We need to update and revise this Solidarity Statement, written in 2020, based on learning and activity that Campus Library staff have undertaken since then. We recently engaged in an antiracism audit with an external consultant, and we are working through the recommendations from that audit’s report to develop our priorities and criteria for updating and revising this statement.
The University of Washington Bothell and Cascadia College Campus Library stands in solidarity with Black students, faculty, and staff at UWB and CC as well as with Black communities across the country. The Campus Library recognizes its power as a historically white institution and intends to use that power for not only serving more fully but also empowering the Black people in our community. We condemn all murders of and violence against Black people, recent and throughout the history of policing and the carceral state. We condemn the systems of oppression and institutionalized racism that allow and perpetuate these atrocities. We condemn inaction and silence from individuals and institutions meant to support and serve community. Black Lives Matter.
This statement initially emerged as a response to a letter from a coalition of UW student organizations1 after the murder of George Floyd in the spring of 2020. It is inexcusable that this institution and many others did not respond to this historic and ongoing crisis earlier, despite years of labor and outcry from Black communities here and across the country. And so, to our Black students, staff, faculty, colleagues, and community members: we promise to reckon with the ways this institution has failed you. We did not act until you explicitly told us about the trauma your community experiences from being targeted by historically anti-Black institutions, disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and persistently terrorized and killed by state-sanctioned violence. We have not spoken up loudly or often enough about the white supremacist structures and systems in which this institution is complicit. We commit not only to standing with you in the future but also to examining the racism in this institution and seeking to undo it.
We know that the journey towards true equity and justice is long and that the systems we work in and with are resistant to this kind of change. We know that we will make mistakes, face limits, and fall short. But we are determined to stand in solidarity with the Black people of our community, and we commit to working against racism-- in and outside our institution-- in the following ways:
More information about the UWB/CC Campus Library Leadership Team
Updated Nov. 13, 2020. This statement is a living document. The list of commitments is in no way exhaustive. We are committed to identifying programs we can expand or create, new actions we can take, and ways that we can build on work that we do to make our library an equitable and just place.
Comments about this statement and committments are welcome and can be submitted to Richard Lewis, Associate Dean of Libraries UW Bothell and Cascadia College Library, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anonymous submissions can be made using the Library’s feedback form. These submissions are reviewed by the Associate Dean, the Head of Public Services, Head of Collections & Course Support Services, and the Budget & Operations Administrator. Comments are forwarded to other library and campus staff if the content is relevant to their work.