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June 18, 2020
Mayor Alan Webber Signs Proclamation of Emergency - Civil Unrest from Institutional Racism

Recent events in the City of Albuquerque and in other cities around the country have demonstrated how protests aimed at statues, monuments, and other historical figures can escalate into violence and cause serious harm to people and property.

The call for the removal of the monuments in Santa Fe was to allow our community the opportunity to have overdue conversations: we need to take an honest look at all of our history, move forward with truth and reconciliation, and create a better future based on our shared values.

Santa Fe has a long and complex history that includes “trauma, tragedy, and sorrow,” which was recognized by leadership from the Caballeros de Vargas, the All Pueblo Council of Governors, the City, the Fiesta Council, and the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, in a Proclamation dated September 7, 2018.

There is currently civil unrest across the country and in the City of Santa Fe, due to historic trauma and institutional racism; certain monuments are displayed in the City of Santa Fe that depict historic figures and events that involve or depict events causing historic trauma and have led to present-day civil unrest;

As a result of the emergency, events have caused or are causing danger of injury or damage to persons and property within the City. The Mayor invoked all Section 2-1.3, and Sections 20-1.2 through 20-1.5 of the Santa Fe City Code of 1987, to preserve the peace and order in the City of Santa Fe.

Directives from the Proclamation:

  •  The City shall immediately remove the statute of Don Diego de Vargas in Cathedral Park and place it in a safe location;

The Don Diego DeVargas Statue has been removed with great care from its current location as a safety precaution in advance of tonight’s protest.  The statue is being stored at an undisclosed location for safety reasons. 

  • The City Attorney and City Manager shall work with City staff to begin the legal processes for removal of the Santa Fe Obelisk from the City’s Plaza Park;
  • The City Attorney and City Manager shall contact the proper officials with jurisdiction over the Obelisk dedicated to Kit Carson, to determine a course of action for removal of that monument; and 
  • The First Amendment Rights of Santa Fe residents and visitors shall be protected and preserved.

The Mayor continues to call on all members of the community in Santa Fe to maintain the peace in our city; to reject expressions of anger that involve violence or hatred. The Mayor is asking our community to use this moment to engage in respectful dialog about our city’s past and prayerful reflection on our city’s future; and to embrace peace and reconciliation as a true fulfillment of the shared values of the people of Santa Fe.

Truth and Reconciliation Commission

Through the proclamation the Mayor is also calling for the formation of a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to make recommendations to the City regarding the future of the City’s historic statues and monuments, relevant sections of the City’s Code, and other matters of education, historic trauma, and systemic racism that the City has the responsibility and opportunity to address.

The Mayor is also calling for nominations of community members from Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico to be placed on a Truth and Reconciliation Commission, including nominations from the groups that drafted and signed the September 7, 2018 Proclamation, groups advocating for social justice, racial equality, historic accuracy, equity and inclusivity, gender equity, and other shared values and representing the diversity of all parts of the Santa Fe community.

Last night the Governor dispatched state assistance in the inspection of the Obelisk in advance of tonight’s protestState contractors determined the top of the obelisk was unstable and removed, they verified the remaining portions were stable. 

The safety of the community is paramount. It will continue to be the focus of everyone’s efforts as we move forward.  We want everything and everyone to be peaceful.

 

Civil Unrest from Institutional Racism Proclamation 

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