AAP DC Statement on Racial Injustice
This past week, our community has been engulfed in turmoil. Our children look out their windows and see flames, hear helicopters, and watch the military in the streets. Instead of playing outside, they are once again confined to their homes, not because of COVID-19, but the ugliness of racism and injustice.
The recent brutal deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others have traumatized our nation and Washington, DC. They have given us a glimpse into the everyday danger that our black colleagues, patients, and families experience. In 2014, we were all in disbelief when the police killed Tamir Rice, a twelve-year-old boy. It has not stopped.
During this past Fall Symposium, we addressed police brutality, racism, and injustice, and its impact on children by welcoming Drs. Danielle Dooley, Maria Trent, and Jacqueline Douge to present their 2019 AAP policy statement, The Impact of Racism on Child and Adolescent Health.
The DC Chapter has long valued diversity in our leadership and membership. In turn, we hope this is a safe place for you to come to learn, grow, and express your concerns as a practitioner.
As pediatricians, we play an integral role in the lives of many families in the region. We are not just providers. We are, at times, a part of the family. As you see patients virtually, in your offices or hospitals, we encourage you to address the mental and emotional stress that patients and families are experiencing in these turbulent times. We know racism and discrimination are a social determinate of health that have long-lasting effects.
Please join the Chapter in uniting against racism and discrimination in all forms, and by denouncing race-related violence, including police brutality.
We encourage you to join our virtual Chapter meeting this Thursday from 6 – 8 pm as we address the next steps to support Chapter members and our patients and families.
Lenore Jarvis, MD, MEd, FAAP
Christian Cornejo, MD
Interim Vice President
Kirsten B. Hawkins, MD, MPH, FAAP, FSAHM
Carmen Gil Bailey, MD
Tysus Jackson, MPA