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Black Lives Matter

July 8, 2016

Image by Sherronda J. Brown

This week, we went to bed and woke up to the news of two more Black men gunned down by police. Their names were added to the growing list of murdered Black Americans immortalized as hashtags.

At Lilith Fund, we proudly advocate for change within the reproductive justice framework; therefore, when we learn news of violence and oppression against people of color perpetuated by systems of power, we are committed to speaking out. We will be neither silent nor neutral during such oppression. We recognize the intersection between reproductive justice and systematic police violence, especially as it relates to Black people, their families and their children. We acknowledge this issue as an epidemic that not only affects our clients, but also our supporters, volunteers, and board members. Their experiences are valid.

We actively affirm that freedom from police violence and racial justice are reproductive justice issues. When Black fathers, like Alton Sterling and Eric Garner, are murdered in city streets, Black families are impeded from having the families they want and deserve. Our hearts break for every family affected by state sanctioned police violence.

It is impossible to not feel a range of emotions when confronted with the images and videos of Black bodies murdered by the police. As an organization, we are committed to lifting up the experiences of people of color and work to address structural barriers to bodily autonomy, including the unacceptable police brutality that ravages our communities.

To our Black supporters and friends, we want to take a moment and speak to you directly. We ask that you make space for those healing in your community. We ask that you hold onto your joy selfishly. We ask that you take care of yourself. We see your resiliency as much as we see your anger and heartbreak. We see you.

In closing, Black Lives Matter.

Lesli-Elsie Simms, Lilith Fund Board Member, on behalf of Lilith Fund Board of Directors and Staff