We Will Do More.
We acknowledge the structural and systemic racism that prevails in this country. The recent and tragic deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and Breonna Taylor are a direct reflection of the ongoing hatred and bigotry currently and historically experienced by the Black community. To those experiencing pain, suffering, and grief, we support you. We are listening / We must change course.
Education can and should serve as a tool for transformation. As UW President Ana Mari Cauce reminds us, the crises facing our nation are highlighting structural inequities that have existed for centuries. This clarity provides an opportunity to tightly grip this moment as a catalyst for change. We must create safe spaces for anti-racist dialogue, examine how our educational practices are perpetuating bias and oppression, and find avenues to raise the voices of historically marginalized communities. The College of Education community affirms that “dismantling structural racism must lie at the heart of our collective work.” We are all responsible.
The Center for Leadership in Athletics believes in the power of sport to change individuals and communities. Our work is rooted in this belief. Athletics can serve as a unifier, a vehicle for positive development, and can provide a platform for examining issues of social justice in a powerful way. However, we acknowledge that the athletics landscape, too, is fraught with inequity and a history of racism. As an athletics community, we must come together to better understand how to create sports settings that are just and equitable, and actively work to dismantle the oppressive structures that currently exist. We see our active role in changing the athletic landscape.
As a Center, we commit to elevating historically oppressed voices and deeply listening to and engaging with those voices. We will examine our personal and programmatic practices, looking for opportunities to disrupt educational structures that perpetuate racism and prepare leaders who do the same, especially within athletics. We reaffirm our commitment to equity work that supports the flourishing of communities and families impacted by histories of prejudice and hate. We will do more.