Sent on behalf of Katie Oesau, lecturer in the Marketing Department and READI equity fellow.
This Tuesday, I’d like to invite you to act. As we work towards a more inclusive and equitable campus, most of us understand these terms and how they show up in our spaces on campus. But ask yourself, when was the last time you acted? Awareness alone cannot dismantle systems of oppression.
The term “Ally” is something familiar to us all. But how do you consider this term in your work? Is it a Noun (something you are) or an Action (something you do)?
Dr. Makini King (she/her/hers), Director of Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives at the University of Missouri – Kansas City, believes that Ally is Not a Noun. In her work, she states “Allyship is one of the first action-oriented tools one learns in social justice and bias trainings. Awareness of injustices; racism, sexism, homophobia, classism, and ableism (to name a few) is of course, the first step toward advocacy, but awareness alone is not enough to dismantle systems of oppression. To be an Ally requires that a person not simply notice an injustice, but also take action by bringing attention to the injustice and requesting that it be corrected.”
I invite you to read her short article, and consider the thought experiment contained within:
“As you move throughout your day; sit in a classroom, a department meeting, a social space… I want you to think about the inequality that might exist in that space…
Consider who is represented in that space and who is not and then ask why. Then ask yourself how you might ACT as an Ally in order to support those people who may not be represented, or who may not have a voice in order to actively make the space more equitable.”
So, are you ready to take action?
Have an idea for an action, a project or a change you’d like to make involving equity, but aren’t sure where to start? READI can help!
READI is a hub for the study of Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (EDI) and antiracist practices from the perspective of faculty instruction and research. READI engages in the production of new and innovative scholarship on EDI and serves as a hub for pairing faculty needs with resources on EDI and antiracism. Our role is to work with faculty on all their equity related needs. This includes faculty mentorship, grants, campus collaborations, research, pedagogy and more. Contact us today!