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Dear YWCA supporters,

This is a sad week for the United States – 100,000 lives lost to the COVID-19. But there were also lives lost to another virus – the virus of racism. Today, in response to the senseless killing of George Floyd by a police officer, the Minneapolis City Council called on state and local officials to declare racism a public health emergency. Racism, like COVID 19, is a pandemic and knows no borders.

YWCA of Syracuse and Onondaga County Inc. is deeply saddened by the loss of life that occurred last Monday evening. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of George Floyd, and all the individuals who have been affected and traumatized by this tragedy. Before his death, George said, “I can’t breathe,” too similar to the cries of Eric Garner in years past. The COVID quarantine is trying for all of us, but could you imagine living in a world where you can’t jog, go food shopping, sleep in your own bed, or birdwatch without fear of being killed or police intervention? Our black and brown communities suffer from “not being able to breathe” because of the virus that is ever-present in our world and for which there is no vaccine: racism.

We are also thinking of our sisters and brothers at YWCA Minneapolis and the whole Minneapolis-St. Paul community through this difficult and frightening time.
As an organization with a mission of Eliminating Racism, we believe we must all do our part to promote and achieve racial equality. We MUST take a stand. We must unite in our vision of a community with peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all.

We invite you to take a stand in solidarity against racism in our community, here and beyond; today and every day.

Please visit our Racism and Educational Topics page from our recent Day of Commitment to Eliminate Racism and Promote Diversity.