CWS LANCASTER– June 5, 2020

Dear Friends and Supporters,

I would like to take this time to personally acknowledge the sadness, the frustration, the heaviness of heart that our country has experienced the past weeks following the senseless death of a black man at the hands of a white police officer. CWS condemns this ruthless killing of George Floyd and stands in solidarity with protesters and demonstrators across the country.

Outwardly I profess to understand the outrage, the hurt, the injustice suffered by black- and brown-skinned Americans. But I also recognize my white privilege—I will never know what it means to be an ‘other’ in America.

When we welcome refugees to America, we live out a promise—this is a country of ‘liberty and justice for all’. We also know however, that America has a horrible history of slavery, and that ongoing racial segregation and discrimination is not a thing of the past but is deeply rooted in our society today. ‘Liberty and justice for all’ is more of a vision than a reality today. We can only begin to atone for the national sin of racism by taking some uncomfortable steps. We need to be agents of change. We need to change that narrative.

At CWS, I promise:

–       to confront discrimination, starting in our workplace

–       to oppose racism in all its forms

–       to become aware of and challenge my own biases

–       to be willing to sacrifice privilege for the common good

–       and, we will work to put our broken nation back together by working with everyone, regardless of race, creed, political affiliation, or socio-economic status.

As we grieve the loss of another black life, I believe, and I hope that there are many who will join us in working for lasting change.

CWS’ mission is to work with partners to eradicate poverty and hunger and to promote peace and justice around the world.

Our strength lies in our capacity to do more together than we or any of our partners could ever do alone.

Our commitment today, and every day, is to stand with all of our neighbors, regardless of their race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in particular social groups. This is not something new to CWS’ values and mission, but current events of today demand it to be proclaimed again, and again.

In Solidarity,

Sheila Mastropietro