PUMP Statement in Solidarity with the Black Community

Brian Magee Access to Health + Wellness, Active + Engaged Residents, Advocacy, Diverse + Connected Region, Featured Advocacy, General, Opportunities for Success

PUMP Stands with the Black Community.

To the PUMP Community:

In the past few days, we have seen and felt the outpouring of grief and anger in response to the killing of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer. This tragedy is just the most recent in a long, painful history of Black lives being taken by police brutality.

Today and every day, we mourn George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Antwon Rose II, and countless other Black Americans who were brutally torn from this world. Our hearts break with the Black community.

We unequivocally support the right to protest and recognize the essential role that protests have played in movements throughout history. PUMP stands with protestors in demanding accountability for law enforcement and criminal justice in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Southwest Pennsylvania, and across the United States. We thank those who have stepped forward and put themselves on the line in pursuit of justice.

Police brutality is just one symptom of white supremacy, which has operated insidiously throughout our country’s history, politics, and society to deny the Black community access, opportunity, and the very humanity that many of us take for granted.  PUMP, guided by our mission and Advocacy + Public Policy Agenda, is committed to fighting racial injustice in all its forms and advancing intersectional racial equity. We believe that Black Lives Matter, and are committed to ensuring that Black voices are heard.

As an organization with a racially diverse board and a network of tens of thousands of young people, many of whom are white, we acknowledge the heightened responsibility that we have to continue to develop and advance inclusive programming and to deepen our service as allies to communities of color, consistently and persistently, in the pursuit of racial justice. We have made real progress, but there is so much more to do.  We will own that responsibility each and every day as we engage, educate, and mobilize our network to create change.  Our organization, and our community, must step up.

We call upon everyone in our network to take notice of this moment and to take action. That starts with the work we must do individually and intentionally to unlearn our own biases, but it does not end there. We must stand up to family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers. We must challenge our elected officials and community leaders to do better – and hold them accountable when they fail us.

We must listen, learn, donate, protest, vote, organize, and so much more.

Resources to learn more about how to effectively participate in a community that uplifts, supports, and cherishes its diverse members:

1) LEARN: Anti-Racism Resources

2) DONATE: Support a Black-led organization that serves the Black community – here are just a few:

3) ACT: 75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice