We stand against racism in all its forms

Thursday, April 2, 2020

For the last few weeks we have mobilized our skills, time and resources to slow the spread of coronavirus. We've done this as each of us has also adjusted to new work and study environments at home or at a distance.

Waterloo remains committed to maintaining and fostering a thriving community

As we adapt, many of you are living our values of respect and inclusion that are promoting social cohesion on our virtual campus. However, I am aware of racist remarks recently made by individuals at the University of Waterloo.

Let me be absolutely clear: Waterloo condemns any and all forms of racism.

We are a global leader in innovation because of our diversity of thought and practice. We are - and will continue to be - an institution that values and fosters respect among all campus community members, without exception.

This means that we do not and cannot accept racist and harmful language. This is more true now than ever before as COVID-19 challenges our physical and mental health in unprecedented ways.

For all of you, but especially those affected by recent acts, we hear you and acknowledge the serious harm that has taken place. We will pursue each and every case with every option available within the bounds of our policies to take action when we see racism.

In recent weeks we have:

I recognize we can and will do more.

This is a time for us to support each other. We have an opportunity to contribute to the greater good in ways that are unique to Waterloo.

We can only do this together. Together, we continue to co-ordinate the collection and delivery of supplies to hospitals. Together, we support the most vulnerable in our communities by mobilizing resources. Together, we do extraordinary work to address the urgent needs of the Waterloo region and beyond. 

I look forward to continuing this work with you, together,

Feridun Hamdullahpur 
President and vice-chancellor

Help is available if you need it:

Our Equity Office continues to offer support and resources. Please reach out to them. Our Employee and Family Assistance Partner, Homewood Health, offers support and tips to those who need it. You can call Homewood confidentially at 1-800-663-1142 for support.

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