Jun 4, 2020

Our Commitment to Fight Systemic Racism in Our Community

This Statement of Support is Signed By: Akron Cleveland Association of Realtors, American Jewish Committe Cleveland, Applewood Centers, The Baseball Heritage Museum, Bellefaire Jewish Children's Bureau, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Cleveland, Birthing Beautiful Communities, Black Professionals Association Charitable Foundation, Boys & Girls Club of Northeast Ohio, Bright Beginnings, Burning River Roller Derby, Case Western Reserve University, The Center for Arts-Inspired Learning, The Centers for Families and Children and Circle Health Services, The City Club of Cleveland, Cleveland Arts Education Consortium, The Cleveland Clinic, CLE Clothing Co., Cleveland Development Advisors, The Cleveland Foundation, The Cleveland Indians, The Cleveland Jazz Orchestra, Cleveland Museum of Natural History, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress, The Cleveland Orchestra, Cleveland Play House, Cleveland Public Library, Cleveland Rape Crisis Center, Cleveland Restoration Society, Cleveland State University, Cleveland Water Alliance, College Now Greater Cleveland, Community Assessment & Treatment Services, Contractors Assistance Association, Construction Employers Association,The Council for Health & Human Service Ministries (UCC), Coventry Village Special Improvement District, Cuyahoga County Community College, Destination Cleveland, Diversity Center of Northeast Ohio, DigitalC, Dix & Eaton, Domestic Violence & Child Advocacy Center, Downtown Cleveland Alliance, Downtown Cleveland Residents Association, Empowering Integrated Care Solutions, Engage! Cleveland, Facing History and Ourselves, Fairfax Renaissance Development Corporation, First Year Cleveland, FIT Technologies, Flats Forward, Fully Promoted, The Gathering Place, gBETA Cleveland, Goodwill Industries, The Greater Cleveland Partnership, Great Lakes Science Center, Great Lakes Theater, The Greater Cleveland Film Commission, Greater Cleveland Food Bank, The Greater Cleveland Partnership, GroundWorks DanceTheater, Gund Foundation, Hand 2 Hand, Inc., HFLA of Northeast Ohio, The Hispanic Roundtable, Historic Gateway Neighborhood Corporation, Historic Warehouse District Development Corporation, Hospice of the Western Reserve, Hunger Network, Hyland, Intergenerational Schools, Jewish Federation of Cleveland, JumpStart Inc., Junior Achievement of Greater Cleveland, The Junior Leauge of Cleveland, The K&D Group, Karamu House, Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry, Manufacturing Works, Marcus Thomas LLC, Maximum Accessible Housing of Ohio (MAHO), Medical Mutual of Ohio, Menorah Park, The Metropolitan at The 9, Monarch Lifeworks, NAACP Cleveland, The Nature Center at Shaker Lakes, NewBridge Cleveland, The Northeast Ohio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Physicians Ambulance, Playhouse Square, Plexus, The Presidents’ Council, Progressive Arts Alliance, Ratliff & Taylor, Recovery Resources, Rhonda Crowder and Associates, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Safe Families for Children, St. Vincent Charity Medical Center, Squire Patton Boggs, Thompson Hine, thunder::tech, Towards Employment, The United Way of Greater Cleveland, University Circle, Inc., University Hospitals, Urban League of Greater Cleveland, Vocational Guidance Services, Western Reserve Land Conservancy, Wingspan Care Group, The Women's Recovery Center, YMCA of Greater Cleveland,YWCA of Greater Cleveland, Youth Opportunities Unlimited, Zhug

This past weekend, across our country and here in Cleveland, we witnessed the ignition of long-smoldering injustice and inequity in our black and brown communities, the evidence of which is undeniable yet frequently overlooked: The rate of COVID-19 infections and infant mortality, disproportionate unemployment and another murder of an unarmed black citizen – George Floyd – at the hands of a police officer.

Systemic racism is everyone’s problem. In Cleveland’s continuing fight for racial equity and inclusion, we have a singular history and have played a progressive role on a national stage. Prominent African American leaders throughout Cleveland’s history and today, have been instrumental in pushing us into the forefront. What we have learned over time is that this is not a fight of one race but rather a fight of one community – our Cleveland community.

Standing united, we are today voicing our strong support of recent legislation passed by Cleveland City Council to declare Racism a Public Health Crisis. Still, this is not enough.

Rectifying a system of structural racism will take much more than words. Work has been done, and, while incremental change is apparent, we need to do much more – and we need to do it now. We must act, stand with justice and work together across our community to do our part to both heal and begin to undo the endemic racism that has and continues to disproportionally hurt our city – emotionally, physically and in terms of reputation.

This legislation can enable and empower us to take this issue head on. It can provide a platform rooted in policy that can initiate substantive care and sustainable change, beginning at a governmental level and then cascading throughout our community.

What we do now to collectively hear the voices of pain, loss, and fear can initiate the actions we take to heal, change and unite our city to define us for years to come.

As leaders of institutions that all seek a better future for Cleveland as a whole, we are all fully committed to this charter and pledge our individual and collective resources to set forth tangible actions to undo structural racism. This is our commitment to our greater Cleveland community, and we ask that you join us as partners in this critical endeavor – and this day forward, let our actions speak louder than our words.