Our Statement on Racism (2020)


At CSWD, our goal is to support social well-being, the multi-level web of factors that enables people to live healthy, productive and respected lives – as equals. Racism continues to be one of the most deep-seated barriers to that goal.

Racism encompasses both a pernicious ideology and its implementation. As an ideology, it is the arbitrary and baseless selection of specific physical traits as representing a class of people who are intentionally defined as inferior within a racial hierarchy of power, opportunity, and worth. In its implementation, that ideology is infused into every aspect of society and its culture, including but not limited to its legal, economic, and educational systems, social and political institutions, class structure, cultural capital, religion, social restrictions, and common sentiments. It is, in the words of sociologist Orlando Patterson, a form of “social death.”

Racism and xenophobia on account of race, ethnicity or nationality are unacceptable in all forms. The CSWD stands in full support of global and domestic efforts to eliminate systems of inequality and racism as illegitimate constraints that prevent social well-being for all.