Statements of Solidarity
The Open Doors Kalamazoo Board of Directors and staff members write to condemn violence and hate expressed against Asian American community members. At Open Doors Kalamazoo, we stand in solidarity with our Asian American and Pacific Islander community members. We fiercely advocate for the preservation of the dignity and the lives of our Asian-American community members. We continue to acknowledge the oppression of historically excluded communities, as well as the privilege of historically dominant identities. We welcome the issuance of an executive order condemning racism against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States. We urge those who experience or witness such instances of hate, discrimination and violence to speak out against it in a way that is safe for each community member.
Open Doors Kalamazoo is all about community and right now our community, along with so many other communities around the nation, is in pain. We witnessed two public health crises – a global pandemic and the national police brutality crisis. In both crises, Black and brown people have endured the worst of these attacks. The continual and unwarranted deaths of Black men and women by law enforcement is unacceptable and our communities are demanding change. We stand in solidarity with African-American people around the nation and especially here in Kalamazoo. Black Lives Matter. While we do not condone violence, we understand that people are justifiably angry, as are we. People are demanding change, and we also believe change is necessary for our community and our nation, to heal, grow, and prosper. We are committed as an organization to being inclusive in all areas of diversity, so we recognize the need to continue to educate ourselves, listen and learn. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone impacted by recent events, and long-standing injustices. We are with you.
We live and work in a city that still bears the name given to it by the first peoples who settled in this valley. The City of Kalamazoo sits squarely in the Confederation of the Three Fires – the Anishnaabek. The True People of Kalamazoo are the Ojibwe, Odawa, and Bodewadmi peoples. Today, we at Open Doors Kalamazoo honor and recognize the sacrifices of the Chippewa, Ottawa, and Potawatomi, their modern relatives. We are aware that many of our homes lay within the boundaries of Match-e-Be-Nash-E-Wish land and respect that we are only visitors on this land.
As an organization, we also acknowledge and honor those of African descent whose ancestors saw their families ripped from their home lands, stripped of their humanity, and forced in to slavery in the name of colonization. We conduct our work in reverence of their sacrifices and recognize that there have been no meaningful actions toward reparations or compensation to date.
Diversity Equity and Inclusion Partner Acknowledgements
Open Doors is committed to serving the Kalamazoo community with a strong focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. As part of that vision, we are being intentional with our partnerships, with the goal of supporting businesses that share our ideals, goals, and vision of creating a community for all.
The following businesses have demonstrated their commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in their policies, hiring practices, sponsorships or other partnerships, staff training, and willingness to learn and grow.
- AF Auto Glass & Detail
- Allied Waste (Republic)
- Best Buy
- FedEx Kinkos
- Midtown Fresh
- Old National Bank
- Park Street Market
- Tractor Supply
- Trend Micro
Open Doors Kalamazoo is committed to being inclusive in all areas of diversity in its employment, operations, programs, and services. ODK prohibits discrimination based on, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, color, religion, age, sex (including pregnancy), gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status, history of incarceration or conviction record, citizenship, political affiliation, nationality, immigration status, language, ancestry, family and marital status, veteran status, genetics, height, and weight.