Hold your head up…

In this piece, Jenna Kring, Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre’s Indigenous Programs and Events Associate, shares some inspiring words about being a safe space for others

Hold your head up

Lift the top of your mind

Put your eyes on the Earth

Lift your heart to your own home planet

What do you see?

Carry it on: Buffy Sainte Marie 

Shé:kon sewakwé:kon, Jenna Kring iónkia’ts. Kanien’kéha:ka niwakonhontisó:ten. I find myself getting lost in thinking of what the future will bring, even though the future is out of my control. Taking a moment to breathe and seeing ways I can improve on the now can help influence the future. I must start somewhere, how about today, with myself. As a Two-Spirit person, I strive to cultivate being a safe space for others. By using self-reflection to monitor my actions and continuing with independent education on issues that surround daily life. Continue Reading »

Image showing a tower of Jenga blocks

Together We Are 2021-2022

How do you envision the post-pandemic world?

How do you envision the future?

During a long and exhausting health emergency crisis, equity-deserving communities have been facing the exacerbated consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. Society has been reckoning with the multiple and intersecting forms of oppression that impact QTBIPOC communities, both at the individual and the systemic level. And now, we are entering a time when a return to life as we knew it seems to be getting closer; however, technological changes and societal demands have put in evidence the need to rethink the future. During the school year 2021-2022, our blog contributors will reflect on the challenges, responsibilities, and practical strategies for building the post-pandemic world.

Check our blog month by month to find new and interesting reflections!

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Image of two Pride flags waiving

Celebrating Community with Pride: A (personal) reflection on the formation of a new Queer Employee Resource Group for 2SLGTBQ+ equity

Alex Pedersen (she/her) staff member and adjunct professor at Queen’s University, closes the school year 2020-2021 reflecting on the importance of creating spaces where 2SLGBTQ+ members can thrive and feel supported

June marks Pride Month in Canada. For many, this month brings a celebration of diversity amongst 2SLGTBQ+ communities and a recognition of struggles, setbacks, and victories towards equality. I look forward to this month not just to celebrate my Queer identity with others, but to reflect on the importance of space and place in community building (drawing on another identity as a geographer!).

For the purposes of this blog post, let’s define what I mean by community. If you were to look up community in the dictionary, you might find a traditional view that focuses on physical space, whereas today we understand that communities exist in both physical and virtual spaces. Continue Reading »

Campus during a sunny day

EDII and the Changing Academic Mission of Universities—a personal reflection

In our most recent blog post, Dr. Fahim Quadir, Dean and Vice-Provost of Graduate Studies and Professor of Global Development Studies, reflects on the crucial role universities have to play in building a more equitable future after COVID-19

A recent discussion at a meeting with my colleagues in the School of Graduate Studies somewhat unexpectedly provided the context for my deep reflection on the topic of EDII. Are the normative principles of EDII at odds with academic excellence? What is EDII all about? Is this primarily a matter of representation?

I find the current general interest in and support for equity, diversity, inclusivity and Indigenization to be enormously exciting. The debates are intense, engaging, and truly thought-provoking.  In most cases, they are no longer about paying lip service to cultivating the civic commons. Nor are they about promoting a political rhetoric without substance. Continue Reading »

anti-asian racism rally. Protesters with signs

The Language of Anti-Asian Racism

Photo from cnn.com

Our March blog post was written by Jenny Lee Northey, Career Counsellor. In this piece, she talks about the importance of language when doing anti-racist work

As we mark the one-year anniversary of the World Health Organization’s declaration of a global pandemic, we have witnessed how the pandemic has highlighted and exacerbated all types of longstanding inequities in our society. In the early months of 2020 as the novel coronavirus spread, overt discrimination and acts of racism towards Asian communities spiked as people associated COVID-19 with people of Asian descent. There was heightened fear and anxiety, not only with the uncertainty of the coronavirus itself, but of the growing anti-Asian sentiment.

As the pandemic continues, we have seen anti-Asian racism and hate crimes continue to persist. There has been heightened media coverage of recent violent and fatal attacks on people of Asian descent, Continue Reading »

COVID-19 road sign: Stop the spread - Save lives

Canadian Disability Benefit – A historic opportunity to end poverty for persons with disabilities

In her February piece, Heather Aldersey, Associate Professor and Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Disability Inclusive Development, talks about how COVID-19 has impacted Canadians with disabilities disproportionately and offers an avenue to reduce inequity for persons with disabilities

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted for us the deep societal inequities facing particular segments of our society. Equity-deserving groups saw the disadvantages that they already experience further exasperated. When speaking about the challenges that families with members with disabilities face, a parent researcher with whom I work expressed: “the faucet was leaky in the best of times, and the pandemic just turned a drip into a deluge”.

The Canadian government’s 2020 speech from the throne also recognized that for those in Canada already struggling, the pandemic has made the burden heavier. Specifically, the Canadian government noted that COVID-19 has disproportionately affected Canadians with disabilities, Continue Reading »