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FINDING COMMON GROUND FOR COLLABORATIVE ACTION SHARON DOUGLAS REGIONAL DIVERSITY ROUNDTABLE Along this Unique Journey: Exploring Equity Frameworks.

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Presentation on theme: "FINDING COMMON GROUND FOR COLLABORATIVE ACTION SHARON DOUGLAS REGIONAL DIVERSITY ROUNDTABLE Along this Unique Journey: Exploring Equity Frameworks."— Presentation transcript:

1 FINDING COMMON GROUND FOR COLLABORATIVE ACTION SHARON DOUGLAS REGIONAL DIVERSITY ROUNDTABLE Along this Unique Journey: Exploring Equity Frameworks

2 WHAT IS THE EQUITY FRAMEWORK THAT THE RDR OPERATES FROM/WITHIN? Question?...

3 What is the Regional Diversity Roundtable? Our Mission The Regional Diversity Roundtable is committed to being a leader in supporting organizations and institutions to be diverse and equitable in order to provide services that are fair, inclusive, respectful and culturally competent. Our Vision To promote respect and equity within organizations and institutions for an inclusive and harmonious community. We Value Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Respect, Social Justice

4 Who We are Cont’d The Regional Diversity Roundtable is a network of organizations and institutions committed to building inclusion and diversity competence that results in the institutionalization of equity in their core values, structures, workforce, policies and services. We are a group of individuals and organizations with a commitment to inclusion, equity, and diversity competence.

5 Process for today – ‘A Deliberative Dialogue’ The goal of this presentation is to inspire thought, openness, reflection, ask questions and to explore all options about an RDR operating framework. To see the intersectionalities This is not a debate Equity Anti- oppression Diversity

6 ‘Deliberative Dialogue’ versus ‘Debate’ Deliberative DialogueDebate CollaborativeOppositional Common groundPoints of divergence Listening to find meaningListening to find flaws Listening to find agreementListening to find points to argue Openness to being wrongDetermination to be right Weighing alternativesWinning Assumes that others have pieces of the answer and all can find it together Assumes there is a right answer and someone has it Involves concern for the other personInvolves countering others Seeks not to offend or alienateBelittles or deprecates others

7 BEFORE WE BEGIN TO TALK ABOUT FRAMEWORKS, WE NEED TO IDENTIFY OUR CONTEXT Setting the Stage

8 RDR Context Consider this… The RDR currently operates from a diversity framework, understanding and accepting that people /organizations with differing viewpoints can work together if their ‘core values’ and goals are the same

9 Definitions - CRRF Diversity – a term used to encompass all the various differences among people including race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, socio-economic status, etc. and commonly used in the United States and increasingly in Canada to describe workplace programs aimed at reducing discrimination promoting equality of opportunity and outcome for all groups. Concern has been expressed by anti-racism and race relations practitioners that diversity programs may water down efforts to combat racism in all its forms.

10 Anti-oppression – Strategies, theories and actions that challenge socially and historically built inequities and injustices that re ingrained in our system and institutions by policies and practices that allow certain groups to dominate over other groups. Anti-racism – An active and consistent process of change to eliminate individual, institutional and systemic racism as well as the oppression and injustice racism causes. Definitions Cont’d

11 Learning from the Experts Approach Diversity Initiative/Project: 6 basic models:  Intercultural  Legal Compliance  Managing Diversity  Prejudice Reduction  Valuing Differences  Anti-racism ChangeWorks Consulting: Social Change or Status Quo?

12 Intercultural Approach (IC) Primary focus - is the development of cross-cultural understanding and communication between people and nations It examines the ways humans speak, reason, gesture, act, think and believe It tries to help people develop sensitivity/awareness to the cultural roots of their own behaviour as well as other people’s culture….values, assumptions Common language - worldviews, cultural relativism, value orientation, verbal/non-verbal communication In the IC approach ignorance, cultural misunderstanding and value clashes are seen as the problem and increased cultural awareness, knowledge and tolerance are the solution Cultural identity and ethnicity are the focus while racial identity is not often examined

13 Legal Compliance Approach Primary focus – based in legal theory, civil rights law, and human resource development strategies It is primarily concerned with monitoring, recruitment, hiring & promotional procedures affecting women and people of colour to increase representation in the organization & to comply with anti- discrimination laws In the legal perspective the optimal state of race relations is ‘colorblindness’ – people are just people and differences are not taken into account Common language – affirmative action, equal opportunity, qualified minorities

14 Legal Compliance cont’d Organizational problem defined as individual biases, lack of compliance with civil rights law, and exclusionary procedures within the organization Main driver is often avoidance of discrimination lawsuits Training is designed from a legal compliance perspective – focus on laws, regulations and requirements. The emphasis is on statistical representation not on what happens to women and people of color once they are hired

15 Managing Diversity Primary focus – diversity as a business issue rather than a legal, political, or moral one Managing diversity has a strong presence in corporations & receives a lot of media attention The driving force is survive and thrive in the 21 st century – tap into diverse labour pool Common language – competitive edge, changing demographics Diversity training targets managers of the organization. Some experiential activities may be included..exam personal attitudes and behaviour within a business context Conflict resolution techniques may also be included

16 Prejudice Reduction Approach Primary focus - is rooted in the ‘Re-evaluation counselling movement The approaches teaches people to help free one another from the effects of past hurts – Prejudice reduction approach applies the re-evaluation counselling framework to explore and heal past hurts caused by prejudice and bigotry Common language – “guilt is the glue that holds prejudice together”, healing past hurts, emotional healing Training relies heavily on activities that promote emotional release; Sharing personal stories, holding hands, crying, exchanging painful lessons The focus on the personal can be frustrating for some

17 Valuing Differences Approach Primary focus – recognizes and celebrates differences as the fuel of creativity and innovation. Core value is recognition of individual uniqueness while acknowledging different group identities See conflict as the result of an inability to recognize and value human differences..implication that the solution lies in learning about ourselves and one another Shares some aspects with other models – building relationships across lines of difference, recognizing the importance & value of a diverse work team; explores stereotypes, cultural differences, race, gender… Common language – people with differences, diverse people Training tends to be apolitical – issues of privilege and entitlement of dominant group members may not be critically examined

18 Anti-Racism Approach Primary focus – firmly rooted in the civil & human rights struggles in the U.S. and internationally Based on the historical understanding of racism & oppression – expressly political approach emphasizes a distinction <> personal prejudice and institutional racism; core culture & institutional structures must fundamentally change Goals include a total restructuring of power relations–analysis of power Common language – liberation theory, anti-oppression work Training draws from the knowledge of the other approaches and adds in an analysis of power and oppression

19 Scenario The SDouglas et al Foundation is a non-profit organization which recently ran a open competition to select a new ED. A few weeks later an unsuccessful candidate charged the SDF with unfair interview and selection process. That the process was biased in favour of white, male candidates. The organizational composition is primarily female with approx. one tenth of staff comprised of visible minorities plus, 2-3 represented on the Bd. Of Dir. The organization considered itself progressive and sensitive to issues of equality and inclusion. Consider each of the approaches presented and apply to the above situation. What would the review process for this organization look like based on the various approaches? What are the differences?

20 WWW.REGIONALDIVERSITYROUNDTABLE.ORG Thank You!


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