An Open Letter to the Northeast Kansas Community

I have struggled to find the right words to express the heartbreak, disgust and horror I feel over the murder of George Floyd and countless others, but there are no “right words.”

Family Service & Guidance Center is committed to confronting the racism and injustice that exists in our own community. We will do better at listening and hearing each other so we can learn from each other, embrace our differences and build a stronger society.

This can only happen on a personal and systemic level, and FSGC acknowledges what is happening around us. Silence is not an option. FSGC staff members and leadership will engage in conversations — some of which will make us uncomfortable — with each other, with friends and neighbors and with community partners of all races and backgrounds.

I am encouraging each and every FSGC staff member to find their voice and become an active participant in our nation’s healing and change. We won’t let the “social distance” we have to put between each other keep us from having crucial conversations.

We must go the extra mile – especially now – to truly hear each other in an open, candid dialogue and to speak out against any form of racism, hatred and injustice.

As we work with northeast Kansas children and families who are struggling with these types of societal issues, we will engage with them, our partners and each other to create a more just, inclusive community.

Brenda S. Mills, MSM, FACHE