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IT STARTS... With Committing to Equity

Equity - A condition or state of fair, inclusive, and respectful treatment of all people. Equity does not mean treating people the same without regard for individual differences.

Source:  Ministry of Education (2009).  Realizing the promise of diversity:  Ontario's equity and inclusive education strategy.  Retrieved May 5, 2017 from http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/policyfunding/equity.pdf.

What is the difference between Equity and Equality?

Equity is giving everyone what they need to be successful. Equality is treating everyone the same. 

"Equality aims to promote fairness, but it can only work if everyone starts from the same place and needs the same help. Equity appears unfair, but it actively moves everyone closer to success by "leveling the playing field."  But not everyone starts at the same place, and not everyone has the same needs.

equity 1.png 

Source:  Interaction Institute for Social Change (last updated January 13, 2016).  Illustrating Equality vs Equity.  Retrieved January 31, 2019 http://interactioninstitute.org/illustrating-equality-vs-equity/

equity 2.jpg 

Source:  Kinshella, M.  (2016). Equity illustrated, 3rd place:  Equity is about resources.  Retrieved May 17, 2017 from https://mmt.org/news/equity-illustrated-3rd-place-equity-about-resources.

Who Risks Exclusion?

  • Indigenous peoples
  • Francophones
  • LGBTQ2S+
  • Immigrants
  • Older Adults
  • Youth
  • People with disabilities
  • People living in poverty
  • Racialized people
  • Rural residents
  • Women
  • People of faith 

Source:  City for All Women Initiative (June 2015).  Advancing equity and inclusion:  A guide for municipalities.  Retrieved May 17, 2017 from http://www.cawi-ivtf.org/sites/default/files/publications/advancing-equity-inclusion-web_0.pdf

How to Take Safe and Purposeful Action

  • Consider your diversity:  Recognizing diversity within ourselves and others can help us understand how multiple factors influence the way we provide services, design policies and programs, or interact with staff and residents.
  • Check assumptions: When we question our own ideas, we can open up to new ways of understanding.
  • Ask about inclusion: By always asking three simple questions, we can thread equity and inclusion throughout our work:
  1. Who is not included in the work you do?
  2. What could contribute to this exclusion?
  3. What can you do differently to ensure inclusion?

Apply it to your work:

Here are areas of work where you can enhance equity and inclusion:

  • Communications
  • Engaging Community
  • Planning:  Services, Programs, and Events
  • Recruitment and Hiring
  • Strategic Planning

For a full list visit the document below.

Be an ally, take action: When we are allies, we commit ourselves to using the information we learn to stand beside, and advocate for, those with whom we work. It is not a one-time action. Being an ally is a lifelong learning process of asking questions so as to apply (and re-apply) insights to action.

If you are interested in attending a 2021 Ambassador Information Training​​ held in the month of February please click the link below:

#ITSTARTS Ambassador Information Session​ Registration​​​


Visit Ontario's equity and inclusive education strategy. 

Explore six steps towards equity in the classroom. 

There is no quick way in which to achieve greater equity and inclusion.  Explore the following toolkit and consider how to transform your municipality (or organization) towards more equitable and inclusive practices.