Nationally, African Americans accounted for 40 percent of all people experiencing homelessness in 2019 despite being 13% of the population. This is just one of the many symptoms of institutional racism and economic and racial inequity.
We believe in the absolute value and worth of every human being, no exceptions. Everyone must live without fear of oppression and persecution. Whether homeless or housed, each individual has the right to be who they are and to be treated with dignity and respect.
We condemn the murder of George Floyd and the numerous other black individuals and persons of color whose lives have been senselessly taken from us. We condemn institutional racism and bigotry and the generations of killing and violence that continue today. We condemn the agitators who are disrupting the peaceful protests and hurting our community. We condemn the brutality of thought, word, and action that people of color live with every day. We condemn the judgment passed by people who can’t accept those who look, live, and believe in a way that is different from their own.
We stand for humanity, racial justice, diversity, equity, inclusion, compassion, freedom, hope, and love. We stand for peaceful protests and community action. We envision a day when all people will be treated with dignity, compassion, and decency.
As individuals, we must have honest conversations, inward reflection, and empathy toward all people. We must embrace diversity, see the value in every individual regardless of their circumstance, and the beauty of a community that is not all the same.
Our law enforcement must be well trained in de-escalation and crisis intervention with regard to behavioral health, cultural competency and compassionate behavior.
Our legislators must support this training financially and legislatively and declare racism a public health crisis.
We call for change. As a community, we must do the work to end racism, hate, violence, and judgment. As an agency, we commit to doing this work.