How to Be Anti-Racist: A Social Worker’s Perspective
What Is Anti-Racism?
How to Practice Anti-Racism Every Day
Examples of Anti-Racism at Micro-Mezzo-Macro Levels
Micro Level: Reflecting on personal biases and working to unlearn them
- When thinking about a racial incident you experienced:
Who was I in the situation, how did or didn’t I contribute and why? What did I leave with?
- When connecting with your personal history:
What values was I taught and which values have changed over time? What values do I want to have?
- When considering power and position:
What different decisions can I make and why? What is my sphere of influence? How can I facilitate change?
- When seeking direction for change:
How can I grow in this area? Why do I feel in opposition to a new perspective?
- When identifying opportunities for learning:
What can I learn from others? What can I learn about my impact on others?
- Speaking up about racism, microaggressions and racial injustice.
- Journaling about thoughts and experiences with racism.
- Recognizing your emotions and reactions to anti-blackness situations.
- Reading books, listening to podcasts or watching movies/documentaries about racial justice.
- Completing a training or course on anti-racism, micro-aggression and unconscious bias.
- Documenting your commitment to promote anti-racism, racial equity and social justice.
Mezzo Level: Identifying unjust norms and working to address them as a group
- What can I learn from the other people in the room?
- How can we establish a safe, nonjudgmental environment?
- How can we create a solution-based space to foster dialogue?
- What effect do I have on the people around me?
- What experiences can we reflect on together?
- Inviting a friend or family member to organize with you.
- Joining an anti-racism book club.
- Learning how racism affects the health of those around you.
- Having difficult conversations in-person or online.
- Calling out racism when you see it at home or at work.
Macro Level: Using influence and privilege to dismantle racist practices and policies
- What are the values of this organization or group?
- Who benefits from the structure of this organization?
- What influence do I have that I can leverage for good?
- Who is marginalized or shut out by the structure of this organization?
- What processes can we change to be more equitable and accessible?
- Calling representatives to support and promote racial justice in your community, city or state.
- Raising awareness about racial equity in your workplace.
- Joining a diversity, equity and inclusion committee.
- Participating in elections, petitions and protests promoting racial and social justice.
- Writing op-eds, blogs or articles that advance racial equity.
- Collaborating with organizations dedicated to advancing racial equity and social justice.