Dear Friends,

We join millions of people in voicing our condemnation of racism and violence directed at our Asian American sisters and brothers. We were horrified to learn of the murders in Atlanta. We are reminded of centuries of bigotry and violence directed at Asian and Pacific Islander communities in the United States. This latest incident is a reminder to us all that we need to be vigilant and unwavering in our commitment to fight prejudice in all its forms and at all levels. We need to work hand in hand to build a country which is intentionally and openly anti-racist and inclusive.

Confronting a global pandemic together has shown us how inter-connected our community, our country and our globe is at every level. Sadly, many have used the pandemic as one more reason to instigate anti-Asian sentiment. We have seen a massive surge of hate crimes, bias incidents, and racist bullying against Asian and Pacific Islander Americans over the past year, stemming from anti-Asian discrimination, misogyny, and white supremacy.

We cannot tolerate such violence and hate. We stand with those who condemn racism, xenophobia, and nativism, and stand with those who have been harmed by all forms of anti-Asian discrimination. We call on our policymakers to ensure there are consequences for acts of hatred and bigotry. We call on all educators to provide an accurate and inclusive history of our country. We call on all of you in our community to actively resist ill-informed and biased perspectives on any people, especially as insidiously incorporated into race, gender, sexuality, immigration or economic status commentary. We are all members of the human race – the only race – and need to treat each other with respect. That is what builds community. We further urge all of you who are part of our Community Foundation “family” to uphold our organization’s values of integrity, equity, respect, courage and empathy.

We are committed to using our space in the community and the philanthropic sector to promote the rights of people of all different backgrounds, especially those who have experienced systemic racism. We are providing grants and convening space to further anti-racism work. This work is essential. Every person in our country should be treated with dignity and respect. It is the richness of the diversity of our human family that ensures thriving communities. More than ever, we are committed to creating a healthy, thriving, sustainable Eastern Connecticut with greater equity for all.

In Solidarity,

March 19, 2021