Statement Regarding Experiences of Organizational Racism at CQAS and Calgary Pride
November 27, 2020
CommunityWise is aware of the recent statements on social media made by Indigenous, Black, and racialized 2SLGBTQIA+ folks about their experiences of organizational racism while working for two of our Tenant Member organizations, Calgary Queer Arts Society (CQAS) and Calgary Pride. We are in solidarity with these statements and their associated calls to action, as the harms described are consistent with experiences that members of our Staff, Board, and Anti-Racist Organizational Change (AROC) Advisory and Working Groups have had with these organizations.
We have learned, as part of our Anti-Racist Organizational Change (AROC) process, to always orient ourselves to accountability. To us, this looks like centering and listening to the experiences of our Indigenous, Black, and racialized Staff, Board members, and stakeholders; taking informed anti-racist action and learning from these actions; and continually considering where recovery and repair is necessary. With this in mind, while we offer our support to CQAS and Calgary Pride to see the calls to action through, we also commit to holding these organizations accountable within the context of their Membership with CommunityWise. We apologize for not doing more in our capacity as a provider of equity-focused shared space and will be holding ourselves to account for that.
We will continue to respond to this situation as it evolves. We also ask whoever is reading this to take the time to do their own learning and unlearning around organizational racism in all of its overt and covert forms and strive to do better in real, material ways. We commit to doing the same.
-CommunityWise Resource Centre Staff and Board of Directors
This statement can also be viewed here.