Dear Members of the CPDD Community,
In the past three months, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented CPDD members with extraordinary challenges. Our African American, Latinx, and Native American communities have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, and our Asian communities have been unjustly targeted because of the disease’s origin. Many of our community members have suffered the loss of their or family member’s jobs while others have experienced the death of a loved one.
On May 25, the pandemic was overshadowed by horrific displays of outright racism. We witnessed the murder of George Floyd, an African American man who died in Minneapolis after being handcuffed and pinned to the ground under the knee of a white law enforcement official. Just weeks earlier, we experienced the loss of Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old African American emergency room technician who was shot while sleeping in her own bed in Louisville, Kentucky, and the sad loss of Ahmaud Arbery, who was killed while jogging in his neighborhood of Brunswick, Georgia. These recent deaths combined with many others as depicted by a recent NPR piece highlight the continued violence and racism against the African American community.
CPDD is fundamentally committed to addressing issues affecting substance users, a diverse population of people. As such, CPDD condemns injustice and discrimination and stands with many other scientific and professional organizations in absolute rejection of any and all systemic racism and racial disparities. We reaffirm our Commitment to Diversity and to live by our values and cultivate a community of scientists that makes equality our priority. CPDD believes the scientific community strongly benefits from diversity in thought, experience, and background. We are committed to creating an environment where everyone feels safe, valued, and included.
CPDD is currently working to identify ways to broaden the diversity of our membership and develop an inclusive leadership pipeline for our future. During these difficult times, we will work together to be a light for all communities we serve.
Elise Weerts, Ph.D. , President
Margaret Haney, Ph.D., Past-President
Sandra Comer, Ph.D., Public Policy Officer
Stacey Sigmon, Ph.D., President-Elect
Jack Bergman, Ph.D., MPH, Treasurer
Loretta Finnegan, MD, Executive Officer