An ally is any person who takes actions, whether they be big or small, and works in solidarity and partnership with marginalised groups of people to take down the systems that challenge their basic rights, equal access, and ability to thrive in our society. Allyship is a journey of life-long learning.
So what does being an effective ally actually look like? Here are a few things you can do to better interrupt racism, gender-bias, anti-LGBTQ+, hate, and discrimination with your own actions.
#1 Bring Diversity & Inclusive Practices to the Table
Invite people from marginalised groups to gatherings. Ensure their contributions and expertise are heard.
#2 Own Your Privilege & Accept Feedback
Recognise that you may have advantages, opportunities, and resources to help others.
Seek feedback from marginalised groups, but recognise the power dynamics at play. Receive comments as a gift, and a chance to make meaningful change.
#3 See Something, Say Something.
Monitor your surroundings for racist, sexist, anti-LGTBQ+, or other discriminatory comments and behaviour. Be clear and decisive in shutting them down.
#4 Build Your Own Community Of Allies
Allies can broaden their impact by joining groups that fight racism and gender-based inequality.
Look for like-minded people in all parts of your personal and professional space, and then grow your base.
#5 Educate Yourself
An ally takes the time to read, listen, watch, and deepen their understanding of existing issues.
They request permission to enquire and approach any obstacles with humility and a learning mindset.
They recognise that increasing self-awareness is a continuous process, and embrace the journey.