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NEVADA COUNTY, Calif. June 16, 2020 – JOINT STATEMENT FROM:
Phillip Brooks – Nevada County Probation Officer
Chad Ellis – Chief of Police, Nevada City Police Department
Dr. Brian Evans – President/CEO, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital
Daniela Fernández – Assistant Director, Color Me Human
Alex Gammelgard – Chief of Police, Grass Valley Police Department
Curtis Glenn – Supervisor, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Food and Nutrition
Scott W Lay – Superintendent, Nevada County Schools
Alison Lehman – CEO, Nevada County
Shannan Moon – Nevada County Sheriff
Tracy Pepper – Director, Color Me Human
Honorable Linda Sloven – Nevada County Superior Court Judge
Jamal Walker – Co-Founder of Creating Communities Without Bias (CCBB)

We the above community members and institutional leaders are devastated following the deaths of George Floyd and many others throughout the United States. It is our belief that we can significantly reduce racism, bias, and inequity in western Nevada County by joining our voices together to both speak out and learn more. We are committed to finding a process to create sustainable change in the communities we serve and will seek long-term solutions beyond this moment.

On Monday, June 8, some of us met formally to begin the process of creating systemic change by better understanding the lived experience of people of color in Nevada County. We are all committed to the work required to end racial bias and build new, meaningful connections in our community.

This group is still in a formative stage and currently includes leadership and representatives from Grass Valley and Nevada City Police Departments, Nevada County Sheriff’s Office, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital, Nevada County Schools, the County of Nevada, and local non-profits.

It is our shared belief that we can improve the experience of people of color and all citizens by addressing underlying racial bias from a multi-institutional approach. Our approach begins with the necessary step of better understanding the lived experiences and barriers for people of color in our community.

In this formative stage, members are sharing insights and assessing current institutional policies, training, demographics, hiring practices, etc.

As we identify key areas for systemic improvement, we will follow with impactful changes to create the equality that every member of our community deserves.

We are committed to valuing, acknowledging and honoring every person’s humanity, and will use cross-organizational accountability to achieve it. We look forward to learning more and sharing concrete action plans, mission and key goals as they are developed. The problems we will address go beyond one organization but it is our shared belief it is our duty to address them in this moment.

We invite everyone in Nevada County to reflect on how they can be part of the solution in their own spheres of influence and hope to forge new connections in seeking a more just society for all.