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The Current Crisis of Mass Uprisings Around Police Murders and Systemic Racism


Dear FSU Members,

In light of the mass protests in more than one hundred and forty cities across the nation, the FSU must respond specifically to the police murder of George Floyd as symptomatic of the general historical trauma of structural racism, settler colonialism, and the systemic disregard for Black life that characterizes the history of this country. These mass protests represent a repressed anger and outrage that has continually manifested itself throughout our national history into rebellions and uprisings. What we are witnessing today in the streets of America is the refusal on the part of Black, Brown, working class, and poor communities to participate any longer in the charade of a so-called democratic and just society. 

We demand a concrete response and commitment to this ongoing national crisis by the University of Massachusetts Boston and its new Chancellor. We propose that the administration, in consultation with the Africana Studies Department, and other faculty of color, provide resources to organize, support, and facilitate Undoing Racism workshops and forums for ALL faculty, administrative, and staff personnel. The administration of UMass Boston must be held accountable to addressing these urgent concerns. As a public university, UMass Boston must properly serve its urban mission to ensure that students who come from Black, Brown, working-class, poor, and other oppressed communities are safe and included on campus. Their histories, cultures, and presence must be honored, respected, and appreciated as a source of knowledge in the class room and reflected, across disciplines, in the curriculum. 

From Steve Striffler, FSU President, and the FSU Executive Committee

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