The following resolutions were approved at the August 11, 2018, August 12, 2017, August 22, 2015, and August 16, 2014 business meetings.

Resolution 1

Resolution 2

Resolution 3

Resolution 4

Resolution 5

Resolution 6

RESOLUTION 1 approved in 2018Just Transition to Renewable Energy with Justice for Workers and Frontline Communities

Submitted by Todd Vachon on behalf of the Labor Studies Division

Whereas, the SSSP has previously acknowledged the overwhelming scientific consensus that global climate change is due to human activities, primarily the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation that have caused a dramatic increase in the levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere; and

Whereas, the SSSP has resolved to stand in solidarity with the policies, targets, and practices established by the Paris Climate Accord; and

Whereas, national and global income and wealth inequality continues to rise to levels never before seen;

Whereas, moving rapidly toward a renewable energy economy can—with the right policies in place—be the source of large numbers of new, well-paying jobs that will reinvigorate local economies; and

Whereas, climate justice and economic justice can only be achieved when working people and frontline communities are at the center of the transition to renewable energy; and

Whereas, a variety of policy tools are available to move rapidly toward renewable energy while providing well-paying stable jobs, income protection, and retraining for workers and communities adversely affected; including, but not limited to: 1) a progressive tax on carbon pollution with the revenue used to support the income, retraining, and provision of new jobs for workers and communities hurt by the transition and those that have historically borne the brunt of pollution from these facilities; and 2) policies referenced in the Clean Energy Worker Just Transition Act, and the “100 By 50” Actthat seeks to move towards 100% renewable energy by 2050 while providing protection for workers and communities affected by the transition, and also lowering barriers that make it difficult to organize workers into unions in the new renewable energy jobs;

THEREFORE, Be it resolved that the SSSP reaffirms its support for the Paris Agreement as a contribution to driving a rapid and managed just transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy; and

Be it resolved, that the SSSP will support measures that provide strong protection for workers and communities that are adversely affected by the transition away from fossil fuels, such as those detailed in the Clean Energy Worker Just Transition Actand the “100 By 50” Act; and

Be it resolved, that the SSSP supports the demands of frontline communities for environmental justice, including access to newly created jobs in the renewable energy sector; and

Be it resolved, that the SSSP will utilize its communication resources and work to inform and mobilize members through actions and mechanisms, including, but not limited to, petition gathering, letters of support, organizational rallies, contacting elected officials, in support of a just transition to a renewable energy economy.

Be it resolved, that the SSSP will communicate support for Clean Energy Worker Just Transition Actand the “100 By 50” Act, to leaders of both parties in the House of Representatives and the Senate, all members of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, the House Committee of Natural Resources, the Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, and the President of the United States of America.

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RESOLUTION 2 approved in 2018: Resolution on Disarming Campus Police

Submitted by Amara Miller and B.B. Buchanan

Whereas, the history of policing in the United States is a history of racial terror; one which grows directly out of runaway slave patrols¹, the black codes², and anti-immigrant border patrols³,

Whereasthe history of policing is also a history of class oppression and violence against union organizing⁴, including roots in capitalist systems that frame disabled populations as “demographic threats”⁵,

Whereas, police have also historically targeted gender and sexual minorities in support of a heteropatriarchal legal system⁶,

Whereas, campus police greatly increased their presence and power on university and college campuses in the 1960s and 70s to quell student protest⁷, especially those led by marginalized populations⁸,

Whereas, many campuses have a long history of activist suppression⁹, including but not limited to the use of pepper spray¹º; and,

Whereas, university and college campuses continue to exhibit incidents of racialized violence by police forces¹¹, and in which their access to weapons increases their threat to the students and university and college workers¹²,

Whereas, police violence on university and college campuses continues to disproportionately affect and endanger those who are not only people of color, but also those who are disabled¹³, LGBTQ+¹⁴, and/or lower-income student and worker populations¹⁵,

Whereas, police forces have increasing access to military-grade weaponry and vehicles¹⁶. Although a temporary ban was placed on this by then President Obama, our president has promised to reinstate the transfer of military grade weapons to police departments¹⁷.

