If you live in Toronto, did you know that August is Emancipation Month? And that August 1 is Emancipation Day?
You can read about it here.
Acknowledgment is very important.
So, Emancipation Day/Month is a good idea.
But we have to know about it, and do something with it, in order for it to be meaningful.
Hopefully this acknowledgement and education means we don’t make the same mistakes again. And, ideally it means we take that learning and apply it to what is happening today, and create change. Otherwise this seems like a hollow attempt to look like we “get it” when we really don’t have a clue about the depth of systemic racism.
I have never heard of Emancipation Month in Toronto. Have you?
What’s happening in our city this month (and every month) to acknowledge the horrors and work on their systemic legacies to ensure we are moving forward? What are you seeing? Leave a comment!
More Than a Proclamation
Just like in a company or organization, where having a policy that no one knows about does little to create change, having a month meant to educate, acknowledge and prioritize change that no one knows about is ineffective. This is an example of window dressing; surface attempts meant to show commitment without the gravitas to create change.
Equally ineffective is a month that everyone knows about that is just a proclamation without any (public and obvious) action(s) to fuel change.
Especially this summer, we should expect more.
And we should see more happening – in obvious, tangible ways, as well as behind the scenes if we look more closely.