IAFFE Statement in Solidarity with #BlackLivesMatter

We, members of the International Association for Feminist Economics, stand in firm solidarity with the #BlackLivesMatter movement and those protesting the senseless murder of Mr. George Floyd in the United States. We condemn and decry this murder in unwavering terms, and we recognize and acknowledge that structural and systemic anti-Black racism contributed to the death of Mr. Floyd at the hands of four police officers, one of whom knelt on Mr. Floyd’s neck until he stopped breathing while the other three assisted in the murder. We also wish to highlight that anti-Black racism in the United States contributes to the deaths of Black women at the hands of state-sponsored law enforcement as well, including, most recently, Ms. Breonna Taylor. We mourn Ms. Taylor’s loss, Mr. Floyd’s loss, and all others lost due to the reckless and inhumane acts conducted by police officers whose job is to serve and protect, not wantonly kill. To be clear, we do not condemn all law enforcement officials, but we do recognize that there is inequitable treatment of people of color in the U.S. with respect to policing.  We condemn in the strongest terms racism and all forms of bias, discrimination, and human rights abuses in the United States and in this world we all share.

IAFFE is an international association with members from over 70 countries whose common cause is to further gender-aware and inclusive economic inquiry and policy analysis with the goal of enhancing the well-being of children, women, men and transgender people in local, national and transnational communities. As such, we know that the U.S. is one among many countries where state-sponsored abuses and human rights violations occur, some resulting in death. But at this moment, in this time and in this context, we feel compelled to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with African Americans and the larger Black community in the Americas and the world to say we detest and condemn anti-Black racism wherever it exists.  We are quite clear that anti-Black discrimination, as it has manifested over centuries in the United States, played the definitive role in the murder of Mr. Floyd.

As an academic and professional association, we recognize that we must also “walk the walk” in our respective spheres of influence—academia, the economics profession, and as producers and users of knowledge. Thus, we commit to taking the necessary steps to examine how we, as an organization, can ensure that anti-Black racism is nowhere reflected in our work, our teachings, and our values. But we cannot stop there—we will commit to proactive steps that promote dialogue and knowledge about the far-reaching role of anti-Black racism in the contemporary conditions of women and people of color in the U.S. and the world.  And further, we will also examine whether and how we, as an institution, have provided a space and platform for economists who are Black to feel seen, heard, valued, and supported. 

Because our networks are wide and deep, we also commit and will undertake steps to actively engage with and foster dialogue about anti-Black racism and its ugly ramifications with our students and colleagues, our families and friends, our communities and institutions. Silence is complacency, and we must be clear that each and every one of us in our organization has the power and potential to use their voice and resources to bring attention to the ways anti-Black racism is perpetuated, not just by commission, but by omission.

In peace and solidarity,
Executive Committee on behalf of IAFFE 

Note: This statement was drafted by Michelle Holder with input from Radhika Balakrishnan, Elissa Braunstein, Heidi Hartmann, and Rita Michelle Sandoval.

June 5, 2020