The National Dialogues are a series of national forums focused on addressing equity and inclusion in Canadian post-secondary education. The first in the series is a National Dialogue that will focus on anti-Black racism and Black inclusion in Canadian higher education, and will take place on Thursday, October 1 and Friday, October 2, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. (ET).
This year’s Dialogues and Action will focus on sharing experiences and ideas, exploring and learning best practices, and contributing to the formulation and implementation of concrete actions that resolutely reject anti-Black racism and drive meaningful, enduring Black inclusion within individual universities and colleges; the higher education sector, in general; and our communities.
Over the course of two days, participants will have the opportunity to choose from amongst nine interactive online dialogues with panelists from academia and beyond to address student, faculty, and staff access and success; inclusive teaching, learning and curricula; inclusive decision-making structures; responsibilities and obligations of non-black peers; mentorship and more. The concurrent dialogues will explore the relevant issues considering the diverse and intersecting identities within the Black community.
The first day of the Dialogues will focus on systemic anti-Black racism, key barriers to Black inclusion & approaches to identifying and responding to them, while the second day will focus on developing concrete actions and accountability mechanisms for structural and systemic change.
The outcome of the deliberations will inform the creation of a charter of principles and commitments, which will support the implementation of the actions identified, and help to sustain an enduring culture against anti-Black racism and in support of Black inclusion.
Register Here: https://utsc.livecast.ca/
Making light of a movement that concerns itself with ensuring that like all lives, Black lives matter too, is appalling,' said the African Caribbean Canadian Association of Northern Ontario in a statement,
A local business owner has apologized after putting up a sign that tried to make light of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Centre Ice Bar and Grill placed a billboard advertisement outside promoting a new pizza line. The advertisement read “Black Olives Matter, Try Our New Flat Bread Pizza.”
The owner posted an apology for the advertisement on the business’s Facebook page Sunday afternoon. “I sincerely apologize for any miss understanding [sic] I have caused with the wording of my sign. I was trying to make light of a very sensitive situation. I immediately took the sign down as it was brought to my attention that the wording my be [sic] offensive to some. I was only wanting to promote my new pizza line,” the apology reads. “I have supported our community for the last 10 years and I hope you as a community continue to support my business. I am not a racist and I will never be a racist and again I am truly sorry.”
In response to this, the African Caribbean Canadian Association of Northern Ontario (ACCANO) issued a statement regarding the sign.
“ACCANO members are extremely disheartened by the mockery,” the statement reads. “Making light of a movement that concerns itself with ensuring that like all lives, Black lives matter too, is appalling. All members of this community, especially those in places of authority and privilege have the moral obligation to refrain from practices that maintain the social conditioning of normalizing anti-Black racism and microaggressions.”
ACCANO recognized that many residents of Sault Ste. Marie acknowledged the inappropriateness of the advertisement.
“To all the individuals who reached out to express their dismay, and to declare their commitment to make Sault Ste. Marie a safe, more inclusive and welcoming community for all peoples, we say thank you. Continue to stand for what is just and what is right.” the statement reads.
Angela Caputo selling Black Lives Matter shirts and Afro-Carribean dinners to help establish new scholarship fund for Black post-secondary students
Sep 17, 2020 1:42 PM By: James Hopkin
he Breakfast Pig has partnered with the African Carribean Canadian Association of Northern Ontario (ACCANO) to raise funds for Black students locally through the sale of Black Lives Matter shirts (pictured) and Afro-Carribean takeout dinners. Photo supplied
The Breakfast Pig is partnering with the African Carribean Canadian Association of Northern Ontario (ACCANO) to help Black post-secondary students in Sault Ste. Marie.
Angela Caputo says her Bruce Street breakfast and brunch eatery is currently using its website to sell Black Lives Matter shirts and Afro-Carribean takeout dinners for a limited time, with the majority of proceeds going directly to a new scholarship fund that is being established by ACCANO.
Caputo isn’t making any money from the sales. Rather, the restaurateur was compelled to take action for the Black community after reading a SooToday article about the burning of Black Lives Matter signage on the campus of Algoma University last month.
“When I saw the article about the burning of the Black Lives Matter signs, I felt like that was a really poor representation of our community,” said Caputo. “I wanted to give people the chance to show their support.”
“I think the actions of one person should not define all of us.”
Caputo subsequently reached out to ACCANO and set up a meeting in order to propose a plan of action.
“They were actually emotional. They were so happy to have that support,” she said. “They said that I was the first person in the community to reach out, to take action - a lot of verbal support, but no one had reached out to this point to take actual action. So they were all for it.”
