Scientists around the world are taking a step back from their work today to protest racism in academia, Wired reports.
As Wired notes, the messages of support from companies, universities, and others following the death of George Floyd, a Black man who was killed by Minneapolis police, seemed inadequate to some scientists. "We saw those and thought, 'We don't need your solidarity, we need your actions,'" Brittany Kamai, one of the protest organizations from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and Caltech and who is Native Hawaiian, tells it.
According to Nature News, the goal of the #ShutdownAcademia, #ShutdownSTEM, and #Strike4BlackLives strike is to give Black researchers a break and encourage others to examine racism within academia and research and contemplate their own part in it.
Wired adds that Black researchers are sharing their experiences of racism in academia on Twitter with the #BlackInTheIvory hashtag — such as one chemist who was blocked from getting her mail because someone didn't believe her ID card was real.
Jasmine Abrams from Boston University School of Public Health and Yale School of Public Health tells Nature News that universities should examine how their faculty, staff and students experience racism. "Then they need to invest the time, money, and energy required to effectively and efficiently dismantle and penalize racist structures and practices," she adds.