Racial Justice Task Force Launched
Provost Donna Maria Blancero announced the creation of a new task force charged with identifying and investigating practices at Bentley University that sustain systemic racism. The Task Force on Racial Justice will recommend specific actions to overturn those practices so Bentley can grow as an anti-racist university.
Now is the time for Bentley to look at itself with a critical lens, Blancero says.
“This is an important moment in the history of our university," she wrote in an email to the community. "Only by working together can we begin to heal the wounds of racism in our community and continue to transform the culture of Bentley into one that fully embraces and celebrates our Black and Brown students, alumni, faculty and staff.”
Students, faculty and staff were invited to volunteer for the task force by filling out a brief form by June 19. The goal was to include a diversity of voices with regard to identity, experience, talents and passion.
The task force will report its findings by the end of the fall semester.
Blancero will work with Assistant Provost for Diversity and Inclusion Katie Lampley to designate members of the steering committee that will lead the task force. Several workgroups consisting of volunteers from various areas of the university will report to the steering committee. Student leaders will also be included, and the steering committee will solicit nominations for students and alumni to join the task force.
The task force will move quickly and is being asked to produce an executive summary of its work by the end of the Fall 2020 semester. If the task force identifies immediate opportunities for change, those can be enacted earlier.
As the task force launched, the university also created a new email account, RacialJustice@bentley.edu, to invite the community’s suggestions related to combating systemic racism at Bentley.
As the task force moves forward, the university will continue to coordinate events, trainings, dialogues and services on race, privilege, identity and systemic racism through the Office of Diversity and Inclusion.