Statement on the death of George Floyd

Once again our nation mourns. The tragic and senseless death of George Floyd is a vivid reminder of the inequalities and unacceptable indignities that so many of our citizens constantly endure. The events in Minneapolis this week should lead everyone to recognize how much more work our society must do to realize liberty and justice for all. As a nation we have much work to do.

While the entire Penn community weeps, and our hearts are filled with sadness for this senseless loss of life, we should remember the importance of Penn’s commitment to doing our part to create a more inclusive and mutually respectful environment and society free from discrimination and deprivation.

I especially want Penn’s African American students, faculty, and staff to know how much they and their contributions to our community are treasured. It is particularly important at this difficult time that Penn’s students of color know their University supports them, which we unequivocally do. While we may be apart physically at this point in time, we are truly together in spirit.

We all long for the day when we never again bear witness to such a needless death. Our prayers are for the Floyd family, and for a healing of our nation’s soul. Let all of us in the Penn community use this moment to recommit, from the deepest corners of our hearts, to creating a living and learning environment that is truly safe and welcoming for all.