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No. 2003-009
By Commissioners Kenyatta, Bell, Varga and Ware
Wayne County, Michigan
February 6, 2003

In Support of Affirmative Action

        WHEREAS, in 1954, the Supreme Court decision of Brown v. Board of Education helped strike down segregation in public education; and

        WHEREAS, America is a racially diverse society, most ethnic groups tend to lead separate lives. This separation includes residence, recreation and;

        WHEREAS, race is an important and defining characteristic of American life, uniquely shaping our values, beliefs and perspectives; and

        WHEREAS, in 2003, Michigan ranks among the most racially segregated states in the country. Most whites in Michigan live in areas that have a negligible minority presence, thereby minimizing contact with people of other ethnic backgrounds; and

        WHEREAS, contemporary studies indicate that metro Detroit was as segregated in 1990 as it was in 1960; and

        WHEREAS, the University of Michigan draws nearly two-thirds of its students from Michigan, with nearly half coming from metropolitan Detroit; and

        WHEREAS, contemporary studies have concluded that students educated in diverse classrooms learn to think in deeper and more complex ways, and are better prepared to become active participants in a pluralistic, democratic society; and

        WHEREAS, Affirmative Action is a policy designed to break down barriers of exclusivity and expand access to those groups heretofore discriminated against because of race or gender;

Now therefore be it

RESOLVED, that the Wayne County Commission stands with all students, social justice groups and citizens of good will that believe in the need for Affirmative Action in higher education. We also stress our commitment to protecting the gains made through years of civil rights struggle; and be it further

RESOLVED, this 6th day of February, 2003 that this Resolution be spread at length upon the Journal of today's proceedings, to endure as a permanent record of our position in favor of a diverse educational environment, and that a suitably-enrolled copy be presented to the Regents of the University of Michigan.


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