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June 1, 2020

Boulder County Commissioners reaffirm anti-racism stance and support peaceful protest


As white local elected leaders, we believe it is our obligation and duty to explicitly affirm that Black Lives Matter, here in Boulder County -- and everywhere. We add our voices to the chorus calling for justice in the recent murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor, as well as countless other Black Americans before them.

- Board of Boulder County Commissioners


Statement from the Board of Boulder County Commissioners

These are extraordinarily unsettling and challenging times. The global pandemic that is wreaking havoc on human lives and economies around the planet is the backdrop for yet another spate of murders highlighted in the media of unarmed Black people at the hands of some policemen and vigilantes. These were not isolated incidents but a chillingly familiar and frequent pattern of racial violence that has fueled a boiling point of outrage and frustration in cities across the country already frayed and polarized by the coronavirus.

As white local elected leaders, we believe it is our obligation and duty to explicitly affirm that Black Lives Matter, here in Boulder County -- and everywhere. We add our voices to the chorus calling for justice in the recent murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor, as well as countless other Black Americans before them.

As white people, we will never know what it feels like to be Black in America. We can't fully understand the struggles that Black men and Black women face in our country, or the fear and danger People of Color experience just walking down the street. But we do know silence would mean complicity, and that in addition to voicing our opposition to racial violence, we must also use our white privilege and political platform to help disrupt and dismantle the institutional racism that fuels this violence and that is embedded in our society and government systems, a by-product of the enslavement and dehumanization of Black people upon which our country was built.

The cancer of racism in America is everyone’s problem and we must all do our part to create needed and lasting change. It is not enough to merely oppose racism; we must be actively anti-racist in both word and deed. So we join with others across the country in peacefully protesting* racial violence and affirmatively supporting and advocating for our Black community members.

In recent years, Boulder County has identified equity and justice as a top organizational priority, and we re-dedicate ourselves to this work, as individuals and within our county organization, to be better co-accomplices to all Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, and to collectively create an anti-racist, inclusive workplace and community that is welcoming and safe for all.

Sincerely,

Deb Gardner, Elise Jones, Matt Jones
Boulder County Commissioners


*Though it can be difficult, we urge protesters to attempt to maintain social distancing whenever possible, and remember that a Public Health Order mandating the use of face coverings is still in place within Boulder County. We would also suggest that protesters should monitor themselves for symptoms for at least seven days after a protest, and implement self-quarantine if you believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19. Testing for coronavirus is available throughout Boulder County (see list of locations) and a free testing site is also available to anyone at the Pepsi Center in Denver.