CommUnity: The Power of One
Our Executive Director, Renée Vaugeois, was the keynote speaker at the third annual CommUnity: The Power of One, an event held on March 24, 2018, to commemorate the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
Renée's presentation was a response to Racism and Discrimination:
"...Discrimination between human beings on the grounds of race, colour or ethnic origin is an obstacle to friendly and peaceful relations among nations and is capable of disturbing peace and security among peoples and the harmony of persons living side by side even within one and the same State…." International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, January 1969
The Principles and Values of Human Rights are Essential Elements
We need to respond to racism and discrimination, be critical and make distinction of individual and systemic racism and to ensure action occurs against both.
We Make the Road by Walking
- Pass the mic.
- Sit back, listen. Understand your privilege.
- It’s not about you - don’t take it personally. Doing so causes defensive reactions which do greater harm.
- Recognize guilt. Guilt gets us nowhere.
- Commit to creating intersectional spaces of dialogue. Commit to moving beyond whiteness (e.g. event planning).
- Build relationships. This is a journey.
Rights are progressive and dynamic; not static. They rely on us; we, the people.
You can't have an individual right. It has to be a universal right. I have no rights that everybody else doesn't have. There's no right I could claim that anybody else in the world can't claim, and I have to fight for their exercising that right just like I have to fight for my own. That doesn't mean I have to impose my ideas on people, but it means I have a responsibility to provide whatever light I can on the subject and share my ideas with people.
The event was hosted by the Central Alberta Refugee Effort (CARE) & Red Deer Native Friendship Society