From our hearts…

This is a challenging and painful time for our country. The trauma and disdain of recent events have reverberated around the world. We recognize that some of you are feeling distressed, uncertain, and maybe even alone. We are concerned about all of you and would like to take a moment to share our thoughts.

New York - June 9, 2020

The senseless deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and too many more, are beyond wrong. 

Watching the violence unfold nightly is unbearably sad. That a person, especially of color, should suffer a violent act at the hands of racism, prejudice or discrimination is intolerable. We are deeply affected by the level of despair, anger, and fear we see on so many faces in the crowds. The pain is raw with emotion. Souls are wounded, possibly beyond repair. 

Many thoughts go through our minds as we try to make sense of it. No matter how strongly we believe it should not be the case, the abhorrent reality of racism and prejudice that people of color experience within our community remains a harsh truth. We were recently reminded of this with the video of Amy Cooper weaponizing her inherent racism against Christian Cooper (no relation) in Central Park.

For us, we firmly believe diversity makes us stronger and helps us lead infinitely richer lives. In our hearts and minds, we support diversity and believe respect, open-mindedness, and kindness are key to being our best selves. 

Still, we are also aware that we have unconscious biases to which we have talked about openly at work. We are ready to continue the tough conversations. We want to go there! We are very grateful to our employees who have helped us see their experience through their lens. These conversations enlighten our collective perspective, making us better friends, colleagues, and human beings.

We want to do more than just believe we are not biased. We need to seek to understand in spite of our bias and make real change in our society.  Society is an agreement that we make with each other with common ideals, rules, and practices.  All of which rely on us feeling that we are being treated fairly and with compassion.

To all of you who are feeling afraid, uncertain, alone, angry, or unheard in the Black community or elsewhere during this unimaginable time – Please know that we see you, we hear you and we stand with you.

In peace,  

James, Benoit, Eurel, & Bijou

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