Claremont Graduate University, School of Community and Global Health
Statement on Racism as a Threat to Public Health

June 10, 2020

The disproportionately high rates of COVID-19 deaths among African-Americans coupled with the senseless, brutal police killing of George Floyd and recent killings of Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor are sobering reminders of the peril associated with simply being born black in the United States.

In African-American communities across the nation, the historical trauma of slavery is intergenerational, pervasive and complementary to the scourge of racism. Both structural and institutional racism influence political and economic processes that too often limit the degree to which many African-Americans and other ethnically diverse groups can access a quality education, safe housing, gainful employment and affordable health care. Moreover, racism serves as a major driver of health inequities, which contribute significantly to high morbidity and mortality rates among African-Americans and other underserved groups.

At the Claremont Graduate University, School of Community and Global Health, we acknowledge that racism has been and continues to be a public health crisis of historic proportion. We denounce racism in all forms and are committed to doing our part to address it.

We specifically support reforms to current law enforcement practices that unjustly target and, all too often, maim and kill innocent young black and brown men and women. To that end, we stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter.

As a faculty dedicated to improving the health and wellbeing of our surrounding and underserved communities, we stand ready to fight for what is right and just. The litany of deaths of black and brown men and women culminating in the harrowing events of recent months have compelled us to self-reflect, examine our own biases, challenge old ways of thinking and ponder new avenues of research, teaching and advocacy, while also engaging communities with compassion and respect through a social justice lens.

As a School of Community and Global Health, it is our passion and responsibility to provide our students, staff, faculty and community partners with a proactive and safe learning environment that is actively inclusive. We invite our students, CGU colleagues, faculty from the Claremont Colleges as well as leaders of community and faith-based organizations to join us in ongoing dialogue about ways in which we can work collaboratively to improve health and overall quality of life in every community.

The School of Community & Global Health (SCGH) is catalyzing a new vision of how humankind conceptualizes and promotes health that extends far beyond the scope of traditional paradigms.

Our programming convenes top minds from science, public health, government, business, and the community to engage in creative problem solving that leads to innovations in health, well-being, and quality of life. Our experiential, transdisciplinary research aims to promote human health and improve quality of life for individuals, families, and communities. We’re examining the cellular, genetic, individual, economic, political, social, cultural, societal, and environmental factors that contribute to health outcomes and their uneven distribution within and between populations.


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