May 31, 2020
Statement from Board Member Erika Y. Mitchell on the Recent Killings of Unarmed Black People and Atlanta Protest
As a black woman, a native Atlantan, an American, but most importantly a mother of a Black son and daughter, the recent chain of events, particularly the unjust loss of our black brothers, have left me feeling upset and frustrated. As a leader and public servant in the educational space, I fear for my black students, their future, their opportunities, and their ability to impact their communities. How do our students thrive in this country under such inequity, racial constraints of oppression and suppression? The killing of unarmed black people is unacceptable and we must do better as a nation to protect the rights of all citizens. Within these past 48 hours, I have seen protests, peaceful and destructive. But for the students, whom I serve, that feel the need to take their anger to the streets, I urge you to find a peaceful way to protest because your voice is important and should be heard. The current issues impact us all regardless of our race. We all need to come together for the greater good of our future and our communities. We have to stand for justice and fight the injustices that for so many years have caused racial trauma to permeate our culture, our education system, our communities, and our families. I am with you, I stand with you and I will continue to fight for you. Atlanta Strong!
Erika Y. Mitchell
Atlanta Board of Education District 5