Hello, My name is Patricia Sieglen-Perry.

I want to share with you that we have seen your comments and concerns related to systemic racism within DCS. DCS is committed to the journey of learning, and unpacking ourselves. We want to create a safe space at DCS, we acknowledge that this journey will involve re-evaluating internal operations, policies and procedures, organizational structure and roles, and employee relations. Community relations too. We are working with our department directors and employees to thoroughly understand all perspectives on what we need to change within DCS to create a safe space for all staff and the community as well.

We have communicated with the National Black Deaf Advocates (NBDA) for consultation and we will have requested a facilitator from NDBA to foster meaningful dialogue that will guide DCS employees, including the administrative and executive teams.

As we navigate through this journey, we plan to share occasional updates to inform the community about what DCS has done with our strategic action plans, including regular training on racial equity, biases and privileges, the Black history, oppression, and many more.

Ultimately, we recognize the infringement of trust that has taken place between DCS and the community. We recognize that DCS cannot succeed in its mission without shared trust and respect between us and the community, and, therefore, understand the necessity for substantial, immediate, and long-term action that needs to be undertaken in order to begin to rebuild this trust.

Thank you for sharing your concerns. We acknowledge we need to make changes and we hope that you will assist us to accomplish this goal.

Thank you.