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Valuing Black Lives - Honoring Breonna Taylor

Dear campus community,

I write to you on the heels of the news of the grand jury decision in Breonna Taylor’s case that completely derailed me. The sadness was there, and I did not know how deep it was and still is. For some, your paper was undone, that grant proposal had missing sections, that book chapter's page did not budge, work became harder, and you stopped everything you were doing because you just could not do anymore.

As a legal practitioner, I tried to analyze and make sense of it all and as that same legal practitioner, I knew that the criminal justice system often leaves calls for justice incomplete. Black Lives Matter. Breonna’s Life Matters.

Still I know, that we have the chance to do it differently here at UC Merced, together. Last night, the Residential Education Team hosted a space for our scholars and today, Friday, September 25, 2020, the Office of Social Justice Initiatives & Identity Programs invites our campus community to come together for a Healing Circle from 10am-12pm to reflect, reframe, and honor Breonna Taylor, #BLACKLIVESMATTER and all the names of those lost to violence in our country.

On Monday, September 28, 2020, the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion will also offer an opportunity to come together and we will include further information in the Monday memo.

Please know that other resources and support are available through Counseling and Psychological Services and the Employee Assistance Program

Resources for those who want to learn more about anti-racism, anti-Blackness and how to get involved here at UC Merced and in the community: 

Together, we can strategize moving forward to create change and remain #BOBCATSTRONG

Always with you,

Dania Matos, J.D.
Associate Chancellor and Chief Diversity Officer
Pronouns: she/her/hers