Communications from UNC's Vice President of the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
September 02, 2021
Suicide Prevention Awareness
September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, a time to share resources and stories in an effort to shed light on this highly taboo and stigmatized topic. We use this month to reach out to those affected by suicide, raise awareness and connect individuals with suicidal ideation to treatment services. It is also important to ensure that individuals, friends and families have access to the resources they need to discuss suicide prevention.
August 26, 2021
Women's Equality Day
August 26, 2021, we observe the 101st year of the passage of the 19th Amendment, which granted women the right to vote in a federal election. Indigenous women did not gain the right to vote until 1924 when Congress passed the Indian Citizenship Act. In the first election in 1920 after this amendment passage, only 36% of women actually cast a ballot compared to 68% of men. According to the Pew Research Center, since 1984 women voters have turned out to vote at a greater rate than men in every presidential election.
August 19, 2021
World Senior Citizen's Day
On Saturday, August 21, 2021, we observe World Senior Citizen’s Day. As we continue to experience shifts in human population, it is important to keep in mind the diversity and equity challenges that may exist among the aging population. The Silver Tsunami (also known as Grey Tsunami, Silver Wave, or Grave Wave) is a metaphor to describe the population of persons over the age of 60. The term initially used when the baby boomer generation entered their 60s and concern rose regarding the effect that the aging population would have on health care, the workforce, and the housing market.
July 29, 2021
Hate Crime Laws
A report on the analysis of state and federal hate crime laws was recently released by the Movement Advancement Project (MAP) in partnership with 16 leading civil rights organizations. This report, Policy Spotlight: Hate Crime Laws, contains an analysis of the challenges and opportunities of current hate crime laws in an effort to both improve those laws and better support communities affected by hate violence.
July 22, 2021
Americans with Disabilities Act Day
On July 26, 2021 we recognize the 31st anniversary of the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Initially introduced to Congress in 1988, the ADA was signed on July 26, 1990. The passing of this civil rights law was a major milestone in that it guarantees equal opportunity for persons with disabilities in regards to public accommodations, employment, transportation, state and local government services, and telecommunications. Changes to the definition of ‘disability’ were included in the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) that was passed in 2008.
June 30, 2021
Independence Day has been celebrated since July 1776 when America declared its independence from British rule. Many battles and events led up to the American Revolution. The Seven Years’ War (French and Indian War) between France and Britain, 1756 – 1763, resulted in the need for Britain to raise taxes against the American colonists with the passing of the Stamp Act in 1765 to help cover war debt accumulated. The Stamp Act was followed by other imposed taxes against the American colonists including the Townshend Acts and the Tea Act. Ultimately, the American colonists sought to gain their independence from Britain and, with assistance from the French, were able to do so with the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776 although the American Revolution didn’t end until 1783.
June 24, 2021
Legalization of Same-Sex Marriages
In continuation of the celebration of Pride Month, it is important to recognize and celebrate a major milestone in the advancement of civil rights for the LGBTQ+ community. On June 26, we acknowledge the legalization of same-sex marriages. The Supreme Court ruled on June 26, 2015, that same-sex marriages must be recognized across the United States.
June 15, 2021
The Emancipation Proclamation was signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, however, it took an additional two years for that news to reach Texas. On June 19, 1865, Union Soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas to share the proclamation with African Americans living in that state which numbered more than 250,000. The first Juneteenth celebrations occurred in Texas on June 19, 1866 and it has widely grown across the United States over the years since. Also known by several other names including Emancipation Day, Jubilee Day, Freedom Day, and Liberation Day, Juneteenth is a celebration of African Americans’ freedom from slavery. It’s a time for celebrating both the abolishment of slavery and the African American culture and is celebrated in many ways such as religious gatherings, music, arts and crafts, food, and much more.
June 07, 2021
Janine Weaver-Douglas, Director of the Marcus Garvey Cultural Center
I am thrilled to announce the appointment of Dr. Janine Weaver-Douglas as Director of the Marcus Garvey Cultural Center. Janine comes to us from the University of Georgia, where she was the Associate Director of Residential Programs and Services for University Housing. Janine has vast expertise in social justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion, and her enthusiasm for this work began before her professional career and has continued to shape her professional work to ensure it is entrenched in her work with students.
June 03, 2021
LGBTQ+ Pride Month
LGBTQ+ Pride month is celebrated annually during the month of June which was selected to commemorate the riots that took place at the Stonewall Inn in June of 1969 in New York. LGBTQ+ Pride month provides a time to recognize and celebrate the progress that so many across the country have worked toward in support of LGBTQ+ rights. Recognized and celebrated in many ways across the nation including educational opportunities, pride parades, and many other events. Denver Pride will be celebrated June 26-27 and will offer a virtual and in-person 5K as well as a virtual Pride Parade. The rainbow flag, designed by Gilbert Baker in 1978, will be prominently displayed throughout the month of June. Each of the six colors included in the rainbow flag have a particular meaning and include life, healing, sunlight, nature, harmony, and spirit.
May 26, 2021
Memorial Day: A Day of Remembrance
Originally known as Decoration Day, Memorial Day is a day observed in honor of the Americans who have died while serving in the United States Military. Observed annually on the last Monday in May, this year, Memorial Day occurs on Monday, May 31. While Memorial Day was not declared an official federal holiday until 1971, the original observance of Decoration Day took place in 1868 to remember those soldiers lost while fighting in the Civil War. Over time, the holiday grew to include military members lost in all wars.
May 19, 2021
World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development
In 2002, May 21 was designated as World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development by the United Nations (UN) General Assembly. This day provides an opportunity to better understand and value cultural diversity as well as to encourage the advancement of the goals of the UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) Convention on the Protection of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.