Modelling true allyship with Kristyn Wong-Tam

Toronto Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam, who was elected to Toronto City Council in 2010 and whose advocacy efforts have spanned affordable housing, economic development, community art and urban planning, joined us recently for one of our most inspirational conversations yet on ABCDEI. 

In the past decade, Councillor Wong-Tam has brought a lot of positive change for her ward. But it’s also what she does in her time outside Council that makes her stand out. She was front-and-centre at a gathering at Nathan Phillips Square to fight the rise of anti-Asian racism in the wake of the recent shootings in Atlanta, the victims of which including six women of Asian descent. She was there to unveil a set of new benches in Toronto specially made and painted to mark #TransgenderDayofVisibility in the heart of the city. And as the only out member of Toronto city council, she has fought effectively to turn an LGBTQ lens on a range of issues.

When you think about the essence of a politician, it’s representing the diverse needs of one’s constituents. Not many can do it as authentically and passionately as Councillor Wong-Tam, especially in one of the most diverse and challenging areas of the city. Here is some of the wisdom shared by someone we feel is modelling true allyship:

Motivation is personal

What propelled Councillor Wong-Tam into politics was a deep-rooted feeling of restlessness with the imbalance in success of those around her. 

She saw people who were falling the cracks in the system, no matter how hard they worked and how qualified they were to achieve the success they deserved. Despite their best efforts, they were struggling to provide food and care for their families. That’s when she strived to do something and judge her own success by those around her.

Dismantling patriarchy

Wong-Tam talked about the need for more women, especially racialized women, in government because their voices are important and the point of views that they bring to policymaking is so critical. A woman’s perspective can shift the discourse around topics of economic recovery, health spending and education policy, among other issues. 

But in order for that to happen, we need to be able to address misogyny and patriarchy. 

We live in a world that has systemic barriers that hold women back. And it doesn’t matter what country you are, or region or town you’re from. Women always rank the lowest with respect to economic advancement, with respect to labour force representation, with respect to university and college degrees held. 

Dismantling patriarchy has to involve focused effort on the part of governments, businesses and institutions to improve conditions with an equitable and intersectional lens.

Intersectionality matters

Wong-Tam approaches her work with an intersectional feminist lens. What does this mean? It’s about working towards the upliftment and the advancement of women and girls, but especially BIPOC. If women, girls and non-binary folx feel safe traveling on transit, have economic opportunities and equitable access to employment, then everybody else will, because they’re always at the bottom of every single list.

Now, a lot of people feel more comfortable speaking about equality. But, as Gail Strachan articulately stated in episode 5: meritocracy is a myth. In fact, some of the fiercest resistance to these topics can come from BIPOC men. It is important not just to bring the historically privileged folx with us, but as Ali Kazmi shared in episode 4, allyship among the margins is critical too. But to be clear: bringing women up in the organization, creating new opportunities for BIPOC doesn’t mean eliminating roles held by white people. It’s about looking ahead with intentionality.

Since ABCDEI is all about learning and unlearning, this is how we have unpacked the concepts shared in episode 7 into simple and actionable ideas:

  1. Fight patriarchal culture. Don’t get defensive about the processes in place at your workplace. Look at them with an intersectional lens and be open to changing, replacing and retiring policies that hold back certain marginalized groups from advancement and fulfillment. Create safe channels to seek the input of those who feel held back: that’s where your change goals should be focused.
  1. Co-create change. When you’re reviewing corporate culture, make sure you have a policy to ensure the workplace is discrimination and harassment free. Co-create that document by inviting your colleagues to share their individual views on what makes a positive workspace, for BIPOC, for new parents, for transgender individuals, for those living with disabilities. Accommodating these diverse needs is step 1; step 2 is creating a guide to address conflict in a productive way.
  2. Don’t create diversity mascots. Too often, an individual in a predominantly white workplace may feel pressured to speak for all forms of diversity. This is not possible, nor is it fair to any individual. The BIPOC community is not a monolith, nor is the LGBTQ community. Their issues are not the same. Don’t put anyone in that awkward position.
  1. Listen with love. People who are from under-represented groups have embraced the need for self-care. So, for those with privilege on the flip side, we urge you to listen with love. When someone shares their struggles with you, try to hear them with your heart and resist the urge to jump in and fix the issue immediately. This is what Diversity Equity & Inclusion (DEI) expert Aiko Bethea describes as the action bias on an episode of Brene Brown’s Dare to Lead podcast, cautioning against the instinctive rush to ‘fix’ racism fast. When we go straight to fixing, we feel good, but the other person feels unheard, unseen and disempowered. Inclusive leadership is much more about listening to learn than to react in the moment.

