*Please note that this fundraiser ended on Sunday, July 5, 2020. Consider donating to the supported organizations directly.*
June 15, 2020
Dear Bates Community,
Over the course of the past few weeks, protests across all fifty states have called for equal justice and an end to racist policing within the United States. Black people and people of color are forced to fear for their lives at the hands of police, even while they are in their own homes. This is unconscionable. As the movement sweeping our nation has demonstrated, now is the time for real action and change.
We, as an alliance of Bates Clubs, Bates’ Anti-racism Coalition, are taking informed civic action. Stemming from the work of Africana, Black Students Union, Caribbean Students Association, and Student Government with support from collective clubs, our coalition is seeking donations for racial justice organizations that work to support Black communities in and around the Lewiston-Auburn area. These organizations include Color of Change, #FreeThemAll, and the Liberation Farms Somali Bantu Community Association. We ask that you join us in supporting the hard work of these organizations. If you have the means to do so, please strongly consider a financial contribution to the Bates’ Anti-racism Coalition GoFundMe page. If you do not, please show your solidarity by protesting, writing to your representatives and the local police department, or having conversations in your own communities.
This international movement sparked by the murder of George Floyd has already made tremendous, unprecedented progress highlighted in the Minneapolis City Council’s promise to dismantle their police department, the same department which employed the four officers responsible for the murder of George Floyd. Minneapolis, however, is just one city among many plagued by long histories of racial inequity and structural injustice, and Lewiston is no exception. The city of Lewiston has been a place of academic and personal growth for all of us. It is time that we use the values instilled in us as Bates students to promote racial justice and equality in Lewiston and the surrounding communities. In the words of the Bates mission statement, now is the time for each of us to uphold our responsibility to “take informed civic action” and be “responsible steward[s] of the wider world.”