Posted by Executive Director on June 12, 2020 5:00 pm
The VUL stands in solidarity with Black members of our community. We seek to uphold and promote the values of inclusivity and diversity, and commit to speaking up to oppose racism and hate in all its forms.
The VUL Board and Staff have been listening, learning, and reflecting over the past few weeks to try to find a way to provide a thoughtful and meaningful response to the recent tragic events unfolding in the US and similar events reported in Canada. Our hearts go out to those impacted by violence and discrimination.
Racism has no place in our sport, our community, or our world. The sport of ultimate is for everyone, and everyone must be welcomed equally. With that, we recognize that many people today still do not feel welcome in organized sports, or are even actively excluded from them.
In the past few years, we have taken action on building inclusivity for women, trans and non-binary folk, and the LGBTQ+ community. We also know this is not enough – there is more work to be done to uphold our core value of inclusion. The VUL is part of a broader social structure that has benefited from systemic discrimination. For example, Black and Indigenous communities were dispersed from lands where we live and play ultimate. As an organisation we need to better understand the past and current impacts of these actions and increase our support for Black, Indigenous, People of Colour (BIPOC) communities in general.
Last fall the VUL released our new Code of Conduct which includes a requirement to demonstrate respect to all individuals regardless of ancestry, colour, and race, among other considerations. The Code of Conduct includes a formal complaint process, and we invite VUL members to share their experiences with board and staff members informally, as well.
At their next meeting, the Board of Directors will discuss how the VUL can better address racism and discrimination in our programs and communities. We will provide updates as appropriate when we have more to share.
For our members, we share the following resources as a starting point:
- Hogan’s Alley Society Resources
- Black Strathcona
- AUDL Anti-Racism Discussion Panel on YouTube hosted by Disc Diversity
- VUL Inclusivity
- VUL Policies (including Code of Conduct)