If you have found yourself wanting to unlearn but wondering where to even begin, or if you have a guest idea, drop us a line at hello@abcdei.ca.

Here in heeding and ignoring advice,

Rohini + Susan

Fight with one hand, build with the other, a conversation with Leo Johnson

Leo Nupolu Johnson, internationally acclaimed human rights activist, social entrepreneur, United Nations fellow for the International Decade for People of African Descent and Founder and Executive Director of Empowerment Squared, joined us for a serious unlearning session on ABCDEI recently. 

Leo is spearheading true sustainable change in BIPOC communities in Canada and beyond. He drew from his own immigration experience to Canada as a government-sponsored refugee to centre the focus of Empowerment Squared on the ability to navigate the educational system successfully. He shares some powerful lessons on how we can put a value on the marginalized experience and perspective, be genuine and action-driven allies and drive more impactful community initiatives. We should that our conversation with Leo was specific to the BIPOC experience, but many aspects of the struggles faced by BIPOC are common among a wide range of marginalized groups. 

By the end of our conversation, we both felt charged and refreshed for the journey to change that lies ahead. Read on for some serious motivation to fight with one hand and build with the other.

Level the playing field, especially when things get tough

Rule 1 of supporting marginalized communities: trust. Trust them even when – inevitably – things don’t go smoothly. There is a clear double standard around expectations of marginalized communities when it comes to social impact programming. When white communities make mistakes, it’s seen as “learnings” on the way to success, whereas marginalized organizations are one mistake away from a total shutdown. 

Why are the standards so high when the people are different?

At some point, BIPOC charitable organizations doing meaningful work to drive community wellbeing will have corruption, dysfunction or inefficiencies in process. Resist the urge to reinforce a confirmation bias when this happens.

Take the example of Steve Jobs. How long did he work at Apple before the company turned into the powerhouse it is today? He undoubtedly made some mistakes before landing on the incredible Apple product ecosystem that is known and loved today. Can you imagine what we would have lost if Steve Jobs were shut down with his first misstep? 

Community at the heart of social responsibility 

White communities, please know this: BIPOC communities often devalue their knowledge. 

It is true. In the process of raising resilient kids and preparing them for their journey to success, knowledge and hard work are necessary and therefore undervalued. As marginalized folx then go on to create programs to drive community impact, they can find themselves in the uncomfortable role of serving the corporate agenda. 

Leo’s view in no uncertain terms: “You (BIPOC charitable organizations) are not supposed to be the servants of funders. You are not supposed to be the representatives of funders. I think that is a misunderstanding of the role that you should be playing based on the commitments that you’ve made to communities you represent. If all we’re doing is working hard day and night to meet the requirements of the funders, I wonder who’s being left behind. I wonder who’s being ignored.”

Fix the deficit

In the process of creating equity, it is important to balance the fight and the build. Fighting has a very prominent and important place in the history of the fight for equity. And it will continue to. But if we are protesting about the same causes for years in a row, without moving the needle in any tangible way, then we need to add in a different element. 

The rally is important – no doubt about it. But it goes beyond that, and if marginalized folx – alongside allies – don’t gear up for the longer journey to create real action towards building equity, then we’re going to be stuck waiting for change. Instead, let’s power up to make change happen. 

Since ABCDEI is all about learning and unlearning, this is how we have unpacked the concepts shared in episode 7 into simple and actionable ideas:

  1. Give marginalized communities the freedom to fail. When we are dealing with 400 years of deficit, BIPOC will inevitably make mistakes. So, when they do, be ready to double down on your support. Deal with the reasons why they failed and learn from it – don’t cancel them. Don’t hire BIPOC to check a diversity box. Do it when you have a clear plan to adapt your culture to accommodate people from marginalized groups. Put a high value on BIPOC skills and expertise, including translating that to dollars. Most importantly, don’t put it on your marginalized hire to fit into your culture. That’s on you, the employer.
  2. Park the corporate agenda around community impact initiatives. Corporate leaders looking to create real impact in the community should look to their charitable organization partners to help connect their funds to the needs of the community. Pigeon holing a charity’s operations into an organization’s 10 arbitrary requirements for a corporate responsibility program may not translate to success in terms of driving real change.
  3. Fight the good fight but conserve some energy to build. It’s all about balance: Don’t expend all your energy demanding change. Conserve some of your stamina for the creation of change, which is a longer and more arduous process. 