ACCANO co-founder Dave Mornix credits Caputo for the “beautiful work” that’s being done in terms of “stepping forward” and forming a partnership with the organization in order to support the Black community within the Sault.
“Angela and The Breakfast Pig has been a shining example of what allyship looks like – not someone who’s talking about it, but someone who is willing to take a chance to do something about being a good ally,” Mornix said.
The ACCANO scholarship aims to help Black students attending Sault College and Algoma University by alleviating some of the financial burden attached to coming to Sault Ste. Marie as international students.
“We make significant contributions to the community,” said Mornix. “One of the things I believe that people don’t talk about enough is the contribution international students from all over the world make to Sault Ste. Marie.”
The purpose of the scholarship is actually two-fold: Black students will be required to contribute to the community as a whole through volunteering in order to qualify for support from ACCANO. Mornix sees this criteria as a way for the Black community to connect with people and build a relationship with Sault Ste. Marie.
Drawing from his own personal experiences, Mornix says that he’s seen many of his educated friends in the Sault’s Black community leave the city due to a lack of employment opportunities - and a general sense of belonging.
“This is a way for us to encourage them to connect to the community by volunteerism. That’s one of the main things,” he said. “We want them to be actively engaged, so that they can build [a] relationship with this space, and hopefully find employment opportunities.”
The Black Lives Matter shirts will be available through The Breakfast Pig’s website until Sept. 24. Online orders for the full-course Afro-Carribean takeout dinner will be accepted right up until Oct. 2, the date in which the food will be available for either pick-up or delivery.
The food will be prepared by ACCANO members and Caputo, with staff from The Breakfast Pig volunteering their time and efforts to the fundraising dinner.
Caputo says the fundraising efforts are important in terms of building relationships and connecting with the Sault’s Black community.
“We’re bringing diversity to the community by bringing more Black students to town, and also it’s supporting our local economy by supporting our post-secondary institutions,” she said. “I think it’s really important for people to understand that people that are coming into town from different regions of the world, they want to help to bolster our economy. They want to see Sault Ste. Marie thrive, and this is a great way for them to start being known throughout the community.”
“I think it’s important for them to see their faces, and be able to put some names to the whole Black Lives Matter [movement]," she continued. "I think in some situations that phrase can come across as touchy, but I think we have kind of come to the agreement that all lives do matter, and I think it’s time that we give Black lives the respect that they deserve and allow them into the conversation, and to be able to say, ‘our lives matter too’.”
All orders for shirts and takeout dinners can be made through The Breakfast Pig website.
The Ontario government is investing in community-driven and youth-led projects to improve the wellbeing of children, youth, and families facing economic and social barriers within Sault Ste. Marie.
More than $13 million in funding will flow through the 2020 Youth Opportunity Fund, a province-wide initiative that creates opportunities for young people and empowers and supports parents, guardians and caregivers.
The 2020 Youth Opportunities Fund will provide financial support to 43 community organizations across Ontario that will benefit youth aged 12 to 25, and their families. In Sault Ste. Marie, the African Caribbean Canadian Association of Northern Ontario has received $170,000 to lead a social integration project for new families in the community.
“I am incredibly proud of our government’s continued commitment to Ontario’s families and youth,” said Ross Romano, MPP for Sault Ste. Marie. “By investing $170,000 in the African Caribbean Canadian Association of Northern Ontario, our government is ensuring that new Canadian parents, guardians and caregivers continue to strengthen the social fabric of our northern and rural communities. I applaud ACCANO for their work in helping Canadian families navigate their new home, and I look forward to seeing them continue to grow.”
“I believe that this project will propel the socioeconomic integration of ACCANO parents as we engage in peer-to-peer learning and healing through exploring various topics specific to our needs such as financial literacy and mental health in order to dismantle barriers to our successful resettlement in the community.” said Jane Omollo, Project Director.
“By believing in our youth and supporting them today, we can help develop the knowledge and skills they need to reach their full potential. I truly believe this initiative will go a long way towards developing our next generation of leaders. The projects selected for this year’s grants are wonderful examples of how community-led initiatives can make a positive difference in young people’s lives.” Said Jill Dunlop, Associate Minister of Children and Women’s Issues “The Youth Opportunities Fund is a way for our government to form partnerships with grassroots projects and community leaders who are creating change.
This year’s grantees will create opportunities for children, young people and families to grow their skills, access new opportunities and build stronger relationships with their communities. Together, we can build an Ontario that gives everybody an equal chance to succeed.” Said Todd Smith, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services