Black Lives Matter
It is hard to find words to express how I feel at the moment, so I can only imagine what the Black community are going through right now. The world does not need another white voice, so I believe it is important that we, as a Students’ Union, empower the Black community now and always. In my manifesto, I pledged to encourage equality and diversity throughout our institution and that continues to be part of my ethos as I begin my role as your Student Union President.
I don’t believe that statements of solidarity will change the world but being the positive change will. That’s why I want to work with the College to encourage more POC students to make their voices heard by joining the Executive Committee, by ensuring there is representation and a broader agenda in the Equality and Diversity Committee and by helping to educate the wider Plymouth College of Art community in times like these. We can, and will, do more.
I’m so proud of those of you who are using your voices, through art and social media, to spread awareness and change and those of you who were actively involved in encouraging a safe protest on Sunday. I was so proud to see such a peaceful protest happen in our city, with powerful words and actions from all. Whilst COVID-19 poses a risk to us all, it poses an even greater risk to the BAME community internationally, so I was glad to see that everyone made the effort to keep each other safe by abiding by social distancing guidelines where possible and wearing the appropriate PPE. You can keep up to date on the Black Lives Matter Protest via their Instagram page here. The protest was not the end; this isn't a trending moment, it's a life-long movement. We have to continually re-engage with difficult conversations and actively fight racism and part of that is educating ourselves. I've provided some resources that we shared by the College below to get you started.
If you would like to read Plymouth College of Arts’ statement and access the resources shared there, please head to their blog post or see below some ways to educate, donate and get involved. I’d also encourage you to share with us any other resources that you’ve found, and please know that myself and all of the SU Team are always available to discuss this issue. You can find all of our contact emails here.
How To Be Anti-Racist by Ibram X Kendi
So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo Heavy: An American Memoir by Kiese Laymon
Why I Am No Longer Talking To White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge
Black Feminist Thought by Patricia Hill Collins
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
The Fire Next Time - James Baldwin
I Am Not Your Negro - Raoul Peck - Amazon Prime
Just Mercy - Destin Daniel Cretton - Amazon Prime
13th - Ava Duvernay - Netflix
American Son - Kenny Leon - Netflix
Dear White People - Justin Simien - Netflix
See You Yesterday - Stefon Bristol - Netflix
When They See Us - Ava Duvernay - Netflix
Last but certainly not least, sign petitions! Start with this list.
Marketing and Enterprise Lead
SU President 2020/2021