Last week as a campus, we recognized Trans Day of Remembrance (TDoR) to honor and remember transgender and gender non-conforming (TGNC) people who have lost their lives to acts of hate and violence. Yesterday, on the national observance of TDoR, five people were killed and 25 more were injured in a shooting at Club Q in Colorado Springs. Our hearts are with the victims, their loved ones, and our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer / questioning, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA+) community during this difficult time.
LGBTQIA+ people are more than twice as likely to be a victims of gun violence, and nearly 8 in 10 murders of Black trans women are by a gun. The dangers of hateful and exclusionary rhetoric and actions have led to violence and deadly attacks such as the mass shooting in Colorado Springs and the murders of at least 38 trans people in the United States this year. This number is likely not representative of all the lives taken because not all cases are reported and tracked accurately.
We invite the MiraCosta community to continue educating ourselves about LGBTQIA+ issues, history, and people. Students and employees are encouraged to sign up for the self-paced Pride Inclusion Training, which provides access to information to aid in supporting our LGBTQIA+ community.
Students: We invite you to utilize the Prism Collective Group, an affirming space for LGBTQPIA+ students to share experiences, express their identities, and build a community on Wednesdays from 5 - 6 p.m. via Zoom. To learn more about this student group, please visit Health Services. For the Zoom link, email Van Ethan Levy at email@example.com and specify in the email that you are requesting a link for the Prism Collective Group.
For our LGBTQIA+ community, especially our TGNC members, we remind you that you are valued members of the MiraCosta community. Please know that if you would benefit from support, MiraCosta employees are here for you to help process the tragic news of Colorado Springs.
Employees: MiraCosta employees and their dependents are eligible to receive confidential support. The Employee Assistance Services for Education (EASE) provides free, short-term counseling over the phone or by appointment. To learn more, please contact the EASE Program at 800.722.3273.
MiraCosta College has made a commitment to welcome, nurture, and validate individuals and their identities and diverse cultures. MiraCosta will continue to serve all constituents with values rooted in equity, diversity, inclusion, and community. MiraCosta College urges all students, employees, and the surrounding communities to report bias or hate incidents. We must support those who are experiencing hate and violence, whether it is related to perceived sexual orientation, race, religion, immigration status, gender expression, or in any other circumstance.
Sunny Cooke, Ph.D. Superintendent/President
Tim Flood, Vice President of Administrative Services
Charlie Ng, Vice President of Human Resources
Denée Pescarmona, Vice President of Instruction
Wendy Stewart, Ed.D., Chief Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility Officer
Alketa Wojcik, Ed.D., Vice President of Student Services