The senseless and shocking killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and many other Black community members, as well as the violent response met by many peaceful protesters as they exercised their constitutional right to protest these deaths, are abhorrent to the John Stewart Company (JSCo) and we condemn these terrible acts. Our country’s history of racial inequality, social injustice and systemic oppression of Blacks and other communities of color has ravaged families and destroyed lives for centuries, and those with power have not done nearly enough to stop it.
JSCo has championed social justice through the provision and management of high-quality affordable housing for over 40 years. We are proud of the positive outcomes we have achieved through providing stable and affordable housing as a platform on which our residents can build better lives and future success. But recent events have been painful reminders that we also share an obligation to directly address social and racial injustice at work and at home, in our local communities and throughout the nation – and we too haven’t done nearly enough. That stops now.
JSCo’s Board of Directors is initiating an intensive, reflective process with JSCo staff and others to both learn how we can better support positive change and chart an intentional, thoughtful course to accomplishing that goal, both within and outside the company. That work is just beginning and we have much listening, thinking and planning to do. But we will not and cannot travel this path alone – everyone at JSCo will be asked to play a part.
We all need to be voices for positive change; to support each other as we learn; and to offer patience and kindness as we grow through the challenging conversations ahead. As humans, we are imperfect beings – so our journey will also be imperfect, and we will experience set-backs along the way. If anyone expects this to be comfortable or easy, they are mistaken. Nonetheless, JSCo’s Board and I are determined to lead our Company forward on this path, because we wholeheartedly believe both that these inequities must stop and that WE can help stop them.
Thank you, and I look forward to taking this journey with all of you. Now is the moment, and we at the John Stewart Company are committed to seizing it for the greater good of all.
President & CEO