In June 2021, the National Board of Directors (NBoD) adopted the PSAC Anti-Racism Action Plan which recognizes that there is an underrepresentation of Indigenous, Black, Asian, and other racialized members in leadership roles within our union. As our fight for social and economic justice at the bargaining table continues, working towards racial justice is not only linked with but is essential to our collective strength.
In order to build an anti-racist union, we need to listen to our members who have been impacted by systemic discrimination for far too long, without recourse, and without ways to share their experiences in spaces that are safe and affirming. With full support of the NBoD, we are taking concrete steps towards building inclusivity, equity and belonging in the union by examining the ways in which PSAC has upheld systems of oppression.
By incorporating principles of reconciliation, the Anti-Racism Action Plan is rooted in an intersectional and trauma-informed approach. This means examining the ways in which different forms of oppression based on an individual’s identity or lived experience can shape their sense of power, resilience, and well-being. We hope that this plan will help us identify and break down the barriers that continue to prevent PSAC members from fully participating in their union.
This anti-racism work will help us recognize the legacies of colonialism, slavery, and residential schools that are woven into the policies, structures and systems of our union. So that we can meaningfully make space for Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized communities to thrive.
This plan will focus on four key areas: education, representation, engagement, and political action. We've already begun our outreach and consultation with Indigenous, Black, Asian and other racialized PSAC members and will continue into 2023.
The Anti-Racism Action Plan has five objectives:
- To raise awareness and provide tools for leaders, union representatives and all members to become anti-racist activists;
- To increase the participation and engagement of Indigenous, Black, Asian and racialized members within the union at all levels – local, component, region and national;
- To ensure representation through available recourse processes have an Indigenous, Black, Asian and anti-racism lens;
- To meaningfully engage and support community organizations and initiatives fighting racism against Indigenous, Black, Asian and racialized communities; and,
- To develop and undertake anti-racism human rights and political campaigns with Indigenous, Black, and Asian lenses.
Input from our members will be crucial to the success of this plan and will help pave the way for us to build a stronger and more inclusive union.