Recent events in Minnesota, Georgia and Kentucky — indeed across the country — are heartbreaking and outrageous. These unjustified assaults upon Black Americans, documented again and again in graphic images and video, are attacks upon all of us — and upon the human rights and freedoms we hold inviolate. These acts of racism and violence cannot be ignored, dismissed or forgotten.
For these reasons, we stand in solidarity with the aspirations and mission espoused by White Coats 4 Black Lives and other groups advocating for liberty and justice through peaceful protest, civil discourse and real, substantial change to prejudiced policies and programs.
For the thousands of men and women working at UC San Diego Health and throughout UC San Diego Health Sciences, from physicians and nurses to faculty and staff, a career in health care, education and research represents a conscious decision to help others, to provide healing and support and to help address ongoing disparities in health care, further revealed and exacerbated by the current COVID-19 pandemic.
UC San Diego Health and UC San Diego are founded upon the indisputable value of shared ideas, equity and diversity, of working together for the common good. In times of trouble, frank but reasoned discourse may be especially difficult, but it is during these times when it is never more important for the well-being and future of our society.
Many of our team members and medical students are experiencing fear, anger and anxiety. We recognize and understand these honest and justified emotions. We must pay attention to what our colleagues and those most greatly impacted are saying and feeling. We need to listen, acknowledge with respect and pursue continued, actionable conversations beyond this fraught moment.
To that end, we have heard the concerns, fears and worries of faculty, staff and students. These include specific proposals for new or amended policies, personnel and programs intended to more fully and deeply address the pressing issues of equity, diversity and inclusion. We welcome them. We know we can do better. We embrace working as partners to find lasting solutions. Today’s issues are not easily fixed tomorrow. We are committed to a unified, enduring effort.