Statement on Social Justice and Human Rights from various organizations

The Association of Caribbean Social Work Educators (ACSWE) Statement

The Association of Caribbean Social Work Educators (ACSWE) is compelled to denounce the racially motivated attacks that are occurring against the Black community in United States. The most recent incidents are part of a pattern of violence meted out to people of colour and other marginalised groups in that country and elsewhere. Its repeated incidence and the lack of reddress have led to the latest uprisings.

We stand in solidarity with and share the pain and fear of family members, friends & colleagues, who are directly and indirectly impacted by these events.

Generations of Caribbean peoples have long been subject to racism, prejudice, and injustice of many kinds. When they relocate “in search of a better life” they encounter racial profiling, institutional racism, and ofttimes racially motivated actions of agents of the state, coupled with and fed by anti-immigrant rhetoric, sentiments and policies.

The protests that have erupted across the US and in other parts of the world this past week are testament to the depth of grievance and increased desperation felt by the community. “I CAN’T BREATHE” is a tragic and apt metaphor for the smothering and stifling oppression that pervades communities of colour. We do not condone violence and we strongly condemn riots, vandalism and looting. However civil disobedience is a legitimate method of empowerment and social change. This time in history offers legislators and governments across the world an opportunity to take notice. An opportunity to confront this crisis at its source and enact strict anti-discriminatory and anti-racist laws and policies. Swift and transparent justice must be forthcoming for the growing number of cases.

As educators we commit our teaching, research and social action to supporting the eradication of racism. Its persistence is a deep, dark, noisome stain on all civilization.”

Asia and Pacific Association of Social work Education (APASWE) Statement

In Memory of George Floyd, APASWE joins in condemning the killing of George Floyd. His killing is the latest at the hands of an institution in a country that sees itself as “the land of the free”. Floyd’s death came at a time when a pandemic is staring at humanity. Sadly, after all these years of civilization, a virus called racism has yet to be neutralized by many of us in ourselves and state’s institutions. There are lessons to be learnt with the tragedy of Floyd’s death. One that is clear, those shouting at human rights abuse of others, should focus on their own flaws – hypocrisy is starkly being exposed. Minorities, blacks in particular, are still being victimised. Racial profiling is rampant in those so-called champion of human rights countries.

We as social work educators must play a role in combating racism and other forms of discrimination. Slowly we must separate ourselves from the narratives of Eurocentric in our curriculum. An introduction on the subject of racism must be included in all schools where there are none. We in the Asia-Pacific region have collectively experienced racism in one form or another by the colonialists. Let us all rally around Floyd’s dying words of “I can’t breathe” to allow all to live peacefully devoid of discrimination.

A Statement on Social Justice from Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)

Darla Spence Coffey, PhD, MSW, president and CEO of the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), and Saundra Starks, EdD, MSW, chair of the CSWE Board of Directors, released a statement today regarding issues of social justice that have been brought to the national forefront. Read the full statement on CSWE’s News page

Statement on Promoting Social Justice and Human Rights from Global Social Service Workforce Alliance (SSWA)

The recent deaths of African Americans at the hands of police in the United States are not isolated incidents, rather the result of deep-rooted racism that has existed in many forms for far too long. We’re heartbroken, angry and frustrated, like so many are right now. In any circumstance like this, in any place around the globe, staying silent only allows these actions to continue. We must continue to challenge ourselves to not only recognize racism and violations of human rights in all forms, but respond, react and call out those actions. It will take all of us.

As a network of social service workers across the globe, we recognize the importance of bringing together individuals and groups across sectors in dialogue and actions to address the root causes of racism. Social service workers are needed now more than ever. Social service workers engage people, structures and organizations to: facilitate access to needed services; alleviate poverty; challenge and reduce discrimination; promote social justice and human rights; and prevent and respond to violence, abuse, exploitation, neglect and family separation.

We are committed to remaining true to the values that guide social service workers every day – to uphold and recognize human dignity, and protect and promote fundamental rights of people, particularly the most marginalized and excluded. Many of our members live in countries that have experienced overt and underlying systemic racism. We all have the opportunity to learn from one another and be better together. We have hope that this time will result in constructively moving dialogue and actions forward, together.

STATEMENT FROM THE VICE-CHANCELLOR (The University of The West Indies)

Marcus, Martin, and Minneapolis.
Regional Headquarters, Jamaica, June 1, 2020. The following statement is issued by Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, Vice-Chancellor of The UWI, President of Universities Caribbean, and Chairman of the CARICOM Reparations Commission.Statement_from_Professor_Sir_Hilary_Beckles_Marcus_Martin_and_Minneapolis.pdf