Black Lives Matter
American Model United Nations (AMUN) expresses our devastation for the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and the many other Black lives that have been ended as a result of systemic racism, extrajudicial violence and police violence. These tragedies have been compounded by a lack of legal and cultural accountability for those who perpetrate racist violence. We honor and stand with the families and communities who have been most affected by historical and continuing racism in the United States and the violence it has engendered against Black Americans.
Modeled after the preamble to the United Nations Charter, AMUN’s mission emphasizes respecting basic human rights, as laid out in the Universal Declaration for Human Rights (UDHR) and supporting equal rights for all people. Model United Nations aims to build empathy and understanding by asking students to take on the perspectives of people across political borders, while pursuing a goal of global equality. We must all join the multifaceted fight against racism to establish and maintain human rights for all. This work begins with a commitment to diversity, equity, justice and inclusion, which are core values of the United Nations and AMUN. This work cannot be achieved without a commitment to act and educate in opposition to racism.
Secretary-General António Guterres has stated, “Racism is an abhorrence that we must all reject.” Guterres has also encouraged those protesting to express themselves peacefully and called on leaders to “show restraint in responding to demonstrations.” The right to peacefully assemble and associate is enshrined in the UDHR and must be respected. Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights tweeted “We all have a responsibility to fight racism. COVID-19 or not, I call on everyone to take a stand, speak up and put an end to racism wherever present.” The UN has provided a landing page to fight racism, including promoting and defending human rights, ideas for getting involved and resources to further educate yourself.
Now is the time for all of us to take a stand against racism and discrimination. At AMUN, we strive to empower students to address the world’s most challenging issues, many of which are directly related to diversity, equity and inclusion. We believe Model UN should be a place where Black voices are elevated and amplified. Due to unequal access to higher education as well as other barriers, tangible and intangible, AMUN recognizes that Model UN–a community we love–is not as diverse as it could or should be. Nevertheless, we want to encourage wider participation in Model UN, as we believe in its power to change the world for the better
We are committed to providing opportunities for Black students and students of color to participate in AMUN and other Model UN experiences. AMUN is open to hearing from any of our Black, Indigenous and People of Color participants who have attended an AMUN Conference, or from prospective participants, about ways we can encourage and facilitate your participation and the participation of other people of color in Model UN. You can always find us at email@example.com, and we look forward to continuing this conversation with you all.
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