific actions as we also engage with all members of our campus and community to enhance diversity, equity and action toward an even more inclusive and compassionate culture.
We are OneBeach,
Jane Close Conoley, Ph.D.