Anti-Black Racism Resources

Video Resources


On February 9, 2021, the ACB Network of Waterloo Region hosted a live stream panel discussion. Ruth Cameron, Executive Director at ACCKWA, moderated this two-hour conversation with medical staff and healthcare professionals to explore questions about COVID-19 and vaccinations. Specifically, the panel spoke about the effects of the pandemic on racialized communities, health equity and anti-Black racism and what’s to come with vaccinations.


Have you considered why most harm reduction and drug policy activists support the movement to Defund the Police? How are harm reduction philosophy, drug policy reform and the movement to defund the police linked? How do the police benefit from the criminalization of people who use drugs?

Defund the Police has been a strong rally cry in the US and Canada. #StimulusConnect will discuss why defunding the police is an essential part of harm reduction based practice. Join this group of Canadian panelists for Defunding the Police, a moderated discussion.


What is Racial Battle Fatique?

Racial battle fatigue is the “cumulative result of a natural race-related stress response to distressing mental and emotional conditions. These conditions emerged from constantly facing racially dismissive, demeaning, insensitive and/or hostile racial environments and individuals.”

The term, coined in 2003 by Dr. William A. Smith, professor and chair in the Department of Education, Culture & Society and the Division of Ethnic Studies at the University of Utah, describes the psychophysiological symptoms—from high blood pressure to anxiety, frustration, shock, anger and depression—people of color may experience living in and navigating historically white spaces.

Racial Battle Fatigue: What is it and What are the Symptoms?
Understanding Racial Battle Fatigue

Cityline: Real on Race

Cityline host Tracy Moore leads honest discussions about race, privilege, and how to achieve systemic change. Panelists include historians, academics, activists and young leaders, whose focus on Anti-Black racism in Canada begins with an overview of how we got to where we are today by understanding our country’s deep-rooted and longstanding racism towards the Black community.

Key Discussion items:

  • The history of two-centuries of slavery in Canada
  • Canada’s history of anti-Black migration policies
  • How anti-Blackness and anti-Indigeneity sit at the root of white supremacy and white dominant systems in Canad

How racial bias works and how to disrupt it

Our brains create categories to make sense of the world, recognize patterns and make quick decisions. But this ability to categorize also exacts a heavy toll in the form of unconscious bias.

In this powerful TED talk, psychologist Jennifer L. Eberhardt explores how our biases unfairly target Black people at all levels of society — from schools and social media to policing and criminal justice — and discusses how creating points of friction can help us actively interrupt and address this troubling problem.

Recommended Reading

Our Future is Tied to Abolition

Our Future is Tied to Abolition

Here we are in April 2021, as COVID surges in its third wave across our province. Ontario community-based HIV/AIDS organizations, their staff, peers and volunteers continue with the profoundly fundamental work of supporting the over-policed working-class, and impoverished Black, Indigenous,...

Articles and Action

Centering Race in Health Equity Advocacy: Lessons Learned

From, The Colorado Trust, A Health Equity Foundation 
Social Policy Research Associates 

This paper shares the story of the HEA Cohort’s efforts to live into its commitment to put race at the center of its health equity advocacy field-building work. It describes the rationale for centering race in health equity, the vision for the Cohort’s efforts on this front, the multi-level strategies the Cohort employed, Cohort progress within these levels, and the challenges and emerging lessons learned.

50 Actions Your Organization Can Take After Posting about BLM

By Vanessa Douyon, 54 Promises 
This list is intended to serve as a starting point for leaders contemplating where to go from here and for staff members who are advocating and case-making within their own organizations. It also serves as a reminder that words and written statements, shared internally or publicly, must be accompanied by substantive action and change.

This list can help broaden the conversation as organizations think through what action to take. It is best used as a menu – pursuing the strategies that make sense for your people and context – rather than as a checklist to complete.

3 Ways To Decolonize Your Nonprofit As Told By A Black Queer Feminist Organizer

By Neesha Powell, Everyday Feminism
“Some of my most cherished moments have been at nonprofits, but unfortunately, I’ve also felt dehumanized and devalued by them. They can be hostile workplaces for People of Color (POC) due to the impacts of the nonprofit industrial complex (NPIC).

The NPIC is a system of relationships between the State, the owning classes, foundations, and nonprofit and social justice organizations that results in the surveillance, control, derailment, and everyday management of political movements, according to INCITE! Women, Gender Non-Conforming, and Trans people of Color* Against Violence.”

21 Signs You or Your Organization May Be the White Moderate Dr. King Warned About

By Vu, Nonprofit AF

“Regrettably, nonprofit and philanthropy have in many ways become one giant white-moderate sector. It is filled with good people who want to advance justice and help create an equitable society, yet we often get in our own way. We may have the same dreams as MLK, but so many of our good intentions serve to further the very injustice we claim to be fighting.

Here are a few ways you or your organization or foundation may be perpetuating this sort of well-meaning white moderation that’s preventing progress. This list, aggregated from colleagues across the sector, is not comprehensive. Also, all of us, including people of colour [BIPOC], are prone to many of these because this is what we have been taught. We all need to constantly examine ourselves and make adjustments.”

