Statement on the Recent Killings of Black People in America

Dear Cornellians,

I am heartbroken, angry and frankly sickened by the recent killing of George Floyd, and before him, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and others whose deaths are less well publicized.

The amount of pain in the Black community is unfathomable, especially as these are occurring in the midst of a pandemic that is having such a disproportionate impact on communities of color.

Decent people and institutions cannot stand silent while such violence against our fellow citizens continues.

I want to make clear, both personally and on behalf of Cornell, that we will do all we can as a university to address this scourge of racism. We will address it directly in our educational programs, in our research and in our engagement and related activities, working through the ways we know best to push for a world that is equitable and kind; where people do not have to fear for their lives because of the color of their skin; and where everyone has the same opportunities to grow, thrive and enjoy their lives.

My heart goes out to everyone who is feeling the pain of these recent incidents.