A year ago, the SFCC President’s Diversity Advisory Committee released a statement decrying the murder of George Floyd and calling for Santa Fe Community College to become an actively anti-racist campus.
We specifically chose Juneteenth, or June 19, which memorializes June 19, 1865, when the last enslaved people in Texas were declared free under the Emancipation Proclamation of 1862. One-hundred-fifty-six years later, we are not free. Racism keeps us all in chains. In the year since Floyd was murdered, our nation has continued to endure violence and bigotry — yet communities across the country have mobilized against hate in ways we could never have imagined. We are beginning our our work to embrace SFCC’s anti-racist identity.
In March, the President’s Diversity Advisory Committee produced our professional development day, the SFCC Anti-Racist Leadership Conference. Staff and faculty received professional development opportunities designed to challenge our assumptions, uncover our biases and enhance our work. Over the next year, we will engage with our college community through events under the theme “Becoming Anti-Racist.” We understand that being anti-racist it is not a goal to achieve but a way of life to embody. We will dismantle the systems of racism in our college to center inclusion, equity and justice in our work and learning for every person at SFCC. Unlike so many instances of Black, Indigenous or other people of color experiencing violence and death under the knee of a white oppressor, Floyd’s murderer was convicted for his crime. It is one step toward acknowledging, understanding and embodying Black Lives Matter.
Becky Rowley, Ph.D.
Santa Fe Community College
Give families pool time
Like many parents, I’m disappointed there isn’t an outdoor pool to take my child to this summer, but, at this point, I think the focus should be on how to increase access for families to the pools that are open. Currently, only the Genoveva Chavez Commuity Center has an area sectioned off for kids, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. weekdays. There need to be more hours, especially on weekends, for working families, as well better systems for reserving time (including waitlists so cancellations can be filled). Why isn’t the baby pool at the Fort Marcy Recreation Complex open to kids? Or the shallow area of the Salvador Perez pool? Why can’t an adult who has reserved a lane at any of the pools swim with a few children? That would make swim lessons possible. The city could also communicate with the acting secretary of the state Higher Education Department, Stephanie Rodriguez, to encourage her to authorize children to use Santa Fe Community College’s pool. Finally, the city should communicate with the public about its plans!