The Role of Senior Leaders in Building a Race Equity Culture

By Kerrien Suarez, Director, Equity in the Center, Washington, DC, USA

(a project of ProInspire)
“Across the social sector, a fundamental element of social impact remains missing: race equity. Race equity, the condition where one’s racial identity has no influence on how one fares in society, is essential to social change.

However, it is impossible until we address the structural racism that is entrenched, not only in our nation’s history and culture, but in the mindsets, policies, and practices of nonprofit and philanthropic management. This requires transformative change to these organizations, and to the sector overall.

As noted in Building Movement Project’s (BMP) report Race to Lead, only 20 percent of CEO/executive directors of social service organizations and the foundations that support them are people of color [BIPOC]. Furthermore, the common belief that bringing more people of color into the sector inevitably means that they’ll rise to the leadership level is a myth. BMP’s research confirmed that the talent pipeline is healthy, and that the desire for advancement among people of colour [BIPOC] is strong.”

Dismantling White Supremacy in Nonprofits: a starting point

By Jarell Skinner-Roy

The nonprofit sector is a special place, where passionate professionals are all-too-often overworked and underpaid at an organization that is likely under-resourced. While I’m hopeful that progress will continue towards improving this, these tough current realities cannot be an excuse for us to both ignore the prevalence of white supremacy in the nonprofit sector and refuse to put in the personal and organizational work necessary for its dismantling.

Even when the majority of us nonprofit professionals have big hearts, white supremacy is a well-oiled machine with a pernicious nature, fuelled by ignorance and undisturbed by good intentions.

The Bias of ‘Professionalism’ Standards

By Aysa Gray

Professionalism has become coded language for white favouritism in workplace practices that more often than not privilege the values of white and Western employees and leave behind racialized people.

In the workplace, white supremacy culture explicitly and implicitly privileges whiteness and discriminates against non-Western and non-white professionalism standards related to dress code, speech, work style, and timeliness.

We are taught to identify white supremacy with violent segregationist groups such as the Ku Klux Klan and their modern-day equivalents. Okun and Jones, however, introduce a different approach to thinking about white supremacy. In their definition, the term describes a series of characteristics that institutionalize whiteness and Westernness as both normal and superior to other ethnic, racial, and regional identities and customs. While people often don’t view this theorization of white supremacy as violent, it can lead to systemic discrimination and physical violence.

Black Canadians and HIV: How will it end?

“Racism is not a mere inconvenience, so we must insist that the plans and strategies to end HIV transmission address (rather than reproduce) the systemic conditions that fundamentally disadvantage us as Black Canadians. Otherwise, the “end” of HIV transmission may be a disaster for Black people – resources that are currently available to address HIV will have been shifted elsewhere while Black people continue to shoulder the epidemic.”

11 Anti-Racist Actions You Can Take at Work—Today and Every Day

“You might be wondering how you can be a better ally to Black and brown people in an environment where you spend a whole lot of time: work. Here are 11 practical actions you can take.”

What is Racism?

“Racism is different from racial prejudice, hatred, or discrimination. Racism involves one group having the power to carry out systematic discrimination through the institutional policies and practices of the society and by shaping the cultural beliefs and values that support those racist policies and practices.”

Dear Karen. How I stumbled into anti-Black institutional racism at Futurpreneur and why I can’t be silent

“An open letter to those Canadians in the entrepreneurial community who seek to be the change we want to see…and those who believe they are accountable but not racist. We are all racist. We need to start recognizing what progressive, polite racism looks like and be truly accountable.”

Three Signs your HIV/AIDS organization has a Racism Problem

Tokenism is simply a form of covert racism. Racism requires white people to maintain their power by exercising social, economic, and/or political muscle against people of color (POC). Tokenism achieves the same while giving those in power the appearance of being anti-racist and even champions of diversity because they recruit and use POC as racialized props.

Practical Ideas for Improving Equity and Inclusion at Nonprofits

“The journey toward greater diversity, equity, and inclusion has no fixed endpoint, but here are a few places to start. Acknowledging intersectionality—the reality that we live within a system of overlapping and interdependent privileges and disadvantages—is a first step toward truly addressing DEI. But how can we make acknowledging intersectionality a practice, and not just a conversation? We can start by making relatively simple changes that center our work at the intersection of race, gender, sexual orientation, ableism, and implicit bias.”

Tools and Policy

Operationalizing Racial Justice in Non-Profit Organizations

By Maggie Potapchuk, MP Associates

Structural racism requires institutional support and cultural nurturing. The core of anti-racist work is to seek to recognize institutional bias and to make structural changes that are supported by policies and procedures that are accountable with outcomes of equity. Executive leaders, boards, managers, and supervisors must be taught to recognize that contemporary forms of racism exist and become familiar with the various forms that it takes in the lives of all staff and clients. They must become vigilant in learning and identifying what those issues are and how they are perpetuated in the organization’s policies, practices, and procedures. The goal of anti-racist work is to widen the circle of power and opportunity.

