With the death of George Floyd, and racist events closer to home, people are talking…no yelling about racism. As a white woman, I have not experienced racism, but I have experienced watching people I love experience racism. I hear friends, people of colour, say they are tired of fighting, of being the token spokespeople, and of reliving their trauma. So what needs to happen? White people must step up and become active allies.
I thought that by being aware that we need to hear and promote people of colours’ voices (and be quiet for a change) that it would be enough, but we need to do so much more. We need to examine our unconscious biases, fight for policy change, and look at the systematic and historical ramifications.
The thing is it is hard and messy. I decided last summer that I would not just “let” things go anymore and I stood up. I sounded defensive and self-righteous. Next time, I will ask a few questions and listen to their perspective and then, more calmly, talk about mine. But I am doing it. I am being an ally – messy or not. >> Checklist for White Allies Against Racism
By Tanya Cowie, Board of Directors