As a multi-racial organization of trans and non-binary sociologists and our allies, we are in full solidarity with the Black Lives Matter actions across the country. As sociologists we know the history of the police in this country is one of anti-Black, anti-trans, and anti-queer violence; that has been made even more clear in recent days, including in the death of Tony McDade, a Black transgender man killed by police in Florida.
As an organization, we are responsible for doing more than making empty commitments. We must continue to examine and actively address the manifestation of white supremacy and anti-Blackness inside our own organizational practices. As part of that work, we have identified these concrete steps that S4TJ will take:
- We will replace our existing Trans Justice Syllabus with a shorter syllabus that centers the intersections of racial justice and trans justice, and uplifts the work of Black and Brown scholars and other scholars of color. (Our current syllabus will be maintained as a comprehensive Trans Studies Bibliography.)
- We will continue to offer and promote programming that makes connections between systemic racism & white supremacy and trans/non-binary/intersex issues at the annual American Sociological Association meetings and other conferences. Additionally, S4TJ will consider the composition and balance of representation amongst presenters. Key criteria in considering proposed sessions, workshops, and book salons include: we will only propose or agree to co-sponsor conference sessions that are meaningfully inclusive of Black, Brown, and other scholars of color. We will never propose or sponsor an all-white panel.
- We will continue to prioritize our commitment to racial justice as part of the work of our organization, in all of our committees and subcommittees. We have had Black scholars in leadership positions for all but one year of our 4-year history and will continue to expand the inclusion of all scholars of color in our work.
We are especially aware of the particular burdens our Black colleagues, and Black trans sociologists especially, are managing right now. We call on fellow sociologists, especially those who benefit from white privilege, to use our positions to support the fundamental human rights of Black people in this country. We encourage everyone to read the statement put together by the graduate students at Brown that explains what this work can look like, the 2016 statement by Sociologists for Justice, and the Black Lives Matters Syllabus; and to consider signing this petition for institutional change in the University of California system. Additionally, we encourage everyone who is able to contribute to supporting Black trans people and communities; a list of good options is here.
Sociologists for Trans Justice Executive Committee