‘We Need to Talk,’ UNLV Libraries’ panel discussions examine systemic racism and possible solutions


Following the death of George Floyd, Black Lives Matter protests and a president stoking racial division, UNLV Libraries began a panel series titled, “We Need To Talk: Conversations on Racism for a More Resilient Las Vegas.” 

Moderated by Claytee White, Director of the Oral History Research at  UNLV Libraries, the live-streamed series featuring UNLV researchers and community experts discussing systemic racism and possible solutions.

Beginning last September discussions have centered on criminal justice, communications and economics with each panel designed to examine the myriad ways systemic racism impacts our community and steps individuals can take to create positive change.

In Conjunction with Black History Month the virtual panels resumed Feb. 4 with a discussion on healthcare, followed by a Feb. 11 discussion on Education.

This week’s Feb. 18 episode “Where we go from here,”  ” examines ways to use information from previous topics to pursue change through equity and equality. Panelists include Harriet Barlow, executive director of The Intersection at UNLV; Sondra Cosgrove, professor of history at College of Southern Nevada; Jayce Farmer, assistant professor of public policy and  leadership in the Greenspun College of Urban Affairs; and Minister Stretch Sanders, a Southern Nevada community activist.

As with other panels “Where we go from here” will be live-streamed on its website, https://www.library.unlv.edu/weneedtotalk, and then remain available as an archived episode.

The final episode in the series looks at Las Vegas’ Westside neighborhood and its struggles during  the early days of segregation, its ongoing blight  and racism, as well as its positive changes and developments.  Panelists will include artist Chase McCurdy and Erika Vital-Lazare, professor of creative writing and marginalized voices in dystopian literature at the College of Southern Nevada.

For live-streamed panels and archived episodes, visit  www.library.unlv.edu/weneedtotalk.