For the past decade many corporations have been committed to DIVERSITY, ensuring they have diverse workforce, diverse, personnel, diversity represented at every level. I propose that it is time to move beyond DIVERSITY to EQUITY, in the same way it is time to move beyond TOLERANCE to INCLUSION.

What is the difference?

DIVERSITY:  defined as variety a variety of something such as opinion, color, or style (Encarta)

EQUITY: actions, treatment of others, or a general condition characterized by justice, fairness, and impartiality

TOLERANCE: the act of putting up with somebody or something irritating or otherwise unpleasant

INCLUSION: the addition of somebody or something to, or the presence of somebody or something in, a group or mixture

When a professional group is looking to fully incorporate their staff it’s dangerous to assume that everyone is ready to make the change. People come to work daily with their own bias and pre judgments of others; I was reminded of this today when I attended a workshop run by GLSEN and sponsored by a local corporation. It was great to mix with business professionals, all of whom told us when they were in school there was no GSA or public conversation about equity and inclusion. It was refreshing to hear how far we have come. It HAS gotten better, but corporations like schools are a microcosm of society and need to keep growing and pushing themselves and each other to evolve,

Published by Jane Bleasdale PhD

Jane.Bleasdale, PhD is Assistant Professor and Department Chair of Leadership Studies in the School of Education at the University of San Francisco (USF). Dr.Bleasdale has lived and taught in the United Kingdom, The Bahamas and the United States, Her career as an educator now spans three decades. Dr. Bleasdale previously served as a high school administrator focusing on equity and inclusion through personnel and student development Her doctoral research focused on equity and inclusion in high schools and specifically the experience of Black, Latino and LGBTQ students. She has recently conducted research on social and emotional wellness of students, the impact of school leaders on creating inclusive communities and critical feminist perspectives on leadership.Current research focuses on the experience and impact of women leaders with intersectional identities. Dr.Bleasdale is the principal investigator on a participatory action research project at USF collaborating with 10 doctoral students on a new paradigm for equitable leadership focused on critical feminst perspectives.

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