Fairfax Education Association Resolution on Black Lives Matter and Racial Equity

A RESOLUTION to declare that the lives of Black students, staff, and community members matter.

WHEREAS, throughout our nation’s history, institutional and structural racism have caused injustices that deepen racial disparities across all sectors of society and have lasting negative consequences for our communities, cities, and nation; and

WHEREAS, historically, when Black people have fought for a more democratic society, the lives of all people have improved and, conversely, each time barriers to Black people’s potential have been erected, our whole society has suffered; and

WHEREAS, the killing of unarmed Black LGBTQ+ and men and women of color, like George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbrey, Tony McDade, Nina Pop, Marcus-David Peters and countless other examples and forms of violence upon Black bodies, who have left young people searching for answers to incredibly complicated and infuriating questions; and

WHEREAS, stating the “Black Lives Matter” does not negate our commitment to ALL of our students, but rather elevating Black students and educators, who have historically been oppressed by our society, and affirming that their lives, specifically, matter; and

WHEREAS, as a public school district, we are facilitators of the limitless growth potential of human beings, with a charge to guide our youth in finding and achieving their purpose with a belief that every human being deserves to live with dignity; and

WHEREAS, fighting racism in the world with anti-racist practices and policies requires fighting racism with anti-racism in our schools, our unions, and ourselves. With this statement in support of the #BlackLivesMatter movement, The Fairfax Education Association aims to make it crystal clear where we stand on this issue. This is the time to make a long term commitment to become an anti-racist; and

WHEREAS, that same reality of institutionalized racism and ongoing discrimination against African-American students still exists in our schools. The Black Lives Matter at School movement started in Seattle in 2016 when a white racist made a bomb threat against a group called “Black Men Uniting to Change the Narrative.” This group wanted to greet students at John Muir Elementary in the morning as they entered school with high fives and a celebration of Black youth;