United Way of the Southern Tier statement on equity and access to justice

June 2, 2020:

United Way of the Southern Tier believes that every person is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect – this includes equal treatment and access to justice. Recent events involving violence and threats against Black Americans expose our society’s underlying racism, prejudice and privilege that prevent too many people from being treated with the humanity and respect they deserve. These incidents are abhorrent and run counter to everything that United Way, its volunteers and professionals value, live and fight for every day.

All people of all backgrounds and identities must call out discrimination and demand its removal from our society; otherwise, we are endorsing the status quo and are complicit in the abuses that follow. United Way of the Southern Tier applauds the peaceful protests occurring in our region and our country, and we are saddened by the acts of violence and destruction which mar the message of respect, equality and unity. 

We must all do our part, working United, to make our communities the places that we need them to be – equitable, respectful and opportunity-filled. We, as a society, can and must do better to guarantee that the basic human rights and freedoms of every person in every community are protected.

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