Whereas, despite not needing deadly weapons in the course of their job¹⁸, campus police continue to utilize a culture of fear around school shootings to justify their increasing armory of military grade hardware,

Whereas, there is evidence that campus police rarely intervene in school shootings until after the events are resolved¹⁹, when they mostly serve to provide secondary support. Despite not demonstrating need²º, we still see a move towards increased militarization and armament,

Whereas, the majority of SSSP members have as their workplace university or college campuses, which have long served as central places for education, organizing, and activism, making the police a health and safety issue and marking these campuses as important spaces of influence and change,

THEREFORE Be it resolved, that the Society for the Study of Social Problems (SSSP) will post a public statement calling for higher education systems to disarm their campus police of all lethal and military-grade hardware.

Be it resolved, in this statement the SSSP will also endorse harm reduction strategies such as additional trainings for campus police (e.g., anti-racism training, de-escalation, and crisis management), ending military and police collaborations (e.g., 1033 program, Urban Shield), and additional transparency and community accountability measures for police accused of excessive force.

Be it resolved, that SSSP calls on universities to provide guidelines for non-police, community-based responses to issues such as mental health crises, policing of smoking in non-smoking areas, or people calling police as a response to the presence of Black and Brown bodies. These alternatives will make it so that even the possibility of unnecessary stop and frisk, search, threat of violence or other escalation is removed from everyday life on campus for all members of the community.

Be it resolved, the Executive Officer of the SSSP will pen a letter to the editor of The New York Times,with duplicates sent to the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Huffington Post, the National Public Radio (NPR), the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Washington Post,universities considering founding or expanding armed police forces, and the University of California Office of the President (UCOP) on the dangers presented by an increasingly militarized and armed campus police force, and which outlines the dangers police have posed to the student body in the past, based in rigorous and empirical data drawn from historical and social research.

Be it further resolved, the SSSP will reassert in the public statement our commitment to fairness, equity, and equality by standing in solidarity with marginalized and hyper-policed students and communities, and calling for the development of skilled alternative student services that are not dependent on police intervention. 


References

¹ Turner, K. B., Giacopassi, D., and Vandiver, M. 2006. “Ignoring the Past: Coverage of Slavery and Slave Patrols in Criminal Justice Texts.” Journal of Criminal Justice Education17(1): 181–195; Texas Penal Code, § IV, “Homicide of a Slave When Justifiable,” 1857, Article 564; Ida B. Wells. 1892. Southern Horrors Lynch Laws in All Its Phases. New York Age. 

² Williams, Kristian. 2007. Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America. South End Press.

³ Donato, R., & J.S. Hanson.  2012. "Legally White, socially ‘Mexican’: The politics of de jure and de facto school segregation in the American Southwest.” Harvard Educational Review82(2): 202–225; Harring, Sidney L. and Lorraine M. McMullin. 1975. “THE BUFFALO POLICE 1872-1900: Labor Unrest, Political Power and the Creation of the Police Institution.” Crime and Social Justice 4: 5-14.http://www.jstor.org/stable/29765953; Johnson, Kevin R. 2005. "The Forgotten Repatriation of Persons of Mexican Ancestry and Lessons for the War on Terror." Pace Law Review26(1): 1-26; Romero, Mary and Marwah Serag. 2005. “Violation of Latino Civil Rights Resulting from INS and Local Police's Use of Race, Culture and Class Profiling: The Case of the Chandler Roundup in Arizona.” 52 CLEV. ST. L. Rev. 75. 

⁴ Bass, Sandra. 2001. “Policing Space, Policing Race: Social Control Imperatives and Police Discretionary Decisions.” Social Justice 28(1): 156-176.http://www.jstor.org/stable/29768062; Donner, Frank. 1990. Protectors of Privilege: Red Squads and Police Repression in Urban America. University of California Press; Ogborn, Miles. 1993. “Ordering the City: Surveillance, Public Space and the Reform of Urban Policing in England 1835-1856.” Political Geography 12(6): 505-521.https://doi.org/10.1016/0962-6298(93)90002-O

⁵ Bacon, Selden Daskam. 1939. The Early Development of American Municipal Police: A Study of the Evolution of Formal Controls in a Changing Society.University Microfilms.

⁶ Mogul, Joey L., Andrea J. Ritchie and Kay Whitlock. 2011. Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States. Boston, Beacon Press; Rosenthal, Keith. 2016. “Pioneers in the fight for disability rights: The League of the Physically Handicapped.” International Socialist Review 90.https://isreview.org/issue/90/pioneers-fight-disability-rights; Stanley, Eric A. & Nat Smith (Eds.). 2015.Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex. AK Press; Spade, Dean. 2011. Normal Life: Administrative Violence, Critical Trans Politics, and the Limits of Law.South End Press; Wolff, K.B. and C.L. Cokely. 2007. “‘To Protect and to Serve?’: An Exploration of Police Conduct in Relation to the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Community.” Sexuality and Culture11(2): 1–23.

