MOURNING THE DEATH OF JUDGE SHEILA ABDUS-SALAAM
(1952 - 2017)
On Wednesday April 12, the devastating news of the death of Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam left many reeling from shock and disbelief. This incredibly accomplished and beloved jurist had been reported missing by her husband and by 2pm the following day, her lifeless body was discovered floating in the Hudson River in NY. According to Police, there were no signs of foul play and her death is currently being treated as a suicide. Given the hateful socio-political climate and Judge Abdus-Salaam's unwavering commitment to justice, many are skeptical. Others flat our reject this possibility - unwilling to consider that this brilliant, successful, trailblazing Black Muslim woman would take her own life.
As we wait for additional information to emerge, it is vitally important that we engage in an honest and candid conversation about stress, depression and suicide in the Black/Black Muslim community.
SPEAK UPON THE ASHES
"When Sojourner Truth was informed that Indiana rebel sympathizers threatened to burn down the hall in which she was scheduled to hold a rally, she said, "Then I will speak upon the ashes." It is in this tenacious manner that she confronted the difficult and often cruel realities of her life." Black women are praised for their strength, tenacity and resilience. However, battling racism, sexism, antiMuslim bigotry and other forms of oppression exact an undeniable toll on one's mental and emotional well-being. Black women, and Black Muslim women in particular, are also vulnerable, exhausted and in pain. These emotions are often denied and dismissed beneath the weight of unrelenting expectations. The "strong Black woman" trope leaves too many suffering in silence. We must break this silence and "speak upon the ashes" of these experiences.
AN ONLINE WEBINAR ON GRIEF, SUICIDE & SELF-CARE
Friday April 14, 2017 | 6:00pm - 7:30pm
Kameelah Rashad, MS
Dr. Nicole Monteiro, Chestnut Hill College
Dr. Shareefah Al'Uqdah, Howard University
Join discussion online via YouTube