David & Margaret Youth and Family Services (D&M) mourns the killing of Mr. George Floyd. Not only is it a tragic personal loss for his family but it is a loss to society. His death stands as the most abhorrent evidence of systemic racism, as well as the broad-ranging social injustice that racism breeds.
As an agency that serves youth with a history in foster care, the juvenile justice system, and those who are Medi-Cal eligible for mental health services, D&M serves a community that is deeply affected by racism. People of color and particularly African/Black Americans make up a disproportionate number of those we serve. The fact that our services are here in part due to systematic racism is not lost on us. We know this, we see this, and we work in support of these communities every day.
We know that words can never fully express the history of racism, oppression, and violence that African/Black Americans and other people of color have experienced. This is a time for us to come together to stand against injustice.
We stand resolved to change the systems that have created inequality. Families of color must be kept together and must feel safe within society. Criminal justice, education, and foster care systems must be reformed.
D&M will maintain its strong position of advocacy as we engage with the community and other community providers. We will continue to work with the individuals and families we serve as well as local and state officials to make the needed reforms to these systems. We must engage more and do more. Change and reform begin within each of us and continues through us. We are resolved to this change.
Michael Miller Sabina Sullivan
Interim Executive Director Chair, Board of Directors