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AFT Massachusetts Statement of Solidarity with our Black Students, Families, Educators, and Communities

AFT Massachusetts stands in solidarity with our Black students, families, educators, and communities in Massachusetts and around the country, and joins them to condemn anti-Black racism and police brutality.

The murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery have once again drawn public attention to the structural racism that underpins our entire society. As we continue to confront the COVID-19 public health emergency that is disproportionately harming Black Americans, we know that systemic racism is also a public health emergency that threatens the lives and health of Black people every day. Black lives matter, and we will not live in an equitable society that recognizes that fact unless we commit to deep, structural change.

As educators, we must confront racism in our schools, and in our communities, even when the headlines fade. AFT Massachusetts is committed to fighting for antiracist reforms – real, lasting change that transforms not just policing, but our entire society. In the classroom and the community, we must challenge our own internal biases and fight to transform the systems that preserve them.

We need our elected officials to invest in public education and other community needs, not military-style policing. Our students need books, counselors, and access to healthy food, not police harassment and surveillance. Our communities need good jobs, affordable housing, and educational opportunities, not tear gas and tanks.

We need to support our Black students and communities with concrete action, not just words. As we work to support our students and their families this summer, and as we plan to reopen schools, our work will be centered in our commitment to racial, social and economic justice. Now more than ever, we all must work to build a more equitable and antiracist education system and society.


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