FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 17, 2017
Contact: Allie Aguilera, email@example.com, 202-734-6529
Statement from YI Executive Director Jen Mishory:
“Like so many Americans, we at Young Invincibles were heartbroken and outraged this weekend by the displays of bigotry and hate on the streets of Charlottesville – and appalled at the defense of those racists by the President. We strongly condemn those hateful displays by white supremacists and neo-Nazis, and send our thoughts to the University of Virginia, the Charlottesville community, and most especially to the victims of violence and their families. The scourge of white supremacy and racism have no place in our society, and we are doubling down on our commitment to stand with the most marginalized among us.
Below is a personal note that Allie Aguilera, our press secretary and a 2011 graduate of the University of Virginia, wrote this week. I think her words capture it better than mine.”
In the darkness of this past weekend, I found hope in the bravery of the young people who stood up against threats and hatred – from the small group of UVA students who held their ground against a torch-wielding mob to the young woman who lost her life protesting bigotry. Young people like them, and like you, are on the right side of history and will be the ones to help us carve a path forward to justice.
Charlottesville, UVA’s home and mine for over four years, is an idyllic city but by no means a unique one. What frightens me is that any campus across America, any town working to grapple with its own history on the difficult journey towards true inclusivity, could have been the target. Much of Young Invincibles’ work takes places on college campuses, and we believe strongly that colleges and universities should be beacons of hope and promise for all young Americans. As a first-generation student, who fulfilled my parent’s dreams of providing me a college education on the very lawn that was the site of this weekend’s horrific intimidation campaign, UVA certainly was for me.
YI stands steadfastly behind every young person’s right to pursue their dreams without the barrier of racism or violence, and we will keep fighting for equitable policies that address structural racism and bring us closer to making that vision a reality.
University of Virginia, Class of 2011