Black lives matter. We stand together in solidarity with the Black Community and all people working toward racial equality and social justice. We deplore racism. We abhor the violence that has been perpetrated on Black, African America, other people of color, and other communities. We decry the discrimination faced by people of color and other marginalized groups. For too long, racism and intolerance have harmed every aspect of our collective lives. Recent and ongoing events continue to expose the structures, systems, and policies that contribute to conditions that lead to social and economic inequities, poor health outcomes, health disparities, and lower life expectancy; indeed, the structures, systems, and policies that threaten peoples' lives. We acknowledge that inequities exist in academia that have contributed to these societal ills. We are committed to change.

We know this affects people on an individual level in ways that many of us have not experienced and cannot fully understand. We are committed to listen and to learn. We are committed to creating a safe place where our students, faculty, staff, and other stakeholders can share, and where we can learn from one another. We are committed to action. We do not need to all do the same thing, but we all must do something, and we will.

Racism and intolerance have no place in academia. The Department of Nutritional Sciences has zero tolerance for racism, discrimination, intimidation, and any form of aggression and violence towards others, and we encourage our students, faculty, and staff to take a vocal stand. "If you see something, say something." We will create a safe space where speaking out and standing up can occur.

As educators,

  • We must demonstrate empathy and compassion and acknowledge the pain and grief that individuals, families and the communities of victims of violence, discrimination, and intolerance have endured and sadly continue to experience;
  • We commit to engage in difficult conversations and take the lead in educating ourselves and other to address issues that must not be ignored;
  • We commit to engage in anti-racist and unconscious bias training and interracial dialogues that will dispel the misrepresentations that dehumanize our Black community members, other people of color, and other marginalized groups;
  • We will act to eliminate inequities in our own programs that could do harm.

We acknowledge that any discipline can be woven into the history of racism, including our own. We acknowledge we must understand our own contributions, so we can better move on, and recognize our past failures have contributed to today's situation. We are committed to catalyzing meaningful and lasting solutions. We are committed to inclusion and equity practices. We must not be bystanders. Together, in partnership with the students and communities we serve, we pledge to pursue transformative practices and create an environment where everyone can thrive.

We invite your comments. We want to know where we have failed and how we can improve. Anonymous feedback can be shared here. We are committed to introspection, educating ourselves, and creating a safe place where students, faculty, staff, and stakeholders can share, listen, act together, and move forward. We know the work will take time, and we are committed to sustain our efforts. Our plan will evolve as we evolve, but our efforts will not cease. We commit to listening an responding to your feedback and adapting and frequently sharing our plan as we learn from you.