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MAY 29, 2020

Founder, Thought Leader, and Lead DEI Strategist of ImpactEDI™, Stacey S. Joseph, issued the following statement surrounding the events of protest in Minneapolis:

“The murder of George Floyd by police officer Derek Chauvin, and the apparent ‘refusal to act,’ of the additional three officers who are as a result of their inaction, complicit in George Floyd’s death is an unspeakable and disheartening tragedy. Police brutality against the Black community, and the subsequent attempt to control and harm black bodies is an ever-present condition in our country, stemming from the historical desire to preserve the system of slavery, and the myth of white supremacy.
Black families and the Black community at large stand in solidarity amid two life-threatening pandemics. The insurgence that we are seeing across the country has been ignited by systemic racial issues and injustices that are deeply rooted in our nation’s history and culture. Over the past 48 hours, we have seen these issues manifested into deep sadness, frustration, confusion, fear, and justified anger. As we all bear witness to these events, we are forced to ask ourselves, especially after watching the terrorizing footage of George Floyd’s death, and the disgraceful video of Amy Cooper mobilizing white fragility and white fear as she makes a false report of being threatened by a Black man: When will it end!? and What is my roll in bringing about change?
As a mother of a young Black boy, I have sat in deep contemplation with other Black mothers and Black fathers, as we pose the question to one another: What does the future look like for our children? and What is the way forward? These are questions that I urge all of us to ask.
It is apparent that there is an underlying mindset and attitude across our nation that has been crippling and blinding us for quite some time. It can be so pervasive that we don’t often take the time to question it. This attitude and mindset is grossly disconnected from the natural order of things, and has been created and fueled by the illusion of difference, lack, separateness, and ignorance. We live in a culture that we recognize to be materialistic, neurotically individualistic, alienating, narcissistic, and at the same time ridden with hate, violence, shame, anxiety, and guilt. And as a result, it is painfully obvious that our humanity is suffering under one of the greatest tyrannies, the tyranny of divisiveness.
When we succumb to this tyranny, we lose sight of the fact that we are all a part of a greater collective. A global pandemic should’ve shed light on this fact. I had hoped and believed that in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, we would all become better versions of ourselves. I think this may be true of many of us. Yet, if we consider the recent increased acts of racism, bigotry, and other forms of ‘othering’ it would seem that in the face of crisis, not only are all of the systems in which we rely on failing, we are also through our inaction and hesitance to stand in truth, failing one another.
In this hour, we must all be moved to action. Our failing and unjust systems will only change if we apply multiple measured and strategic acts of necessity and courage, consistently over a prolonged period of time. We must all be willing to do our part in battling this and every future injustice. We simply cannot return to ‘business as usual.’ At ImpactEDI we are committed to the attainment of equity through diversity, inclusion, and creating safe spaces of belonging. I believe that every decision that we fail to act on in attaining equity and serving justice robs us of our will to be greater.
As a young girl, my father once shared with me “When people do bad things, it tests our faith in humanity, and then inevitably someone does a good thing, the [right] thing, and then humanity is restored.” Now is the time for each of us to act collectively, and commit to doing our part in the continued restoration of humanity. This, is the way forward.”

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