Posted on March 31, 2023

NYC Teachers Union’s Workshop on ‘Harmful Effects of Whiteness’ Canceled After Influx of ‘Hate’

Rich Calder et al., New York Post, March 27, 2023

A controversial seminar about white privilege that had been planned by the city teachers’ union for Monday was abruptly canceled — because its host was inundated with “hate messages and disparaging comments.”

The United Federation of Teachers — which represents more than 190,000 teachers, paraprofessional educators and child care workers in the five boroughs — had planned the virtual “Holding the Weight of Whiteness” seminar for 4 to 6 p.m. before it was postponed over blowback from politicians and online commenters.

Scheduled presenter Erica Sandoval, a Queens licensed clinical social worker, said in a statement that the event addressing the “harmful effects of whiteness in our lives” was canceled when she received “hate messages and disparaging comments being left in my email inbox and on my social media platforms.


The optional course for licensed mental health professionals was focused on “cultural humility and inclusion” and sought to teach educators “how whiteness relates to privilege and identity, and how both become normalized and invisible,” according to literature promoting the event.

“Participants will leave the workshop with a better understanding of how to center ourselves as a form of resistance against the harmful effects of whiteness in our lives, the organizations we work for or direct, and the communities in which we serve,” according to a promo on Instagram.

Attendees would have earned two hours of credit for their continuing-education resume, which eventually results in higher pay.