Dear AAS Members,
On March 15, 2021, the entire country again watched aghast at the murders of eight innocent people in Atlanta, Georgia. Six of the victims were Asian women, and while the exact motive behind the shooter’s intent is being debated, it is irrefutable that there has been an unprecedented increase in anti-Asian rhetoric, as well as racist physical and verbal attacks against our Asian American colleagues.
Academic Surgery is a microcosm of our nation at large. Without a doubt, we know our Asian American medical students, trainees and faculty have increasingly faced discrimination and bias over the past year. We have heard you express fear for your safety and the safety of your family members. We echo your cries to be seen as equals and as Americans. We stand with you and rebuke racism and bigotry against Asian Americans.
In 2020, the AAS restated our mission to condemn systemic racism and oppression of racial, ethnic, sexual and gender minorities. We have been transparent in our efforts to amplify our organization’s rich diversity, champion research aimed at achieving health equity, and mentor a diverse group of academic surgeons responsible for training the next generation of healthcare providers. Our society is a strong, proud, and diverse surgeon workforce, and we will continue to strive to reflect the diversity embodied by the United States of America. We pledge to continue to use our platform to call out unjust policies, procedures and acts which conflict with our shared mission of a diverse and dynamic academic surgical workforce. We speak out now to raise awareness and to heighten solidarity. These acts will only be prevented with greater awareness, and universal rebuke.
We hope our members will continue to lend support to each other and bring their voices to the conversation, as we continue to develop programs to create a culture of antiracism in Academic Surgery. For our members, who continue to suffer racial harassment and mistreatment either inside or outside of the hospital, please know that the Association for Academic Surgery remains steadfast alongside you.
We ask you to raise your voices by sharing this message on Twitter and all forms of social media.
“There comes a time when silence is betrayal.”—Martin Luther King Jr.
Amir Ghaferi, MD MS
Carrie Lubitz, MD MPH
Fabian Johnston, MD MHS
Callisia Clarke, MD MS
Hari Nathan, MD PhD
Eugene Kim, MD
AAS Immediate Past President
Tania Arora, MD
Chair, AAS Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee
Brenessa Lineman, MD MEHP
Co-Chair, AAS Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee
For additional resources, support and information: Stop AAPI Hate: An organization working to gather reports of AAPI-based hate crimes and offer resources and assistance to communities in need.