Dear AMS Students,
By now you should have all received this message from leaders at the University. I am deeply saddened and distressed by the recent events of racism, oppression and injustice that have permeated throughout our country. The deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor as well as Christian Cooper being the target of a false accusation in Central Park, are not isolated events but recurrent traumas and abuses that often result in the death of Black people and people of color. I know that these events have had a profound impact on our students, staff and our community. I want you to know that we are here to support you during these devastating times.
As a medical school, we recognize the systems and structures that perpetuate racism and oppression and acknowledge the need for change. We are committed to working with the entire AMS community to affirm our dedication to anti-racism and create an environment in which we stand in solidarity to condemn these acts of violence and demand systemic change. We cannot stand in silence and must reflect upon and always remember the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in his Letter from Birmingham Jail, written more than half a century ago. If you have read it I would encourage you to read it again; if you haven't read it, I implore you to read it.(http://web.cn.edu/kwheeler/documents/letter_birmingham_jail.pdf ). We must continue to strive to make our communities and society better and inclusive for everyone, and continue to stand up against injustice against Black people and people of color. We are here standing with you.
Allan Tunkel, MD, PhD
Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education