FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  • What is diversity? Having a range of people with various racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, and cultural backgrounds and various lifestyles, experiences, and interests. Diversity is a group of people who are different in the same place. 

  • What is equity? Refers to fairness and justice and is distinguished from equality: whereas equality means providing the same to all, equity means recognizing that we do not all start from the same place and must acknowledge and make adjustments to imbalances. The process is ongoing requiring us to identify and overcome intentional and unintentional barriers arising from bias or systemic structures. 

  • What is inclusion? When everyone feels a sense of belonging and is valued for their differences and empowered to participate and contribute freely. 

  • What is belonging? The human emotional need to be an accepted member of a group. Whether it is family, friends, co-workers, a religion, or something else. People tend to have an ‘inherent’ desire to belong and be an important part of something greater than themselves. 

  • What is allyship? When a person of privilege works in solidarity and partnership with a marginalized group of people to help take down the systems that challenge that group's basic rights, equal access, and ability to thrive in our society.

  • What is intersectionality? The interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, and gender as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage.

  • Systemic versus systematic inequalities? Systemic or structural inequalities refer to how the unequal treatment of specific minority groups are maintained through policies, programs, systems and structures. Systematic inequalities are intentional practices that maintain inequities such as wage secrecy policies or segregation. 

  • What are microagressions? Subtle actions, comments, or statements that communicate a derogatory, hostile, or negative assumption based on someone’s identity group. They may be intentional or unintentional.