This is an open letter to you, our SWN family, to acknowledge the pain, heartache and fear our communities and country have been experiencing after the horrific death of George Floyd followed by unsettling violence in many communities across the country. In the interest of being fully transparent, which as you know is something I believe is important, I’ll be honest in telling you I’ve had several conversations about whether to write this note. In the polarized environment we are in, the very last thing I want to do is to hurt any of our members of our network by saying the wrong thing…or not saying the right thing. While some say silence often speaks louder than words, many would argue that silence is what allows evils like racism and prejudice to grow. So rather than risk silence speaking for me, I am choosing to speak to you from my heart.
At its core, the Southside Women’s Network brings people together. It allows people to meet, learn about, and, in many instances, become friends with people from different backgrounds and cultures. When people get to know one another, it strengthens the bonds of humanity. I love this aspect of SWN.
SWN is a company built on a strong culture of inclusion. A culture of transparency. A culture that starts with an open door. That door is not open, however, to discrimination of any kind: be it race, color, sex, or religion, sexual orientation or discrimination of ANY kind. The importance of feeling heard and supported during times like these cannot be underestimated. I want to hear from you if you think I fall short. I want to hear from you if you think I can do better. And I will listen and strive to hear and support you, our family.
In the last three months as the world has grappled with the COVID-19 pandemic I’ve been hearing “we’re all in this together,” but now is the time we truly need to come together and unite. I want you to know I am with you.