KCR Community Resources Asks Community to Unite Against Discrimination

United Against Discrimination

KCR Community Resources Asks Community to Unite Against Discrimination

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (July 9, 2020): KCR Community Resources is issuing a statement to stand up to racism and discrimination faced in our community and asks everyone to report incidents through a new United Against Discrimination online portal.

“We need action from the whole community and cannot leave the work of anti-racism only to racialized people,” says Ellen Boelcke, Executive Director of KCR Community Resources. “We are fortunate to collaborate with UBCO through the UBC CUES fund, to launch a new initiative that gives us the ability to bear witness and to respond to acts of racism in our community, and shares the responsibility of action to all of us.”

Statement:
KCR Community Resources has a long history of embracing and celebrating diversity in the Central Okanagan. Our core values identify with inclusion and respect for everyone. We have worked collaboratively with individuals and organizations to address discrimination and to encourage a welcoming community for all. As an agency that supports newcomers and marginalized people in our community, we have seen the effects of systemic racism and discrimination, and we know that its deep roots are felt every day. The experience of discrimination negatively affects individuals who are often members of targeted groups based on race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and disabilities, for example. Discrimination hurts individuals and our community as a whole.

We recognize that more action is required. We must stand up to racism, be actively engaged in anti-discriminatory thinking and behaviours, and stand together with leaders that represent the diverse voices in our community. We need active listening and learning and we must acknowledge the harm that has been, and continues to be, done. Today we commit ourselves to be a part of that change and we encourage you to do the same.

Activate Change!

Silence about incidents of racism and various forms of discrimination in Kelowna does not stop discrimination. Everyone in the community is encouraged to take action and to report an incident of racism and discrimination that they experience, or that they witness, through a new online portal at www.kcr.ca. By reporting these incidents, we are actively acknowledging the discrimination that is hurting so many, while informing future resources and protocols that will address discrimination toward making our community more safe and welcoming.

“Discrimination against people because of their personal characteristics such as the colour of their skin, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, age, and other characteristics protected by The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is simply unacceptable in today’s world. Despite this, we still have people who hurt other people based on these and other characteristics to discriminate against people who look different and so forth,” says Dr Shirley Chau, Associate Professor of Social Work at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan campus, and lead researcher for the community-based project, United Against Discrimination. “By providing a space for people to report their direct experience with discrimination or their witnessing of discrimination by others in the community will help everyone to know what is happening in the community. By no longer staying silent about discrimination, we can use the information to develop solutions to better support victims and to help people to learn what they can do to stop discrimination. This way, we can all build a more respectful and safer community for everyone.”

To learn more about United Against Discrimination and how you can help to activate change, please contact Wan Wan at 250.763.8008 ext 253 or ac.rcknull@detinu.

Central Okanagan United Against Discrimination

REPORT AN INCIDENT
If you are a victim, or a witness, of racism and discrimination, report the incident. In collaboration with UBCO with the support of UBC CUES fund, KCR Community Resources is collecting data to help develop a community protocol to address racism and discrimination in our communities.

– ACTIVATE CHANGE –
Fill in the report online, or contact Wan Wan at ac.rcknull@detinu or 250.763.8008 ext 253


Funding for this project has been provided by
University of British Columbia - Logo

Contact:

Ellen Boelcke
Executive Director
KCR Community Resources
P: 250.763.8008 ext 132
E: ac.rcknull@nelle

Shirley Chau, Ph.D., M.S.W.
Associate Professor, School of Social Work
University of British Columbia | Okanagan Campus
P: 250.807.8739
E: ac.cbunull@uahc.yelrihs
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