We have all watched in grief and anger at the murder of George Floyd two weeks ago . . . and before that, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery . . . and before that Philando Castile, Eric Garner, and Trayvon Martin . . . and before that countless others for generations and centuries into our country’s past.
On behalf of New Oakland Family Centers, I want to say that we stand with the peaceful protesters who are insisting with their voices and their bodies that this racist terror has to stop. We stand with those who insist Black Lives Matter. And we stand against those who would prevent these peaceful protest voices from being heard.
As an organization dedicated to mental health, I believe the most important action we can take together is to continue to meet the mental health needs of the people we serve. So we will do that.
But we will do more, too. As many of you know, since 2017 we have been hosting public, half-day continuing education training forums on key topics in mental health. We will be devoting our next session to the topic of ending racism and the entrenched culture of racial violence.
We all have a lot of work to do. But for all of us, it is a time to declare where we stand. So I am telling you where New Oakland stands. I hope those of you who know me and my family and knew my dad, our founder Dr. Ismail Sendi, will not be surprised to hear it.
Kevin S. Sendi, JD, MBA
New Oakland Family Centers