We strive to become a stronger organization and better friend to and ally of BIPOC children and families, now and into the future.
Thursday, June 4, 2020 – Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab condemn the intolerable killing of George Floyd and countless Black people through the years as a result of racial injustice.
As a cultural institution that is entrusted with the education and development of children in our community, we have a responsibility to fight racial and social injustice at all levels. The killing of innocent Black people must be stopped. Institutional racism and prejudice must be eradicated.
We cannot remain silent – and we have been quiet for too long. Black Lives Matter. We support all efforts to defeat racism and stop the senseless and unnecessary killing of Black men, women, and children.
Our staff stands in solidarity with the Black community, and with individuals across the country and the world demanding justice, and denouncing racism and police brutality.
Unless we face and address the racial injustices, systemic oppression, and violence of the past and today, we cannot change the future.
There is work to do to become the institution to which we aspire. This includes listening, learning, engaging, and partnering. We must start by educating ourselves on these topics to become the organization we want to be.
The killing of George Floyd and resulting events impacting our city, region, nation, and beyond is out of our control, but how we react, show support, and create change is within our control.
These tragic issues around race and equality – paired with the COVID-19 pandemic – are having an impact on the lives of children, in ways we can see and in ways we cannot see. Younger kids may not know how to talk about what they see in the media or fully grasp the conversations adults are having. Youth and teens need an opportunity and the space to express their feelings and opinions about the world around them. We want our work to encourage children and families to speak and ask questions, understand, and learn.
Our mission calls on us to inspire joy, creativity, and curiosity, and to be a partner and resource for those who work with or on behalf of children, youth and families. To better achieve that goal, we are compiling resources for helping parents talk to their children about race and equality (available at https://pittsburghkids.org/education/learning-resources/talking-to-children-about-tragic-events).
This is only the beginning of this conversation at our organization. We need to improve who we are, what we do, and how we affect change. We will ask for help, and learn from and partner with others in the fight for equity. We must continue to diversify the audiences we serve and make our facility a place where Black people, people of color, and minorities feel safe and welcome.
There is more to do, and it will be as difficult as it is necessary.
We must do better as an organization. Museums must do better as an industry. And together we must all do better to stop racism and prejudice.