This is just the start and there is still much more for us to do. As much as we celebrate the rich diversity across our borough, we must also reflect on the past, and the ongoing challenge of achieving racial equality. Therefore, as we look to celebrate Race Equality Week in February and as the theme is listen take action, I would like to share with you my top tips to being an active peer and ally.
Top tips to allyship
- Be ready to be vulnerable. Being an ally is not an easy task. It requires courage to accept truths outside of lived experience, reflect on your own biases and speak up when no one else will.
- Be curious: inform yourself at every opportunity. Take the initiative to educate yourself about the struggles and achievements of people of colour. Don’t be afraid to ask questions that allow you to learn more about different cultures.
- Amplify voices. Use your platform and privilege to amplify the voices of people of colour. Inviting individuals' contributions as part of the discussion means their unique perspective is heard and valued.
- Speak up and intervene. If you witness racial bias or discrimination, don’t be silent and be willing to call out others and ask tough questions. Your voice can make a difference.
- Take Action. Challenge, promote and celebrate diversity at every opportunity you can as this can create a more inclusive environment for everyone.
As we bid farewell to Black History Month, let us carry forward the lessons learned and the inspiration gained. I am grateful for everyone’s contributions to making this month as enriching and fulfilling as it can be and look forward to celebrating future events.
Thank you to Jade, Policy Officer at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, for this blog