Racial Equity Toolkit

By Mary Pender Greene, MPG Consulting

The Racial Equity Toolkit lays out a process and a set of questions to guide the development, implementation and evaluation of policies, initiatives, programs, and budget issues to address the impacts on racial equity.

Race Equity and Inclusion Action Guide

Embracing Racial Equity: 7 Steps to Advance and Embed Race Equity and Inclusion Within Your Organization
From the Annie E. Casey Foundation

In This Racial Equity and Inclusion Framework you’ll learn:

  • How to use an equity and inclusion framework for understanding different dimensions of racism.
  • How to identify and analyze the root causes of racial inequities. 
  • Key terms, concepts and definitions relevant to race equity. 
  • How to talk about race by establishing shared values and a common understanding.
  • How to advance racial equity and inclusion and embed it in your organization.
  • Questions that bring together stakeholders to achieve social change. 
  • How to set goals for racial equity and track and measure progress. 
  • How to assess the impact of policies and other actions on racial and ethnic groups
Managing Unconscious Bias: Strategies to Manage Bias & Build More Diverse, Inclusive Organizations

Unconscious bias can lead to many types of undesirable outcomes; in organizations, it can lead to differences in the way we attract, hire, develop, and retain people from underrepresented groups. Even when these differences are subtle—and sometimes especially so—they present significant barriers to cultivating a diverse, inclusive organization. Awareness of unconscious bias and active engagement in efforts to reduce bias should be a core component of any company’s diversity and inclusion strategy. For the growing number of companies devoting resources to diversity, this paper is a guide on how to think about and address unconscious bias at all levels of the organization. Source: ParadigmIQ

Ten Lesson for Taking Leadership on Racial Equity

Ten Lessons for Taking Leadership on Racial Equity is a summary of lessons learned about how to navigate that terrain and take leadership around race. They are especially for those who want to play more of a role in promoting racial equity but aren’t sure about where or exactly how to begin. While there are many more than ten lessons that might inform the daily work of building racial equity, the authors hope that these ten will encourage new actors, and that they will be a useful tool for those already playing active roles. Source: The Aspen Institute

White Supremacy Culture & Remote Work

White supremacy culture, as defined by Tema Okun (Dismantling Racism Works), can be mirrored and perpetuated in remote environments. In order to mitigate white supremacy culture in virtual work, we (Remote DEI Toolkit) created a crosswalk and resources to explore the intersections of both sets of practices.

Worksheet: White Dominant Culture and Something Different

Learn to identify the characteristics of white dominant culture using a ‘norms of white dominant culture’ matrix/table. See how they play out in within an organization and learn about antidotes and alternatives to white supremacist culture using the ‘Something Different’ matrix/table. Source: Racial Equity Tools

Defining White Culture

This one-page PDF resource provides a basic understanding of the term ‘white culture’. It includes succinct, easy-to-understand definitions and examples of how white-dominant culture manifests and marginalizes racialized people inside organizations. Source: Racial Equity Tools

Tools for Addressing White Dominant Culture

The Partners for Collaborative Change’s document lines up the main characteristics of white supremacy culture, imagines antidotes, and reviews some of the ways to think about transformation in your organization.

Capacity Assessment Intervention Provision of HIV/AIDS Services and Support for African, Caribbean and Black Populations

The Capacity Assessment Intervention is a tool to assess the current capacity of your organization to respond to the HIV/AIDS service and support needs of African, Caribbean and Black (ACB) communities.

ACCHO Capacity Assessment Tool Questions

This is an assessment tool provided by the African and Caribbean Council on HIV/AIDS in Ontario to have a deeper understanding of capacity within organizations.

Anti-Black Racism Analysis Tool for Radically Equitable COVID-19 Response

The COVID-19 pandemic is having a disproportionate impact on many Black communities and pervasive anti-Black racism not only exacerbates long-standing issues people of African descent face in society, it also makes responding to the needs of the Black community during the pandemic more difcult. To support community stakeholders in this regard, the City of Toronto’s Confronting Anti-Black Racism Unit has prepared this resource.

Five Ways to Improve Diversity and Inclusion in Your HIV Service Organization

“We can start by making relatively simple changes that center our work at the intersections of race, gender, sexual orientation, ableism, and implicit bias. Here are some practical ideas to begin.”

Dismantling Anti-Black Bias In Democratic Workplaces: A Toolkit

Our goal in creating this packet is to equip democratic workplaces with tools to see and address anti-Black racism when it happens, as well as creating systems and practices that undermine anti-Black racism. When we participate in a democratic workplace or collective, we take on the incredible responsibility of shaping an institution—and we therefore have incredible power to resist the harmful cultures, practices, and policies that reinforce anti-Black racism in mainstream institutions. But the persistent messages that we receive that reinforce anti-Blackness can just as easily infiltrate our workplaces if we’re not dedicated to building a shared vision for collective liberation that centers Black liberation and self-determination.

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