Our Commitment to Diversity and Anti-Racism

The UB Department of Sociology and Criminology values all its members and constituents, including undergraduate and graduate students, staff, and faculty. We recognize and support our community’s differences and similarities in terms of race, ethnicity, gender, social class, sexuality, indigenous status, citizenship status, ability, and more. 

The Department is committed to promoting diversity, inclusion, and equity in all of its endeavors. We pledge to strengthen and enact anti-racist practices in our teaching, service, advisement, and interpersonal interactions. We condemn racism and racist behaviors at the interpersonal, organizational, and institutional levels.

The fair and respectful treatment of individuals, especially the most vulnerable, is a core feature of sociologists’ vision of social justice, as is striving to document and reduce structural inequalities in our communities, schools, workplaces, healthcare settings, and criminal justice systems. The Department affirms its responsibility to demonstrate fairness and respect, appreciating each other as valued members of the community, and to recognize the central place our Department holds in educating students about all forms of inequality. 

Extending the Department’s commitment to diversity, inclusion, equity, and anti-racism includes striving for both short- and long-term improvements based on reassessment of the status quo, our aspirations, and UB’s mission. The Department knows it can do better and is working to broaden diversity and to increase the presence of historically underrepresented groups as it moves forward. This ongoing commitment to diversity means that we take affirmative steps (1) to recruit, hire, and retain faculty, staff, and students from underrepresented groups, particularly Black, Latinx, and indigenous scholars who have historically been excluded from the academy; (2) to create inclusive learning and working environments; (3) to engage in scholarship that impacts discussions of social justice, including racial justice, and support students and faculty whose goal is to pursue research in these areas; and (4) to provide a positive social context in which everyone is able to teach and to learn, without any form of discrimination, intimidation, exploitation, or harassment. The Department will take active steps to prevent – and to respond to – any type of discriminatory behavior. For information on UB’s anti-discrimination policies, please read them here.

Our Commitment to the Transgender Community

The UB Department of Sociology and Criminology values all of its members and constituents, including undergraduate and graduate students, staff, and faculty. The Department is committed to promoting diversity, inclusion, and equity. We pledge to strengthen and enact practices in our research, teaching, service, advisement, and interpersonal interactions that support transgender and queer individuals and communities. 

In light of UB’s decision to allow Michael Knowles’ speech to move forward on March 9, 2023, we want to make it clear that we condemn the recent – and the many prior – comments made by him about the transgender community. We are disappointed that at least some of our students find his views palatable, a fact that means we have much work to do as educators. The transgender community is at substantially greater risk for becoming victims of violent crime in our society, and protecting this and all marginalized groups from violence must be a shared goal of all members of the UB community. We take our responsibility seriously to resist the dehumanization of our community members inherent in Knowles’ ideology. As sociologists, our teaching and research call us to consider the roots and the implications of this ideology and to build critical, ethical, and evidence-based education. We will continue to work toward these goals

Equity and Inclusion Resources at UB

Please check out UB's resources and programs benefitting individuals from a variety of diverse backgrounds and experiences.