GSU on Racism

Oct. 24, 2020

 

GSU Statement on Racism

 

Help GSU Be Better

The events unfolding globally have raised the profile of systemic racism to unprecedented levels.  The violence against racialized people by systems and non-racialized people has effectively ignited a storm in society.  Concurrent with this is a pandemic that is exacerbating the economic and social inequalities.

As a union we speak to so many people who have experienced racism, discrimination and/or violence, all agree the status quo must change.  Racism should have absolutely no place in our world, but the reality is that racism exists and if left unchecked it will continue.  There has been incremental change, but it’s simply not fast enough.  Every issue that is to be addressed must first be identified.  Thus, exposure is the first step, we must expose and confront racism in all areas of our lives then take steps towards complete eradication.  Once we see it, we can talk about it and begin to understand how it came to be and what sustains it.   

In this work we must recognize that these stories are personal and that these events caused personal damage – we must respect their privacy.  There are serious consequences to what we do and how we think.  We should strive for wisdom in what we choose to discuss and how we engage in that conversation.

Fear is something that coexists with the topic of racism, fear of saying the wrong thing and of potential reprisal.  However, we can’t let fear stop us from doing what we know to be right.  No one has all the answers, but if we try to push ourselves and our communities, we can move in the direction of what is right and just.  There will be mistakes, but how we react to those mistakes is what is most important.  GSU encourages everyone to engage in open and respectful dialogue, if you have questions ask.  Racism, discrimination, bullying and harassment all thrive in the dark.  Shining a light on these behaviors is so important but light without discussion can also be blinding. 

The GSU Equity Committee