The Limestone Lens

Focusing In On Anti-Racism and Equity

April Awareness

There is so much on everyone's minds this Spring, as the third wave of COVID -19 is upon us. Some days feel isolating and hard, while other days offer hope, with the vaccine rollout and sunny weather.


The focus of this issue of The Limestone Lens is fostering

"awareness".


As you read through this month's collection of resources, I ask you to consider the following:


A) What can you do, as an individual or group, to support communities negatively impacted by COVID-19 inequities?


B) How are you countering the negative words and actions of others? What steps can you take to intervene and disrupt race-based messaging?


C) What is one action you can take on your personal equity work? How can learning more about the experiences and needs of our community support positive cultural change?

1) An Awareness that Inequities are Heightened During the Pandemic

Doctor reflects on racism amid COVID-19 pandemic

“More Exposed & Less Protected” in Canada: Racial Inequality as Systemic Violence During COVID-19

"There is an interrelationship between racism and COVID-19 in Canada."


This report highlights some of the ways that racism (and its intersections with class and gender inequality) has made BIPOC “more exposed and less protected” to harms during the pandemic."


Read the complete report here: http://www.vawlearningnetwork.ca/our-work/backgrounders/more_exposed_and_less_protected_in_canada_systemic_racism_and_covid19/

Here are the Summaries of Three Key Issues in the Report:

2) An Awareness that April Hosts Many Dates of Significance

Our students, staff, and broader communities represent a rich diversity of faith and cultural traditions. Among many dates of significance in April, we recognize this month as Sikh Heritage Month, and recognize important dates such as Easter, Yom HaShoah, Vaisakhi, Yom Ha'Atzma'ut, and Rivdan.


This issue of The Limestone Lens will look deeper into explaining the importance of Ramadan.

Ramadan

6 Things Non-Muslims May Not Know About Ramadan

3) An Awareness That Actions and Words Matter!

Anti-Asian Racism and race-based hate crimes/speech are on the rise in Canada. Here is an interview from CTV News with Anita Jack-Davies, assistant dean of equity, diversity, inclusion and Indigeneity at Queen's University, about the dangers of linking coronavirus variants to particular countries:

https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/why-the-who-won-t-call-it-the-u-k-variant-and-you-shouldn-t-either-1.5292441


Here are some tools and information to help others understand, respond, intervene and act when issues of injustice, human rights, equity and oppression arise:

New study shows extent of anti-Asian racism in Canada

4) An Awareness That We All Have A Responsibility to Learn From and Take Care of Each Other.

Hunger-fighting Campaign Unites People and Taps into the Spirit of Ramadan

Ramadan is about giving, building community, and understanding the challenges of hunger that others face, says Michael Taylor (Give 30 Team Kingston). That is why it works so well motivating people to give.


“Everyone can participate in the spirit of Ramadan,” Taylor emphasizes. “Give 30 is not about any one group or faith; it's about uniting in common humanity. Hunger and poverty know no race, religion, ethnicity, creed, gender or age and that's why it's important for everyone to join Give 30.”


This year, members of the Kingston Muslim Youth are organizing an interschool competition, encouraging secondary schools to raise funds for Partners in Mission Food Bank via Give 30.


Stay tuned to updates via their Instagram account (@kingston_muslim_youth). We encourage other groups and business to get creative and join the Give 30 campaign to help Partners in Mission Food Bank fight hunger in Kingston.

Resources to Access for Support and Awareness

We'll get through this together! Here is a website from the Government of Canada with a variety of ways we can support each other!

https://www.covidracism.ca/

The Limestone Lens: Focusing In On Anti-Racism and Equity

As Limestone District School Board employees, we are all a part of this learning journey. If you have ideas about future equity topics or terminology, please contact Rae McDonald.