Dear Campus Community:
Once again, acts of violence and racism have our nation mourning innocent lives lost. The killing spree in Atlanta on Tuesday that took eight lives, including six Asian women, is the latest in a trend of harassment, abuse and aggression towards Asian-Americans, and NKU unequivocally condemns these acts of hate.
There has been a dramatic escalation of violence against Asian-Americans and Asian Immigrants over the past year that emerged with the COVID-19 pandemic. While we know it is unfounded to blame a certain population for the virus, hate often does not follow a rational path. We can battle racism and discrimination by showing unwavering support for our Asian-American, immigrant, and international students and colleagues, as we do with all races and ethnicities. The pandemic has rekindled a history of racism to Asian-Americans while also highlighting the inequities and disparities that persist in our society. The social justice movements that gained momentum over the past year force us to face these harsh realities and find new ways to take thoughtful and intentional action to support the change we need. By educating ourselves and engaging across interest groups, we can work together to combat the bias and stereotypes that contributed to these attacks.
We all must play a role in building a more equitable, inclusive and just society and ensuring that our campus is a safe and welcoming home where everyone belongs and is valued. Our community cannot thrive when individuals are targeted because of the color of their skin, how they look, who they love, or how they identify themselves.
The resurgence in hate crimes weighs heavily on us all, and we encourage our campus community to seek help and support. Students can visit our Health, Counseling and Student Wellness (HCSW) or reach out to the Student Affairs Office. Faculty and staff can take advantage of University Wellness’ offerings, including the Aetna Employee Assistance Program. Tomorrow, we hold our next campus conversation titled NKU Mental Health– We Care at 1 p.m. I hope you can join us for this important discussion by clicking this link: https://nku.zoom.us/j/92328023130#success.
We value the many perspectives and voices of our students, faculty and staff. That is what drives our success and purpose. I ask our campus to focus on our core values that binds us as a community and take care of each other. We are one Norse family.
Ashish K. Vaidya