June 1, 2020
The Simon Fraser Student Society stands in solidarity with Black Lives Matter, and with all Black lives that have been touched by state-sanctioned violence at the hands of the criminal justice system, the police and the RCMP. We reject the notion that police violence is unique to the United States, as our Black and Indigenous communities continue to be over-policed and subject to violence at disproportionately high rates in Canada (BC Civil Liberties Association, 2020).
As students, we are no strangers to protests, boycotts and other forms of action to protect ourselves and our peers. We encourage students to take a stand against white supremacy, stand beside Black and Indigenous folks in action, and seek alternatives to calling the police in our communities especially when the threat of police violence is high. We support the defunding of police and the RCMP, and the redistribution of funding into education, justice reform and into the communities most affected by police violence.
As an institution of higher learning, we encourage all students to educate themselves on the historical significance of movements like these, both past and present. It is no longer sufficient to just ‘not be racist’. Instead, we should strive to actively be anti-racist. We, as the SFSS, also acknowledge the harm that we have caused the Black community on our campus over the years. We have since committed ourselves to maintaining Black community space on campus, and will continue working with Black student organizers and allies, to ensure our actions are committed to rooting out anti-Black racism on campus. This includes holding our University accountable in any efforts for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Justice. We call on all SFSS members to reflect on our own biases and privileges, call out the systematic racism and the anti-Blackness we may see in our own circles and communities, and donate to and support Black-led organizations and campaigns.
As a community, it is up to each and every one of us to strive to create a future that is equitable and accepting of all people, regardless of their race, ethnicity or creed.
We stand with #BlackLivesMatter.
Here are a few Black-led organizations and funds to donate to and boost:
Affirming Black Lives Without Inducing Trauma by Teaching Tolerance
Anti-racism resources for white people by Sarah Sophie Flicker and Alyssa Klein
Black and Asian American Feminist Solidarities: A Reading List by Black Women Radicals and the Asian American Feminist Collective
Remembering 27 Black, Indigenous, and racialized people killed by Canadian police by Desmond Cole
Your Kids Aren’t Too Young to Talk About Race: Resource Roundup by Katrina Mitchie
30+ Ways Asians Perpetuate Anti-Black Racism Everyday by Michelle Kim
BCCLA, UBCIC and BLM VPD Street Checks Report Response – https://bccla.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Press-Release-VPD-Street-Checks-Review-Report-Feb-2020.pdf.
Report reveals ‘gross’ racial disparity in Toronto policing – https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-46513250
Human Rights Commission Report Ontario – https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/dec/10/toronto-black-residents-more-likely-shot-dead-ontario-human-rights-commission-report
Racial Disparities in Toronto Police Use of Force Report – https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/toronto/article-report-reveals-racial-disparities-in-toronto-polices-use-of-force/
Read the full statement here.