HEALYAC Black Lives Matter (BLM) Statement
The Human Environments Analysis Laboratory Youth Advisory Council (HEALYAC) staff and youth co-researchers have the collective goal to make meaningful change within our communities by taking steps towards improving the health and wellbeing of children and young people. To reach these goals, the HEALYAC relies heavily on a diverse group of youth who bring varied experiences and perspectives to the table.
The incidents of systemic violence against the Black community in North America, including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Caleb Tubila Njoko, Regis Korchinski-Paquet, and countless others, remind us of the enduring Anti-Black Racism and inequities that exist within our country.
The HEALYAC stand with our Black members and supporters, as well as Black leaders putting efforts towards ending the continuous injustices faced by the Black community. The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement should be discussed on a regular basis as a reminder that Black lives matter always and not just when injustices happen.
The HEALYAC commits to using its collective tools and voice to listen, learn, and take action to support the BLM movement. They do not stand for racism. They do not stand for injustice. And so, they will not tolerate it or be silent. The HEALYAC is taking action to address racial inequities by (1) continuing to embrace racial diversity among members, (2) appointing Diversity Ambassadors to their council, (3) organizing seminars with experts to educate themselves, (4) engaging in digital outreach to spread awareness and educational resources, and (5) engaging in community advocacy.
The HEALYAC also calls on the London community to be allies of the Black community, listen to their shared experiences, and learn to amplify their messages so that their ideas are heard. They are also calling for collaboration with key stakeholders within the city of London and province of Ontario to share their views and ideas for enacting change.
The HEALYAC supports the BLM Movement, and promises to keep inclusivity at the forefront of their core values.
Please read the full statement here!
The HEAL Youth Advisory Council (HEALYAC) from London, Ontario informs youth-related health research conducted by the Human Environments Analysis Laboratory (HEAL) at Western University. It represents the diverse voices and perspectives of 16 teenagers from across the city.