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Statement from ZERO TO THREE Executive Director Matthew E. Melmed
As an organization we are committed to ensuring every baby has the opportunity to be valued and loved; to be taught to care for and be compassionate to others, regardless of their backgrounds.
WASHINGTON—"We are outraged. We are heartbroken. We are hurting. And we are with you.
“The adverse impacts of racism begin prenatally and are present at birth. We see it all around us; in the very data we report on in our State of Babies Yearbook to the disproportionate impact of the pandemic on communities of color. Like a virus, racism, and the hate, intolerance, and indifference it breeds, are highly contagious, spreading from person to person. And the trauma of hate, intolerance, and indifference also spread, from generation to generation.
"More than half (51%) of America’s babies are children of color. We must embrace the changing portrait of our nation’s babies and commit to end the racism that infects not only them, but us all.
"We can do that work within ourselves, within our organization and as an organization. At ZERO TO THREE, we recommit to the efforts we have undertaken to address equity in our work and our workplace. Further, we commit to strengthening our efforts to address inequities in society through our policy and programmatic work.
"We do what we do because we want every baby to have a strong start in life. To fulfill that mission, we must address the structural racism that creates huge economic and social disparities in our country so that where, and to whom, a baby is born does not determine their future.
"As an organization we are committed to ensuring every baby has the opportunity to be valued and loved; to be taught to care for and be compassionate to others, regardless of their backgrounds. As an organization we support the clinicians, educators, care providers…all the professionals, who are on the frontlines of care. They are also on the frontline for social and economic justice. And we must support them in that cause as well.
"Together let us reflect on the root causes of this national tragedy and use it to strengthen our collective effort to bend the arc of the moral universe towards justice. Let’s make this a better world for babies.”
About ZERO TO THREE
ZERO TO THREE works to ensure all babies and toddlers benefit from the family and community connections critical to their well-being and development. Since 1977, the organization has advanced the proven power of nurturing relationships by transforming the science of early childhood into helpful resources, practical tools and responsive policies for millions of parents, professionals and policymakers. For more information, and to learn how to become a ZERO TO THREE member, please visit zerotothree.org,facebook.com/zerotothree, or follow @zerotothree on Twitter.
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