Resolution in Support of Solidarity with the Black/African American Community and Commitment to Greater Equity and Anti-Racism
Whereas, on May 25, 2020 George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man was killed in Minneapolis, MN when a white police officer knelt on his neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds; and
WHEREAS, systemic racism and race-based violence are far too prevalent in our society and must be eradicated, along with the systems that still support discrimination and bigotry; and
WHEREAS, institutional racism in education unjustly affects Black/African American people and other marginalized communities, including here at Santa Rosa Junior College; and
WHEREAS, 72 percent of Black/African American undergraduates who are enrolled in a public college or university in California are enrolled in a California community college compared to 9 percent and 3 percent enrolled in a California State University (CSU) and University of California (UC) institution, respectively[i]; and
WHEREAS, the state of California, the California Community College system and Santa Rosa Junior College need to address structural inequities of Black/African American student success by way of policy efforts and advocacy; and
WHEREAS, the president, vice presidents, departments, campus organizations and numerous individuals at Santa Rosa Junior College have expressed their commitment to solidarity with Black/African American students, colleagues and community members in calling for change; and
WHEREAS, the mission of Santa Rosa Junior College is to cultivate learning through the creative, intellectual, physical, social, emotional, aesthetic and ethical development of our diverse community; and
WHEREAS, the values of Santa Rosa Junior College include diversity that “supports honesty and integrity in an environment of collegiality and mutual respect,” and compassion that includes “civic engagement opportunities that contribute to real world problem solving,” and “empathy to identify the challenges and address the needs of others;” and
WHEREAS, only through the implementation of equitable planning and practices will Santa Rosa Junior College be able to begin to address racial disparities in opportunities for Black/African American community members and in the campus culture, curriculum, hiring and retention.
Now, Therefore be it Resolved, that the Board of Trustees of the Sonoma County Junior College District states that Black lives matter, and stands in solidarity with Black/African American students, college employees and community members and commits to being active participants in the continuing and necessary struggle to create a more equitable and anti-racist community at Santa Rosa Junior College.
RESOLVED, that the Board supports open and respectful dialogue to implement actionable policies that will address campus climate, support inclusive classrooms and anti-racism curriculum review, promote diversity, equity and inclusion in hiring and retention, and review equity plans and procedures. At the state level, the Board supports system wide review of law enforcement officers and first responder training and curriculum. The Trustees are committed to advocate for the needed resources to support college action plans and to continually measure their progress in order to hold themselves accountable for making progress.
RESOLVED, that the Board supports the JOINT RESOLUTION AFFIRMING OUR COMMITMENT TO STUDENT SUCCESS FOR AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDENTS of the California community college trustees (CCCT) Board and chief executive officers of california community colleges (CEOCCC) Board adopted on June 5, 2020 including the recommendations in the resolution.
The foregoing resolution was introduced by Trustee Battenfeld, who moved its adoption, seconded by Trustee Martinez, and adopted on a roll call vote June. 9, 2020, by the following vote:
Student Trustee – Jocelyn Toscano* - Aye
Trustee Dorothy Battenfeld - Aye
Trustee Jordan Burns - Aye
Trustee Don Edgar- Aye
Trustee Maggie Fishman- Aye
Trustee Jeff Kunde- Aye
Trustee W. Terry Lindley- Aye
Trustee Mariana Martinez- Aye
*Student Trustee – Advisory Vote
[i] Source: Campaign for College Opportunity “State of Higher Education for Black Californians” 2019 report