Challenging Our Racism/Challenging Your Racism
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Racism comes in the three main forms:
Structural: Policies and practices which are seen within structures of society which favour white people over those of colour. If a fairer society were a house, then structural racism would be the foundations and walls.
Institutional: Policies and practices which are seen within organisations which favour white people over those of colour. In the house analogy Institutionalised racism would a room, the contents and the rules of that room.
Individual: Personal and stems from conscious and unconscious roots. Continuing with the idea of the house, individual racism is an act which takes place in the room.
The insidious nature of racism means that our thoughts, feeling and actions can all lead to discrimination. They are all interlinked, and these may impact unconsciously in our interactions with people and systems.
The most significant step here is recognising that their actions and biases may, in fact, be racist.
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- Interrogate your personal conscious and unconscious bias.
- Think through your personal preferences and toxic associations; this is the source of all unconscious bias.
- Name your favourite films, books, actors, stories and ask yourself where those ‘preference’ originated.
- Do the same with people you do and do not appreciate.
- Are they any trends with those groups?
Write down, how do you feel about different groups (positive and negative)?
What stereotypes do you hold (positive and negative)?
Have you let any of the above impact on your decisions (positive and negative)?
- Who is impacted by your current organisation?
- In schools think about behaviour records, exclusions, outcomes, who’s head boy and girl, etc.
- How do the policies and procedures impact on the above groups and why?
- How do the above two sections leak into the everyday practices in your organisation?
Write down all the outcomes of your organisation. Are there any cases where PoC are adversely impacted?
Policy and Procedures:
What are the outcomes of the policies in your school? i.e. Who is punished for by hair policies?
Are there any trends that impact on PoC?
- Accept we are all complicit in structural racism; all of us are responsible.
- What are the structures in our society?
- By society, I mean what is deemed as acceptable and not acceptable in society?
Which policies do you support? And how do you they impact on PoC?
Unwritten Societal Rules – Procedures:
What are the implicit rules you live your life by and see in society?
How do the above two impact on PoC in your society?