Statement of Solidarity - Counseling

June 4, 2020
The faculty and staff of the Counseling Department unequivocally stand in solidarity with our Black and African American community.

We are heartbroken and outraged by the brutal and senseless loss of Black and African American lives. Together we mourn the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and the numerous other families and communities traumatized by police brutality and systemic racism. We recognize and honor the truths, experiences, and perspectives shared by our Black and African American colleagues, within our department and across the district.

We witness the damaging effects that racism and injustice have on students’ academic, personal, and professional lives. In accordance with professional counseling ethics, we will serve students with a commitment to eradicate oppression through social justice advocacy. We call on our entire SRJC community to continue courageous conversations, and to stand shoulder to shoulder with our Black and African American colleagues and students, to change deeply rooted systemic injustices on campus and in the community. 

In moving from rhetoric to action, we pledge to the following practices as first steps towards eliminating institutional racism that occurs within our campus community:

  • Maintain a safe, supportive environment through advocacy, compassion, active listening, and valuing the individual experiences of our Black and African American students and colleagues
  • Continue our own self reflection and departmental dialogue to identify personal biases and additional opportunities towards developing anti-racist growth and self-awareness 
  • Advocate on behalf of students experiencing racism and support them through the grievance process
  • Read literature pertaining to anti-racism, white privilege and fragility, and the Black and African American experience 
  • Engage in equity, diversity, and anti-racism training 
  • Encourage the development of anti-racist change agents in our institution

In conclusion, we value and affirm the dignity of all Black and African American people, not only when lives are lost, but everyday. We wholeheartedly believe that “All lives can’t matter, until Black lives matter”.

Sent out on behalf of the SRJC Counseling Department