Our Commitment to Social Justice and Inclusion
“There is no such thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single-issue lives … Our struggles are particular, but we are not alone." – Audre Lorde, 1982
As a Center for Women and Gender Equity, it is our primary goal to address issues of gender equity on our campus and in our community through our programming and services. We also understand that it is our responsibility to approach issues of gender as always linked to issues of race, sexuality, class, ability, citizenship status, and all other categories of identity in which people are marginalized and face systemic oppression.
When we say “Women,” we mean all women; transgender women, women of color, immigrant women, queer women. White womanhood is not a default or universal experience and should not be the foundation for our feminism. When we say “Gender Equity,” we recognize gender as more than a binary of man or woman. We work to understand histories of medical racism against Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) on the basis of sex and gender, the harassment, violence, and discriminatory legislation transgender and gender non-conforming people continue to face, and individuals who have their genders erased because of a disability or their refusal to occupy gendered ideals.
To have a truly intersectional feminist lens that sees the interconnectedness of all injustice and oppression, something Lorde and many women-of-color feminist scholars have written about for decades, we need to combat relying on a single narrative or perspective in our feminism. As educators, and as a resource for BGSU and the surrounding community, we are committing to the following:
- We will create programming and workshops for women to unpack unconscious bias and privilege, for the purpose of educating women on how to be anti-racist in their actions and participate in the practice of allyship for Black, Indigenous, Women of Color (BIWOC).
- We will host or co-host regular book clubs on the writings of BIWOC and queer/trans people, with book purchases made from BIPOC and/or queer-owned bookstores.
- We will continue to host programming and events such as the Women of Color Leadership Summit, and will focus on contracting BIPOC and queer/trans individuals as speakers, performers, artists, and educators for programming whenever possible.
- We will provide direct support and education to students on advocacy and activism, so that students can exercise their voices on and off campus on issues of justice.
- We will continue to use our social media and other platforms to share out resources and events for campus and community groups working for racial justice, LGBTQ+ rights, and other struggles for justice, recognizing and supporting those who are already doing the work.
- We will remain open to criticism, feedback, and growth, responding to the needs of students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members.
Please email us at email@example.com, call us at (419) 372-7227, or contact us on social media with any questions, comments, or feedback about how we can better show up and advocate for marginalized people in our community. We are proud to be a part of BGSU and even prouder to work towards a more equitable future alongside you all in the firm knowledge that all Black Lives Matter.
The Staff of the Center for Women and Gender Equity & the Center for Violence Prevention and Education