If you have found yourself wanting to unlearn but wondering where to even begin, or if you have a guest idea, drop us a line at hello@abcdei.ca.

Here in fighting and building,

Rohini + Susan

#8 – Modelling true allyship with Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam

This week, we unlearned all the advice about steering clear of politics and religion. Our guest, Toronto City Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam, is modelling true allyship in the way she advocates for her constituents’ diverse needs. In this humbling conversation, Councillor Wong-Tam talks about the need for more smart, progressive women, especially those who are racialized and differently abled in the government. She shares her own inspiring journey into political office and how running for office is the most physically and spiritually challenging experience she has been through. It’s a version of government we don’t see often – the singular human experience. If we have more leaders like her in this city, we are in good hands. Lots to unpack in this incredible episode.

#7 – Fight with one hand, build with the other, a conversation with Leo Johnson

This week, we are joined by Leo Nupolu Johnson – internationally acclaimed human rights activist, social entrepreneur, and Executive Director of global charitable organization Empowerment Squared.  In this awe-inspiring and humbling conversation, Leo covers serious ground on the incredible power of lived experience and the need for marginalized communities to fight injustice with one hand and build systems with the other. Leo urges corporate leaders to put a deservedly high value on the knowledge and participation of the BIPOC community around matters related to creating equity. This episode will give you chills and leave you inspired.

A tale of two Meghans with Stacy Lee Kong

Stacy Lee Kong – writer, editor and creator of one of our favourite newsletters, Friday Things – joined us for a seriously fun conversation. And by that, I mean a serious conversation layered under a really fun conversation.

Stacy has built a successful personal brand by using celebrity stories to bring the discussion around serious issues, be it mental health, racial injustice, body positivity or hustle culture. As a racialized woman in media, she recognized that stories about race are most often heavy and deflating. So, she created a space where people can understand someone else’s experiences a little bit better, while having a little bit of fun doing it. Celebrity culture provided the perfect construct.

Our conversation covered many topics, but we centered our unlearning around the topic of racial inclusion on the sharp contrast between two Meghans: Markle and McCain.

Lived experience over credentials candy

We talked about the Duke of Sussex’s latest corporate title: Chief Impact Officer for BetterUp, an organization that provides certified coaches to help individuals with performance, mentorship and mental health counseling through video chats or over the phone. 

In our view, this was a really smart move by BetterUp’s leadership. Prince Harry, for his part, has been open about his struggles with grief and mental health. So, when he started using BetterUp’s services, it was a match made in Silicon-Valley-Romcom heaven.

What Prince Harry may lack in corporate ladder-climbing he makes up for in spades through his lived experience in public in the years following his mother’s untimely passing. 

The princely hire has also accelerated the mainstreaming of mental health discussions. If you listened to episode 3, you know we’re big fans of this. 

Buck tradition when it stifles progress

In Buckingham Palace’s statement in response to the Sussexes’ interview with Oprah, “the firm” bit the proverbial hand that fed it a gift-wrapped opportunity (in the form of an interracial love story for the ages) to modernize an institution that has faced vast amounts of criticism for decades. Instead, the statement appeared to challenge recollections of the events that led to the Sussexes’ eventual exit from the UK. 

And that’s a lesson to all of us – whether in the corporate workplace, in academic institutions or public sector organizations. The status quo is meant to be challenged and updated with the passage of time, especially when following it necessarily means keeping some people out.

Representation matters, especially at the top

From Meghan Markle to Meghan McCain. [Quick sidebar: On an episode of The View that aired in March, Meghan expressed concerns about the “slippery slope” resulting from prioritizing minority candidates with less experience over qualified, straight white people.] McCain questioned if one of the co-hosts should leave to make room for more representation from the Asian-American community.

To answer Meghan’s partially rhetorical question: yes. We have to find ways to make room for diverse communities at the top if we want to reap the multitude of benefits that come from representative leadership. It doesn’t mean C-suites have to be dismantled overnight. But when looking for new talent, it does mean being very focused on recruiting from specific marginalized groups.

