CCIE Launches Website to Address Racial Justice

New website cover imageLast year, a powerful and thought-provoking letter was submitted to the Saint Mary’s College community by Shilei Bell-Lipsey ’22, president of the Black Student Union (BSU). Her profound and emotional words about racism and divisiveness had an indelible impact, and letters of solidarity and support were also issued by the Black Lives Matter (BLM) Subcommittee, and the Ethnic Studies Department. Collectively, the letters are referred to as the “List of 20 Demands for Campus-wide Racial Justice.”

To keep the community abreast of efforts to address racial equity issues at Saint Mary’s, the College Community on Inclusive Excellence (CCIE) has launched a new website named: "Response to Campus-Wide Demands: A Call for Racial Justice.” The website provides a transparent platform to address targeted issues, progress, and critical actions taken as the College responds to the 20 list of demands.

“The launch of the website could not have been more timely given our national conversation on race and justice,” stated Kathy Littles, associate provost for inclusive excellence and senior diversity officer. She expressed the powerful impact the letters have had on the community, and how people are now energized and galvanized to “do the work.” She added, “Having the website as a resource is another positive move forward by the College to bring about important and meaningful change.”

Littles, whose position was recently elevated to a full-time Associate Provost for Inclusive Excellence and Senior Diversity Officer, now sits as a member of the President’s Cabinet. “One of the demands on the list was for my position to have a seat on the Cabinet, and the demand was fulfilled,” shared Littles. “This is what progress looks like, and it is one accomplishment of many that we are working toward with the community.”

The new website will provide an opportunity for the community to review updates and actions—categorized into four themes: campus climate, hiring and retention of Black faculty and staff, racial profiling and harassment, and curriculum and BIPOC student retention. The individual categories are already populated with actions that started in the fall of 2020, as well as information on upcoming actions and opportunities to work toward meaningful and substantive change.

Click here to access the new website.