On Friday, Dec. 11, 2015, the presidents of all 34 community and technical colleges, including Shoreline President Cheryl Roberts, signed the following letter reaffirming their commitment to diversity and safe campuses.
Religious and racial tensions are high in the United States right now and our communities are feeling the effects deeply.
As presidents of Washington’s community and technical colleges we issue this clear response on behalf of our students and colleagues: We stand together. Harassment and prejudice of any type defies the very values of pluralism and religious freedom that we hold dear in this country.
Community and technical colleges are truly “Democracy’s colleges” — not just because of our open-door policies, but because of the diverse community of students we serve. Our colleges are proud to be the educational homes to students of different faiths, races, national origins, sexual orientations and gender identities. We also strive to provide a working and learning environment that values civility, mutual respect and rigorous intellectual inquiry.
We believe our very differences strengthen our bonds of understanding and community. The tapestry of American life is woven by the intersection of people from all backgrounds. We have been, and will continue to be, a system of colleges committed to human dignity and social justice. As such, we have zero tolerance for anything but safe campuses for our students and colleagues.
During these difficult times, when fear breeds hatred, we resolve to embrace humanity in all of its rich diversity.