June 9, 2020
Re: #ShutDownAcademia Day of Reflection
To: All students, faculty and staff
June 9, 2020
Dear Campus Community,
UC Merced is an academic institution, but it is foremost a community, and our primary duty is to one another.
Many faculty, staff and others have heard the call not to conduct business as usual tomorrow, but rather to attend to the challenges that we in higher education face in ensuring justice and equity to all of us, in this time when the injustices and inequities inflicted on Black and Brown people in this country have been laid bare to all but the willfully ignorant.
We heartily encourage you to individually and collectively follow this call. We call on supervisors across campus to accommodate this social good in all ways that do not compromise campus health and safety.
The work of breaking down barriers built around identity is critical to the mission of UC Merced and critical to the intellectual development of our entire society. Taking time to think deeply, carefully, and collectively about next steps is exactly what intellectuals should do.
To formally take a day of reflection is only a first step in a process that must be deep, ongoing and comprehensive.
At the senior leadership level, we recognize that words must be accompanied by deeds. Tomorrow we will gather for a working session to discuss how we can eradicate racism in substantive and specific ways, on campus and beyond. And we look forward to hearing questions and receiving action plans and proposals from you in the coming days, months and years as we work to make UC Merced, California and our world more equitable and inclusive.
Mike Riley, CPA
Interim Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer