Since the tragic death of George Floyd, and more recently the shooting of Jacob Blake, Greater Seattle Rotarians have engaged in vigorous discussions around racial justice, diversity, equity and inclusion.
Rotary is the world’s largest service organization, and its members are men and women who own or manage small and large businesses, work in nonprofits and play leadership roles in our communities.
We are proud to stand in unity with Black Americans and other communities of color in demanding racial justice.
Members of the University District Rotary Club approved a statement in support of racial justice in early July. Eleven Rotary Clubs in our region have endorsed it: Ballard, Kirkland Downtown, University Sunrise, SeaTac-Tukwila, Des Moines/Normandy Park, Puget Sound Passport, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Renton, Burien/White Center and Vashon Island. Many other clubs have created their own.
This statement emphasizes that Rotarians “pledge our support for fundamental change to anti-racist policies and practices — in law enforcement, policing tactics, the criminal-justice system, health-care system, public and private education, employment and housing.”
Rotarians are taking action to turn these goals into reality, supporting minority-owned businesses, creating scholarships to assist students of color and calling for more diversity in our clubs.
Our work is just beginning.
Dave Spicer, Seattle, immediate past president, and Brenda Dimond, Seattle, president, University District Rotary