SCC Management Team’s Message on Racial Injustice in 2020

We wish to express our sorrow and outrage over the senseless killing of George Floyd while in the custody of Minneapolis law enforcement.  We share in the pain and anger that so many are feeling in our communities and across the globe.  This is yet another horrific example of the historic racial injustice in our country that dehumanizes our African American community.

Tragically, these deaths at the hands of the police and the racism that fuels these deaths are not new and remind us that while together we have made progress, we cannot afford to be complacent about the hard work that must be done.   The social, economic, educational and political systems that reinforce racism and bigotry, whether subtle or overt, rob us of our humanity and prioritize the safety of some over the safety and dignity of all members of society.

At Solano Community College, we still have work to do in order to fulfill our mission to educate a culturally and academically diverse student population.  We know that achieving meaningful measures of equity and inclusion will not come through dialogue alone, but through sacrifice, self-reflection, and action.  It is vital that we hold each other accountable, acknowledge our shortcomings with humility, embrace difficult conversations, and act compassionately to foster a healthy environment in which every student and employee of the district can thrive.

We understand that change is a process that is not always prompt nor easy; however, we also recognize the urgency of this moment and the need to strengthen our commitment knowing that the road may be rocky.  It will take each of us being willing to confront these challenges together and create new spaces for all voices to be heard and affirmed.

Here’s what we can do now:

  • Reach out to students, colleagues and neighbors who may be in pain or feeling threatened. Please show your support and hear their truths.
  • Communicate with students and colleagues.  Talk with them, not at them.
  • Be mindful of our language. Protesters are not looters. We all have the right to peaceful assembly and free speech as a form of protest.  The practice of standing up against violence and one’s personal and collective dehumanization is not a criminal act.
  • Self-reflect and examine our prejudices and understand our privilege. Such reflection will lead us to what Lynn Pasqueralla, President of AACU, calls an “honest assessment of, and genuine reckoning with, the structural barriers and hidden biases that pervade our own colleges and organizations.”

Now, more than ever, we need to show up for our students and for each other.  We stand in solidarity with all who advocate for change, making their voices heard at this critical time.  We believe in the dignity of all people and will not be complicit to systems or practices that perpetuate injustice and inequality on campus or beyond.  We must lead by example so that our policies and practices reflect the values of fairness and social justice, and we must empower our students to help lead the way to a more just future for us all.