Since ABCDEI is all about learning and unlearning, this is how we have unpacked the concepts shared in episode 6 into simple and actionable ideas:

  1. Put a value on lived experience. When you’re looking for your next hire, think critically about the lived experience that will add value to the role before you start the interview process. Don’t fixate on 15 years of experience or a degree from a specific university. Instead, break it down into what the role entails: people management, the ability to negotiate strategic partnerships and a solid understanding of the industry you’re in. Prioritizing lived experience over credentials candy will rarely lead you astray.
  2. Challenge the “way things have always been done.” Marginalization of certain communities is unfortunately baked into our systems and processes that were built with white-cis-Christian-able-bodied men in mind. We now need to overhaul parts of those systems that exclude those that are different from entering and moving up, without being precious about what bringing others in means for those already “in.” There’s plenty of opportunity for all of us. 
  3. Build BIPOC up, while creating space for them at the top. One major parallel from the conversation about the two Meghans to workplaces is this: we have to find ways to set up those who are “not the norm” for success –through upskilling, creating equitable opportunities for advancement and mining for transferrable skills. On the other hand, we also need to make space at the top to ensure leadership is well-represented. For this, we have to forego antiquated notions of candidacy based on apples-to-apples experience. I would argue that experience at an after-school program or managing a quick service restaurant is the perfect launchpad to a career in customer relations or client service.

If you have found yourself wanting to unlearn but wondering where to even begin, or if you have a guest idea, drop us a line at hello@abcdei.ca.

Here in fun and serious conversations,

Rohini + Susan

#6 – A tale of two Meghans with Stacy Lee Kong

Stacy Lee Kong – writer, editor and creator of one of our favourite newsletters, Friday Things – joins us for a serious conversation layered under a really fun conversation. As a racialized woman in journalism, Stacy shares how she has turned some of the fatigue around race-related conversations into pop culture reporting with a cerebral twist. She delves deep into the stories beneath the latest celebrity scandals, with takeaways that are accessible to most. In this episode, she gives us the goods on two very different Meghans: Markle and McCain. Great takeaways on representation, lived experience and seizing the narrative.

Power structures, immigrant inclusion and the meritocracy myth with Gail Strachan

Gail Strachan, Executive member of Accenture’s T&O/Human Potential practice, social justice advocate and co-Founder/co-chair of the Antiracism in PR summit, joined us for an unlearning-on-steroids episode of ABCDEI. 

What started as curiosity in her formative years about power dynamics, immigration patterns and racial stereotypes led Gail to a journey of social advocacy. While navigating roles in law, communications and organizational culture, Gail has become a powerful inclusion and equity advocate. 

The conversation covered so many topics that are skirted around but rarely addressed head-on in workplaces. So, settle in for an important read ahead.

The frozen middle

We’ve made some progress in the way we talk about race. The N word is widely understood to be unacceptable. We’ve updated our vocabulary, but we still need to fix racist policies, procedures and processes that are couched within “the way things have always been done” in organizations, institutions and governments. The racism or preference is there. It may not be blatant, but it’s seen in the way people are interviewed, promoted and in the reasons why someone different doesn’t make the cut. 

We as Canadians take pride in calling our country diverse – rightfully so. But we have an inclusion problem. We’re diverse at the pipeline but that freezes in the mid-level of our workforce. We need to honestly examine these systemic barriers that have been pulling marginalized folx away from growing – equitably – to the top ranks. 

The meritocracy myth

Which brings us to the absolute myth of meritocracy. A corporate culture that claims to “award opportunities to the right people with the right skills, period” is woefully out of touch. 

We have made some progress in altering corporate policies to accommodate commuters, new parents and younger employees’ needs. Yet, when it comes to inclusion around race and immigrant status, this is an area of serious inertia. Immigrants and racialized folx often have the same qualifications as those with privilege, but those qualifications aren’t translating into the same power. Heads up, leaders: status quo isn’t working.

A true meritocracy doesn’t aim for equal opportunity, but rather, strives to create equity among employees in the workforce. Not seeing race doesn’t make you fair-minded, it makes you blind. 

