What is Inclusion?
When we talk about Inclusion, we talk about appreciating diversity and what makes each of us different and unique. Inclusion is about making everyone feel welcome without trying to change them, silence or negate some parts of their true self. We all have the right to be included in our community, and no one has the right to discriminate against us for any reason, because human rights are the law in Ontario and in Canada.
When we appreciate and celebrate differences, we help create a culture of Diversity and Inclusion where everyone feels a sense of belonging and benefits from a safe, healthy and positive living and working environment. When people feel accepted fully for who they are, they participate and contribute more, and overall have a better experience and quality of life.
Discussing Diversity in simple terms
- Diversity happens when people are different, together.
- Many differences all in the same place, getting along and respecting each other.
- We all have differences and similarities, and that is a beautiful thing!
Video Discussion Questions:
Now that you’ve watched the video, use these questions for personal reflection or to facilitate a discussion with your team:
- What suggestions for inclusion shown in the video can be applied in your own organization, family or community?
- What are some of the things you are already doing to be inclusive? What has worked well for you?
- Name one thing that you can personally commit to doing to help create a safer and more welcoming environment for everyone.
Being an ally
An ally is someone who supports equal rights for others and acts when people face exclusion and discrimination. You can be an ally to those who have had to struggle for their rights throughout history including people with disabilities, black and indigenous communities, and gays, lesbians and transgendered people.
Anyone can be an ally in helping to create a safe and more welcoming and inclusive environment.
Supportive Advocate Checklist
An activity to help you become more aware of your role as an ally or advocate, and to learn how to better support diverse individuals. Supportive Advocate Checklist
Do you feel that you are being treated unfairly?
Here are some steps that you can take:
- Tell someone you trust about what has happened as soon as possible.
- Find out what the formal complaint process is in the place where the incident happened. Find out who the right person is to tell your concern. For example, a supervisor, manager or someone in charge.
- Document the incident and keep a record of all the facts related to the situation: Who, What, When, Where, How. You can ask someone to help you with that.
- Follow up with your complaint: ask about the outcome and rationale behind the decision, or a confirmation that things have been resolved. If things were not resolved, review your options, decide on the next steps and enlist someone to support you through the process.
To learn more about your human rights and resources available:
- Ontario Human Rights Commission
- Introduction to Human Rights 101 – Multilanguage e-module
- Your Guide to Understanding Human Rights
- Human Rights Legal Support Centre
- Ombudsman Ontario
- A Video and Audio Guide to Understanding the Canadian Human Rights Act with ASL interpretation Link