It is my contention that I fall on action in 'active' on the continuum. I began focused learning on diversity and inclusion in the mid-90s, then took what I learned back to my community, to the school where I was a principal. During those years had some difficult conversations with staff and students; provided forums for voices to be heard; shared the knowledge as a trainer. Was blessed to see the transformation in the building. Strangers would walk the halls and tell me they could feel love.
This work led me to become an active ally for the LGBTQ+ community in education, then during my tenure with police services. The evolution from the mid-90s to the mid-2000 in the importance of staying current was evident with the work we did with the transgender community. The mid-90s education simply opened my mind and heart to recognize how little I knew. The work during the past decade reminded how much more there is go.
Learning and working with the indigenous community since the mid-80s and the multicultural community in the last decade has also been an eye-opener. The move from 'feeling bad' to being a 'struggling bystander' to a person who is becoming an active ally more consistently. This course has provided me with more insight. In fact, this morning while walking the dog we stopped to talk to a neighbour. The neighbour was hesitant about defining systemic racism. His belief was it existed only if defined in a certain way. I could take what I learned and share the knowledge. One small step, however, it is demonstrated to me, I can engage in the tough conversations.