The Lunar New Year is upon us! We welcome this celebration with feelings of joy and renewal. Sadly, we are also reminded that across the nation, there is a significant rise in bias and hate crimes toward Asian-Americans. This is the result of a number of forces converging, including the previous administration’s stoking of anti-immigrant sentiment and the labeling of COVID-19 as the “China virus.”
For us at NYC Outward Bound Schools, these xenophobic events and attitudes are a source of considerable pain, and are both deeply alarming and a clear call to action.
As an organization, we stand for and practice a form of education that values equity, collaboration, community and the celebration of differences; one that affirms the identities of all our students, regardless of their background or circumstance; one that celebrates our common humanity and puts a premium on respect, compassion and empathy.
We stand in solidarity with our Asian-American communities, and will continue to:
- Provide our students with access to a curriculum that is culturally relevant — one in which their histories and cultures are recognized and uplifted. Provide ample opportunities to better understand the richness and diversity of Asian-American, African-American, and Latinx cultures — and all the cultures that make up the mosaic of our city and country.
- Support our school communities by sharing the tools and skills that will help all of us to dismantle the systems and policies that perpetuate racism in our city and country. These are examples provided by Anti-Racism Daily:
- Commit individually to standing up to injustice wherever we see it. In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”