By Azinwi Kien Saningong, Black Caucus National Executive Representative

As black history month comes to an end, we have to recognize that the fight, the pride, the excellence,  doesn’t pause until the next black history month. As black students, the onus falls on us to educate ourselves. To look past the colonial teachings of our ancestry and history and understand what it is to be a black body in a colonial society. From Canada to South Africa to many other countries around the world, black students have been at the forefront of change on their campuses and across the globe. We need to be leaders not just by educating ourselves but by educating those who are to come after us.

Anti-Black racism on our campuses is prevalent and alive. We need to create communities for ourselves to support one another and to heal. Our colonial institutions have made it possible to constantly benefit from black intelligence, black student finances and black bodies while simultaneously implementing policies that are blatantly racist and do not protect black or marginalised students.

The fight for equity and equality towards black bodies is far from over, be it around the world or on our campuses. We neither should stop fighting nor can we do it on our own. We are committed to working with Indigenous students on our campuses to build solidarity across movements, while creating alliances with other marginalised and racialized communities. Our struggles may be different but our fight is the same. Our communities do not operate in silos; what hurts one of us can and will hurt all of us. Now is the time to rise up for one another, support each other and actively call out discrimination on all grounds.

Black excellence is real. Black intelligence is real. Black power is real. We should continue to work to empower one another, uplift each other and be willing to learn and unlearn. We need to come together as a national organization and as a national black student body not only to lobby our universities but our government to do better and prioritise the needs of black students and marginalised students in Canada.