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Clarington and its Diversity Advisory Committee condemn racism in our community

Clarington June 9, 2020/- Together with the Diversity Advisory Committee, the Municipality of Clarington is speaking out against racism and discrimination. We condemn the tragic and senseless death of George Floyd in the United States as we collectively speak out against anti-Black racism. We stand together with the global community with one simple message: racism and discrimination against any marginalized member of our community will not be tolerated.

“We want to express our ongoing support for the Black Community, who may be experiencing outrage, fear, frustration and tiredness – not only related to recent events, but to the broader systemic barriers, biases and the ongoing impact of racism that you face daily,” said Rachel Traoré-Takura, Chair of the Diversity Advisory Committee.

We know that racism permeates every aspect of society. Even in Clarington, some residents have faced discrimination. We also know that the conversation on this topic is starting to shift. Slowly but surely, we are on the cusp of a wave of change: a wave that includes acceptance, inclusion and fundamental respect for diversity. But first, we must listen and learn from those who have experienced racism first-hand.

To better understand the issues and experiences of those who have encountered racism, the Municipality has asked its Diversity Advisory Committee to guide Clarington as we come together to break down walls and eliminate racism in the workplace, in our lives and our community. The Committee was created with a single vision to promote a “welcoming and inclusive Clarington, where differences are celebrated, and the voices of all peoples are heard.”

The Diversity Advisory Committee is recommending that Clarington develop a robust anti-racism policy. Clarington has several policies in place on harassment and discrimination, adding an anti-racism lens, will strengthen the focus and message that racism in any form, whether anti-Black, anti-Indigenous or against any marginalized group will not be tolerated. Clarington staff will also look at policies governing our public facilities to ensure that all Municipal buildings are spaces that are inclusive and promote diversity. Clarington has also partnered with the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion. This partnership will provide staff with access to programs, courses and resource support to understand issues of diversity and inclusion as they apply to the workplace and society in general.

“Fifty-seven years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King gave a speech that impacted and shaped generations of people to this day. The ‘I have a dream’ speech is an echo in our society today as we continue to struggle with racism. It is up to us to come together to fulfil that dream by supporting a shared code of community values. We stand firmly in support of all members of our community, no matter their colour, nationality or religious beliefs,” said Clarington Mayor Adrian Foster.

“It is only by listening to others and their lived experiences of racism that we can start to understand how actions, words and aggressions leave a lasting mark. This is one of many steps Clarington needs to take to address this issue in our society,” added Mayor Foster.

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Media Contact:
Basia Radomski
Communications Manager
905-623-3379 ext. 2214

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