⁷ Sloan, John J. 1992. “The Modern Campus Police: An Analysis of Their Evolution, Structure, and Function,” American Journal of Police85; Bureau of Justice Statistics. 2015. “Campus Law Enforcement, 2011–12.”https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/cle1112.pdf; Rodríguez, D. 2012. “Beyond ‘Police Brutality’: Racist State Violence and the University of California.” American Quarterly64(2): 301-313; Brucato, Ben and Luis A. Fernandez. 2013. “Socio-Technical Developments in Campus Securitization: Building and Resisting the Policing Apparatus.” Counterpoints410: 79-104.

⁸ Earl, Jennifer, Sarah A. Soule and John D. McCarthy. 2003. “Protest Under Fire? Explaining the Policing of Protest.” American Sociological Review 68(4): 581-606.

⁹ Strong, Wesley. 2013. “Repression of Student Activism on College Campuses.” Counterpoints410: 15-27; Student Protest. 1969. AAUP Bulletin55(3): 309-326.http://www.jstor.org/stable/40223829

¹º Augusto, Sarah and Julie Setele. 2013. “Militant Privatization: The UC-Davis Pepper-Spray Incident.” Counterpoints410: 151-169; Maira, Sunaina and Julie Sze. 2012. “Dispatches from Pepper Spray University: Privatization, Repression, and Revolts.” American Quarterly 64(2): 315-330; Miller, Abraham H. 1972. "People's Park: Dimensions of a Campus Confrontation." Politics & Society2(4): 433-457; Bass, Jack and Jack Nelson. 1996. The Orangeburg Massacre. Mercer University Press; Means, Howard. 2016. 67 Shots: Kent State and the End of American Innocence. De Capo Press.

¹¹ Delgado, Daniel Justino. 2018. “‘My Deputies Arrest Anyone Who Breaks the Law’: Understanding How Colorblind Discourse and Reasonable Suspicion Facilitate Racist Policing.” Sociology of Race and Ethnicity: 1-18; Greenwald, David. September 21, 2015. “Studying While Black Former Student Shaken By Police Encounter on UCD Campus.” The Davis Vanguard.https://bit.ly/2NwQ5ni; Christensen, Dusty. September 17, 2018. “'It’s Just Draining': 14-Year Employee of University Gets Cops Called on Him for Looking 'Agitated'” Daily Hampshire Gazette.https://bit.ly/2NWckm3; Daily Californian. February 8, 2018. “UCPD Shouldn’t Get Away with Its Violent Arrest of David Cole.” The Daily Californian.https://bit.ly/2DkKV9g

¹² Benjamin, Jr., Arlin J., Kepes ,Sven, & Brad J. Bushman. September 17, 2017. “Effects of Weapons on Aggressive Thoughts, Angry Feelings, Hostile Appraisals, and Aggressive Behavior: A Meta-Analytic Review of the Weapons Effect Literature.” Personality and Social Psychology Review; Delehanty, Casey, Jack Mewhirter, Ryan Welch, and Jason Wilks. 2017. “Militarization and police violence: The case of the 1033 Program.” Research and Politics(April-June): 1-7.

¹³ Saleh, Amam Z, Paul S. Appelbaum, and Xiaoyu Liu. 2018. “Deaths of people with mental illness during interactions with law enforcement.” International Journal of Law and Psychiatry58 (May–June): 110-116; Lamb, H. Richard, Linda E. Weinberger and Walter DeCuir Jr. 2002. “The Police and Mental Health.” Psychiatric Services 53(10): 1266–1271;Lewis, Talila. March 21, 2014. “Police Brutality and Deaf People.” American Civil Liberties Union.https://bit.ly/2O3hoEY; Perry, David M. September 22, 2017. “4 Disabled People Dead in Another Week of Police Brutality.” The Nation.https://bit.ly/2fGPEDY

¹⁴ Brammer, John Paul. September 19, 2017. “Death of Scout Schultz Highlights LGBTQ Mental Health Needs On Campus.” NBC News.https://nbcnews.to/2xgv1sf;Balsam, K. F., Y. Molina, B. Beadnell, J. Simoni, and K. Walters. 2011. “Measuring multiple minority stress: The LGBT People of Color Microaggressions Scale.” Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology 17(2): 163-174.http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0023244

¹⁵ Sara Goldrick-Rab et al. 2018. “Still Hungry and Homeless in College.” Wisconsin Hope Lab.https://bit.ly/2H72k3f; Ivanich, Jerreed D. and Tara D. Warner. 2018. “Seen or Unseen? The Role of Race in Police Contact among Homeless Youth.” Justice Quarterly; Amster, Randall. 2003. ”Patterns of Exclusion: Sanitizing Space, Criminalizing Homelessness.” Social Justice30(1): 195-221.

