Black Lives Matter Statement

Posted on: Tuesday, 06/02/2020

To the School of Dentistry Community:

We, the UCLA School of Dentistry leadership, stand with Chancellor Block and the 37 other campus leaders who joined in solidarity to share their outrage over the recent killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor. We stand with them to speak with clarity about the brutality and chilling casualness of George Floyd’s killing in particular. We stand with them to name it for what it is: the “utter dehumanization of Black life.” We stand with them in “stating unequivocally that Black lives DO matter.”

Many members of our SOD are suffering acute outrage, pain, and sorrow sparked by these recent killings. For some, it runs more deeply than the rest of us can know. As Dr. Ed Hewlett shared with us, “as a Black American, these feelings are always there just beneath the surface –scars from past injustices that never heal, and every #(fill in the name) like George Floyd rips off all of the other scabs. Again, and again, and again.”

We ask each of you to reflect on the injustice that continues to plague our country and to use this time as a call to action and to make the needed changes in our own community. We must acknowledge that as upsetting as these events are, we must not allow the day-to-day aggressions (let us stop calling them “micro”), mindless hurtful comments and insults to go unchallenged; they must not be allowed to define the SOD culture and experience. We, as SOD leaders, pledge to lead by example. We will hold ourselves accountable for recognizing and addressing implicit biases in our own behavior. And we commit to learning and using best practices in inclusive communication and to using them constructively to change the SOD culture for all.

Our heart goes out to the SOD’s Black community, and to all those affected by these traumatic and painful events. Please let us know how we can provide additional support. 

Students are always welcome to stop in the Office of Student Services. UCLA Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) counseling.ucla.edu is open during regular business hours, and 24/7 crisis support is always available by phone at 310-825-0768.

Sincerely,

Paul H. Krebsbach
Dean and Professor
Sotirios Tetradis
Senior Associate Dean
Paulo Camargo
Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs
Diana Messadi
Associate Dean of Academic Affairs
Barry Margolis
Associate Dean of Student Services
Edmond R. Hewlett
Associate Dean of Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion, School of Dentistry
Cun-Yu Wang
Associate of Dean of Graduate Studies and Chair of the Division of Oral Biology & Medicine
David Wong
Associate Dean of Research
Tara Aghaloo
Assistant Dean of Clinical Research
Andrew Alexan
Assistant Dean of Finance & CFO
Vina Chin
Assistant Dean of Administration and External Relations
Ronald Mito
Special Advisor to the Dean
Kathryn Atchison
Interim Chair, Section of Orthodontics
Ting Ling Chang
Chair of the Section of Prosthodontics
Alistair Cochran
Interim Chair, Section of Orthodontics
Jim Crall
Chair of Public Health & Community Dentistry
Russell Christiansen
Chair of the Section of Oral & Maxillofacial Pathology
Earl Freymiller
Chair of the Division of Diagnostic and Surgical Sciences and of the Section of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery
Mo Kang
Chair of the Division of Constitutive and Regenerative Sciences an of the Section of Endodontics
Reuben Kim
Chair, Section of Restorative Dentistry, School of Dentistry
Clarice Law
Interim Chair, Section of Orthodontics
Andrew Leuchter
Interim Chair, Section of Orthodontics
Sanjay Mallya
Chair of the Section of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology
Christine Quinn
Chair of the Section of Anesthesiology
Daniela Silva
Chair of the Section of Pediatric Dentistry
Igor Spigelman
Chair of the Section of Oral Biology
Eric Sung
Vice Chair of the Division of Advanced Prosthodontics and Chair of the Section of Special Patient Care
Ben Wu
Chair of the Division of Advanced Prosthodontics and Chair of the Section of Biomaterials Science
Fariba Younai
Vice Chair of the Division of Oral Biology & Medicine and Chair of the Section of Oral Medicine & Orofacial Pain