“Why must black death be broadcast and consumed to be believed, and what is it beyond spectacle if it cannot be used to obtain justice?” - @Blackamazon on Twitter, June 16, 2017
We do not have the words to describe the sadness, anger, and anguish that many of us are feeling at witnessing another incident of police violence on a Black person. The killing of George Floyd in police custody follows the recent killings of Ahmaud Arbery, who was chased and gunned down while jogging by White vigilantes, and Breonna Taylor, who was shot and killed by police in her own home. While it appears that these occurrences are rising, we know that racial violence is as old as this country founded in genocide and slavery; the only difference in recent years is the ability to record and transmit these incidents nationwide. How many incidents of brutality, vigilantism, injustice are we missing because there were no witnesses or video evidence?
Black Geisel community members have already been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as carrying the daily burdens of underrepresentation in the Upper Valley. Many are deeply hurting and experiencing community trauma. Now more than ever, be kind to one another and support each other. Reach out and check in with your affected colleagues and trainees. If these topics are new to you, educate yourselves with the resources below. In these hard times, our community members need to know that their community is standing in solidarity with them and hearing their pain.
These traumatic experiences can often lead to understandably feeling incapacitated by overwhelming emotions. However, in accordance to Dartmouth College’s Principle of Community, we encourage you to remain motivated in eradicating racism and structural violence from Geisel, the Upper Valley, and healthcare. We implore all students, educators, researchers, healthcare professionals to examine how racism and systemic oppression devastate our patients, our communities, and ourselves. We cannot remain silent and be complacent in the face of this. Let us work together to be upstanders for positive change and address the structural racism that underlies this public health crisis.
In the coming days, the DICE Office will be coordinating with Student Affairs and Dick’s House to provide students with further support services and resources for both our medical students and MPH students. Faculty and staff who require assistance should reach out to Diana Wu, Leslie Henderson or Faith Goodness in the Dean’s Office.
Resources for Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) to Engage in Self-Care:
- Geisel Wellness
- Surviving & Resisting Hate: A Toolkit for People of Color
- Self-Care Tips for Black People Who Are Struggling with this Very Painful Week
- Self-Care for People of Color after Psychological Trauma
Resources for Engaging in Anti-Racism Work and Practicing Solidarity:
- Resources for Engaging in Anti-Racism Work
- We are Living in a Racist Pandemic
- Your Black Colleagues May Look Like They’re Okay – Chances are They’re Not
- Affirming Black Lives Without Inducing Trauma
Ways to Support Current Developments in Minneapolis:
We want to acknowledge the help of Lashaya Howie, MA, Hendry Ton, MD MS (Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion of UC Davis Health), and The CUNY School of Medicine’s Deans Inclusive Excellence Council in composing this message.
Duane Compton, PhD, Dean
Diana Wu, MD, Interim Associate Dean of Diversity and Inclusivity
Leslie Henderson, PhD, Dean of Faculty Affairs
John Dick III, MD, Interim Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education, Associate Dean for Clinical Education
Richard Rothstein, MD, Senior Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs
Wes Benbow, MBA, Executive Dean for Administration and Finance
Alison Holmes MD, MPH, Associate Dean for Student Affairs
Roshini Pinto-Powell, MD, Associate Dean for Admissions
Faith Goodness, MBA, Chief of Staff