June 3, 2020
In recent days, our country has witnessed the outcry for justice, equality, stability, and reform. While there have been many others, the death of George Floyd, combined with the pandemic, have caused us to pause and reflect on our realities, values, and what is important.
At this time, the Alabama Cooperative Extension System (ACES) is reflecting upon its mission and commitment to diversity and building resilient communities. As citizens, we must not remove ourselves from situations that desperately need our attention. It is important to have difficult and uncomfortable conversations about racial injustices in our communities and country. We must do our part to end divisive rhetoric and racism, as these do not reflect the core values of ACES or humanity. We are an organization devoted to making the world better; therefore, we do not support any behavior that contradicts our mission.
We stand with our employees and the citizens of Alabama in working toward a future that results in permanent and lasting change. We recognize that many of our employees and stakeholders are hurting. Please know that ACES stands with those persons who are fighting for social justice and an end to oppression, and we are committed to creating and maintaining viable programs that will enhance humanity. We serve the people of Alabama, and our programs represent inclusion and advocacy. Moreover, the commitment to justice and respect for all mankind are shown in action through our guiding principles
- Guiding Principle 1: ACES will be known as a trusted community-based organization that models a commitment to diversity, multicultural understanding, and civil rights in our educational programming.
- Guiding Principle 2: ACES will be known as having an organizational culture where civil rights responsibility requirements are integrated into our program planning cycle by providing educational opportunities to meet the needs of all diverse populations throughout Alabama.
- Guiding Principle 3: ACES will be known as an organization that instills in its employees the competencies to engage in multicultural communication and to apply new skills that foster inclusiveness and result in new learning outcomes for diverse audiences.
The sphere of influence of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System provides us with a unique opportunity to share this call to action in our own communities and facilitate needed change throughout our state and society. We ask that you join us in making the world, the country, our state, and our communities better places for all people to live and thrive.
Dr. J. Mike Phillips, Director
Dr. Allen Malone, 1890 Administrator