Black Lives Matter
CERSE is committed to supporting the Black Lives Matter movement through our words and actions, as individuals and collectively as an organization. We reject and condemn anti-Black racism and white supremacy. We grieve over the numerous Black folks murdered by the police and for communities of color who experience this threat every day. As an organization, our work centers on increasing equity in STEM fields, including racial equity. We recognize that these inequities are at the surface of deep-rooted systems of oppression that will take sustained efforts from many different angles to dismantle.
We recognize our own complicitness as an organization embedded within a culture and institution that upholds white supremacist values. We know that we can do better, and we are committed to continuing or commencing the following efforts to break down white supremacy-based policies and practices in our organization. We hope that this list is useful for other organizations committed to dismantling white supremacy.
- Hire and support Black scholars as well as scholars belonging to other systematically marginalized groups. Use equitable hiring processes such as intentionally sending postings to a broad audience, using inclusiveness in job ad wording, and evaluating candidates using a clear and comprehensive rubric. Support staff through mentorship and professional development guided by their interests and goals.
- Strive to create an inclusive working environment by recognizing the value of diverse opinions, beliefs, experiences, communication styles, and specialized skills which enhance the team, the organization, the institution, and the field. Provide mechanisms for feedback and encourage communication with supervisors, even when it’s uncomfortable.
- Make decisions with honesty and transparency. Communicate who has decision-making power and when additional input will be taken into consideration.
- Invest time in long-term planning, thoughtful decision-making, and genuine relationship building with clients and colleagues.
- Examine research and evaluation plans in relation to CERSE’s critical research and evaluation questioning guides and identify areas where approaches are upholding white supremacist/colonialist paradigms. This includes approaching evaluation with humility and openness; listening to the needs and values of impacted communities; and reflecting those needs and values in evaluation work.
- Engage in regular reflection and build in accountability for anti-racism. Hold regular meetings focused on the alignment of work with racial justice values. Utilize an advisory board to maintain accountability and continue to improve on an anti-racism approach.
- Re-visit the organizational values statement on an annual basis with input from all members of the team to make sure that it accurately reflects a current understanding and shared vision for the work. Update the values statement through continued learning.