Like never before…
We hear you. We see you.
We all understand that we face an unprecedented effort to dismantle Alaska’s safety net – creating so many holes that we don’t know where people will land, dismantling the infrastructure that supports arts and artists like no other state in our union, undermining our children, our students, our elders and our most vulnerable, eroding support for science, education, and our fellow Alaskans who live in rural communities. Never before have all of these attacks happened all at once and with such force. And yet, here we are.
And yet, here we are together as well – Alaskans of every political party, nonprofits of every kind, businesses and industry, and local and tribal governments – all standing together for the Alaska we believe in. We go to bed each night wondering if we have done enough – tried enough – talked and listened enough – shared our story enough. We are holding our breath and screaming at the same time. We are running a marathon at sprint pace. We are holding each other up, while reassuring ourselves.
And so, for a moment, I remind myself and urge all of you to practice “choral breathing,” the act of taking turns taking a breath so that our sound is sustained. As we each pause to take a breath, we can stay strong together, supporting each other in sustaining our voice. And we can say together: “Restore the vetoed funding. Reverse the sweeps. Alaska for everyone.”
As we have navigated alongside you and spoken up time and again as the voice of the sector, I want to say to you today: You are amazing. Don’t give up. Keep on showing up.
This is not over. There are more options. There are more paths forward.
We are preparing a survey to hear what you need and how we can work together. Until then, we know there is a lot of information out there, and it can be confusing. So…
Like never before – Stay strong. Stay Focused. Stick Together.