Violence, of any form, is a matter of public health

Violence, of any form, is a matter of public health

A Statement from Mary’s Center:

We write to you today in solidarity with the many across the globe calling for the immediate end to the kind of police violence we have witnessed recently against Black people in this country. This social epidemic builds fear, anger, and trauma, significantly impacting the health outcomes for the members of our community, particularly our children. During this time of great sorrow, we must stand with our Black and Brown community members. We need to use this moment and energy to honor George Floyd and the far too many others who have been violently stolen from their family and loved ones. It is absolutely imperative that this moment, this energy, is used to guarantee that this does not happen to anyone else, ever again.

Today, more than ever before, there is a need for Mary’s Center’s Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Awareness (IDEA) committee to focus specifically on equity. The IDEA committee provides a place where we can voice the facts, express our feelings, and develop the strategies to take action to dismantle structural racism.

As a healthcare institution, we must recognize violence, in any form, is a matter of public health. In particular, we must recognize that the kind of police violence we have witnessed lately is a public health crisis that must be addressed immediately. Indeed, it deeply impacts the health of our communities, especially our children. These events deeply affect their everyday learning and aspirations for the future, and heighten their stress level, continuing to expose them to a lifetime of risk.

We recognize these events flow from existing deep-seated unaddressed systematic racial inequality in our country. It disproportionally relegates communities of color into concentrated poverty and limits their opportunities for quality education, healthcare, economic security, and safe housing.

We ask each of you to join us in solidarity with the individuals that are peacefully protesting these tragedies throughout the world. Now is the time for action.

Let us take the first step today and ask our nation’s leaders to deeply examine these most recent tragedies and promote the structural changes needed to ensure all communities thrive and are treated equally and afforded the dignity and respect they deserve.

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

“There comes a time where silence is betrayal.”

– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Download a Spanish version of this statement.