Hello, Aanii, Bonjour,
We are at the crossroads of meaningful historical and societal change -- together, our communities are raising their voices in protest, taking a knee, marching, educating and taking action in support of justice and equity for Black, Indigenous, and Communities of Colour around the globe.
We at Laurentian are committed to providing our community with opportunities to speak up and speak out, embrace and prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion, laying the groundwork for an environment welcoming of all students, faculty and staff in support of our tricultural mandate.
We support all members of our community who wish to participate in the Scholars Strike on September 9-10, two days of action to protest systemic violence against Black, Indigenous and People of Colour in Canada, the United States, and globally.
Faculty and instructors are asked to communicate any intended class changes to students with as much advance notice as possible, and staff members who wish to participate in Scholar Strike activities are asked to make individual arrangements with their managers. Leaders should be as accommodating as possible with participating employees.
Laurentian is excited to be part of the change sweeping our communities. In the last few months, we have announced a new Senate ad hoc committee on racism and discrimination that will tackle these issues inside the academy. We will report back on the progress and activities of this committee as results emerge.
I also met with leadersof the Safe Place to Learn and Work Presidential Task Force, which focuses on Outcome 23 of the Laurentian University Strategic Plan. We discussed how Laurentian can promote and foster inclusion, acceptance and respect for the diversity that exists within our campus community.
We are in a continued conversation with that task force and it has been agreed that the University will:
- Create a physical safe space for Black, Indigenous and People of Colour on campus;
- Support a forum for students/faculty/staff/administration to openly discuss issues of systemic discrimination on a regular basis.
- Provide unconscious bias and anti-racism training, especially for those who sit on hiring committees, training on equity hiring practices, the benefits of a diverse workforce.
We encourage students to join the Laurentian professors in the Scholar Strike. As I reminded the Laurentian community earlier this year: our broader communities need us to take action, to be leaders, and to do more than we have done before. Our community is absolutely capable of affecting change.
Thank you, Miigwech, Merci
Robert Haché, Ph.D.
President and Vice-Chancellor