Constance Gully, President and CEO, Parents as Teachers National Center

Our hearts are heavy.

As a nation, we have now surpassed 100,000 deaths from COVID-19 in just a matter of months. Infections and deaths from this novel virus have disproportionately impacted Black, Native American, and Latinx communities. Communities from which we come, and among those we serve. And, now we have watched—horrified—as George Floyd, an unarmed black man was killed before our eyes while in police custody, an incident that has been repeated far too many times across our country.

Our hearts are heavy.

Parents as Teachers is a child and family serving network partnering across the country and around the globe with families to ensure all children develop, learn and grow to realize their full potential. We do this by supporting and engaging parents and caregivers. We do this by addressing the social determinants of health that negatively impact family well-being, like trauma and violence. We do this by providing access to community resources. We do this by advocating for our families and equipping and encouraging them to advocate for their own families and communities.

We also do this by offering and connecting families to resources to deal with social isolation during a pandemic. And by offering resources on how to deal with trauma, including how to talk with children about matters beyond our collective comprehension.

Our hearts are heavy.

These are difficult and uncertain times. The physical distancing and social isolation needed to stay healthy in a global pandemic is challenging our human need for connection, and our palpable indignation at the injustice built upon generations of systemic racism is calling us to act. We stand with the invisible and unheard who make inevitable noise until awakened change comes and we are ALL seen and treated as the valued individuals we are.

Our thoughts are with the family of George Floyd, the people of Minneapolis, MN and across the nation who are grieving this injustice and all the families and communities with which we partner across the U.S. and around the globe.