The Junior State of America is horrified and heartbroken by the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, which are just the most recent examples of ongoing, historical and pervasive racism which undercuts what America promises to all of its citizens, namely justice and equality. We call upon the entire JSA community to stand with our black students, alumni, and staff in demanding a world free of racism and bigotry. Now is not the time to be silent. Now is the time to engage in activism, to promote equity, and to promote policies that seek to bring about an end to systemic racism.
Over the last week, JSA students across the country have been involved in peaceful protests. JSA encourages social activism. Our nonpartisan, student run, student led programs give teenagers the skills necessary to engage in the political process; to promote, demand and make the change they wish to see. JSA will continue to support and elevate student voices on this issue and others.
JSA encourages its students and its community to:
- Speak out against bigotry and racism in all forms.
- Become an informed citizen. Educate yourself on the issues of racism, bigotry and police violence.
- Engage in the political process.
- Plan a thought talk with students or friends about the current crisis and what you and your community can do to bring about change.
- Call your mayor, city councilperson, governor, state representative or member of congress and let them know what changes you would like to see made. If you support particular policy changes - be specific. Make sure you let them know your name and address and that you are a voting constituent in their district (if you are old enough to vote!!).
- Support local organizations working on issues you believe in.
- If you choose to protest, take protective health and safety measures to protect you and those around you from COVID-19.
- Register to vote
- Read these resources on how to fight systemic racism in your community.
JSA encourages all of its students, educators, families, alumni and staff to actively oppose racism whenever we encounter it. Let us be especially kind right now. People are suffering.
Rachel Kaganoff Stern
CEO, Junior State of America Foundation
Interim Board President, Junior State of America Foundation
Shayna Mittler Van Hoften
Board Secretary, Junior State of America Foundation
Board Treasurer, Junior State of America Foundation