As intersectional feminists, WIF embraces the dignity and human rights of all and condemns the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, and other acts of racist, white supremacist violence that plague the United States. These recent manifestations of police brutality are evidence of the legacy of racial injustice in this country, and we are devastated by the senseless loss of Black lives. We also acknowledge and denounce subtle forms of racist violence that result in economic disparities and inequalities in access to healthcare, which have again become apparent in the current covid-19 pandemic. As advocates of free speech, human rights, and historical documentation, we also decry impingements on free speech and recent attacks on journalists, and specifically journalists of color, that reduce coverage of this racist tragedy.
WIF expresses full support of our Black colleagues and students as well as all people of color in our communities both in and outside of higher education. We stand in solidarity with the global protests rebuking racial injustice in the United States, in francophone countries, and across the globe. We share this statement from WIF’s board of directors in response to the vacuum of leadership at the federal level whose silence enables the violent actions of police to perpetuate institutional racism and inequality.
WIF’s membership reflects the diversity of the francophone world, and our organization is committed to creating an inclusive space.
For our Black members and members of color: We see you, we hear you, we support and stand with you as allies.
For our white members: There is an active role to play that includes listening, standing in solidarity, and taking actions against structural inequalities so that we can be part of the solution and stop being part of the problem.
For all our members: We encourage our members to act locally as well as on the regional, national, and international levels, and engage in their communities by contacting representatives, organizing direct action, volunteering with organizations committed to ending racism and contributing financially when possible to prevent future tragedies of racial injustice. As an organization, we aim to continue and to amplify our efforts in our teaching, research, and service to study and deconstruct racial hierarchies by highlighting the work of critical race and ethnic studies in our field in order to create change and affirm the humanity of all. As educators, we are an essential part of preparing young people for a future that finally delivers on the promises of liberty and equality for all that are written in our country’s founding documents.
Social Activism + Anti-Racist Reading
- Black Lives Matter Website
- “An Antiracist Reading List” (Ibram X. Kendi, New York Times, May 29, 2019)
- “Black History Month Library” generated by activist-organizer Charles A. Preston
- Resources collected by Robin DiAngelo, author of White Fragility
- “75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Injustice” (Corinne Shutack, Medium, August 13, 2017)
- “Police, violence, une histoire commune” (“Kiffe ta race” podcast, March 17, 2020)
- “Black Parents Know About ‘The Talk’–White Parents, It’s Your Turn” (Ralinda Speaks, Medium, May 26, 2020)
- “EU ‘shocked and appalled’ by George Floyd’s Killing: Live updates” (Al Jazeera, June 2020)
- “International reaction to George Floyd Killing” (Al Jazeera, June 2, 2020)
- “George Floyd’s killing touches a nerve with Africans who know police brutality at home and abroad” (Quartz Africa, June 1, 2020)
- “US Embassies in Africa address George Floyd: ‘We are deeply troubled’” (The Hill, June 1, 2020)
- “African players speak out over George Floyd’s Death” (BBC Sport Africa, June 1, 2020)
- “George Floyd: protests take place in cities around the world” (The Guardian, June 1, 2020)