DC-CORE Statement on the Murder of Karon Blake
Karon Blake was a beloved child. He was more than a victim of senseless violence. He has a community of people who care for him as a student, family member, friend and community member. We share our deep condolences with his family, friends, educators and community.
The rhetoric around crime, and young Black children in particular, in this District has reached a fever pitch and is being used to justify the murder of children, increase in police budgets, police in schools, and more failed policies that do nothing to prevent violence and have only resulted in the over incarceration of people in our communities.
Children have a right to be children and grow up.
There is no justification for the murder of a child.
We are disgusted that after Mayor Bowser conducted a safety meeting with DCPS Administrators on January 11th, 2023 she has concluded that we need more School Resource Officers (SROs) in schools.
SROs will not protect students.
SROs would not have prevented what happened to Karon Blake.
Our students, schools, and communities need real safety. Mayor Bowser must meet with students, parents and school-based educators to discuss what we think would make us safer.
We must listen and honor the voices of students, like those of Black Swan Academy who drafted and published the Black Youth Agenda in 2021. They demanded an end to gun violence that goes beyond policing and includes:
Investments into funding schools, public housing, healthcare, transportation, and living-wages,
community-based interventions and mental health support services outside of the realm of policing. (1)
We further stand in solidarity with all those who have called for increased transparency, accountability, and clear and public denouncements of the murder of children from all top officials. We hold the Blake family in our thoughts as well as all those who have been affected by gun violence.
For those who wish to directly support the Blake family, please give directly to their GoFundMe: https://gofund.me/7c12be3f
(1) Black Youth Agenda by Black Swan Academy, 2021. P. 17 https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5e012150c8100342e4b5e367/t/615bb8aa2acf694f92c7c91d/1633401008783/BSA+2021+Black+Youth+Agenda+Report+(10.02.2021+update)-compressed.pdf
The DC Caucus of Rank and File Educators (DC-CORE) are a diverse group of anti-racist educators from all 8 wards. We are united by the belief that the Washington Teachers Union is in a unique position to create a public school system that better serves our educators, students, and families. Together, we can effectively achieve fully funded public education by building a strong, member-driven union that organizes and empowers educators to fight for changes in and outside of the classroom.
Contact us directly at email@example.com.
Learn more at https://www.dccoreunion.org/