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Updated: Aug 18, 2021

I strongly encourage community consultation when you are reviewing your position on diversity and inclusion. But before you invite your community in, it's best to do some internal work. This will make sure that your efforts are not 'token' and that your team is ready to have potentially challenging conversations. If you are not sure where to start, I suggest doing some research and reading, an article that I found illuminating was this one on white fragility. I had never heard that term before reading this article, but it clearly summarises a problem that I have seen many times in our sector.

Whilst many organisations have a firm belief in diversity, there has often not been in depth work done internally to foster a culture that supports inclusion. If diversity is who is in the room then inclusion is how people feel in the room. In my experience, so called marginalised individuals are often very nervous to have a conversation about D&I at work, because in the past, they have experienced the kinds of responses that are detailed in the article. This can be very isolating, and there will often come a point when they disengage to protect themselves. I can help you to build a culture that is open, constructively critical, and supportive. This will not happen overnight, it is a process, you can find more about what I offer on the Diversity & Inclusion page.

Here are some prompts to start you off. Grab a note book or laptop and spend some time considering the following, write down what comes up. Try not to over think it, just write down your responses. List as many responses as you like, many things can be true at the same time, for example, you might feel both curious and nervous when talking about racism.

  • Talking about disability makes me feel XYZ

  • Talking about racism makes me feel XYZ

  • Talking about diversity and inclusion at work makes me feel XYZ

  • If I could speak to someone candidly about diversity and inclusion in the arts, I would ask them XYZ.

Let me know how you get on with this task, and book in for a free consultation to discuss your next steps.

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