¹⁶ Bauman, Dan. September 21, 2014. “Campus Police Acquire Military Weapons.” The Chronicle of Higher Education https://nyti.ms/2LlzFbh; Peake, B. J. 2015. “Militarization of school police: One route on the school-to-prison pipeline.” Arkansas Law Review 68(1): 195-230.

¹⁷ Jackman, Tom. August 27, 2017. “Trump to restore program sending surplus military weapons, equipment to police.” The Washington Post.https://wapo.st/2pue3Bb

¹⁸ Kaste, Martin. July 30, 2015. “Many College Have Armed Police Squads, But Are They Worth The Risk?” National Public Radio.https://n.pr/2NZk5ri; Warnick, Bryan, Benjamin A. Johnson and Sam Rocha. February 15, 2018. “Can Security Measures Really Stop School Shootings?” Scientific American.https://bit.ly/2PUaI9G; Valentine, Matt. October 5, 2015. “The Myth of the Good Guy With The Gun.” Politico Magazine.https://politi.co/1VCMSL3

¹⁹ Blair, Pete J. & Martaindale, M. Hunter. 2013. “United States Active Shooter Events from 2000 to 2010: Training and Equipment Implications.“https://bit.ly/2OFdz63; Brown, Ruth. February 23, 2018. “Four sheriffs’ deputies hid during Florida school shooting.” New York Post.https://nyp.st/2ouKP4d

²⁰ Mummolo, Jonathan. September 2018. “Militarization fails to enhance police safety or reduce crime but may harm police reputation.”Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences115(37): 9181-9186.

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RESOLUTION 3 approved in 2017: Resolution in Support of the United States’ Commitment to and Participation in the Paris Climate Accord

Submitted by Laura McKinney (Chair) on behalf of the Environment and Technology Division

Whereas, the President of the United States has announced the United States will withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement;

Whereas, the scientific community has achieved consensus about the existence of adverse effects of climate change, with research findings supporting the mandate of the Paris Climate Accord;

Whereas, the United States’ commitment to and participation in the Paris Climate Accord is critical to reaching targets for global emissions reductions;

Whereas, failing to achieve emissions reductions as outlined in the Paris Climate Accord poses grave threats to the health and wellbeing of individuals worldwide;

Whereas, the adverse effects of climate change are disproportionately concentrated among vulnerable and marginalized populations worldwide;

Whereas, failing to meet targets for global emissions reductions as outlined by the Paris Climate Accord unnecessarily puts into peril future generations’ health and wellbeing;

Whereas, withdrawing from the Paris Climate Accord impinges on employment of individuals across diverse sectors of environmental policy, planning, science, research, and development;

THEREFORE, Be it resolved that the Society for the Study of Social Problems (SSSP) stands in solidarity with the policies and practices established by the Paris Climate Accord; and

Be it resolved, that the SSSP will communicate support for the Paris Climate Accord to the leaders of both parties in the House of Representatives and the Senate, all members of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, the House Committee of Natural Resources, the director of the Environmental Protection Agency, and the President of the United States; and

Be it further resolved, that the SSSP will stand in solidarity with the nations and other public and private entities that remain steadfast to upholding emissions reduction targets as outlined in the Paris Climate Accord, posting this resolution on its website.

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RESOLUTION 4 approved in 2017: Resolution on Free Speech and Academic Freedom

Submitted by President Donileen R. Loseke and Executive Officer Héctor L. Delgado (members)

Whereas, a democratic society depends upon the free exchange of ideas in classrooms, on campuses, and in the public;

Whereas, there can be no knowledge or progress without a genuine search for truth which requires free speech;

Whereas, disagreeable or controversial ideas should be challenged through empirical research, reasoned discussion, and debate;

Whereas, there is evidence that organizations that attack instructors and staff take comments out of context, spread accusations, fabricate and misrepresent information, and orchestrate campaigns, targeting instructors and staff deemed to promote “liberal” ideas in their work and personal lives;

