Organizers say University of Chicago doesn’t care about Black lives. Week of actions aims to educate alumni and calls on them to demand that UChicago open an adult Level 1Â trauma center.
CHICAGO, IL – This week, a coalition made up of South Side youth, mothers, clergy, doctors, nurses and university students, joined by UofC alumni, will stageÂ a series of actionsÂ to shine a light on the University of Chicago’s refusal to open a Level 1 Adult Trauma Center. The latest week of actions is timed to coincide with the University’s Alumni Weekend Celebrations, a time of heightened tensions atÂ UofC, because it is during this time that itÂ makes theÂ majority of itsÂ money fromÂ alumni donations.
“The University of Chicago has shown that they do not not care about black lives,” says Veronica Morris-Moore, a Woodlawn resident and youth organizer with the trauma center campaign. “We want to make sure alumni know where their donation dollars are going, and we want to say we can’t live with [UofC President] Robert Zimmer’s definition of ‘business as usual’ any more.Â University of Chicago needs to open a trauma center now.”
Organizers are demanding that:
UofCÂ open a level one adult trauma center now
UofC raise the age of the Level 1 pediatric trauma center care to 21
UofCÂ President Zimmer set a meeting with the Trauma Care Coalition by the end of the week
UofCÂ include community input in the current trauma center feasibility study
UofC agree to a comprehensiveÂ community benefits agreement onÂ the Obama Library
The actions will encompass the duration of the UofC’s alumni weekend celebrations and will be joined by alumni supporters of the ongoing push for a trauma center. “As a student at the UofC I saw first hand the best and the worst of what the institution can do — how many resources they have, but also how they put up barriers around themselves and keep out the rest of the South Side,” explained UofC alum Alex Goldenberg, B.A. ’06.
The communityâ€™s demand forÂ traumaÂ careÂ was sparked by the death of Woodlawn youth leader Damian Turner, and is led by the Woodlawn-based Fearless Leading by the Youth, along with the Kenwood-Oakland Community Organization, Students for Health Equity at the UofC, National Nurses United and many faith groups including the United Church of Christ.
The South Side is currently aÂ traumaÂ desert for adults, meaning that victims of shootings and other serious injuries must be taken over ten miles away, to the Near North Side or south west suburbs.Â The call for traumaÂ careÂ is also supported by a new study by the Illinois Department of Public Health which states that longer travel times to aÂ traumaÂ center increases the likelihood of dying, the study also states that the U of C is best positioned to expand access toÂ traumaÂ care, and that the U of C could further raise the age limit of their pediatricÂ traumaÂ center.
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:
Trauma Care Coalition @traumacenternow #TraumaCenterNow!
#BlackLivesMatterÂ #StillWaitingUChiÂ #DecolonizeSouthSide
Week of Action for #TraumaCenterNow
During UChicago Alumni Celebrations
Wed 6/3: Â 4PM – Protest atÂ UChicago President Zimmer’s house (59th & University)
Thur 6/4: Â 6:30PMÂ – Prayer Vigil, 58th & Maryland
Fri 6/5: Â Â 11AMÂ – T-ShirtÂ Action Calling for a #TraumaCenterNow (Location TBA
8PMÂ – Large-Scale Visual ActionÂ for #BlackLivesMatter (details to be
Sat 6/6: Â all morning – On campus protests and rallies (details to be announced)
In the News
â€œHere’s What U of C Should Do for the Cityâ€Â Crainâ€™s Chicago Business
â€œProtestors link Obama library with #BlackLivesMatter,â€Â Bloomberg
â€œUofC Wants to Raise Age Limit at PediatricÂ TraumaÂ Center,â€Â The Chicago Sun-Times
â€œUofC Aims to Expand Treatment at Childrenâ€™sÂ TraumaÂ Center,â€Â The Chicago Tribune
â€œTraumaÂ center protesters target U. of C. capital campaign,â€Â The Chicago Maroon
â€œChicago Faith Leaders Sing, Pray For A South SideÂ TraumaÂ Center ,â€Â Progress Illinois
â€œReligious leaders march for South SideÂ traumaÂ center,” Hyde Park Herald
â€œSouth Side Hospital Patients Caught inÂ TraumaÂ Deserts,â€ (Feature Story),Â Chicago Tribune
â€œUniversity of Chicago Alumni: No Donations UntilÂ TraumaÂ Center Opened,â€Â Progress Illinois
â€œChicago needs help, not Obama Library,â€ LZ Granderson,Â CNN.com
â€œActivists protest universityâ€™s bid for Obama Library,â€Â USA Today