Anti-Black Racism Statement

Embrave Agency to End Violence echoes the deep concerns of the Black community and is committed to challenging Anti-Black Racism, including the systemic oppression faced by Black survivors of violence. Anti-Black Racism is a centuries-old problem, but we have observed recent events locally and on this continent with increasing alarm, as well as with renewed resolve and determination.

Canada has a longstanding history of dismissing concerns over Anti-Black Racism, but our communities know the excuse that racism is “not as bad” as our neighbour is a falsehood. Canada is a settler state, with systems like policing, education, health care, the judiciary and other structures centered on white supremist practices. Stronger social supports may mean that conditions are better for some low-income and marginalized groups in this country than in the US, but that is far from a complete picture.

Current rounds of protests against Anti-Black Racism come at a time when racialized communities are disproportionately impacted by a global pandemic. We also know that the cumulative impact of racism and structural and systemic inequalities profoundly impact the physical and emotional health of Black communities. In addition to racism, over-policing, surveillance and victim-blaming that Black communities experience, Black cis women and trans women are also highly vulnerable to state violence.

The pervasive and systemic nature of violence against Black women, girls, trans, genderqueer and non-binary people calls into question our reliance on these systems and structures of dominance as responses to Gender-Based Violence (GBV). Effective mechanisms of prevention, response, and intervention to end GBV must go beyond reliance on systems that are plagued with institutional racism and structural discrimination. Embrave Agency to End Violence plays an important role in challenging Anti-Black Racism within our organization as well as in the broader community.

As an organization built upon anti-racist and anti-oppressive values, we strongly believe the way forward begins with naming, challenging, and dismantling systems of oppression. We are committed to action on Anti-Black Racism. We know that silence is violence. Saying we are not racist is not enough, actively working to be anti-racist is required.

We unequivocally reaffirm that Black Lives Matter.