Tools to Get You Started
Encourage confidence to act
This section will provide downloadable documents that you can use to begin work in your state. Please note this is not an exhaustive list rather it is one to help you begin to do this work. You will find a mix of presentation docs, training modules, articles, Ted Talks and more.
Implicit Bias Training Modules: from The Kirwin Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at the University of Ohio. The modules which are research based focus primarily on implicit bias and are designed in short segments for you to learn at your pace.
30 Days and 30 Ways to Be a Better Ally (copyright): By Gloria Atanmo is an excellent 85-page digital resource guide filled with practical and relevant stories, resources, tips, conversation starters, journal prompts, videos, and anecdotes to help allies better navigate this new journey. This is a great team building activity! You can purchase copies of the guide for your whole team and work together!
Tools from Trying Together is an excellent list that offers resources for parents, community members schools and anyone interested in doing this work. Of note, under the Resources for Discussing Racism and Violence with Children section there is a moving New York Times article, Talking to Children about Race, Policing and Violence and a discussion where journalists chat about their own experiences and how they had “The Talk” with their children.
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Cultural Awareness Tools
According to the Perception Institute:
“Thoughts and feelings are “implicit” if we are unaware of them or mistaken about their nature. We have a bias when, rather than being neutral, we have a preference for (or aversion to) a person or group of people. Thus, we use the term “implicit bias” to describe when we have attitudes towards people or associate stereotypes with them without our conscious knowledge. A fairly commonplace example of this is seen in studies that show that white people will frequently associate criminality with Black people without even realizing they’re doing it.”
Stereotypes are the internalized feelings, attitudes, opinions and assumptions that people hold. They color the way we interact. Define stereotypes then move to group activity and discussion
This section can be conducted as part of a cultural diversity/competence training or as a stand-alone team building session after Implicit Bias Training and Reframing Language activity.
Reframing is a restating a negative word or thought and making it more positive. Reframing is a powerful tool to help us begin changing our mindset by changing our language.
The following activity can be done as a (15 mins) team building exercise and should be followed up by the stereotyping activity. In a presentation, pull out a few examples to embed in PowerPoint (5-7 mins).
“As defined by psychologist D.W. Sue, who has studied the topic extensively, a microaggression is a “brief and commonplace slight/insult that communicates hostility or prejudice towards particular groups of people”. The term was coined by Harvard professor Chester M. Pierce in 1970 in response to insults and dismissals he witnessed inflected on black Americans. While many argue against the validity of microaggressions based on the fact that it’s an entirely subjective claim, when presented with examples, an overwhelming majority of us recognize these phrases.”
“You’re very pretty for a dark skinned woman”
SLANG: WHAT IS A KAREN?
The term “Karen” was made popular by social media and is used to refer to a person (without using their real name) who uses their privilege to “report” on situations they deem “suspicious”. There are tales that the name was a reference to a girl named Karen in the 2004 movie Mean Girls.
Cultural Growth Tools
As caregivers, community members, and early childhood educators, we have a responsibility to ensure each child, family, and caregiver is safe from racism and discrimination and has equitable opportunities to thrive.
In order to do this, we must begin with ourselves. Set aside time in your day to do a personal inventory. What thoughts, feelings, and behaviors have you contributed to upholding systems of racism? What assumptions are you making? What actions or inactions have you taken that contribute to systems of oppression?
There are many benefits for disability organizations to engage in cultural and linguistic competence self-assessment. Such processes can lead to the development of a strategic or action plan with short-term and long-term goals, measurable objectives, and identified fiscal and personnel resources to advance and sustain cultural and linguistic competence within the organization.
Organizational self-assessment is a necessary, effective, and systematic way to plan for and incorporate cultural and linguistic competency. An assessment should address the attitudes, behaviors, policies, structures and practices of an organization, including those of its board, staff, and volunteers. It should also elicit the perspectives and experiences of diverse individuals and communities served.
The issue with screening:
Children from racially/ethnically diverse backgrounds are less likely to:
- Be screened early
- Have follow-up evaluations when they “fail” a screen
- Get an early diagnosis
- Access early services
What is an ally?
Dictionary.com’s definition: “to associate or connect by mutual relationship, as resemblance or friendship”. As overused as the word ally has become in recent years, it has become important as a means for folk who use their privilege to step up to support and amplify Black voices.
Who can be an ally?
Anyone can and should be an ally but it always has to be genuine and should come from a good place with good intentions. Not for your own gain or fame. Your voice as an ally should never be one that drowns out others or be done with “savior” mentality. We want you to work with us, for us. Roxane Gay said it best, “ Black people do not need allies. We need people to stand up and take on the problems borne of oppression as their own, without remove or distance. We need people to do this even if they cannot fully understand what it’s like to be oppressed for their race or ethnicity, gender, sexuality, ability, class, religion, or other marker of identity. We need people to use common sense to figure out how to participate in social justice.” Before you embark on the journey, do some soul searching and understand who you are, because along the way you will be tested and challenged as the work will be uncomfortable.
The idea behind P.E.A.R. is how allies can use their privilege to lead, develop, teach and use peer-to-peer or ally-to-ally training to create awareness, change mindsets and break down barriers to dismantle racism.
This 85-page digital resource guide is filled with practical and relevant stories, resources, tips, conversation starters, journal prompts, videos, and anecdotes to help allies better navigate this new journey.