Shortly before midnight on Saturday, 37 campus leaders, including the presidents of the undergraduate and graduate student associations, joined together to send a message to the UCLA community expressing their collective anger, sadness and solidarity.

Across the country, people are horrified by the recent killings of three African Americans: Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd. We share that outrage. And these are only a few of the most recent deaths to cause particular anguish amongst those who for too long have endured cruelty after cruelty, indignity after indignity.

What stood out about the killing of George Floyd — more than its senselessness, more than its brutality – was its casualness. What was so chilling was the relaxed demeanor of a police officer — sworn to protect and to serve — his hands calmly in his pockets, kneeling on the neck of a fellow human being, indifferent to his cries of pain and the fear for his life. Equally harrowing was his three fellow officers who stood there and did not recognize the need to intervene in a life or death situation. All these behaviors reflected the utter dehumanization of Black life.

We must never let that indifference to human suffering become our own. We must never deaden our hearts to the pain of others. Our fundamental values demand that we care.

At UCLA, we believe deeply that equity, respect and justice are central to the character of our institution, to the health of our democracy and to the well-being of our world. Still, we recognize that UCLA also can and must do better. As campus leaders, we recommit ourselves to ensuring that our policies and actions value the lives, safety and dignity of every Bruin.

We have begun the process of coordinating virtual reflection spaces for departments and units, where we can come together to try and process what has happened. With assistance from the Office for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and the university’s Equity Advisors, we are also trying to share ways we can honestly and humbly acknowledge the pain and search for solutions. This includes working with student government leaders to understand and address the needs of our students. Our efforts will be updated on the Resources for Racial Trauma web page as we push forward to deeper understanding and genuine change.

We conclude by stating unequivocally that Black lives DO matter. They matter at UCLA. They matter in Minnesota. They matter everywhere.

In solidarity,

Gene D. Block

Emily A. Carter
Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost

Michael Meranze
Chair, Academic Senate

Michael J. Beck
Administrative Vice Chancellor

Gregg Goldman
Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer

Monroe Gorden, Jr.
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs

Jerry Kang
Vice Chancellor for
Equity, Diversity
and Inclusion

Michael S. Levine
Vice Chancellor for Academic Personnel

John Mazziotta
Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences
CEO, UCLA Health

Louise C. Nelson
Vice Chancellor for
Legal Affairs

Mary Osako
Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communications

Rhea Turteltaub
Vice Chancellor for External Affairs

Roger Wakimoto
Vice Chancellor for Research

Yolanda J. Gorman
Senior Advisor to the Chancellor and Chief of Staff

Dan Guerrero
The Alice and Nahum Lainer Family Director of Athletics

Antonio E. Bernardo
Dean, Anderson School
of Management

Ronald S. Brookmeyer
Dean, Fielding School of Public Health

Eric Bullard
Dean, Continuing Education and UCLA Extension

Miguel A. García-Garibay
Dean, Division of
Physical Sciences

Robin L. Garrell
Vice Provost, Graduate Education
Dean, Graduate Division

Darnell M. Hunt
Dean, Division of Social Sciences

Brian Kite
Interim Dean, School of Theater, Film and Television

Paul H. Krebsbach
Dean, School of Dentistry

Kelsey Martin
Dean, David Geffen School of Medicine

Jennifer L. Mnookin
Dean, School of Law

Jayathi Y. Murthy
Dean, Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science

Linda Sarna
Dean, School of Nursing

Gary M. Segura
Dean, Luskin School of Public Affairs

David Schaberg
Dean, Division of Humanities

Victoria Sork
Dean, Division of Life Sciences

Brett Steele
Dean, School of the Arts and Architecture

Eileen Strempel
Dean, The Herb Alpert School of Music

Marcelo Suárez-Orozco
Dean, Graduate School of Education & Information Studies

Pat Turner
Senior Dean, College
Dean and Vice Provost, Undergraduate Education

Tony Lee
Chief of UCLA Police Department


Naomi Riley
President, Undergraduate Students Association

Jean Paul Santos
President, Graduate Students Association