Whereas, instructors and staff members in an increasing number of academic institutions and in a variety of academic disciplines (including sociology, philosophy, classics, politics and global studies, and communications) have been the targets of threats of violence because of their ideas;

Whereas, faculty and staff who occupy marginal social positions or experience precarious employment are more vulnerable to attacks and sanctions;

THEREFORE, Be it resolved that the Society for the Study of Social Problems (SSSP) stands in solidarity with the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), the American Sociological Association (ASA), and other professional associations in its commitment to academic freedom and due process and in denouncing violence and harassment of all types targeted toward those engaging in free speech; and

Be it resolved, that the SSSP agrees with the AAUP that it is the responsibility of campus governing boards to develop and enforce policies that will protect the safety and freedom of instructors and staff; and

Be it resolved, that we adopt and add to our website a statement, consistent with the AAUP’s, on academic freedom; and

Be it further resolved, that the SSSP will send a copy of this resolution and statement on academic freedom to the AAUP and to the presidents and boards of the institutions at which these types of cases have occurred, on an ongoing basis. 

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RESOLUTION 5 approved in 2015 : Call for SSSP to stand in solidarity with colleagues who have suffered extreme attacks from known White supremacist and other hate groups seeking to silence the voices of activist scholars as members of civil society and campus communities

Submitted by Jay Borchert and Lori Sexton, Chair and Vice-Chair Law and Society Division.

Whereas, 2015 has seen a relentless string of attacks upon the value of activist scholars to civil society and the campus community; and

Whereas, these attacks have been perpetrated against scholars of color, LGBT scholars, women, and scholars with marginalized identities, such as the extreme examples of Saida Grundy and Zandria Robinson; and

Whereas, this opposition to the inherent value of activist scholars has come from mainstream sources such as CNN, Fox News; and

Whereas, further opposition and threat has come from fringe and hate groups such as the National Youth Front; and

Whereas, the Southern Poverty Law Center recognizes the National Youth Front as a White supremacist organization and a hate group; and

Whereas, such attacks place our colleagues at immediate risk by threatening safety and security, to include the ability to earn a living; and

Whereas, these are public and directed attacks upon faculty members and credentialed scholars within academic institutions; and

Whereas, attacks of this manner are an affront to academic researchers and scholars in their service to society; and

Whereas, a unified, supportive response to counter this trend has been sorely lacking from our professional organizations and universities alike; and

Whereas, the Society for the Study of Social Problems stands in firm solidarity with our colleagues who have experienced and who are now experiencing these broad-based assaults; and

Whereas, the Society for the Study of Social Problems views these attacks as attempts to limit the scope of our research, practice, teaching, civic and campus engagement; and

Whereas, the value of activist scholars can be seen in the expanding landscape of rights and citizenship for people of color, LGBT citizens, citizens with disabilities, and women; and

Whereas, academia requires a diversity of perspectives and voices to include women, scholars of color, LGBT scholars, disabled scholars, and those with marginal identities;

Be it resolved, that the Executive Officer of the Society for the Study of Social Problems will pen a letter to the editor of The New York Times, with duplicates sent to the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and the San Francisco Chronicle, declaring our solidarity with scholars in the U.S. and abroad who are attacked by hate groups; and

Be it resolved, that the Executive Officer of the Society for the Study of Social Problems will pen a letter to the university presidents and department chairs at the institutions of Saida Grundy and Zandria Robinson, declaring our solidarity with scholars who have been attacked by hate groups; and

Be it resolved, that the Society for the Study of Social Problems will communicate our support and solidarity to known targets of the recent attacks of Saida Grundy and Zandria Robinson; and

Be it is resolved, that the Society for the Study of Social Problems reiterates its steadfast support for activist scholarship in service to the discipline and society.


CITATIONS

Hetter, Katia. 2015. “Online fury over Boston University Professor’s tweets on race.” CNN.com Retrieved August, 2015. http://www.cnn.com/2015/05/13/living/feat-boston-university-saida-grundy-race-tweets/

Clause, Kyle. 2015. “Controversial BU Professor Saida Grundy Calls for Dialogues on Race. Boston Magazine.” Retrieved August, 2015. http://www.bostonmagazine.com/news/blog/2015/05/13/boston-university-professor-saida-grundy-tweets/

LeBeau, Jordan. 2015. “White supremacists target embattled Boston University professor.” Boston.com. Retrieved August, 2015 www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/2015/07/02/ 

