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Los Rios Values Diversity and Inclusivity

November 10, 2016

Dear Los Rios Community,

As chancellor of our district and presidents of our four Los Rios colleges, we are writing to reaffirm that the core values of our district have never been more important than they are today. When we developed our new District Strategic Plan last year, we “acknowledged and embraced our responsibility to empower underrepresented segments of our community and ensure that all populations have the access, support and opportunities to succeed.” Together, we recognized “that diverse backgrounds and perspectives contribute to the Los Rios District’s strength as a dynamic, inclusive educational community.”

Unfortunately, many members of our community are fearful that these values are under assault. We are aware that some students, faculty and staff have openly expressed concerns that they do not feel safe in light of the divisive rhetoric in the recent campaign. Though we are in a period of disturbing uncertainty at the national level in the wake of the recent election, the Los Rios colleges remain unwavering in our commitment to fulfill our mission to “provide a vibrant learning environment that empowers all students to achieve their educational and career goals.” We will continue to serve as a place where ALL students are provided with an opportunity to fulfill their educational goals and dreams.

To that end, we will continue to do everything we can to keep our colleges a welcoming place for the incredibly diverse student body, faculty and staff who call Los Rios home. For students who are feeling distress, we encourage you to seek counseling support through the Student Services offices at each college. For employees, our Employee Assistance Program provides free, confidential short-term counseling services. (Online at: Employee Assistance Program or call 800-535-4985.) In addition to the strength and commitment of the Los Rios colleges, we are also working closely with our partners in higher education in the region including Sacramento State, UC Davis and the California Community College Chancellor’s Office to explore thoughtful policies in light of the potential challenges ahead. We will come together as a community and as a region to stand with our students.

As we prepare to honor our veterans tomorrow, it is a vivid reminder that there are tough battles that are worth fighting. We will continue to fight on behalf of and alongside our students. As Martin Luther King, Jr., eloquently stated: “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”

Brian King
Chancellor, Los Rios Community College District

Ed Bush
President, Cosumnes River College

Thomas Greene
President, American River College

Michael Poindexter
Interim President, Sacramento City College

Rachel Rosenthal
President, Folsom Lake College