May 30, 2020
Eight minutes and forty-six seconds. That is how long Derek Chauvin, a white Minneapolis police officer, knelt on George Floyd’s neck on May 25, leading to his death. Floyd’s death is yet another in a long line of senseless murders committed against members of the black community.
The root of this problem lies not with individuals, but with systemic racism in our country. Justice has not yet been served and equity is not yet truly realized. Countless times black individuals died due to police brutality without any sense of justice or repercussions for the police officers involved. The damage perpetrated against black individuals has been shown to us by history and now in the present. Let us do our part to amplify the voices of all black Americans.
As an Association, we realize we must take action. First of all, we wholeheartedly say BLACK LIVES MATTER. We are here to support our black students, faculty, staff and community members. The Student Government Association is a platform where student voices are heard and elevated. We are here to listen to our black students and support them in any and every way possible.
Actions speak louder than words. We are committing to making our campus and community a more inclusive and equitable space. Plans are in the works to have conversations with the University Police Department to make sure our campus is safe and welcoming. Difficult, but necessary, discussions with administration, faculty and staff will occur. Change will be made.
In the meantime, we encourage students to take care of themselves and their mental health. Please reach out to Counseling and Prevention Services if needed. Utilize student support groups like Phenomenal Women, Men of Excellence and CUT H8. Utilize local, regional and national resources. Donate to cause like the Minnesota Freedom Fund or the Black Lives Matter Movement if you can. Email your local or state officials to share concerns and demand change. Checkup on your loved ones and stay safe. Lastly, remember their names, stories, hardships and that black lives do and always will matter.
The Student Government Association
Wichita State University