Aim higher than the bare minimum

As Canadians, we lean into our “nice” reputation and take comfort in being marginally better than our Southern neighbours. That isn’t enough. And let’s be clear: systemic racism has been alive and well in Canada for a long time. Centuries of slavery, residential schools and the immigration paradox (where foreigners are welcome but then overlooked for jobs because of a lack of Canadian experience) are just a few examples. Immigrants first came to Canada as labour, and as Gail powerfully argues, that hasn’t changed as much as it should have. So, push past the bare minimum. If you’re not applauding employees just for showing up to work, then don’t pat yourself on the back for diversity at the entry level alone. Level the playing field and then talk about meritocracy 2.0, with a foundation of equity.

Since ABCDEI is all about learning and unlearning, this is how we have unpacked the concepts we shared in episode 5 into simple and actionable ideas:

  1. Let’s talk about race, baby. And gender, sexual orientation, religion, ability…and the list goes on. Skirting around issues of identity for the sake of comfort doesn’t make them go away or cease to exist. Specific preference is firmly at the core of power structures. Acknowledging that out loud is the first step; changing policies to build equity is the critical next step.
  2. Read between the lines for transferable skills. When you’re looking to fill a role on your team, be realistic about what the job entails and look outside the typical talent stream. Don’t be limited by a candidate’s title and experience. Read between the lines and we bet you’ll find invaluable qualities that often live outside a resumé: grit, ambition, hustle and empathy.
  3. Use your power play and share the wealth. The formula for bringing more women into the workplace is the same formula for bringing more BIPOC into the workplace: use your power play and share the wealth. It isn’t a handout. Marginalized people are qualified; they’re just held back by process, preference and policies.

If you have found yourself wanting to unlearn but wondering where to even begin, or if you have a guest idea on the topic, get in touch. Drop us a line at hello@abcdei.ca.

Here in power and vulnerability,

Rohini + Susan

#5 – Power structures, immigrant inclusion and the meritocracy myth

In episode 5 of ABCDEI, Gail Strachan – culture strategist, co-Founder and co-chair of the first-ever Antiracism in PR summit and all-around inspiring advocate – is in the studio! Gail’s journey of wokeness began as curiosity about Black history in high school and became confusion, hurt and anger. As a social justice advocate, Gail states that skirting around the topic of race is stifling our progress towards inclusion and equity. The trio discuss the foundation of disproportionate power structures holding BIPOC and break down the meritocracy myth once and for all.

Typecasting, tokenism, collective vision and cancel culture with Ali Kazmi

ABCDEI’s first-ever guest, actor-director Ali Kazmi, joined us for a no-holds-barred conversation about some of the issues faced by BIPOC and other marginalized talent in the entertainment industry. The conversation covered many themes that are just as relevant in workplaces as they are in show business. 

While talking about his role in Deepa Mehta’s Funny Boy, this year’s Canadian entry to the Oscars in the international feature category, Kazmi shared his disappointment with public sentiment around the cast not being fully Sri Lankan. The film depicted Shyam Selvadurai’s story of a young boy coming to terms with being gay amid a civil war in 1970s Sri Lanka. Cancelling the film because the cast was not entirely Sri Lankan is myopic when one considers the impact it is continuing to make with South Asian families, where the topics of gender, identity and homosexuality can still be considered taboo. 

Representation done right: Kim’s Convenience

Of course, as proud Torontonians, we gushed about Kim’s Convenience and what a good job that show did to represent Toronto (not masquerading as NYC, for a change), Koreans, Canadians and immigrants in general. And most importantly, on national, mainstream network television. The reality is that while we are seeing more marginalized talent in films and TV, the playing field is not level. The abrupt cancellation of a brilliant show such as Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj makes little sense, nor does the complete shut-out of Michaela Cole’s I May Destroy You from Golden Globes nominations. 

The diversity issue on screen and in workplaces

Hollywood and corporate workplaces alike have had a historic lack of diversity. For too long, the token actors of colour have been relegated to roles such as the awkward exchange student, the terrorist, the IT person or the blink-and-you-miss-it bit part. Thanks to the work of stars like Mindy Kaling, Issa Rae, Riz Ahmed and Kumail Nanjiani, to name just a few, we are finally seeing shows that feature BIPOC in leading roles and fully fleshed out characters.

As allies, we need to bring people from underrepresented communities out of the fringes. And as marginalized people, we need to build allyship with other marginalized communities so when one of us shines, it is a collective step forward for BIPOC.

And of course, we talked about cancel culture. 

While the concept of holding people accountable for their actions has some good, the immediate jump to negativity without the option for dialogue can do a lot of harm. We talked about reframing cancel culture as consequence culture, where organizations and people are accountable for their actions, without being cancelled altogether, immediately.

