July 3, 2020: Overview of next steps

A Town Hall focused on Anti-Racism, is scheduled for July 30, 2020, at 6 p.m. The Town Hall will be an opportunity for all members of our regional community to speak to the systemic racism that exists within our community and participate in dialogue discussing areas the region can address it. This Town Hall is our next step in creating an Anti-Racism Secretariat, similar steps to what is in development or already exists in other regions and municipalities.

One possibility of how the Secretariat might look is it would act as its own department within the region. Its focus would be on making recommendations to Council regarding regional services and programs that can positively impact the Black, Indigenous and other racialized communities. The community has highlighted Ottawa and Toronto as good blueprints to look at as a starting point. Moving forward, we will seek community feedback on gaps, areas of improvement, as well as how a similar framework could be adjusted and implemented for the Region of Waterloo.

After the Town Hall, we will be posting an application on this page for community members to participate in an advisory committee meeting. We will be choosing 10- 15 applicants. This advisory committee will have a set mandate and will be selected to represent a range of Black, Indigenous and racialized community members. Members will participate in one to two working sessions to inform regional staff on the intended function of the Anti-Racism Secretariat, and best practices for training and building capacity, both internally at the Region and externally as a community.

In the fall of 2020, Regional Council will discuss recommendations on the creation of an Anti-Racism Secretariat and implementation of an anti-racism framework, as well as training for staff and Council.

In addition to the Town Hall, and the formation for the advisory group, Council has directed regional staff to report back with an update on two internal initiatives: The Five Year Diversity and Inclusion Plan, and The First Nations, Metis and Indigenous Working Group.

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