Jun 3, 2020

On Racism

When it comes to Black Lives, up here in Northeast Edmonton we are watching the news in outrage, sorrow, and concern.

I’ve lost sleep over the calls and emails I’ve received describing the racism my Ward residents have witnessed, or been victim of. I will not tolerate it. There is absolutely no reason why our community cannot be safe for everyone so we must work to recognize hurt, our history, and a new future.

You and I know that racism has real consequences, and can be deadly. Edmonton has seen it.

We see tearful politicians say racism is real and we all must try harder. The truth is that anyone in power can be working for real change, right now. Today.

Words are easy. Action matters.

So instead of offering platitudes, I’m at work. While on Council I’ve been working to use City policy, bylaws, and initiatives to make a real difference in Edmonton. Let’s see if we can accelerate the effort.

I will continue to work with:

You and the community

City Administration

Councillors and Mayor

Edmonton Police Commission and Chief Dale McFee

And more

Some of the early aims and goals on my desk:

  • Re-instate the City of Edmonton Anti-Racism Committee to continue work in their official capacity immediately
  • Ensure race-based data is collected on Edmonton Transit Service and made available to the public
  • Ask Edmonton Police Service, through the Edmonton Police Commission, to collect race-based data and that it be made available to the public
  • Ensure Edmonton Transit Service alters the makeup of their Transit Peace Officer teams to include a social worker at all times and that Transit Peace Officers partake in regular anti-racism training
  • Mandate the City of Edmonton integrate all relevant Calls to Justice from the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls
  • Move far more aggressively on housing the homeless and offering the supports needed
  • And any and all community-lead actions that come forward

Looking to help and learn?

Click here for a locally curated list of books about blackness and films you might want to check out such as 13th or I Am Not Your Negro.

Donate to an Edmonton organization that helps heal the conditions that lead to hate and that builds community.

Vote for politicians who do more than just talk but also show their actions and work – and advocate with your current elected representatives.

In the age of COVID-19, the phrase we have all come to know and believe is that we are all in this together. When it comes to ending racism, those words must ring true.