Letter Regarding Police Brutality and Protests

June 2, 2020

Dear Campus Life community,

This week, like so many we have seen before, comes with pain, exhaustion, fear, anger, sadness, and so many other burdens both physically and mentally.

We want to remind you that despite being far away from campus, we continue to strive to be a resource and support for you. In solidarity with our black and trans students and colleagues, we wholeheartedly support the sentiments in “A Pause to Acknowledge” video published recently by the college, as well as President Spencer’s letter entitled “Racism and Educational Mission.” Racism, transphobia, and all -isms and -phobias are antithetical to all that we stand for in Campus Life, and at Bates College. We are here for you, and will continue to work toward dismantling systems of power and oppression in our community, and in communities around the world.

We acknowledge that Campus Life may not be the first place you turn for support in this way. We encourage you to engage with campus resources in the way that feels most natural to you. Folks in your support network would likely love to hear from you, such as your academic advisor, student support advisor, coach, supervisor, or mentor. Here are some resources that may be helpful:

  • Multifaith Chaplaincy: The Multifaith Chaplains are available for one-on-one compassionate, confidential conversation; email multifaithchaplaincy@bates.edu to set up a time to virtually meet.

  • Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS): CAPS is not open during the summer months. That said, their website is a wonderful resource, including a page on Disarming Racism.

  • Dr. Noelle Chaddock, Vice President for Equity and Inclusion, continues to be a key partner to Campus Life in this work. If you have questions, concerns, or seek a thought partner, they are available via email to kstone@bates.edu.

For those who are looking for personal actions they can take during this time:

1. Check in on your friends and peers who are impacted by the recent events.

2. Find causes that support black and trans lives, and follow them on social media. Local organizations in your community in particular need support now more than ever.

3. If you have the ability to, donate to said causes.

4. DO NOT share videos or images of violence. Some may think this supports education and awareness, but this causes more pain and harm to our trans community and communities of color, specifically the black community.

5. If you’re a club leader, meet with your club to determine ways to contribute to the cause of social justice and equity. Campus Life staff are happy to attend these meetings to help you strategize. We recommend using Google Hangouts Meet, as it does not have the same limitations as Zoom. Please find a guide to using this platform here.

6. Share resources for continued education and learning:

In community partnership,

Jen Haugen, Kim Trauceniek, Marisa Melnick, and Nick Dressler