Updated: Oct 23, 2020
It’s been another couple of big weeks for us! Let us bring you up to speed on what’s been going on and don't forget to follow us @fair_lshtm
Ripple effects of our anti-racism toolkit at Lancaster University
Our friends at the Lancaster University Race Equality Network (LUREN) have developed their own Anti-Racist Learning and Teaching Toolkit, adapted from ours! Like our toolkit, theirs will serve as an invaluable resource for students and staff to learn how to be actively anti-racist within higher education and give a voice to racially minoritized people. It is such a pleasure to know that our work is inspiring others and we are creating a strong network of anti-racism advocates. Other universities are considering adapting it, too! You can read their toolkit here.
"We launched this last week, and it has been very well received. People at Lancaster are really grateful for this resource, and I just wanted to share that you have had such a huge impact already."
Black paper: values and views
We are finalizing a new document explaining the values and principles of Black Lives Matter-LSHTM as an organization and also our views with regard to how the School should take forward its anti-racism agenda. We hope this will give some clarity about our position and rationale around initiatives like the proposed formation of a Diversity & Inclusion committee and the performance of the external review.
Testimony - The representation of Black women in Academia
Our objective has always been to shine a light on racial inequity and injustice at LSHTM, which includes assisting students in the difficult situation of navigating racial bias incidents during their studies. This week we helped one such student gain clarity on the underlying reasons why an image of a Black woman breastfeeding in a lecture slide didn’t sit right with them, and we brought this important conversation to course organizers in the hopes that ‘decolonizing the curriculum’ can be a living, breathing practice rather than merely an intellectual exercise about other people’s work.
We have been heartened to receive supportive messages from staff and students commending us for our handling of this situation, and we look forward to continuing the conversations it has sparked. You can read about the entire process thus far (here). All participants have been anonymized to keep the emphasis on the actions rather than the people involved. Our work is not about exposing racists, but uprooting racism. #YourVoicesAndWellbeingMattersToUs
Dissemination of our anti-racism toolkit in the Public Health Policy Newsletter
We want to thank Prof Kara Hanson, Dean of PHP, for highlighting the ‘Decolonizing LSHTM’ toolkit in the last newsletter and sending more readers our way.
On the agenda
27 October at 17: 30 -19:00 BST - Decolonizing Global Health in Conversation event - Don’t Call Me BAME? Will be the first in a series of conversations focused on language and terminology in global health within the context of race and colonialism. Info here
9 November at 17:15-18:15 BST - Black Lives Matter presentation and Q&A at the Global Health Lecture Series, Free and open to all here
December (TBC, via Zoom) - Introduction Webinar for the Researcher Self-Assessment. Fours researchers from different backgrounds and lived experience will share their approach with students.
In this week News’ digest, learn from Black Women
Stop confusing BLM and D&I. They are not the same thing by Amina Folarin
How racial gaslighting invalidates my experience as a Black woman by Sophie Williams
7 Reasons Why Respectability Politics are BS by Whitney Alese
Our Active projects
1. Testimonies – If you witness or are a victim of racism at LSHTM please email us with details. We will keep your identity secret but make sure the perpetrators are held accountable. The testimonies will also be posted anonymously online throughout the year, so we all know where we are, and where we need to improve.
2. Researcher self-assessment – Everyone working in global health must ask themselves “is my research topic prejudice or racist?”. We are here to help you think this question through. This project will start with an introductory webinar (date TBC). To get a head start, go to our website where you can already find a form to share your research topic. We will get into contact with you, and you will be given the opportunity to discuss it in a group (anonymously or not, as you prefer) or receive individual feedback (based on our volunteers’ availabilities).
3. Navigating Anti-Racism space when White – Everyone can and should work towards anti-racist practice. For white people, it can be challenging to know how to contribute to this work. Join our white people FAIR WhatsApp group [link here]. to share and learn from each other.
1. Happy Hours – Anti-Racism talks – Join us and others in your pyjamas with tea, or something stronger, to have open conversations about any racial justice related topics that matters to you. It is an opportunity to meet different people and learn to engage in difficult conversations.
2. Black & African history and practices in public health – Through the School year, we will invite Black & African students and alumni to share their experience in public health. The format will be 20/30min presentation followed by questions/answers.
If you have a project and would like it to be featured on the website, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with “Project idea” in the subject and some details.
Volunteering with Black Lives Matter – LSHTM
And as always, we’ve got a lot going on, so we’d love to have your help. Drop us a line at email@example.com to volunteer, join our steering committee or propose something!
In the meantime, find out about our current volunteer opportunities below:
- Instagram Account: We need 1 or 2 volunteers from the 2020/2021 cohorts to help manage the Instagram account. Ideally, it there would be a rotation (2 or 3 new volunteers) each term to account for changes in workload.
Email us with “Instagram Volunteer” in the subject and your availabilities.
- Research Self-Assessment: We need some volunteers to engage with students on the “Researcher self-assessment”.
Email us with “RSA Volunteer” in the subject, your topic of expertise and your availabilities.
- Website/Events: We need 2 or 3 volunteers to feed our already busy Events page. Diversifying our learning requires a diverse team. Minimal effort required for this one, just if you find anything interesting, add it to the website.
Email us with “Website Events” in the subject
- Website/News Digest: We need volunteers to feed our news digests throughout the year. Diversifying our learning requires learning from different perspectives and sources: