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Respect, Diversity, and Inclusion

Welcome to the BCIT Respect, Diversity, and Inclusion (RDI) website. Here you will find:

Harassment and discrimination information; Policies, procedures, and guidelines; Board of Inquiry Procedures

Tools; Pride at BCIT; and Free Courses – Relearning Gender, Anti-Racism, Understanding Unconscious Bias, and Respectful Workplaces

Purpose

The RDI department helps BCIT foster a respectful and inclusive working and learning environment by creating awareness and belonging through education, events, and training.  The RDI team provides assistance and support to individuals with concerns of bullying, harassment, and discrimination and strives to help people resolve conflicts informally. We also assist individuals who have formal complaints and coordinate workplace investigations.

As a stand alone department the RDI office reports directly to the President’s office.

BCIT Accessibility

In accordance with the Accessible British Columbia Act, BCIT is establishing an Accessibility Steering Committee and related working groups. See the Accessible British Columbia Act FAQ’s for more information about the Act and Regulations.

The purpose of the committee is to assist the Institute in identifying barriers to participation and advising on how to remove and prevent such barriers in our community through the development of an Accessibility Plan. The BCIT community will have an opportunity to contribute to a more accessible and inclusive environment for staff, faculty, and students at BCIT.

Committee meetings will begin in the Fall of 2022. Guiding objectives for the committee are:

  • Access: Persons should have barrier-free access to places, events, and other functions that are  generally available in the community;
  • Equality: Persons should have barrier-free access to those things that will give them equality of opportunity and outcome;
  • Universal design: Access should be provided in a manner that does not establish or perpetuate differences based on a person’s disability; and
  • Systemic responsibility: the responsibility to prevent and remove barriers rests with the person or organization that is responsible for establishing or perpetuating the barrier.

The Committee will be co-chaired by the Associate Vice President of Academic Operations and the Director of the Respect, Diversity, and Inclusion (RDI) Office, and will report directly to the President. Care has been taken to ensure the Committee is reflective of the BCIT community and the diversity of persons in British Columbia. At least half of the members will be either persons with disabilities or individuals who support person with disabilities.

BCIT Standing in Solidarity Against Racism and Injustice

We have witnessed and heard about the many incidents of race-based violence within Canada and around the world. This ongoing struggle has highlighted the systemic racism that persists against Indigenous, Black, and other People of Colour (IBPoC). They are continually subjected to harassment, discrimination, and violence, rooted in white supremacy and racism.

The Anti-racism Framework is a collaboration of various people from across the BCIT community who committed to moving BCIT forward. This Framework aims to address racism against Indigenous people, Black and African Diaspora communities, and all other racialized groups as well as intolerance based on the intersecting identities of ethnicity, country of origin, religion gender, sexual orientation, ability, and neurodiversity.

We strongly encourage our BCIT community to get involved and support this important work. BCIT offers many avenues to further increase your knowledge of anti-racism, diversity, and inclusion, such as online learning modules, the RDI monthly staff newsletter, and Diversity Circles events to name just a few. The priority actions are: Education and Raising Awareness; Data Collection, Analysis, and Utilization; Human Resources and Policy; and Inclusive Learning Environment.

BCIT takes the physical and psychological safety of our community very seriously, and has a zero-tolerance policy towards racism and injustice. We are committed to providing a learning and working environment that is inclusive and respectful to all, and as such, condemns any and all forms of discrimination and harassment.

Educate yourself.

Self education is an ongoing process and we must work to recognize our own privilege, biases, and systemic discrimination. Understanding the role we all play is the first step in preventing and addressing racism. These books are a great starting point:

  • Subtle Acts of Exclusion: How To Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Xendi,
  • White Fragility Why it’s so hard for white people to talk about racism by Robin DiAngelo
  • they said this would be fun: Race, Campus Life, and Growing Up by Eternity Martis
  • Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What we See, Think, and Do by Jennifer L. Eberhardt
  • Blind Spot: Hidden Biases of Good People by Mahzarin R. Banaji & Anthony G. Greenwald

Free online courses.

Move from silent bystander to an active ally.

  • Remember, silence empowers the oppressor. Learn what you can do when you witness racism or other forms of bigotry.
  • Read – Subtle Act of Exclusion: How to understand, Identify, and Stop Microaggressions by Tiffany Jana and Michael Baran

If you have Privilege, acknowledge it.

  • So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
  • Me and White Supremacy by Layla Saad

Take the  #DifferentTogether Pledge

Other Resources for education and understanding:

Do you need help?

Mental health and wellness supports are available for students through Counselling & Student Development and for staff and faculty through Homewood Health.

If you have experienced discrimination or harassment while studying or working at BCIT please contact the Respect, Diversity, and Inclusion office.

RDI Services and InitiativesBCIT staff and students walking in the Vancouver Pride parade holding up the letters B C I T

 

The RDI Department also supports Diversity Circles.

Recognizing that more resources were needed to support and engage diverse groups in post-secondary education, the Diversity Circles project was founded in 2015. Diversity Circles supports staff, students, alumni, and the public with a series of panels, workshops, conversations, tools, and connections to support an effective model to engage with increasing diversity positively, sensitively, and strategically, by leveraging the power of community-based expertise, to drive responses to diversity and empower all participants in the diversity conversation. ASL interpreters are provided at every Diversity Circle event. A major contribution to the community is the “Moving Forward: Let’s Talk Anti-Racism” video. The Diversity Circles team has delivered over 100 workshops, launched mentoring and networking programs, and shared their findings across Canada.

Contact Us

Jackie Gruber, Director 604-451-6721

Tanya Buschau, Advisor 604-432-8538

Leah Gobin, Advisor 604-432-8782

Wendy McLeod, Coordinator 604-432-8409

Office Telephone: 604-432-8409 or 778-554-3190
Confidential Email: respect@bcit.ca
Office Location: SW01 1550 Burnaby campus

Please Note: Our voicemails and emails are only monitored by the RDI team. Your privacy and confidentiality is important to us.

We acknowledge that BCIT campuses are located on unceded Indigenous land belonging to the Coast Salish peoples, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) Nations.

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BCIT is a member of the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI)