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The Anti-Racism Initiative (ARI) brings together the Loyola community to address the inherent systemic inequities in our society that impacts our community in an effort to create tangible and lasting transformation for a fully inclusive culture.

IN RESPONSE TO CALLS FOR SYSTEMIC CHANGE after the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and many more in summer 2020, President Rooney, with support from the Office of the Provost, established Loyola’s Anti-Racism Initiative (ARI). Loyola administration received recommendations put forth by In Support of Black Students and Loyola’s Chapter of White Coats for Black Lives as well as significant input from members of the Loyola community, including staff and faculty, regarding experiences related to racial injustice on campus. Connor Elmore and Elise Purnsley, Co-Presidents of the Black Cultural Center (BCC), and Taylor Thomas, Chief Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion Officer for the Student Government of Loyola Chicago (SGLC) authored In Support of Black Students, and Jessica Simpson, Founder and President of White Coats for Black Lives at Loyola, authored White Coats for Black Lives. We were grateful to engage in direct dialogue with student leaders who authored those concerns, as well as LaShaunda Reese, Founder and President of the Black Graduate Student Alliance (BGSA).

The ARI brings students, staff, faculty, and administrators together to address issues raised by our community to move Loyola University Chicago along the continuum toward becoming a fully inclusive anti-racist institution. The initiatives are intended to address structural racism within the University community and work toward authentic change, not only at Loyola and the academy, but also across society.

We appreciate the passionate collaboration with and suggestions from our community to move in unison toward a brighter, more inclusive future. Our vision is broad and far-reaching, and the goal is to weave this work into the essential tapestry of Loyola.

In our early assessment and development phase, the ARI Working Group, now called the Advisory Committee, developed three overarching goals and concrete strategies within each goal. Each strategy is managed by a team of members from the Loyola community responsible for conceptualizing the activities within the strategy and the outcomes necessary to make progress towards goals. While the work is ongoing, this website will serve as a repository for the work of the strategy teams to keep the University community updated and aware of progress.

Although there are many strategies that make up the Initiative, we acknowledge that there is still more work to be done. The ARI Advisory Committee serves as the accounting body to ensure that the strategies are implemented as planned, but all stakeholders play a role in assessing the ongoing work and impact of the ARI. Stakeholders who wish to stay up to date on communications related to the ARI should visit the communications page. Stakeholders who wish to understand the work of the University related to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion more broadly, please visit the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion page for further resources and information.

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