Since ABCDEI is all about learning and unlearning, this is how we have unpacked the concepts we shared in episode 4 into simple and actionable ideas:

  1. Paint the full picture. Whether on set or at work, give BIPOC space to be their full selves, so they don’t just check a box in a cast or workplace. The latter is tokenism. Being BIPOC or gay or in a wheelchair is only one aspect of someone’s identity. Do the work to complete the picture.
  2. Level the playing field. Marginalized talent often must work twice as hard for the same recognition that those with privilege receive. If you want to be an ally, sponsor those who haven’t had as much opportunity to have their moment. And advocate for equity so that the bar for participation can be scaled to accommodate and build up atypical talent. 
  3. Build allyship among the marginalized. BIPOC is not a monolith, just as LGBTQS2+ isn’t. As BIPOC, we  need to build community in the margins so we can lift each other up in the journey ahead to real change.

If you have found yourself wanting to unlearn but wondering where to even begin, or if you have a guest idea on the topic, get in touch. Drop us a line at hello@abcdei.ca.

Here in the fringes and the mainstream,

Rohini + Susan

Recollections may vary

Living in relative isolation over the past year has brought conversations around mental health into very sharp focus. Everyone’s experience has been a little different based on their circumstances, but moments of frustration, anxiety and deep sadness have been common. 

Mental health is often an overlooked or sometimes taboo topic among marginalized communities. In the struggle to compete for the same opportunities as those with privilege, there is a push to “shake it off” and just get on with it. Often – and we are both guilty of this – we can turn to humour to hide the pain we feel in situations that impact our mental health and confidence. Hannah Gadsby tackled this difficult topic so powerfully in her Netflix special, Nanette. If you haven’t watched it, please add it to your weekend essential-viewing list. 

What not to do

It is important to create space for people in your life to share their pain if they choose to do so. And when they do so, resist the urge to

1) swoop in with advice unless they ask for it,

2) compare it to something you know from your own experience,

3) minimize their pain, or

4) resort to platitudes like “call me any time.” 

Now that sounds like a long list of no-nos, so let’s get to what we can do. It might sound oversimplistic, but just ask how you can help. Shifting the “reach out if you need support” to “how can I support you right now?” 

Spilling the Royal tea

The world recently watched Meghan Markle’s brave account of her fragile mental health while she was carrying out her royal duties as the Duchess of Sussex, as told to Oprah Winfrey. For that to be minimized in a statement issued by Buckingham Palace that contained the painful phrase “recollections may vary” was a deep blow that was acutely felt by racialized communities. The statement effectively minimized Meghan’s pain and the validity of her account of why she and Prince Harry left the UK and gave up being working members of the Royal Family. 

The monarchy had the opportunity to provide Meghan the support she needed and bravely asked for. Instead, the Firm/HR chose to ignore her plea in the interest of an antiquated view of royal optics. Even if for selfish, image-rehabilitation reasons, the Firm could have stood to gain public favour if they had lent her the support she needed. Brownie points for being modern, caring and inclusive of the first person of colour in the Royal Family. But no, status quo prevailed. As marketers, we are baffled by the absence of logic and empathy in that move.

Since ABCDEI is all about learning and unlearning, this is how we have unpacked the concepts we shared in episode 4 into simple and actionable ideas:

  1. Mental health struggles are real. Yes, someone’s pain might be in their head, but that doesn’t make it less real. Our feelings are connected to identity and how we process the world.  Shaking it off is not always an option one can afford.
  2. Someone’s truth is THE truth. The other golden rule of mental health support, especially for BIPOC: understand that there is no difference between “someone’s truth” and “the truth.” Someone’s lived experience IS a fact and not open to interpretation or drive-by commentary. It can be tempting to step in and wave a magic wand to wish someone’s pain away but understand that some wounds run deeper than words or gestures can fix in an instant.
  3. Ask how you can help. Don’t offer platitudes. Ask how you can support your person going through something. And when they do ask for help, recognize that as a privilege you now have and show up for them. Help can take many forms: space, coffee, a walk, a mental health expert referral or a meal drop-off. It all matters.

If you have found yourself wanting to unlearn but wondering where to even begin, or if you have a guest idea on the topic, get in touch. Drop us a line at hello@abcdei.ca.

Here in good times and bad,

Rohini + Susan