EAST LANSING — Michigan Education Association President Paula Herbart issued the following statement Thursday regarding the killing of Patrick Lyoya and the critical role educators play in fostering community conversations about social justice and equity:
“Like so many others, I was saddened and angered to watch the horrific video of Patrick Lyoya’s senseless death. These haunting images beg questions about our local and national work to achieve racial justice and policing that meets the inclusive needs of our communities. I know students will be asking those tough questions in classrooms across Michigan today.
“Educators play an important role in fostering the dialogue necessary to tear down the institutions of racism and foster inclusive spaces for Michigan students and educators — no matter where they are from or how they look. MEA and our members are committed to collaborating with students, families and the community at large to increase understanding and belonging, as well as developing more equitable systems.
“On behalf of educators throughout Michigan, I want to express our deepest sympathies to the family of Patrick Lyoya, our solidarity with marginalized communities who rightfully feel anger and grief at this latest tragedy, and our desire for justice as investigations proceed into Mr. Lyoya’s death.”