Everyone can do something to stop discrimination. Practicing simple acts every day will help you strengthen your skills to intervene when needed. Most people are not actively seeking to harm others, but many people will admit, they stood by when someone else was hurt because they didn’t know what to do or say.
1. Identify what you believe. Know where your beliefs originated and why they are important to you, your family and/or your friends.
2. Challenge yourself. Try to meet someone new. Try a different restaurant or coffee shop. Walk down a different street. Expand your world view by expanding your world.
3. Ask questions. Promote dialogue, but don’t engage in diatribes. Recognize that what has been done before is not always what is needed now. Why is it done that way? What is the history? Can you tell me more about that?
4. Listen. Seek to understand another perspective before judging it as wrong or strange. Try to understand the beliefs of someone from another faith or political party. Listen to the language used around you. Does it label or offend others?
5. Practice inclusion. Is there room for every voice at your staff meeting? Is every child included in the party? Have you listened to a teen lately? Have you asked an elder for their advice? Do you have a friend from another ethnicity or religion? Celebrate common ground and differences.
6. Speak up against injustice. Injustice happens in other countries, in other states and still in our own backyards. Whether its social, environmental, racial, legal, economic or other forms of injustice, use your voice to name the problem and begin to create change.
7. Take action. Don’t just think about equality, justice and inclusion. Take action to make it a reality.
8. Promote change. Change your mind and see what happens. Start with yourself and it is easier to ask others to change.
9. Be intentional. Do and say what is important to you. Choose to include others. Make intentional choices to end discrimination every day.
10. Support Community Tampa Bay! We envision a community free from discrimination where every individual is treated with dignity and respect. We are working daily in schools and communities to create inclusive leaders who want to change their communities. Your donation of time, talent and financial support enables us to reach more youth and adults with life changing opportunities.