Black Lives Matter03 July 2020
The response to death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on 25 May has rapidly moved from an initial outpouring of hurt and outrage to a growing recognition of entrenched racial injustice and a global moment of reckoning with the past. Racial discrimination and injustice remain all too prevalent across UK society. It is not acceptable to continue to say and do nothing about this. Its continued existence means that we must be passionate, committed, and united in its defeat.
Versus Arthritis will play its part. We aspire to be an inclusive organisation and to create a world where it is unacceptable for anyone to have to deal with the pain and isolation of arthritis on their own. We know that we have significant work to do on race equality and we must find ways to address the systemic issues that exist in who we are and what we do.
We will reflect on how our determination to speak with and for people with arthritis can underpin efforts to tackle racial inequality. We know we need to challenge ourselves on whether we are doing enough to address the health inequalities that we know exist. In March 2020 our Trustees committed to exploring what more we can do to reach and support diverse communities so that what we do and what we offer is fully accessible.
In April we made the commitment to change the profile of the Versus Arthritis Board using recruitment opportunities to evolve into a more diverse Board with more members who are black or from a minority ethnic background, more members with lived experience of arthritis and members with a more diverse age, gender and experience profile.
We will listen to the specific experiences of black and minority ethnic people – people with arthritis, our employees, volunteers and supporters to shape and inform what we do and how we work.
The moment and manner of George Floyd’s death has turned into a worldwide movement for racial justice and equality. It is a cause and purpose that Versus Arthritis supports. Black Lives Matter.