Fox, Jeremy C. 2015. “BU is accused of bias against Blacks.” The Boston Globe. Retrieved August, 2015. https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/05/15/director-african-center-set-for-closure-says-may-move/yP8CdS0PuGQQbJ0YrAv6fJ/story.html

Hennessy, Alexandra. 2015. “Memphis professor behind racist tweets resurfaces at crosstown school.” FoxNews.com. Retrieved August 2015. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2015/07/06/memphis-professor-behind-racist-tweets-resurfaces-at-crosstown-school/

Timpf, Katherine. 2015. “Sources” Zandria Robinson Not Fired Over Tweets.” National Review. Retrieved August 2015.  http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/420604/sources-claim-zandria-robinson-was-not-fired-over-her-tweets-katherine-timpf

Ahle, Steven. 2015. “Black Professor Blames Whites for Her Menstrual Problems….ROFLMAO.” Conservative Firing Line. Retrieved August, 2015. http://www.conservativefiringline.com/black-professor-blames-whites-for-her-menstrual-problemsroflmao/#more-11025  

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RESOLUTION 6 approved in 2014 : Motion Regarding the Death of Connor Sparrowhawk While in Institutional Care

Submitted by Mark Sherry, University of Toledo.

Whereas, Connor Sparrowhawk was an 18 year old English disabled man who drowned in the bath at Slade House in Oxfordshire, England, a National Health Service Assessment and Treatment unit on July 4th 2013;

Whereas, he was having many seizures around that time, but was left in the bathtub alone and died;

Whereas, Connor’s death was initially, incorrectly, presented to the family as death by “natural causes”;

Whereas, an independent report[1] about his death came to the following conclusions:

  1. That Connor’s death was preventable.
  2. That there were significant failings in his care and treatment.
  3. That the failure of staff to respond to and appropriately risk assess Connor’s epilepsy led to a series of poor decisions around his care.
  4. That the level of observations in place at bath time was unsafe and failed to safeguard Connor.
  5. That if a safe observation process had been put in place and Connor had been appropriately supervised in the bath, he would not have died on 4 July 2013.
  6. That the STATT (Short Term Assessment and Treatment Team) unit lacked effective clinical leadership.
  7. That there had been no comprehensive care plan in place for the management of Connor’s epilepsy and his epilepsy was not considered as part of Connor’s risk assessment, in breach of NICE epilepsy guidance.

Whereas, Connor’s preventable death was a tragedy which has gained the attention of the disability community internationally, because disabled people are so often given inadequate and even life-threatening care.

Be it resolved, that we express our sorrow and rage at the preventable death of Connor Sparrowhawk;

Be it resolved, that we express our solidarity with his family, and with others internationally who are pushing for accountability in this case;

Be it resolved, that we demand changes in the disability system more broadly, so that others are not subject to inadequate care and preventable death;

Be it resolved, that we recommit ourselves to ensuring that all disabled people live in safety, with dignity and respect.

Be it resolved, that SSSP send a letter about this issue to the #Justice For LB Campaign[2] and to Connor’s mother Sara Ryan, supporting the introduction of a Private Members’ Bill in the British Parliament, (which advocates have informally called “the LB Bill”), that will put the choices of disabled people and their families at the heart of the decision-making process. The letter should also indicate SSSP’s approval of wide distribution of the letter to policy makers, and among the disability community.

Be it resolved, that the SSSP letter support the #Justice For LB Campaign as they seek the policy changes in the following structural areas:

  • Policies that lead to the warehousing of disabled people
  • Institutions which don’t provide appropriate care,
  • Inadequate management of seizures in many health and disability institutions,
  • The need for different responses regarding the death of inpatients,
  • The need to overturn policies that make the family of the deceased pay for their own legal expenses when investigations and inquests occur into preventable deaths,
  • The need to meaningfully involve the family in the inquest process for the purpose of transparency,
  • The need for improved professional accountability, such as referral of staff to their relevant regulatory bodies where preventable deaths have occurred,
  • The need for national mortality review systems for deaths in institutional care,
  • The need for investigations and consequences in circumstances where a preventable death is wrongly presented to the family as death by “natural causes”.

Be it further resolved, that SSSP add a special session at our next conference in honor of Connor Sparrowhawk.  The session will ensure that the issue continues to be discussed, with scholars examining the social problem further.


[1] See this link for discussion of report and as reference for points 1-7 below: http://www.southernhealth.nhs.uk/news/report-into-death-sparrowhawk/.

[2] They can be contacted at http://107daysofaction.wordpress.com.

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