Over the past two weeks, we have been reminded of the impact that anti-Black racism and injustice has in our society, not only in the United States, but here in Canada, and more specifically within our individual communities. The recent deaths resulting from police actions have brought to the forefront the reality that systemic racism continues to exist and the profound and tragic impact it has on the lives and communities of Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour.
The Western Québec School Board is committed to inclusion, justice, and equity. We understand and acknowledge that there is work to be done within our learning community, as it is fundamentally important to stand together to battle all forms of racism and discrimination. We recognize the experiences of our communities and are committed to listening, responding and supporting our students, families and communities. Our expectation is that every member of the Western Québec community confronts racism, oppression, injustice, and hate, in a collective effort to not only respect and protect the rights of all our citizens, but also to educate the students moving through our system. To do this we will continue to engage our community partners in providing us with guidance and direction; to provide staff with cultural competence and cultural security training and structure opportunities for voice. It is only through this collective effort and education that we will move toward a society where no one is subjected to systemic racism and discrimination.
“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion. People learn to hate, and if they learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than the opposite.”Nelson Mandela
Below is a list of resources and articles that may be of interest.
- 30 books to help you talk to your kids about racism
- NY Times: An Antiracist Reading List
- CBC News: How to talk to kids about race, and why you should start now
- Radio-Canada Ottawa-Gatineau: Expliquer le racisme aux enfants – Les suggestions d’une psychologue
- CBC Ottawa: How black parents in Ottawa are talking to their kids about racism and police
- Anti-Racism for Kids: An Age-by-Age Guide to Fighting Hate
- Canada’s Black Youth Helpline: 1-833-294-8650 and blackyouth.ca
- The Hope for Wellness Helpline (1-855-242-3310) offers immediate mental health counselling and crisis intervention to all Indigenous Peoples across Canada
- Kids Help Phone/Jeunesse J’écoute: Chat with a Kids Help Phone counsellor by calling 1-800-668-6868 or downloading the Always There app.
- Globe and Mail: How Legos helped a classroom lesson on white privilege