Following the important message on Artscape’s commitment to confront anti-Black racism, Artscape CEO Tim Jones made another step in Artscape’s diversity and inclusion efforts by signing the BlackNorth Initiative CEO Pledge on July 30.
“I’m proud to sign the BlackNorth Initiative CEO Pledge and commit to take measurable actions to eradicate systemic anti-black racism in our organization and communities. This pledge is integral to the work Artscape is engaged in to develop a comprehensive Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Plan,” says Artscape CEO Tim Jones.
Created by The Canadian Council of Business Leaders Against Anti-Black Systemic Racism, the BlackNorth Initiative aims to combat anti-Black systemic racism in Corporate Canada. As part of the initiative, Canadian business leaders are challenged to sign the CEO pledge to commit their organizations to specific actions and targets designed to end anti-Black systemic racism and create opportunities for all those in the underrepresented BIPOC community.
A small but important step, Tim Jones committed Artscape to seven key goals outlined by the BlackNorth initiative to move Canada toward ending anti-Black systemic racism by signing the pledge, including:
- Increasing our efforts to make our workplaces trusting places to have complex, and sometimes difficult conversations about anti-Black systemic racism and ensure that no barriers exist to prevent Black employees from advancing within the company.
- Implementing or expanding unconscious bias and antiracism education.
- Sharing best — and unsuccessful — practices.
- Creating and sharing strategic inclusion and diversity plans with our board of directors.
- Using our resources to work with members of the Black community through the BlackNorth Initiative.
- Engaging Canada’s corporate governance framework to foster inclusiveness for Black leaders at the board level, as well as at senior management and executive levels.
- Creating the conditions for success by creating accountability systems and tracking progress toward our goals.
As well, Artscape invites other non-profit and arts and culture organizations to also sign the CEO pledge.
In June 2020, Artscape engaged Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) firm, REACT Consultants, to facilitate the process of developing a comprehensive, long-term EDI plan for the organization. Currently underway, the EDI plan will coincide with the CEO pledge to make long-term and meaningful change at Artscape.