The APUO joins the Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations (OCUFA) and other faculty associations across Ontario and the rest of Turtle Island who condemn institutional racism and police brutality, and who are participating in the Scholar Strike for racial justice on September 9 and 10.
While APUO members are not in a position to legally strike, where possible, we encourage members to join the public digital teach-ins offered in the context of this action and to advertise the #ScholarStrike to students and colleagues. Please consult the programme schedule for more information. We also call on the Central Administration not to penalize campus workers and students who choose to participate in this important action.
In the context of the #ScholarStrike, we also invite members to read the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee’s (EDIC) 2020 Report: Hiring and Retention of Black Faculty at the University of Ottawa: Recommendations for Change, and to discuss it with colleagues and students. The APUO fully supports the five recommendations it sets out. These recommendations constitute an important first step in creating a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive university community, and we are fully committed to seeing them implemented. To this end, as we review our Collective Agreement in the coming months, we will be working to identify additional means to further advance the report’s objectives.
The APUO remains steadfast in its condemnation of the institutionalized and systemic racism present on our campus. We once again urge the Central Administration to implement the ten demands of the APUO BIPOC Caucus in response to the racial profiling, carding, and harassment of Black students on campus. The Central Administration’s delay in implementing these demands has, among other things, served to embolden some Protection Services Officers to promote the “Blue Lives Matter” campaign, thereby further poisoning the climate of our campus for Black, Indigenous and racialized students and workers. Our University community has a responsibility to reflect upon, and deconstruct, structures that uphold systemic racism and prevent our campus from being a safe and inclusive environment for Black, Indigenous, and racialized workers and students. We urge the Central Administration to break its silence by standing with the APUO in publicly condemning any and all actions that perpetuate anti-Black racism and all forms of racial discrimination.