Walk Out Details: February 25, 2015 Walk out at 11:30am Meet up Locations Bothell: The Plaza in front of Discovery Hall Seattle: Between Allen Library and Mary Gates Hall at the art installation called "Blocked Out" Tacoma: Grand Staircase On February 25, 1964 Muhammed Ali defeated Sonny Liston in the world heavyweight boxing championship in 1964. Ali was one of the greatest because he did not shy away from adversity and challenge. He fought fearlessly both in the ring and in the streets to bring attention and justice to important issues. (Black History Month Moment) On February 25, 2015 students and staff from UW Bothell to Seattle in all undergraduate and graduate programs will be WALKING OUT. Historically students and workers around the world have walked out in protest of unfair practices and inequality in their places of work, schools, and government. Muhammed Ali said "[Those] who are not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in [their] life." To WALK OUT is your right AND students at the University of Washington are asking their peers, staff, and professors to join them in support and solidarity of #BlackLivesMatterUW. Why does #BlackLivesMatter to students at the University of Washington? All institutions in this country are interconnected. Racism and accountability are not simply a problem for the police. We know that a lack of access to schools contributes to the school to prison pipeline, the prison industrial complex and the targeting of black and brown bodies in the streets. The University of Washington is our state school and should be accessible to all students in the state, but over the years the representation of underrepresented groups has not substantially improved. Further the climate and culture of the University of Washington remains unwelcoming and uncomfortable to underrepresented and marginalized folks. Since the non-indictments in murders of unarmed black persons by cops all over the United States conversations regarding race, racism and accountability have once again been elevated to the national-level. In Seattle we have seen this struggle in the cases of: Miyekko (Koko) Durden-Bosley (http://www.king5.com/story/news/local/seattle/2014/12/08/woman-punched-by-seattle-police-officer-wants-him-fired/20124563/) Jesse Hagopian (http://truth-out.org/opinion/item/28893-jesse-hagopian-i-was-pepper-sprayed-by-seattle-police-on-mlk-day) Mr. Wingate (http://www.kirotv.com/news/news/seattle-walks-mr-wingate-man-arrested-walking-golf/nj6hX/) Like many other parts of the Unite States the police in Seattle need to be held accountable. The Seattle Police Department is currently under consent decree with the DOJ for excessive use of force and racial discrimination. Many of the black and brown folks targeted by the SPD are our peers and our neighbors. (http://www.justice.gov/crt/about/spl/seattlepd.php) Further, the City of Seattle and King County have decided to build a New Youth Jail. The current facility houses black and brown youth at a very disproportional and disparate level when compared to similarly situated white youth. For more info please see: -(https://nonewyouthjail.wordpress.com/ and https://nonewyouthjail.wordpress.com/why-oppose-the-new-youth-jail/) -EPIC/YUIR(https://www.facebook.com/NoNewYouthJailSeattle and https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ending-the-Prison-Industrial-Complex-EPIC-Seattle/581986985205594) -(https://www.facebook.com/NoNewYouthJailSeattle) -Family's F.I.R.S.T. (https://famfirst206.wordpress.com/2015/02/19/families-first-statement-re-the-new-child-abuse-center-at-12th-and-alder/) There are many reasons for students in Washington to organize around #BlackLivesMatter. In the 1960s it was the tenacity of students, staff and professors from collegial institutions that provided the zeal and energy to the movement for Civil Rights. On February 25th students will declare a State of Emergency at the University of Washington. Students will request the administration to address the obvious race issues present on our campuses. We will deliver a list of demands to administrators at UW and demand they take swift and certain action to improve access to the University of Washington to underrepresented peoples. On February 25th at 11:30am we ask you to stand up for JUSTICE. We ask you to walk out of whatever class, meeting, or office you are in and meet up with students and staff who will gather together at a soon to be disclosed locations on all three campuses to participate in a march and direct action. Please share this invite with other UW friends! We look forward to standing with you on February 25, 2015! "Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
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