Justice, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity

National Day of Racial Healing

Tuesday, January 16 2024 was Western Illinois University's Inaugural National Day of Racial Healing.

The National Day of Racial Healing is an annual observance that takes place on the Tuesday following Martin Luther King, Jr. Day – when racial healing activities happen in homes, schools, businesses and communities across the country with the goal of creating a more just and equitable future for our children.

The National Day of Racial Healing is meant to raise awareness of the need for racial healing and share how this work is taking shape across the country. Racial healing is at the core of racial equity – it is the people work that creates the collective will to transform communities, organizations and systems.

The National Day of Racial Healing provides an opportunity for individuals, communities and organizations to join together in acknowledging the values we share as people, build trust in one other, develop authentic relationships and inspire collective action to heal from the effects of racism.

On Tuesday, January 16, 2024, in the Justice, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity Office at 9:00 a.m., three proclamations were to be presented and read as part of Western Illinois University’s taking part in the National Day of Racial Healing. Unfortunately, weather conditions caused the University to close, which in turn caused the Justice, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity office to cancel the event. Below are the three proclamations that were to be presented and read that day. Download the proclamations (pdf) .

Download a reading list (pdf) for books available at Malpass Library.

National Day of Racial Healing

We invite everyone to join us for the many events on and in conjuction with the National Day of Racial Healing.

2024 Events

   Tuesday, January 23, 2024, Dr. Randy Glean, Associate Vice President of Global Studies spoke about Xenophobia.  Fear and apprehension are a part of the human condition. Adventure and exploration are also consistent with human exploration. In a world with over 200 nations, how do the citizens of the world’s primary melting pot, the USA, embrace inclusion of non-traditional immigrants and visitors? Let’s learn about the over 50 nations represented at WIU in our quest to broaden our horizons.

   Wednesday, January 24, Tamera Izlar, WIU's 2023 Rev. Dr. C.T. Vivian Scholar presented a Diversity Storytelling Workshop. An interactive workshop embracing memory and community. This experience held in conjunction with the National Day of Racial Healing will provide campus and community members’ interactive opportunities to embrace personal storytelling journeys, sharpen listening skills, and create, uncover, or join ongoing advocacy opportunities in your community.

   Monday, January 29, 2024, Winter Unverzagt, Student Government Association Vice President of Justice, Equity, and Inclusion and Kaitlyn Crisantos, Student Government Association, Speaker of the Senate spoke about Student Based Advocacy on the topic of Latin American Immigrants in the United States which pertained to an advocacy trip that was taken to Washington D.C.. 

   Tuesday, January 30, 2024, Dr. Amy Carr, WIU Professor of Religious Studies presented How to Combat Anti-Semitism.  What is anti-Semitism? What is the difference between being anti-Semitic and criticizing the policies of Israel, the world’s only majority-Jewish country? What are the debates about that difference? How has anti-Judaism been present in Christian imagination, and what are some ways that post-Holocaust Christians and Jews have worked together to repair the damage of centuries of Christian anti-Judaism? Join us for a historically-grounded conversation about anti-Semitism, anti-Judaism, and lessons from efforts to end them.



Vision Statement

WIU’s participation in the National Day of Racial Healing (NDORH) is part of an ongoing commitment to help to create a better community both on and off campus. The NDORH represents one day in the work we do 365 days of the year.

Joining the NDORH movement will help to provide additional avenues, resources, and opportunities to address the concerns, meet the needs, and heal the wounds and pains of intolerance discrimination, and hate.

Community Learning Outcomes

Our goal is to promote healing through personal reflect, interactions with others and the development of strategies for cooperation. This involves an exploration of the following dimensions of multicultural consciousness: self (cognitive), thoughts about others (intrapersonal) and ability to work with others (interpersonal).

Cognitive multicultural consciousness is being defined as the complex understanding of cultural differences. An awareness and understanding of the histories and experiences of others. An acceptance of the idea that a difference in values, ways of making meaning, thought, perspective and background does not mean a culture or an individual is lesser or greater than your own.

Intrapersonal multicultural consciousness is being defined as the capacity to accept and not feel threatened by cultural difference. Being comfortable in your interactions with people from cultures and backgrounds that are different than your own. Not feeling the need to avoid, judge, criticize, compare or separate the shared humanity.

Interpersonal multicultural consciousness is being defined as the capacity to function interdependently with diverse cultures. Being able to collaborate, partner, work, and/or socialize to accomplish a task or achieve a goal with individuals from a different culture.

  • Learning Outcome One: After participating in a NDORH activity a participant can list at least two things learned about a culture different than their own.
  • Learning Outcome Two: After participating in a NDORH activity a participant can list at least one thing they have in common with a person from a different culture.
  • Learning Outcome Three: After participating in a NDORH activity a participant can describe an opportunity where they can meet and accomplish a shared task with someone from a different culture.

The three learning outcomes, listed above, will be part of each NDORH survey.

2024 Organizers

  • Amy Carr, Professor of Religious Studies
  • Peter Cole, Professor of History
  • Taylor Duncan, Coordinator, Fraternity and Sorority Life
  • Carl Ervin, Director, Office of Justice, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity
  • Randy Glean, Associate Vice President Global Studies
  • Robert Hironimus-Wendt, Professor of Sociology and Anthropology
  • Tamera Izlar, Lecturer, Theater and Dance/ 2023 C.T. Vivian Scholar
  • Jade Kastel, Assistant Professor, Libraries
  • Eve Nottrott, Graduate Assistant, Office of Student Engagement
  • Oladimeji Taiwo, Graduate Student, Public Health
  • Leann Walters, Office Support Specialist, Legal Services/JIDE Office
  • LeRon Williams, Assistant Director. Multicultural Center

Racial Healing Resources

Racial Healing: The Heart of Racial Equity

Visit dayofracialhealing.org to learn how you can host or participate in a racial healing activity in your home, neighborhood or organization.

NDORH Take-Action

Visit dayofracialhealing.org/take-action/ for examples of how communities have honored the day in the past, as well as ideas to spark your own brainstorming.

Racial Healing 2023

Visit healourcommunities.org/day-of-racial-healing/ for townhalls, guides, videos and other resources.

Conversation Guide

View or download the NDORH Conversation Guide (pdf)


Continue the conversation and share your stories and experiences of racial healing using #HowWeHeal across your social media platforms.

Tools for Anti-Racist Teaching

Access a PBS 4-part series that provides tools for anti-racist teaching.

Educators Action Kit

View or download the Educators Action Kit (pdf)