Black Lives Matter (first posted 6/3/2020)

Yellow background. IMage of a raised, black fist at left of image. Test reads: Black Lives Matter. Science. Technology. Engineering. Math.
Used with permission (credit: WeRepSTEM.com)

This statement was first distributed to our members via our monthly newsletter, issued 3 June 2020. We are posting it here for posterity, and to hold ourselves accountable to continued efforts toward justice and equality in the spheres we have influence.

Dear Section Members & Friends,

We write to you today in solidarity with and affirmation of our fellow Black and IPOC ecologists. Systemic racism and police brutality are societal issues that are inextricably linked and intertwined with our science. Scientists cannot share the stories of science when their voices are silenced, when their bodies are terrorized. Nor can anyone else. As a section, we fully support the Black Lives Matter movement. Academia has been silent and complicit for too long. We were heartened to see both a formal statement from ESA leadership in solidarity and a listening session to follow.

In this month’s newsletter, we highlight Black and IPOC scientists and share essential resources for people of privilege. We urge our white members to do the work that is needed within and to amplify the voices of our fellow Black and IPOC ecologists. Start with this resource from 500 Women Scientists or this resource from Citizens Climate Lobby. If you are looking for resources to better understand how your own work in science and your efforts to share science intersect with historical and contemporary issues of racism in science and society, Dr. Chanda Prescod-Weinstein has built an essential reading list.

As Beth Brainerd (SIBC President) noted, “…be aware that these events hit some harder than others. On top of isolation and anxiety from the pandemic, and the systemic health inequalities laid bare by the disproportionate deaths of black and brown people, this latest racial violence is another blow. Please take care of yourselves, your colleagues, and your students in these trying times.”

In Solidarity,

C&E Section Leadership

Skylar Bayer, Secretary (@drsrbayer)

Kirsten Schwarz, Chair (@kirsten_schwarz)

Robert Newman, Chair-elect (@RNewmanND)

Annaliese Hettinger, Past Chair (@A_Hettinger)

Bethann Garramon Merkle, Co-founder and 2017-2018 Chair (@CommNatural)