As we approach the fall semester’s midway mark, these stressful times become increasingly more difficult amid the COVID-19 pandemic, polarizing politics and racial trauma in our BIPOC communities. More than ever, we seek equitable ways to help our community get through these incredibly challenging times. Please see below for some important updates from the Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion:
Supporting Our LGBTQA+ Community
We received reports earlier this week that there was a man distributing flyers with hateful messages toward one of our LGBTQA+ faculty members. Because of his location on public property near Summit and Cretin avenues, the university was limited in its ability to remove him from the area. We do not condone this man’s hateful messages and provide our full support to our LGBTQA+ community. We reached out to the faculty member to offer support, and the adviser to the Queer Straight Alliance club is meeting with members of the organization to address concerns.
Our values as a Catholic university require us to welcome and love all. As Pope Francis wrote earlier this month in his third encyclical, we should “be committed to living and teaching the value of respect for others, a love capable of welcoming differences, and the priority of the dignity of every human being.”
Updates on DEI Trainings
As part of our commitments to nondiscrimination, anti-racism, diversity, truth and the common good, St. Thomas offers faculty and staff training on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) topics. The recent executive order by the White House on Sept. 22 does not impact the DEI training St. Thomas offers. We continue to provide DEI training that is nondiscriminatory and helps to build knowledge and understanding of one another and our world. Each of us is called upon to protect human dignity and create a just and inclusive society. We continue to learn and grow together.
Climate Survey Results
Please join us from noon-1 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 29, for the Forum on Climate Survey Results. All staff, students and faculty are invited to learn about the most recent climate survey results and how the data informs our work at St. Thomas. Click here to register and a Zoom link will be provided to you.
We uphold our unwavering commitment to create a just and inclusive community and condemn bias, hate, harassment and discriminatory conduct. All members are welcome in our community from all backgrounds including race, color, creed, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, familial status, disability and all other characteristics as protected by applicable laws.