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EDI Video Transcript
Royal Roads University attracts talented people to work, teach, research, and learn.
A big part of how we do that is through our Canada Research Chairs, who are part of a federal program to recognize world-class scholars in their fields. The Canada Research Chairs Program has taken action to increase the representation from these four groups: women, persons with disabilities, Indigenous peoples, and members of visible minorities.
Members of these designated groups often experience systemic disadvantages in Canadian society. This is reflected by reduced leadership opportunities, lack of scholarly rewards, and a loss of their voices in research. This results in low representation and perpetuates a system of inequity.
Since 2011, staff, faculty, and students at Royal Roads have created and contributed to the Diversity Action Group to offer education, provide professional development, and to create positive and safe spaces for everyone in our community. The foundations created by the Diversity Action Group, have led to the initiatives of the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, or EDI Team.
The EDI Team is a partnership between the Office of Research and Human Resources driven by a passion for progress. While our initial work began with the Canada Research Chairs program requirements, we have since broadened our horizons. Our shared vision is to support a workforce that embraces, understands, and advances the best practices of equity, diversity and inclusion in research, scholarship, teaching, and human resources.
In this video we’re going to talk about the work of the EDI Team – where it came from, what we do, and where we’re headed.
EDI impacts all of us. Diversity means that each person brings their own individuality to the table, whether that be cultural, visible or invisible features of self, ability, religion, gender, socioeconomic background, sexuality, or one of the millions of other aspects that makes each of us unique.
Creating an inclusive environment means being able to bring all aspects of our own diversity to work every day. This will build a safer university that benefits from broad viewpoints, increased creativity and innovation, better research, and leads to an equitable organizational culture.
Over the last two years, the EDI Team has:
- Developed the institutional EDI plan with short- and long-term goals;
- Implemented a Human Resources campus-wide benchmarking survey, “Everyone Counts”;
- Conducted research into the experiences of our current and past Canada Research Chairs;
- Created the President’s Steering Committee on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, with executive, faculty, student, and staff members;
- Revised our recruitment processes to emphasize the importance of diversity and inclusion;
- Trained staff and managers on equitable hiring practices;
- Conducted a policy review to investigate existing policies;
- Revised and created new policies that support an inclusive, equitable environment; and
- Led training on implicit bias, gender diversity, and microaggressions.
This has given us a base on which to build as we work to integrate EDI into our university’s framework.
The EDI Team’s next focus is on two key resources for positive organizational change, which are:
- A recruitment management toolkit outlining inclusive practices and training for hiring managers; and,
- An EDI foundational course for all employees to provide an understanding of diversity and inclusion issues in the Canadian post-secondary environment;
These are two of many initiatives that we are using to build a campus culture where we can all be seen and see ourselves represented in our leaders.
We have the chance to design an equitable, diverse, and inclusive community for Royal Roads and across Canadian higher education. To be life changing – for everyone.