We are part of a society where the lives of Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color continue to be devastated by structural racism, lack of opportunity, health disparities, and direct violence. The differential valuing of life, achievements, opportunities and the concealing of intellectual and cultural contributions of anyone or any group of people is manifestly unjust. In alignment with our mission to enrich the lives of our members and benefit the university and the greater community, we need to commit to be accountable for our actions, words, and deeds and examine our own practices that lead to and maintain racial and other forms of inequity.
OSURA believes that this is not the time to be complacent or complicit. We must be thoughtful about our influence not only in our own local community but through our members throughout the country and world. We need to review our collective practices, policies, presentations and actions and become the catalyst for change to expand opportunities for growth, leadership, and power in an inclusive supportive and safe environment. Within our framework, we need to make a conscious effort to educate our members and raise their awareness in the hopes of removing the barriers People of Color face and address these issues with sustained action. As such, with deliberate intentions, we commit to take actions that promote diversity and inclusion in all that we do.
The following are recommended actions:
– Anti-racism should be infused in all that we do. Engage membership with opportunities to learn by infusing anti-racism initiatives in what we do:
- Newsletter articles with specific guests featuring trending topics
- Guest lecturers
- Special events and trips
- Book club
- Dinner series
- Lunch bunch
- Tertulia lunch
– Our Board will have diverse representation and promote opportunities for People of Color for them to serve. Build initiatives to encourage a more inclusive membership pool therefore increasing the opportunity for a diverse Board.
– In an effort to share OSURA values, we will collaborate with the university-wide taskforce on racism and racial inequities to seek opportunities to share our strengths and expertise that advance social justice and address racial inequality.
OSURA is committed to be a part of the solution. We are continuing our efforts to become a better organization. As part of an intellectual community committed to learning and seeking truth, we must reflect on our own failures and address inequities, and know we must do better. Together, we will help make the difference we want to see in the world.