June 15, 2020
To the National Conference of Women’s Bar Associations Community:
The recent violent deaths of George Floyd, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and other Black Americans, as well as the Central Park birdwatching incident involving Christian Cooper have highlighted that systemic, pervasive racism still exists in America. The NCWBA writes today to stand in support of the Black community, the Black Lives Matter movement, and to denounce the legal structures that allow systemic racism to continue to exist.
As part of our mission, NCWBA advocates for equality in the legal profession and in society. We are committed to the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion and to ensuring that the legal profession, the justice system, and leaders accurately reflect the communities they serve. We are committed to mobilizing and uniting to effect change in laws, processes, and biases that adversely impact women, persons of color, and other marginalized groups. Black women in our profession have faced a double bind of racial and gender discrimination throughout their lives.
Recognizing that action is important, our board members have been reading, listening, and reaching out to our friends and colleagues, gathering and sharing resources with our local communities and women’s bar organizations, and attending member programs such as Ms. JD’s Allyship in the Legal Profession. We have been inspired by seeing so many of our member organizations write eloquent statements of support and pledge to take action for change. Given our many privileges, the legal community cannot stand in silence. The NCWBA calls on all of our member organizations and the legal community as a whole to take action to dismantle systemic racism.
On the NCWBA’s website, we now have a compilation of resources available that we hope will be helpful for our member organizations and communities. We encourage you to share the actions you are taking locally with the NCWBA. Please send us a note at [email protected], and we will include your resources on our website.
In Support and Solidarity,
The National Conference of Women’s Bar Associations